'We Love NYC, The Homecoming Concert' set for Great Lawn despite surging COVID cases

New York City's concert to celebrate its recovery from the coronavirus pandemic despite surging cases and hospitalizations due to the delta variant, is set to take place Saturday, August 21 on the Great Lawn in Central Park.

We Love NYC, The Homecoming Concert will feature a star-studded lineup including  Jennifer Hudson, Bruce Springsteen, Paul Simon, Andrea Bocelli, Carlos Santana, Jon Batiste, Andrea Bocelli, Kane Brown, LL Cool J, Elvis Costello, Earth, Wind & Fire, Lucky Day, Kenny "Babyface" Edmonds, Cynthia Erivo, Jimmy Fallon, Jennifer Hudson, Wyclef Jean, Journey, The Killers, Gayle King, Don Lemon, Barry Manilow, The NY Philharmonic, Polo G, Carlos Santana, Paul Simon, Patti Smith, Bruce Springsteen, and Rob Thomas.

"It will celebrate a spectacular range of musical genres, styles, and eras while including some of the most iconic artists in the history of music, of modern music," said producer Clive Davis.

"I am excited to see everyone, you know, all the artists," said Santana during FOX 5 NY morning program, ‘Good Day New York.’ "It is wonderful to partake in this global celebration of coming back to New York in Central Park the center of the world which is New York and sharing hope and courage with everyone."

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Only those vaccinated will be allowed to attend. 

The concert will be the culmination of a weeklong celebration of the city's recovery.

Critics said the lineup wouldn't encourage more vaccinations of younger New Yorkers as the city had hoped.

Billboard Magazine reporter Neena Rouhani, who covers hip-hop and R&B, said this lineup is not what twenty-somethings are tapped into. 

"You don't see Bruce Springsteen on TikTok very often so I'm not exactly sure this is the lineup to compel young people to get vaccinated," she said.

"But let's not kid ourselves — the Central Park concert has some of the biggest stars in history," Deputy Press Secretary Mitch Schwartz said. "It's a major draw and a vaccine incentive unlike any other."

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The Great Lawn's capacity is 60,000. 80% of the tickets were free to the general public while 20% were for VIP purchase. There will be no social distance requirement for those vaccinated.

The show starts at 5 p.m. Gates open at 3 p.m.