Edge has launched 'Music Rising', a fundraising campaign to replace instruments lost by musicians following the Gulf Coast hurricanes.
As we reported a few days ago on U2.Com, Edge took time out from the Vertigo Tour last week to visit neighbourhoods in New Orleans, spending time listening to the experiences of local musicians whose lives were upended following the hurricanes.
'It gave me a first-hand look at the devastation which tragically destroyed the lives of thousands,' said Edge. 'The area's rich and spirited culture must be restored and can be by assisting those musicians affected by the disaster, which in turn will bring back the essence of the regions.'
That's where the new initiative Music Rising, comes in. The idea, explains Edge, is a simple one: 'To put instruments back into the hands of those musicians and try to give them the first step toward regenerating the music scene that surrounds New Orleans and the whole Gulf Coast.'
On his visit he met the first musicians to receive replacement instruments thanks to Music Rising. 'I had the double experience of fully appreciating how bad the situation is but I also saw the glimmers of hope as I met these musicians who were telling their stories of lucky escapes and what they were able to salvage and how they were coping in their new situations.'
Evidently moved by his visit and shocked by the scale of the damage caused, he also feels sure the city can recover.
'What is so amazing is the determination to rebuild the culture and the city. People are very upbeat and positive, but nobody is under any illusion that this is not a monumental task.'
You can learn more about Music Rising here
If you'd like to help provide instruments to the region, you can make tax-deductible contributions to Music Rising at here
or by sending a check made payable to 'Music Rising', c/o
3402 Pico Blvd.,
Eligibility for Music Rising grants will be managed by the MusiCares Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping music people in crisis.