Country Stars, Vedder, Beck Join RAC Concerts
The Recording Artists Coalition (RAC) has updated a list of star performers scheduled to appear at its first series of historic all-star concerts on Feb. 26 in and around Los Angeles, Billboard reportThe Recording Artists Coalition (RAC) has updated a list of star performers scheduled to appear at its first series of historic all-star concerts on Feb. 26 in and around Los Angeles, Billboard reports in its Feb. 2 issue. Dixie Chicks, Emmylou Harris, Trisha Yearwood, and Dwight Yoakam will perform at the Universal Amphitheater, while Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder, Beck, and Social Distortion's Mike Ness will headline at the Wiltern Theater.
The RAC says there are ongoing discussions with other artists to join the confirmed rosters at the California concerts, and it is hoped that another venue can be employed. The newly announced artists join the Eagles, Billy Joel, Sheryl Crow, John Fogerty, and Stevie Nicks, who will perform at the L.A. Forum; and No Doubt, Offspring, and Weezer, who will headline at the Long Beach Arena.
Veteran observers say the four concerts may be the biggest effort ever undertaken in one market on the same night. More concerts are being planned in other cities for later this year. Sources say the proceeds will fund RAC's artists' rights activities both in federal and state legislative matters and as non-partisan recording artist representatives in private-sector negotiations.
Announcing the new performers, RAC co-founder Don Henley also responded to criticism of the RAC's artists' rights agenda as untimely when the industry is facing major economic problems, as well as the characterization of him as a disgruntled rich rock star both by industry lobbyists in Sacramento, Calif., and at the recent Future of Music Coalition in Washington, D.C., last month.
"If those of us who are successful and have been around the block and aren't afraid don't do this work, then who will?" Henley asks Billboard. "The people just getting into the business with absolutely no clout? We're risking a lot here -- the record companies and the [Recording Industry Association of America] can be very punitive. As for me, I'm 54 years old, and I don't care if I have another record company contract. I've seen how the business operates for more than 30 years, and I can't sit idly by now."