Archive for the ‘Good causes’ Category

“We can all find a way to help” — Willie Nelson

Sunday, August 4th, 2019

Willie Nelson, Dixie Chicks perform at private fundraiser (June 23, 2012)

Tuesday, July 23rd, 2019
by: Neil Vigdor

The country music legend — of “lonestar belt buckles and old faded Levis” fame — will headline a private fundraiser at the swanky Belle Haven Club June 23, Greenwich Time has learned.

The invitation-only concert will benefit the China Care Foundation, a charity established by Matt Dalio, a Brunswick School and Harvard graduate who is the son of billionaire hedge fund boss Ray Dalio.

The Dixie Chicks, who vaulted to the top of the country and pop charts in 1998 with songs such as “Wide Open Spaces” and “There’s Your Trouble,” will open for Nelson.

First Selectman Peter Tesei characterized the caliber of performers as a testament to the positive work of the foundation, which provides medical care, educational opportunities and a nurturing environment for Chinese orphans.

“Well, they know it’s for a good cause, so they’re probably willing to step up for it,” said Tesei, who is planning to attend the concert.

Nelson, 79, a seven-time Grammy winner synonymous with hits such as “On the Road Again,” “Mamma’s Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys” and “Always on My Mind,” is the latest A-lister to commit to the annual event.

Previous acts have included Dave Matthews, Eric Clapton, B.B. King, Sheryl Crow, Carlos Santana and the Allman Brothers.

“It’s a great event that they put on, on our behalf,” said Sarah Cramer, a coordinator for the Westport-based charity.

Farm Aid this is not, however.

The yacht club is located at the far end of a private peninsula with its own security force supplemented by off-duty Greenwich police officers hired by the music-obsessed hedge fund kingmaker.

Admission to the event, where music royalty perform under a large tent against the backdrop of Long Island Sound, is expected to surpass last year’s cover charge of $3,000 a head.

Bootlegging boaters have managed to circumvent the hefty cover, anchoring off the club in makeshift flotillas.

The younger Dalio, who is 27 and is slated to get his MBA from Stanford University this year, formed the nonprofit organization in 2000.

Dalio developed a keen interest in helping orphans after living and attending school in China as an 11-year-old. He became exposed to the orphanage system during a visit when he was 16.

“The whole story of China Care is quite moving in terms of Matt Dalio’s initial thoughts and ideas to do something as a young person and for it to flourish into something as big as it is,” Tesei said.

Dalio’s father is the founder of Westport-based hedge fund Bridgewater Associates and the 44th richest person in America on the list of billionaires, up from 55th last year.

A message seeking comment from the elder Dalio, who subsidizes the Greenwich Town Party, a Memorial Day weekend concert in its second year that lured Paul Simon and Dave Matthews, was left Monday at his hedge fund.

In Beijing, the China Care Foundation jointly operates a medical home for handicapped orphans with the Half the Sky Foundation.

There are now an estimated 50 China Care clubs at colleges and schools, including Brunswick, where the Chinese language department was endowed by the Dalio family in 2002.

“We do have a lot of student supporters,” Cramer said.

Both Nelson and the Dixie Chicks are not in the least bit shy when it comes to politics.

In 2003, Natalie Maines, the lead singer of the all-female trio and outspoken critic of President George W. Bush and the Iraq war, told concert-goers in London that she was “ashamed the president of the United States is from Texas.”

Nelson is a stanch supporter of decriminalizing pot and serves on the advisory board of NORML, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws.

On June 1, Connecticut became the 17th state to legalize medical marijuana.

Nelson also sells his own brand of biodiesel fuel and his tour bus runs on vegetable oil.

So which one of Nelson’s songs is the personal favorite of Tesei, Greenwich’s chief elected official?

You guessed it.

“On the Road Again,” Tesei said.

Read article here.

Toby Keith’s Oklahoma Twister Concert Slideshow (July 6, 2013)

Saturday, July 6th, 2019
On July 6, 2013, over 60,000 fans gathered to hear Toby Keith and his friends, and support the people devastated by at Tornado. The concert was held at the University of Oklahoma’s Memorial Stadium in Norman, Okla., just outside Oklahoma City and not far from Moore, a town hit hard by tornado in May of 2013.  Along with Toby Keith, was Willie Nelson, Garth Brooks, Trisha Yearwood, Ronnie Dunn, Mel Tillis, John Anderson, Sammy Hagar, Krystal Keith, Kellie Coffey, and (via satellite) Carrie Underwood. Related: Toby Keith Talks Oklahoma Tornado Relief Concert Despite the heat, remained energetic throughout, both for the artists and the cause. Proceeds from the concert will benefit the United Way of Central Oklahoma May Tornadoes Relief Fund.

