Major Promoters, Music Rising Present Summer Concert Benefit Auctions

(CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — More than 60 artists scheduled to perform summer concerts are joining forces with Ticketmaster and four of the nation’s largest concert promoters, Live Nation, House of Blues, AEG Live, and Nederlander Concerts, along with Gibson Guitar for online ticket auctions to raise funds in support of Music Rising, the campaign to replace instruments and equipment lost by Gulf Coast musicians in Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

Beginning Saturday, April 1, 2006, online auctions are scheduled to launch on ticketmaster.com where fans can bid for tickets to more than 80 summer concert events nationwide including select performances by Tim McGraw and Faith Hill, Def Leppard and Journey, Queensryche, Melissa Etheridge, Sammy Hagar, Ben Harper, Brad Paisley, The New Cars and Blondie, and many others.

Each Music Rising Auction will feature four premium location tickets for venues with reserved seating, or four general admission tickets for general admission events. Along with tickets, the majority of auctions will each include one Epiphone guitar autographed by one or more of the show’s performing artists or band members.

New auctions for additional concert events are scheduled to launch each Saturday throughout the month of April. Many of the Music Rising Auctions, including those for concerts at Gibson Amphitheatre in Los Angeles, offer a special advance opportunity for fans to purchase tickets before they go on sale to the general public. For more information, visit www.ticketmaster.com/musicrisingauctions.

Net proceeds from the auctions will be donated to Music Rising, the musical instrument replacement fund founded by U2’s The Edge, legendary music producer Bob Ezrin and Gibson Guitar Chairman and CEO Henry Juszkiewicz along with the Guitar Center Music Foundation and MusiCares. Gibson Guitar is providing the Epiphone guitars included in the auctions.

"The Central Gulf Coast region has one of the most vibrant music cultures in the world,” Edge from U2 explained in a statement. “That culture was almost eradicated in the storms of last summer. We need to help bring it back. Music Rising is helping thousands of musicians affected by the hurricanes to gain a foothold on their future. But there is still so much to do to ensure that the music rises again. Every dollar collected by Music Rising goes toward musical instruments, equipment and gear for qualified musicians and music organizations in New Orleans and the Central Gulf. Ticketmaster’s Music Rising Auctions offer us a way to come together as musicians, as an industry and as fans of every genre of music to make a difference.”

“Musicians in New Orleans and the Central Gulf Coast need our help,” said Arthur Fogel, President of Live Nation’s The Next Adventure. “And beyond the professional musicians, there are hundreds of churches, schools and community groups that lost their instruments and gear and simply do not have the funds to replace them. As concert promoters, we’re ideally positioned to align our collective summer concerts in support of the Gulf Coast. Bob Ezrin and I discussed this with Terry Barnes, who pledged Ticketmaster’s support, and the Music Rising Auction idea grew within a week to include commitments from all four of the country’s national promoters. Together with the artists and with Gibson Guitars, we are able to make a real difference — not just for those individuals and groups whose instruments we replace, but for the health of the whole region.”

The Music Rising campaign’s goal is to put musical instruments back into the hands of musicians who lost everything in the hurricane disasters, helping them to regain their livelihoods, and to replace the instruments lost by churches, schools and community groups, in order to rebuild the heart and culture of the Central Gulf Region. Music Rising is administered by MusiCares. –by CelebrityAccess Staff Writers

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