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FOX's "Showtime At The Apollo"

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For over eight decades and counting, and even some time before that, The Apollo Theater has been a destination for some of the most memorable performances in live entertainment. The world renowned venue located on 125th Street in New York City’s immensely influential neighborhood of Harlem has been graced by the likes of, well, we’d be here forever if we tried to name all the amazing acts that’ve performed at The Apollo.

Even after all of this time, the venue still attracts an in-demand fanfare — that was proven just this past weekend with rap superstar Drake taking over for a two-night-only greatest hits set.

Drake Live From The Apollo Theater For SiriusXM And Sound 42

Source: Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty



RELATED:  Photos From The Apollo Theater That Scream “Black Excellence”

The Apollo has a history that’s way too dynamic to merely sum up as a music venue, especially when considering its place in Black history as a hub for the Harlem Renaissance that ushered in Black affluence at the dawn of the 20th century. Still, there’s no denying that our favorite musicians have always brought their best when heading Uptown to the big stage!


Keep scrolling to check out our selection of 25 classic Showtime At The Apollo performances during the peak of its 89-year history, and feel free to let us know if you think we skipped over your favorite:

25 Classic Showtime At The Apollo Performances  was originally published on

1. Sarah Vaughan – “These Things I Offer You For A Lifetime” (1956)

2. James Brown – “I Got the Feelin'” (1968)

3. Bob Marley & The Wailers – “So Much Trouble in the World” (1979)

4. Star Tribute – “Motown Salutes the Apollo” (1985)

5. The Temptations – “Treat Her Like A Lady” (1987)

6. Howard Hewett – “Once Twice Three Times” (1988)

7. The Cover Girls – “Because Of You” (1988)

8. Patti LaBelle – “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” (1989)

9. Stephanie Mills – “Home” (1989)

10. A Tribe Called Quest – “Bonita AppleBum” (1990)

11. En Vogue – “Hold On” (1990)

12. Lisa Stansfield – “All Around The World” (1990)

13. Boyz II Men – “It’s So Hard to Say Goodbye” (1991)

14. Jodeci – “Forever My Lady” (1991)

15. Chaka Khan – “The Woman I Am” (1992)

16. Prince & Lenny Kravitz – “When You Were Mine” (1993)

17. Mary J. Blige – “I’m Goin’ Down” (1995)

18. The Notorious B.I.G. – “One More Chance” (1995)

19. Kirk Franklin & The Family – “Melodies from Heaven” (1996)

20. Kool & The Gang – “Celebration” [for Apollo 200th Episode] (1996)

21. Aaliyah – “If Your Girl Only Knew” (1996)

22. Lil’ Kim & Puff Daddy – “No Time” (1997)

23. SWV – “Rain” (1998)

24. LL Cool J, Method Man, Redman, DMX – “4,3,2,1” (1998)

25. Destiny’s Child – “No, No, No Pt. 2” (1998)