Hurricane Relief Concert


Clare McNamara, Contributor

On Saturday, Lady Gaga held a benefit concert for the victims of the hurricanes this past fall. The concert was held in Texas at the Reed Arena. Lady Gaga was joined by the five former presidents of the United States: President Jimmy Carter, H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, G.W. Bush and Barack Obama. President Donald Trump joined the group via video message, thanking all of the participants of the concert, musicians, audience and presidents, saying “To Presidents Jimmy Carter, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama, Melania and I want to express our deep gratitude for your tremendous assistance. This wonderful effort reminds us that we truly are one nation under God, all unified by our values and our devotion to one another”.

Lady Gaga was joined by country and rock musicians, Lyle Lovett, Robert Earl Keen, Sam Moore and Yolanda Adams, emceed by Lee Greenwood. Lady Gaga sang some of her most famous songs “Edge of Glory”, “You and I”, and “Million Reasons”, while playing the piano on stage.

All of the presidents spoke to the audience, each encouraging donations and rallying support for the cause. Former President Obama said, “And as heartbreaking as the tragedies that took place here in Texas, and in Florida, in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands have been, what we’ve also seen is the spirit of America at its best”.

President George Bush, whose hometown is Houston, Texas, one of the hit areas by Hurricane Harvey, spoke saying “It’s important that those affected by these devastating storms know that even if the path to recovery feels like a road that goes on forever, we’re with them for the long haul”.

The other presidents, such as Jimmy Carter, mentioned specific organizations, like Habitat for Humanity, which offered to build 6,000 homes in the hit areas, and needed contributions to help those who were homeless in the areas.

This is the second time that the five ex-presidents have joined together after a devastating hurricane. After Harvey, the five began petitioning for charity, and since then have continued for Irma and Maria.

The concert was called “ Deep From the Heart: The One American Appeal”, and raised over $33 million from 80,000 donors, according to CNN. The money will be distributed among the organizations that work to aid those hit by the hurricanes.

Picture Courtesy of Lady Gaga’s Twitter.