Willie Nelson & Family, Celebrity Golf Tournament (June 30, 2012)

Sunday, June 30th, 2019

Photos: thanks to George Fowler


On June 30, 2012, Willie Nelson hosted the 1st Annual Celebrity Golf Tournament at the Pedernales Cut N Putt Golf Club, and raised funds to benefit four central Texas charities: Pedernales Fire Department, Helping Hands Ministries of Spicewood, The Children’s Music Foundation of Austin, and RunTex Carrozza Foundation.


Willie Nelson and Jerry Jeff Walker @ Hofheinz Pavillion for KPFT Fundraiser (June 22, 1975

Saturday, May 18th, 2019

Willie Nelson’s “Immigrant Eyes” Video showing at #CarefortheCaravan Event, (May 19, 2019)

Friday, May 17th, 2019

Willie Nelson is no (red-headed) stranger to speaking up for the downtrodden. In the ’80s he rallied to keep family farmers on their land with the Farm Aid concert series. In 2017, he led an all-star benefit for Hurricane Harvey relief. Now, the Texas music icon is raising his powerful voice to address the humanitarian crisis on the border.

Nelson is one of several Texas artists lending their support to #CareFortheCaravan, a grassroots mobilizing effort and donation drive organized by social justice group, Buffalo Tree Presents. The group is collecting donations at a series of Texas events. They plan to deliver essential supplies and clothing items to refugees at the South Texas border.

Austin audiences can catch a sneak peak of the video for Nelson’s new song “Immigrant Eyes” at the #CareFortheCaravan event at Still Whisky Company on May 19.

The event kicks off at 1 p.m. and includes an appearance from local television personality, Olga Campos Benz and performances from Kiko Villamizar, Atash, Bamako Airlines, Leti Garza, Tiarra Girls, and Grupo Massa. There is no cover to attend, but organizers urge attendees to bring donations from the list below.

Buffalo Tree Presents is also hosting a kickoff event in Dallas with Polyphonic Spree on May 18. They plan to drop off supplies in McAllen on May 20.

Buffalo Tree Presents is also hosting a kickoff event in Dallas with Polyphonic Spree on May 18. They plan to drop off supplies in McAllen on May 20.

Requested items include (new items only):

· Toiletries including deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrushes, combs, feminine hygiene products, etc

· Tennis shoes for men, women, children and infants of all sizes

· Clothes (pants, t-shirts, blouses, underclothing) for children and adults of all sizes

· Baby supplies for toddlers (diapers, baby wipes, baby bottles)

· Gift cards to purchase food items

· Resealable plastic bags (ziplock, etc)

· Phone cards

· Jugs of water

Willie Nelson sings on tribute to J. J. Cale (2014)

Thursday, April 25th, 2019

“Eric Clapton & Friends: The Breeze, An Appreciation of JJ Cale” features reinterpretations of 16 Cale tracks, performed by Clapton and cohorts like Willie Nelson, Tom Petty, John Mayer, Mark Knopfler and more.

Last July, Cale died in 2017 of a heart attack in San Diego. He was 74 years old. In 2006, Clapton collaborated with Cale for the first time in his career on the 2006 original album “Road to Escondido.” Clapton called it “the realization of what may have been my last ambition, to work with the man whose music has inspired me for as long as I can remember.”
JJ Cale, Musician and ‘After Midnight’ Writer, Dies at 74

Track List:

1. Call Me The Breeze (Eric Clapton)
2. Rock And Roll Records (Eric Clapton & Tom Petty)
3. Someday (Mark Knopfler)
4. Lies (John Mayer & Eric Clapton)
5. Sensitive Kind (Don White)
6. Cajun Moon (Eric Clapton)
7. Magnolia (John Mayer)
8. I Got The Same Old Blues (Tom Petty & Eric Clapton)
9. Songbird (Willie Nelson & Eric Clapton)
10. Since You Said Goodbye (Eric Clapton)
11. I’ll Be There (If You Ever Want Me) (Don White & Eric Clapton)
12. The Old Man And Me (Tom Petty)
13. Train To Nowhere (Mark Knopfler, Don White & Eric Clapton)
14. Starbound (Willie Nelson)
15. Don’t Wait (Eric Clapton & John Mayer)
16. Crying Eyes (Eric Clapton & Christine Lakeland)

Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Sheryl Crow, and friends, “We’re All For the Hall” Fundraising Concert (Nashville) (April 16, 2013)

Tuesday, April 16th, 2019
by:  Stephanie Pendergrass

With a lineup that included Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Kid Rock, Jason Aldean and Eric Church, a multitude of country’s rowdiest entertainers were along for the ride Tuesday night (April 16) when the fourth annual We’re All for the Hall concert made its way to Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena.

Benefitting the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, the concert series had previously raised $1.5 million for the museum’s operating expenses. The latest packed house no doubt helps the cause.

Keith Urban and Vince Gill served as musical directors for the three-hour concert which was aptly-titled Rebels and Renegades: The Outlaws Are In.

