In an uplifting, hip set, WRLDFMS Tony Williams and band Terminal D rendered live covers of classic songs by David Bowie, Prince, Kanye West, and Lenny Kravitz in “The Fame Medley.” Taking place at the electrifying and immersive artistic space of the Psychedelic Robot in Dallas, Texas, the colorful tone of the performance was already determined. Combining his roots in rock, funk, and soul, Williams creates a highly distinguished experience as he “takes flight and soars through and around the inner-workings of psychedelica.”
Williams begins his set with David Bowie’s “FAME,” a song that he always desired to cover. “For years I never knew what he was saying … that faaaaaame … for years I didn’t even know who the artist was,” he said. “But sonically it was always the funkiest and most psychedelic representation of a far away musical landscape that I was yet to explore.”
Next up, the funkiness of “KISS” by Prince. Williams reflected on the meaning that this particular Prince song had on his life: “I remember back when I was in my twenties just starting out forming and fronting bands, we always had a Prince cover in the repertoire and Kiss was one of ‘em. Every band in the 80’s and 90’s had a Prince joint in the bag, else you wuddn’t funky,” he said.
The rendition of Lenny Kravitz’s “Fly Away” is an ode to Williams’ rock band days. “There was a stint early on where I was playing in rock bands. That’s when the magic happened for me, after cutting my teeth in gospel, soul, and funk, rock was the sound that stretched my musical sensibilities and enabled me to see melodies through a different set of lenses. Lenny always had cool lenses,” said Williams.
The set ends with Kanye West’s “We Major,” a song where Williams was given a well-known shoutout by West and sang a beautiful melody for the track. Listeners get to witness this simple yet inspirational melody in all its glory during this special final tune.
The energetic band, Terminal D, brought even more life to these covers, successfully matching Williams’ vibrating energy. Band members include Andre Johnson, Jordan Carr, Mauricio Silva, King Kie, Jeremy Thompson, Q “Philly” Leonard, LeManuel Williams, Jordan Jacques, and Brett Lamel.
Below, watch “The Fame Medley.”