John McEuen Makes Appeal For 9/11 Benefit Concerts

John McEuen of the The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band has made an appeal to all
agents, promoters, artists and managers for artists on the road to perform on 9/11,
but to make it a benefit concert to aid local emergency rooms across the U.S.
CelebrityAccess is proud to pass on to our readers. In his appeal, McEuen
writes:

"During my talent buying for this year's Deadwood Jam XII I noticed very few
acts and
venues have dates on 9/11. Many acts are out between the 9/8 and 9/15; most
apparently are shying away from 9/11 as a
play date. If we look at this from a positive angle we can make it a winning day
for all.

"After talking over this idea with the rest of my group (Nitty Gritty Dirt
Band) I went ahead with Keith Miller (WMA) and Chuck Morris' help, and we
are under way. I
now propose the same to all the performing groups on the road this September
week: do
perform on 9/11. But, give the day to small town America, the backbone of our
country, with a
benefit show that celebrates our abilities to soar beyond adversities and use our
talents to
raise hard cash for a local cause – the Emergency Medical Center (emergency
rooms are the
first place we all turn to after any disaster event, be it caused by tornado, fire,
earthquake,
personal accident, or terrorist) is our choice and suggestion to others.

"Most of America's towns bemoan the lack of funding for even normal
operation of their medical emergency services. Our benefit will help the
Emergency Medical
Service of Bemidji, MN, and fits perfect in our routing.

"Keith and his WMA team, together with Chuck, came up with the right venue in
about a
week… after the offer went out we easily had at least 5 good options to choose
from, and this
one fit right in to the routing. The rest is easy.

"You (acts, agents, managers, promoters) can put one together … it can be done.
In today's
world of email, artwork downloads, fax, and cell phones we know a show like
this can be
mounted by pros like all of us with 3-4 weeks notice . We have 5.

"The town selection could be based upon sound business decisions:
1. well routed

2. decent venue

3. noncompetitive with surrounding dates

4. small secondary/tertiary markets (to be able to dominate local media
with the news and not be competing with blockbuster weekends of major markets
-I suggest
25,000 or less population.). Places that have not had shows in a while… ones that
are passed
by. Grass roots…

"Radio will jump on it… (already after first hearing about it the two
main stations in Bemidji committed to full support), papers will love it…
hotels will want to comp rooms (WITHOUT asking we will have two days of
rooms)….towns
will make money for their EMS (about $45,000 in this case)…corporate sponsors
could come on
board for signage and cash showing support.. etc.

"This can be a great gift and expression of thanks from the touring artists
to the people whose towns we drive thru all the time. Simply put, imagine 100
shows on 9/11
directly helping local EMS centers. My band and I have been helped many times
over the
years by these dedicated people. (I owe my life to one in St. Louis three years
ago.) I am sure
others have stories about them.

"All acts will save money by doing what they love and are out there to do: making
people
happy with music, and play for their 'dinner and rooms'. Throw out the rider
(except for basic
tech needs). Possibly acoustic… smaller or good sized halls… save money on
production…

"Remember the old mantra? It can be true: Music for the people…."

John McEuen of the The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band

August 2002

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