“We’ve got a hell of a lineup,” Urban promised

In the past, Urban and Gill have performed several of their own hits before sharing the stage with their guests. Because of this year’s lengthy list of entertainers, they kept their own opening performances brief.

Afterwards, Montgomery Gentry soon arrived and performed “One in Every Crowd” and “Gone,” followed by Brantley Gilbert, who sang “Country Must Be Country Wide” and his take on David Allan Coe’s “If That Ain’t Country.”

Trace Adkins took the stage after Gilbert, and the “Rough and Ready” star seemed to truly revel in having Urban and Gill backing him onstage.

“I gotta take a picture of my guitar players,” he said before snapping a photo and promising to tweet it, even though the shot included a one-finger salute from Gill.

Adkins’ set included his meaningful track “Just Fishin’” along with “Ladies Love Country Boys.”

Next up, Rosanne Cash performed “Long Black Veil,” a Lefty Frizzell hit she described as “one of the greatest country songs ever written,” along with her own “Seven Year Ache.”

In true Outlaw fashion, there wasn’t a great deal of chit-chat between sets. Each performer simply did what they do best. Billy Joe Shaver, for instance, walked out to sing “I’m Just an Old Chunk of Coal” and “Live Forever,” then subtly strolled off stage to make way for Church. Instead of performing his own hits, Church opted for The Band’s “Ophelia” and a more obscure song, Jim Ford’s “Big Mouth USA.”

Before beginning her set, Jessi Colter, wife of the late Waylon Jennings, explained, “I’m here to represent Waylon, a man who personified the Outlaw.” The timeless artist glowed as she performed “Why You Been Gone So Long,” “I’m Not Lisa” and the first song she wrote after Jennings passed away, “You Were My Mountain.”

Kicking off the third hour of music, Kid Rock filled the arena with energy with “Born Free” and “All Summer Long.”

The screaming fans stayed on their feet as Aldean then arrived to sing “Take a Little Ride” and “My Kinda Party.”

Tim McGraw won the award for most elusive entrance of the evening. Walking out before Urban had a chance to introduce him, fans went crazy when they saw him dressed in a white button-down shirt and his signature tight jeans. From there he belted out “How Bad Do You Want It” and “Real Good Man.”

Perhaps one of the most memorable moments of the night was a solo performance from Hank Williams Jr. Giving Urban, Gill and the rest of the band a break, Williams sang an acoustic medley of “Whiskey Bent and Hellbound,” “All My Rowdy Friends (Have Settled Down),” “Theme from The Dukes of Hazzard” and “I Walk the Line.”

“If you go to the Hall of Fame, you’re going to learn a lot, like June Carter Cash is my godmother,” Williams said as he strummed the first few chords of the song. At first listen, Williams’ delivery of “I Walk the Line” sounded so close to Johnny Cash, I had to look at the big screen to make sure he wasn’t actually lip-synching.

Although Loretta Lynn was originally scheduled to perform, she was forced to cancel her appearance due to a close associate’s illness.

“The role of Loretta Lynn will be played by Sheryl Crow,” Urban explained. She came out to perform “Picture” with Kid Rock and her 1996 hit “If It Makes You Happy.”

After Crow, legendary singer-songwriter Kristofferson took centerstage and belted out “Sunday Morning Coming Down” and “Me and Bobby McGee.”

The night’s final solo came from Nelson. As the audience jumped to its feet to welcome the country icon, he sang “On the Road Again” and “Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die.”

Urban and Gill then brought all the night’s entertainers back onstage for a rousing rendition of Hank Williams Jr.’s “Family Tradition,” which included the back-and-forth, question-and-answer chorus fans can’t help but sing along to.

Though he’s unsure what next year’s theme might be, before giving his farewells for the night Urban promised fans, “Here’s to All for the Hall Five.”

Generations: A Concert to Benefit Aids (March 26, 1994)

Tuesday, March 26th, 2019

“They’re the luckiest horses in the world”

Monday, March 25th, 2019

BRIARCLIFF, Texas – A world away from the stage, and with the steering wheel of his old pickup truck instead of a guitar in hand, Willie Nelson loves few things more than to go on a drive around his 700-acre chunk of the Texas Hill Country near here.

He calls his ranch “Luck” and smiles as he explains, “When you’re here, you’re in Luck, and when you’re not, you’re out of Luck.”

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Over 70 horses roam Nelson’s ranch, most of which he rescued before they could be sent to slaughterhouses.

“My horses are probably the luckiest horses in the world,” Nelson said. “They get hand-fed twice a day, and they were just ready to go to slaughter is probably the last thing they remembered, so they’re happy horses.”

Nelson has included his love for horses in a CD that will be released in early summer. It’s a song entitled “Ride Me Back Home.”

