Our elected officials may not be able to get their shit together and come to any sort of consensus, and the three week Band-Aid in place at the moment keeping the government funded may only be short relief for the some 800,000 Federal workers affected by the current budget impasse. But one band is doing what they can to show respect for the hard working Americans inconvenienced or imperiled by the government shutdown. Blackberry Smoke has stepped up to offer free tickets to those in distress due to the government shutdown.
“We aren’t here to talk politics. We aren’t debating anyone’s personal beliefs,” the band said in a statement. “But if you’re a federal employee who wasn’t getting paid or put on furlough and need a break from all the bullshit that’s been happening around it, we’d like to invite you out for a night to an upcoming Blackberry Smoke show. We know there is a temporary, 3 week, solution, but we would still like to extend an invitation.”
Known not just for being the current kings of Southern rock music, but for having one of the most loyal fan bases in music for showing that loyalty back, Blackberry Smoke proves it again with this invitation.
“We are going to hold some tickets at every venue for our brothers and sisters who weren’t working or told not to work because of the shutdown,” the band continues. “We have set up a website to find the show that is closest to you and provide verification of your Government employment. We can’t promise to get everyone in, it will be first come, first serve, but we are working with every venue and box office to try. You are allowed to bring your significant other or someone you want to hang out with, and the 2 of you can come and be our guest. We know it’s not a lot but hopefully, you can meet some great people, listen to some music, and put your mind at ease for a little while. We support all American workers and want you to know you are appreciated.”
Blackberry Smoke’s latest album Find a Light released in April of 2018 was nominated for Saving Country Music’s Album of the Year, and they recently released an acoustic EP of songs from the album called The Southern Ground Sessions.
Blackberry Smoke aren’t the only ones who stepped up to lend a helping hand during the shutdown. John Prine and his label Oh Boy Records purchased lunch for all of the TSA workers at the Nashville airport on January 18th during the shutdown. “The Nashville airport is my second home and everyone there always takes care of me,” John Prine said. “It’s nice to be able to do something small for them today.”