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Carrie Underwood to perform via satellite at Toby Keith's Oklahoma Twister Relief Concert

by Brandy McDonnell Modified: June 26, 2013 at 2:15 pm •  Published: June 25, 2013
Carrie Underwood (AP file)
Carrie Underwood (AP file)

Another Oklahoma country music superstar has been added to the lineup for the Toby Keith’s Oklahoma Twister Relief Concert.

Checotah native Carrie Underwood has been added to the lineup for the July 6 benefit concert. Due to her previously scheduled show at the Grand Ole Opry, her performance will be aired via satellite from the Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville to the Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium in Norman, according to a news release.

In addition to Toby Keith, performers will include Owasso residents Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood, former Tulsan Ronnie Dunn,Willie Nelson, Sammy Hagar, Mel Tillis and John Anderson. More artists are being added to the lineup and will be announced on a future date.

In the days after last month’s deadly Oklahoma tornadoes, Underwood donated $1 million to to the Red Cross for disaster relief. The six-time Grammy winner made the charitable contribution to the Red Cross from her tour’s concert proceeds.

“I have watched the devastation in my home state of Oklahoma … with great sadness,” said the Checotah native in a statement upon making the donation. “With the help of my fans who attended my concerts over the past year, we can offer the Red Cross a little extra help in comforting those affected by the recent tornadoes.”

The 2005 “American Idol” also gave an emotional rendition of her new single “See You Again” as a tribute to her twister-ravaged state at the June 5 CMT Music Awards in Nashville.

Ford Trucks, Verizon Wireless, Academy of Country Music Lifting Lives, and Walmart are on board as sponsors for Toby Keith’s Twister Relief Concert. In addition to sponsoring the event, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation have committed $1 million to Oklahoma tornado relief. Sponsorship donations and underwriting of the concert, and donated services from suppliers and vendors from all over the country, will allow the net proceeds of tickets (after tax and credit card fees) to benefit the United Way of Central Oklahoma May Tornadoes Relief Fund to aid recovery efforts.

Tickets went on sale last Friday and sold out in a little more than an hour. Once production is finalized event organizers may have additional tickets that could be released for purchase.

Net proceeds (minus only credit card merchant fees and Oklahoma sales tax) will benefit The United Way of Central Oklahoma May Tornadoes Relief Fund. Donations are also being accepted online via the United Way home page at www.unitedwayokc.org. Checks may be mailed to the United Way of Central Oklahoma, P.O. Box 837, Oklahoma City, OK 73101 with notation for May Tornadoes Relief.

Verizon Wireless is offering a text-to-donate capability before, during and after the benefit concert. Currenlty, customers of any wireless carrier may donate by texting the keyword REBUILD to 52000, which will give an automatic $10 donation to the United Way of Central Oklahoma’s May Tornadoes Relief Fund. Verizon Wireless customers will be limited to five text donations.

For Keith, this event and the devastating May storms that led to it are deeply personal.

“I grew up in Moore, I live in Norman and I’ve got lots of family and friends who were directly affected. I know these folks and they’re resilient, but we’re going to keep helping them any way we can. I’m proud to get together with some others from around here who are just as committed as I am to supporting these communities,” the Clinton native said in a news release.

Underwood isn’t the only superstar who will juggle two shows in one day to participate in the benefit concert. Brooks was already booked to play a July 6 return engagement at the Wynn Las Vegas when Keith began organizing his Twister Relief Concert. But Brooks’ publicist said the Country Music Hall of Famer decided to fit both shows into his schedule.

“Garth is opening the show in Oklahoma and then getting in a plane for his show in Vegas. Thankfully the time difference allows (him to do) both,” Nancy Seltzer said in an email.

For Brooks, who grew up in Yukon, the deadly May tornadoes hit close to home and heart.

“Once we got the news that the tornado had hit Toby’s hometown, Miss Yearwood and I told Toby we were at his service for whatever he chose to do,” Brooks says in the email. “I am amazed at the human spirit the tornado victims have shown. I am humbled by the giving of the volunteers. It is an honor to get to be a part of this healing process.”

Updates on the event and lineup will be posted at www.tobykeith.com.

-BAM

by Brandy McDonnell
Entertainment Reporter
Brandy McDonnell, also known by her initials BAM, writes stories and reviews on movies, music, the arts and other aspects of entertainment. She is NewsOK’s top blogger: Her 4-year-old entertainment news blog, BAM’s Blog, has notched more than 1...
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