A half-dozen charities will be making an appearance at the Dead & Company concerts at Madison Square Garden this weekend, part of the “Participation Row” social action area organized by the non-profit group HeadCount.
To support the charities, instrument makers D’Angelico and Remo donated custom-made Dead & Co. items to be signed by the band and auctioned in select cities on the tour. Similar items generated hundreds of thousands of dollars in Participation Row auctions at the Lockn’ festival and the Grateful Dead 50th Anniversary concerts. A signed D’Angelico guitar sold for an eye-popping $526,000 at the final Grateful Dead concert in Chicago in July.
The next installment of Participation Row will be staged in the Madison Square Garden concourse outside sections 108 to 118. Concert-goers will be invited to visit any of the organizations and take socially conscious actions such as registering to vote, joining the bone-marrow donation registry, or petitioning for tighter environmental regulations. For every action completed, the attendee’s name will be entered into a raffle to win a Dead & Company tour poster signed by the band.
The organizations featured on Participation Row will include the Rex Foundation a charitable non- profit established by members of the Grateful Dead in 1983, the bone marrow donor screening organization Love Hope Strength, environmental groups Reverb and Mom’s Clean Air Force, the Multidisciplinary Associations for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), and HeadCount, which specializes in voter registration and civic engagement through music.
Dead & Company is a new collaboration that includes Grateful Dead guitarist Bob Weir and drummers Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann. They are joined by singer-songwriter and guitarist John Mayer, bassist Oteil Burbridge of the Allman Brothers and Aquarium Rescue Unit, and keyboardist Jeff Chimenti of RatDog and Furthur. Dead & Company’s first nationwide tour kicks off in Albany on October 29th and culminates with a New Year’s Eve show in Los Angeles.