As he approaches his 87th birthday, Nelson is still touring and spending about 200 days on the road.

“It’s a lot of traveling and being away from home,” Nelson said. “But that’s what we do.”

With the exception of a benefit performance in 2018 for then-senatorial candidate Beto O’Rourke, Nelson’s shows are void of politics.

“We leave all of that at home,” Nelson explained. “I think that’s why a lot of people show up, because they don’t have to worry about what they’ve been watching on TV all day.”

Though in good health and living a relatively stress-free life, Nelson noted that it hasn’t always been that way, as reflected in troubles he had with the IRS.

Nelson said, “I remember that I remember those guys.” He’s since settled his debt and moved on.

“You’re supposed to get a little smarter as we get older,” Nelson said with a smile. “Every now and then, I think I’m getting a little smarter, but I’m not sure.”

Among the things he remains focused on are advocating for the legalization of marijuana, marketing his brand of marijuana, called “Willie’s Reserve,” where it’s legal and raising money for American farmers during his annual Farm Aid Concerts.

Retirement, Nelson says, is not a part of the conversation.

“I retire after every show,” Nelson said. “I say, ‘That’s it, I’m not goin’ no more,’ but then we hang out awhile and people (his band) feel like playing, and so we go play again.”

The making of “We Are the World”

Monday, February 25th, 2019

This day in Willie Nelson history: Willie Nelson performs for soldiers @Brooke Army Medical Center (2/17/06)

Sunday, February 17th, 2019

Staff and patients gather on three levels to watch Willie Nelson and his band perform Feb. 17 at Brooke Army Medical Center.  — Photo by Brian Guerra
by Nelia Schrum and Andricka Hammonds

When the 2006 San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo pulled up stakes Feb. 19, it left the wounded warriors recovering at Brooke Army Medical Center here and hospital staff with fond memories of Texas and cowboy hospitality.

Texas legend Willie Nelson and his family band treated the hospital to a concert in the Medical Mall Feb. 17, playing to a packed audience of staff and patients. Opening with his hit, “Whiskey River,” he sang signature ballads like “On the Road Again,” “Crazy” and “Mamas, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to be Cowboys.”

Nelson played for 90 minutes. Following his performance, he signed autographs and posed for pictures with patients and staff for another hour.

The Willie Nelson band played at BAMC in February 2005 performing 11 numbers. But Nelson had to cut his performance for the 2005 Stock Show and Rodeo because he was suffering from laryngitis.

“I wanted to come back again and play for the soldiers because I didn’t feel I had performed at my best last year,” Nelson said, adding his throat since has recovered.

Willie Nelson Performs for the Troops, Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas (February 2006)

Saturday, February 2nd, 2019

Fan Fueled Auction: Help replace instruments lost in California Fire — bid on items from Willie Nelson, Lukas Nelson, Neil Young and More

Tuesday, December 18th, 2018

Join us in raising funds to replace instruments that were lost in the Camp Fire in Butte County, CA.

It’s an online auction! Just scroll through the items posted on this page and leave a comment with your bid amount. Each item has a minimum bid listed. The auction will run until 11:59pm (Pacific) on 12/28/2018. Any bids placed after that time will not be considered. Winners will be notified on 12/29/2018 via Facebook Messenger, and will have 24 hours to make their “winning bid amount” donation through this fundraising page.

Upon verification of payment, items will be shipped out. (Our donors will get things out in the mail within 5 days.) After 24 hours, if the winning bid donation for an item is not received, the next higgest bid will be notified and will have 24 hours to make their ‘bid amount’ donation (Please don’t make us go through all that! Check back on 12/29/18!)

You are always welcome to make a direct donation to the cause, but that donation cannot be used towards a bid. Bids MUST be made as a comment on the photo of the item you’re interested in.

California Bluegrass Association
US 501(c)(3) Nonprofit Organization
To promote Bluegrass, Gospel & Old Time music in CA

Arts, Culture and Philanthropy

Based in Sacramento, CA

Learn more at

Receiving donations from Network for Good within 45-75 days after a donation, depending on enrollment. Learn more.

Support Farm Aid; make a difference in a family farmer’s life

Thursday, December 13th, 2018

Photo: Laurie Bonneau

For 33 years, Farm Aid has been a beacon of hope for family farmers — whenever they need it. And we’ve done far more than that. Every day, we connect family farmers around the country with the resources they need to make it through tough times and to gain access to land, credit and markets so that they remain resilient.

When farmers call the Farm Aid Hotline, we’re there to take the call. This year the calls have been non-stop, and we’ve increased our staffing to be sure we’re doing all we can to support farmers who reach out to us. All signs point to another tough year ahead, with falling incomes and rising production costs. As strong as farmers are, Farm Aid will continue to fight for them.

Your gift keeps Farm Aid strong, so that we’ll always be there for farmers when they need us most. Help us continue this critical work.