MSG To Host The Big Apple To The Big Easy On September 20

(CelebrityAccess MediaWire) —
Madison Square Garden will host The Big Apple To the Big Easy, New York City’s live concert for the Gulf Coast, on September 20, to support the long-term relief and rebuilding efforts following Hurricane Katrina. The concert event will feature New Orleans musicians joined on stage with many of music's biggest names, including Elton John; Jimmy Buffett; Rod Stewart; John Fogerty; Bette Midler; Loggins and Messina; Stevie Nicks; Lenny Kravitz; Earth, Wind & Fire; Fats Domino; the Neville Brothers; The Original Meters; Allen Toussaint; the Dirty Dozen and The Rebirth Brass Band.

Madison Square Garden is underwriting all costs related to the event and has pledged an additional $1 million dollar donation to begin the event’s fundraising efforts. One gundred percent of all proceeds will go directly to the long-term rebuilding of the area, with individual charities announced in the coming days.

Through the Concert for New York City, held in October, 2001, following the September 11 tragedy, Madison Square Garden and Cablevision joined with numerous corporations to raise more than $35 million dollars. A combined effort in the Big Apple to the Big Easy provides the entire New York community with a way to give back to another American region in need.

Veteran television producer Ken Ehrlich (“The Grammy Awards”) and Quint Davis, president of Festival Productions, Inc. and producer/director of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and Essence Music Festival, will serve as executive producers of the Big Apple to the Big Easy event, which will celebrate the rich musical tradition of New Orleans. Ehrlich has produced 25 Grammy Award telecasts, created and produced the "MTV Movie Awards" and "Divas" and hundreds of hours of specials, concerts and live events. Ehrlich and Davis have worked together often over the years on shows that featured New Orleans, Jazzfest and New Orleans musicians.

"In the midst of this national crisis, to have the City of New York, which has known such tragedy itself, to reach out to the citizens of New Orleans is a wonderful thing, and to do it in such a way that celebrates the rich traditions of New Orleans music shows an understanding and compassion that is truly heartwarming", Ehrlich and Davis said in a statement. –Bob Grossweiner and Jane Cohen