Twenty-nine years after the first Farm Aid concert in 1985, this inspirational day of music and praise for the American family farm will be taking place on September 13, 2014 at the Walnut Creek Amphitheater in Raleigh, North Carolina. Constructed by the City of Raleigh in 1991 and covering 77 acres, the beautiful outdoor music venue has seating capacity of nearly 7,000, with approximately half that being under cover, while the lawn holds room for nearly 14,000 bringing the total capacity of the venue to almost 21,000. Tickets range in price from $49 to $175, and as of the time of this post, tickets are still available.
Farm Aid has raised more than $45 million to strengthen the family farm system of agriculture and keep farm families on their land since its beginnings nearly 30 years ago. Raleigh will welcome the 2014 concert lineup of legendary Willie Nelson, Neil Young, John Mellencamp, Dave Matthews–Tim Reynolds duo and the Preservation Hall Jazz Band. Also to be featured at Walnut Creek are Jack White, Gary Clark Jr., Jamey Johnson, Delta Rae, Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real, Carlene Carter, Todd Snider, Insects vs Robots, Raelyn Nelson Band and Jesse Lenat. The performers, who all donate their time to the longest running benefit concert series in America, deserve special praise.
The 2014 concert in Raleigh is the first Farm Aid concert to be held in North Carolina. In 1985, the University of Illinois’ Memorial Stadium in Champaign, Illinois was the site of Farm Aid’s first concert before an enormous crowd of 80,000 people. Performers included Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp, Bob Dylan, Billy Joel, B.B. King, Johnny Cash, Bonny Raitt, Tom Petty & the Heart Breakers and Roy Orbison. The Wikipedia article on Farm Aid lists all of the concert venues and performers in Farm Aid’s illustrious history. If you’re within driving distance of Raleigh next Saturday, tickets are still available as of the date of this post for a concert not to be missed.
(Frank W. Barrie 9/6/14)