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DTE/Pine Knob concerts were always "an honor" for Eddie Money

By Gary Graff
ggraff@medianewsgroup, @GraffonMusic on Twitter

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Summers will never be the same in the metro area after the passing of Eddie Money on Friday, Sept. 13.

The veteran rock singer said in a recent interview that his regular appearances at the DTE Energy Music Theatre/Pine Knob -- many of them opening the season -- were "the most exciting show I do every year. It's a rel privilege and a real honor and it really puts a feather in my cap...The (DTE) show means a lot to me."

According to 313 Presents, Money -- best known for hits such as "Two Tickets to Paradise," "Baby Hold On" and "Take Me Home Tonight" -- layed a Memorial Day Weekend show as part of the venue's opening blast each of of the past 28 years. "I think it was just symbolic of summer," 313 Interim President Tom Wilson said on Friday. "Eddie would draw 13,000, 14,000, 15,000 people every year, not just because it was Eddie Money but because it was, 'Here we go! Summer's about to begin.'

"And he always gave you a good show. He had enough hits that you'd have to dance a little bit and shake off the winter and just have some fun. We're going to miss him."

Wilson calls the association with Money "a marriage of convenience which became sort of a love fest between him and us and him and the crowd." Money became the venue's most frequent season opener because of availability, Wilson explained. "Every years it's a matter of 'Who do we start the season with?' and you're sort of subject to who's out touring. Then we had the idea, 'Who's always available,' and it was Eddie because he wasn't quite big enough to go on formal tours. So he'd be around and you could call four or five months in advance and he'd pencil it in, so we started to bring him in every year"

Money acknowledged that the DTE/Pine Knob shows were usually his biggest of the year in terms of attendance. "I think he recognized it was a big deal for him," Wilson said. "His agent could say 'Eddie just did 14,000 at Pine Knob and take that to the next place and the next and the next place."

In an official statement, 313 Presents expressed "tremendous sadness" over Money's death and sent "our deepest condolences to Eddie's wife Laurie, his entire family and his countless friends and fans at this difficult time."

Money, 70, announced earlier this summer he was being treated for stage four Esophageal cancer. Earlier this week it was announced those treatments had been suspended because he was suffering from pneumonia. During his career the former New York police cadet released 10 studio albums and sold more than 47 million records.

The first song Money recorded for his 1977 debut album was the Miracles' Motown classic "You Really Got a Hold on Me." "I'm a huge Motown fan," Money once says. "Smokey Robinson said to me, 'I like your version better than the Beatles'. I said, 'Smokey, I hate to tell you this, but I like my version better than YOUR version.'"

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