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Dave Matthews to play at Second Annual Lampedusa: Concerts for Refugees Tour

Posted by Jen Henson in Charity at 8:13am on Wednesday, Sep 20th, 2017

Dave Matthews continues his humanitarian efforts next month when he joins the first leg of the the Lampedusa: Concerts for Refugees Tour. The North American branch of the Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS), in partnership with the UN Refugee Agency, is hosting the concert series.

The series was first organized last year to bring awareness to JRS’s Global Education Initiative which provides educational services to displaced youth throughout the world.

Despite the “usa” at the end of the name, the tour is actually named after the Italian island, Lampedusa, which is known as the “door of Europe”. It is estimated that nearly 400,000 people have braved the Mediterranean, first passing through Lampedusa, in their hopes to migrate to Europe. For the last twenty years, the immigrant waves often outnumber the island’s tiny population of 6,000 but not its hospitality and humanitarian aid.

Over the course of thirteen days in October, artists, including Dave Matthews, Joan Baez, Brandi Carlile, Steve Earle and Emmylou Harris, among others, will form their own tiny island of musicians in furtherance of the aid efforts and awareness of refugees on a global level. Unlike last year’s tour, which spanned the US from coast-to-coast, this year’s tour is focussed on the western United States with 8 concerts spanning Washington, Oregon, California, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas. With tickets ranging from $30 to $150, the proceeds will go to support JRS’s Global Education Initiative. Unfortunately, if you have plans of trying to see Dave in this concert series, you will have to turn to the secondary market. Both of Dave’s shows are ‘sold out’ and so far, these are the only ‘sold out’ shows in the concert series. With all other artists playing at least one other non-sold out night, it’s not a stretch of the imagination to assume that Dave’s appearance in the line-up was the catalyst of the ‘sell out’. The interest in any Dave Matthews performance is not surprising during the band’s break and given that these are the only west coast dates that Dave Matthews has scheduled to play this year.

While he did not participate in last year’s Lampedusa concert series, it is possible that the cancellation of the Bridge School Benefit Concert freed up Dave’s October schedule enough to enable him to participate this year. Dave will be performing at the October 3rd Seattle, Washington and October 4th Portland, Oregon dates in the series. The settings will be quite intimate with Seattle’s Moore theater holding only 1800 and Portland’s Aladdin theater holding only 620. If this series of concerts follows the same format as last year, the musicians will remain on stage together, throughout the concert, and play their songs in a round-robin format with accompaniment from the other artists. Last year’s performances were heavily laden with humanitarian and political messages. This is exactly the sort of event that may spark a new song from Dave Matthews or the debut of a song that has been in the works. A prediction that seems possible given Dave’s recent mention of a potential album next year and the debut of new song “Do You Remember” at this year’s Farm Aid.

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