Flood Victims Get Boost From Garth BrooksDecember 18, 2010 - 1:06 PM | by: Elizabeth Prann
Aside from an occasional show in Las Vegas, Brooks came out of retirement for a week to help the tens of thousands of Tennesseeans who are still recovering from historic floods that ravaged the state seven months ago.
“If you were ever going to come to a Garth show, this is the one,” Garth Brooks said.
His band is in the middle of a nine-concert run at Bridgestone Arena in downtown Nashville. Brooks hasn’t held an arena concert since 1998 in the Music City. Tickets cost $25 dollars and every show sold out in just one day.
“Picking up after something like [the flood], they have all my respect,” Brooks said. “If there is any way through the gift of playing music that will make that a little bit better then that makes me proud.”
Everyone – from the band, to technical staff, stadium crews and vendors – are all working for free. Brooks said it’s a massive effort to put on a concert of this size, especially nine concerts in only five days. All the proceeds generated will go to the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee which then distributes to non-profit organizations.
“The reality is all of this money and all of the money that we have raised through charitable contributions is a drop in the bucket compared to the over $2 billion disaster,” said Ellen Lehman, president of the Community Relief Foundation of Middle Tennessee.
21 people died in the massive floods that created disaster areas in more than 30 counties across the state. Tourism hot spots such as the Opryland Hotel and the popular downtown honkeytonk district suffered severe damage.
“This flood has changed forever the physical landscape but also the communal landscape of Middle Tennessee and Tennessee itself. We now feel differently together. We truly are all in this boat together,” Lehman said.