WASHINGTON, D.C. – The top musicians, promoters, managers, and media companies in the live music community have all pledged their support to HeadCount, a not-for-profit, nonpartisan organization that aims to register 100,000 new voters.
With the presidential election nearing, voter participation has become a unifying cause among musicians and their followers. Artists such as Bob Weir, a HeadCount board member and guitarist for The Dead, are calling on fans to exercise their fundamental rights as Americans to go to the polls.
Bob Weir by Tony Stack
"If every Dead Head in the state of Florida had voted in the last presidential election, it would be a very different world today," said Weir backstage at a recent Ratdog show at San Francisco's legendary Fillmore Auditorium, where HeadCount volunteers were on hand registering voters. "If you value democracy, register and vote."
HeadCount has announced that it is "looking for a few good heads" to run voter registration tables at concerts by such acts as The Dead, String Cheese Incident, Gov't Mule, moe., The Disco Biscuits, Galactic, Les Claypool and Primus, Sound Tribe Sector 9, Leftover Salmon, Spearhead, Steve Kimock, and Dark Star Orchestra, and at festivals such as Bonnaroo, High Sierra, and many others.
The organization's web site, HeadCount.org, is accepting volunteer applications and donations. It also houses a proprietary online voter registration system.
Joining Weir on HeadCount's board of directors is moe. guitarist Al Schnier, the promoters of the Bonnaroo and High Sierra music festivals, the managers of String Cheese Incident and Gov't Mule, and the producers of the Jammys, JamBase.com, and Relix Magazine.
The organization was founded by Marc Brownstein, bassist for the popular electronic rock band The Disco Biscuits, and Andy Bernstein, a sports media reporter with strong ties to the live music community.
HeadCount will operate grassroots street teams in over 50 U.S. cities, registering voters whenever a participating act comes to town. HeadCount will also reach fans through email campaigns, benefit concerts, and community-action events, plus special giveaway contests where entrants must submit completed voter registrations for a chance to win major prizes.
"There's an entire movement of people supporting this project, and we hope to add hundreds more to the team," said Brownstein, who is devoting virtually all of his free time to HeadCount. "The belief we all share is that voting is a basic right of citizenship, an obligation that comes with living in a free environment."
Andy Bernstein, Co-Chair
JamBase | Washington