Jobless claims are skyrocketing due to COVID-19, and musicians have been hit hard. Volkswagen is trying to help out by leveraging its connection to guitar producer Fender for its premium audio system across multiple vehicle lines.
Tonight at 8 p.m. EST on Facebook Live, the German automaker and Fender will host a live stream fundraising performance by blues guitarist Joe Bonamassa to financially assist touring musicians affected by the pandemic.
Bonamassa, a prodigy who opened for B.B. King at the age of 12, also will showcase some of his personal vintage Fender guitars. Performance proceeds will help musicians through Bonamassa’s Fueling Musicians Program, an emergency relief plan organized by his 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, Keeping the Blues Alive.
The program provides financial assistance for essential living expenses along with prepaid fuel cards to qualified musicians in need.
“My sincerest thanks and gratitude to both Volkswagen and Fender Premium Audio for their generous support of our Fueling Musicians Program,” says Bonamassa. “Musicians have a tough road ahead and this will help them regroup until they can head out on the road again.”
Saad Chehab, senior vice president-Volkswagen Brand Marketing, says the event will be both meaningful and entertaining. “When given the chance to support individuals in the music industry during this time, it felt like a true Drive Bigger moment that we wanted to be a part of,” Chehab says.
To donate to the Fueling Musicians Program or to complete an application for assistance, visit www.KTBA.org.