Performers on the bill are Jackson Browne, Alice Cooper, David Crosby and Graham Nash, Sam Moore, Nils Lofgren, Keb “Mo”, Jerry Riopelle, Dar Williams, Ozomatli, and Calexico. The event will also feature speakers, including Ron Barber, who was among those wounded on January 8, NASA astronaut Mark Kelly (congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords‘ husband), Lea Marquez Peterson (president of the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce) and Tucson Mayor Bob Walkup (who introduced a nation-wide Civility Accord at the winter legislative meeting of the U.S. Conference of Mayors in Washington, D.C. on January 18, which has since been signed by almost 200 mayors).
“When I was in the ICU, I thought a lot about what it would take to help our community heal and unify,” says Ron Barber. “There was a huge outpouring of goodwill, kindness and compassion after the shooting, such a contrast to what happened that day. My family and I wanted to find a way to harness that goodwill to do meaningful things in the community. In the short term, we can help those whose lives were affected on January 8. In the long term, we will work toward improving awareness of mental health issues and services and changing the tone of how we interact with each other in our schools, our communities, and in public policy discussions.”
In addition to honoring those who lost their lives or were injured physically and emotionally on January 8, the fund’s stated objectives include: paying tribute to the first responders, citizens and medical staff who helped after the shooting; ensuring that individuals who witnessed the shootings will have the resources they need to address the emotional trauma they endured that day; increasing community understanding of mental illness and services, sponsoring programs, discussions and other activities in public schools, faith communities and in the political arena; supporting concerts and artistic events to promote civil discourse regarding public policy issues and respect for different points of view.
Tickets go on sale February 19 at 10 a.m. through the Tucson Convention Center Ticket Office 260 S. Church Ave. (10 a.m. – noon), on the web at Ticketmaster.com, by phone (800) 745-3000 and all Ticketmaster outlets.
Slash: I don’t know. I don’t really have an idea as to what I’m supposed to be from any kind of real perspective. People develop their own idea. The cool thing about Twitter or Facebook was it’s given me a chance to reach out to anybody who is interested as opposed to having to issue press releases…. or leaking stuff out to reliable sources. It puts you more in control of your own promotion or just to be more square with fans in general.
The Charlotte Observer: When did you realize Myles [Kennedy] was the [right singer] for [your solo] tour?
Slash: When he came in and did the second (song) I thought this is the only guy that could handle all this material…stuff from the solo record and GUNS N’ ROSES and VELVET REVOLVER. Myles was just so capable. We didn’t have any prior relationship. He happened to be on a break (from ALTER BRIDGE). He accepted. At that point I only had two weeks to rehearse with a band and only a week of that I could spend with Myles.
The Charlotte Observer: Your experience with notorious singers is well known. Is personality something you consider?
Slash: Beggars can’t be choosers. The first most important thing is to find individuals who are musically capable and then you have to take into account whatever their personality is…. It’s something you need to accept within reason if they play the way you want them to play. A lot of musicians are crazy and that’s what makes them great musicians.
The Charlotte Observer: Where does VELVET REVOLVER stand on finding a new singer?
Slash: There was truth to the rumor that we were looking at Corey Taylor (SLIPKNOT, STONE SOUR), but then I left for tour. So there’s nothing being done at the moment. No decision.
Read the entire interview from The Charlotte Observer.