240-hour Assembly Line Concert

AJ’s Music Café, located just outside Detroit in Ferndale, Mich., is hosting the “The Assembly Line Concert,” a 10-day, 240-hour concert that kicked off Friday to pay tribute to the auto industry and attempt to break the Guinness record for “longest concert by multiple artists.”

“Detroit is in all of us. We are all Detroiters, and this marathon is for the industry that made Detroit,” Café owner A.J. O’Neil told the Detroit News.

Martha Reeves of the Motown group Martha and the Vandellas, who is also a Detroit City Council member, got the concert going March 20 with her rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

Photo: AP Photo
Canadian Custom Officer Joe McParland, A.J. O’Neil and Butch Hollowel sing the Canadian National Anthem.

The concert will include at least 240 acts and focus on different aspects of the industry from workers to politicians to the media. One day of the concert will feature political leaders taking the stage, playing 24 one-hour sets. Autoworkers and local Detroit bands will also get their chance to let their voices be heard. The concert runs through March 30.

Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm took time out of her busy schedule to made a stop at the “Assembly Line Concert” and introduce one of the musical acts.

“We are ground zero for the loss of manufacturing jobs. We have to come together and hold up our brothers and sisters who by no fault of their own have lost their jobs,” Granholm said, according to the paper.

Last year Granholm sang during O’Neil’s “Danny Boy” marathon, in which the café owner earned a Guinness World Record for hundreds of people singing the Irish folk song “Danny Boy” continuously for 50 hours.

The Detroit News noted that three 2009 American-made vehicles are on display outside the café – the Dodge Challenger RT, the Pontiac G6 GT and the Ford Flex.

O’Neil hopes Americans will be inspired by the “Assembly Line Concert” and take home a similar vehicle from one of the Big Three – Chrysler, General Motors or Ford.

Concert attendees are asked to sign a pledge, either at the café or online, to buy an American car the next time they buy a vehicle.

O’Neil has invited Detroit legends Bob Seger, Kid Rock and Eminem to come out and support the event, as well as President Barack Obama.

Read the Detroit News articles here and here.

Sign the pledge to buy an American car here.