“Folks are educating themselves about where and how food is grown — they’re hungry for the truth. Family farmers bring us good food, protect our soil and water and strengthen our country. The Farm Aid concert is a day for us to honor that truth and keep working for family farmers.” — Willie Nelson
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Willie Nelson, along with Neil Young, John Mellencamp, and Dave Matthews are the board members for the Farm Aid organization first launched in 1985, and all four will be performing at this year’s event being held in Bristow, Virginia at Jiffy Lube Live on September 17th.
Along with the four headliners, this year’s Farm Aid features an impressive list of country music talent, including Sturgill Simpson, Jamey Johnson, Margo Price, Carlene Carter, and Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats. Other performers include The Alabama Shakes, Lukas Nelson and The Promise of the Real, Tim Reynolds, and Insects vs. Robots. Dave Matthews will perform an acoustic set with Tim Reynolds, and Neil Young will be backed up by Willie Nelson’s two songs Lukas and Micah, and The Promise of the Real.
Farm Aid has been held annually since it started in 1985, and this will be the third time the event will be held at the Bristow, Virginia venue. Picking Bristow was purposeful for organizers. Farming is Virginia’s largest economic sector, and contributes more than $52 billion to the state’s economy. However, just like many parts of the country, farming is in decline in the state. Virginia has lost 4% of their farms in the last 10 years.
“Citizens are told that their long-held values are getting in the way of progress, or that the family farm is obsolete,” says Willie Nelson. “But the truth is just the opposite: Corporate farming is destroying our present; the family farm is our future.”
“We’ve been fighting for family farmers for a long time, and that fight isn’t over,” John Mellencamp adds. “At Farm Aid 2016, we’ll come together to stand up to the handful of corporations that control our food system. If you want a better world, it starts with you.”
Since 1985, Farm Aid has offered immediate and effective support services to farm families in crisis. Farm Aid works with local, regional and national organizations to promote fair farm policies and grassroots organizing campaigns designed to defend and bolster family farm-centered agriculture.
Tickets for Farm Aid 2016 will go on sale July 27th at 10 a.m. Eastern.