Kate Upton Declares Her Love for Tom Petty at Charity Gala
On Friday night in Los Angeles, music stars like Elle King, Norah Jones, Stevie Nicks, and more converged on the Los Angeles Convention Center to celebrate Tom Petty’s 2017 MusiCares Person of the Year award. In honor of both Petty’s music and charitable work, a multitude of artists—Nicks, Jones, and King included—paid tribute to the legend with covers of his songs, while fans like Helen Mirren and Kate Upton showed their support from the audience.
Upton, for her part stunned in an off-white satin halter top tucked into a long gold skirt, telling InStyle she was thrilled to be celebrating Petty’s legacy. “I love Tom Petty, and I think [MusiCares] is very important,” she said. “Every way they help music, it really does matter, and communities, and bringing people together.”
The event kicked off with cocktails and a silent auction, with attendees bidding on everything from Tom Petty artwork to VIP tickets to a Bruno Mars show with proceeds providing funding for MusiCares, a charity that assists musicians in need.
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Highlights of the evening included George Strait singing “You Wreck Me” and Elle King crooning “American Girl” in star-printed ankle booties. Earlier in the night, King told us Petty is one of her heroes, and proudly enthused, “I heard that he liked my cover of his song. So I feel honored to get to come sing it for him.”
Norah Jones went on to sing “Time to Move On” and “You Don't Know How it Feels,” and Lucinda Williams sang “Rebels” as Mirren, clad in a white ensemble, bobbed her head along with the tune.
Following an announcement that the event has raised over 8 million dollars, Petty walked on stage to a standing ovation, wearing a gray blazer and black pants. “Twenty years ago I would've been way too cynical to do this, but I'm 66 now and I thank you for this,” he said.
“I'm just so beyond honored to be here for MusiCares—something that does something for musicians,” he continued. “I know people who have been directly affected and they know how to do it. They don’t ask for a lot of paperwork and the money just shows up. They've helped so many people.
After he spoke to the crowd, Petty slipped on his tinted aviator shades, joined his band The Heartbreakers on stage, and performed “Waiting for Tonight” with The Bangles and strummed his guitar as Stevie Nicks joined him for “Stop Draggin My Heart Around”. “We couldn’t come out here without this lady right here,” Petty said. “She’s been my friend since 1978.”
With friends like these…