The 35th Annual Farm Aid got underway this past weekend, virtually of course, but that didn’t mean there weren’t some fantastic performances.
Founded by Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp, Neil Young and Dave Matthews, this year’s slate also featured performances from Margo Price, Brandi Carlile, Lukas Nelson, Kelsey Waldon, Jamey Johnson and more, but one of the highlights of the night for me was Chris and Morgane Stapleton.
Performing one of my all-time favorite Stapleton tunes from back in his SteelDrivers days, the hopeful “Where Rainbows Never Die,” along with his current single “Starting Over,” Chris prefaced his part of the show with what family farms have meant to him:
“Growing up where I did in Eastern Kentucky, a lot of my friends grew up on generational family farms. Their grandparents worked that land, their parents worked that land and their brothers and sister live on that land. And I have a lot of fond memories of going and hanging out on those farm and camping on those farms. I would hate to see that kind of legacy not be part of the fabric of America.”
And while the whole concert is worth a watch, Chris and Morgane’s performance begins at the 23:50 mark.
Farm Aid’s mission is to build a vibrant, family farm-centered system of agriculture in America. Farm Aid artists and board members Willie Nelson, Neil Young, John Mellencamp and Dave Matthews host an annual festival to raise funds to support Farm Aid’s work with family farmers and to inspire people to choose family farm food. For 35 years, Farm Aid, with the support of the artists who contribute their performances each year, has raised nearly $60 million to support programs that help farmers thrive, expand the reach of the Good Food Movement, take action to change the dominant system of industrial agriculture and promote food from family farms.
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“This pandemic and so many other challenges have revealed how essential family farmers and ranchers are to the future of our planet. Farm Aid 2020 is going to give the whole country a chance to learn about the important work of farmers and how they’re contributing to our well-being, beyond bringing us good food.” — Willie Nelson
Willie was joined by his sons Lukas and Micah for a performance of “On The Road Again.”