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Neil Young, Willie Nelson concert set in path of Keystone XL Pipeline Tell North Platte what you think
Courtesy Photo­Image
Willie Nelson, 2009
Courtesy Photo­Image
Neil Young

Tickets go on sale Wednesday for Neil Young and Willie Nelson in a benefit concert Sept. 27 on a farm near Neligh that is in the route of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

The concert was announced Monday by Jane Kleeb, the leader of the “Bold Nebraska” anti-pipeline movement.

Proceeds from the "Harvest the Hope" concert will go to Bold Nebraska as well as the Indigenous Environmental Network and the Cowboy and Indian Alliance, to fund the ongoing fight against the pipeline, which would carry tar sands oil from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico.

Kleeb said a number of small, community-based clean energy projects on farms and tribal lands will also benefit.

The outdoor concert will also feature Nebraska musicians and a Native American rapper. It will begin at 1 p.m. in a farm field owned by the Tanderup family, who are among the Nebraska landowners who refuse to sell their land to the TransCanada corporation for the Keystone XL pipeline.

Art and Helen Tanderup are also part of the “Cowboy & Indian Alliance," a group of farmers, ranchers and tribal members that demonstrated in Washington, D.C. in April against the Keystone XL pipeline. This spring, the Ponca tribe of Oklahoma partnered with the alliance to hand-plant several acres of sacred Ponca corn on the Tanderup farm — the tribe's ancestral homeland — where it will be harvested in Nebraska this fall for the first time since the Ponca people were forced to go to Oklahoma 137 years ago.

Last fall, the land became home to the world's largest living crop art installation, when artist John Quigley collaborated with Art Tanderup to create an image the size of 80 football fields featuring the Cowboy & Indian Alliance icon along with the words "Heartland #No KXL."

"Our family has worked this land for over 100 years,” Tanderup said. “The Heartland is more than a place, it's our home. We hope Americans from across the country join us to Harvest the Hope and stop the Keystone XL pipeline."

"Farmers, ranchers and tribes that have been standing up to TransCanada are rock stars in my eyes," Kleeb said in the announcement. "Now we will have the honor to have music legends Neil Young and Willie Nelson stand with us.

Kleeb said the pipeline is risky and “threatens our water and our livelihoods. It is our hope that Pres. Obama in the end stands with us over Big Oil."

The concert will also feature performances by Frank Waln, a Native American hip-hop artist from the Rosebud Sioux tribe, and the "Stopping the Pipeline Rocks All-Stars," a collection of Nebraskans who performed on a benefit album recorded inside an energy-powered barn built last year by Bold Nebraska and volunteers on land directly in the path of the Keystone XL pipeline, near York.

TransCanada first proposed building the pipeline more than five years ago. It would complement an existing Keystone pipeline.

The event will also be a "Get Out the Vote" effort by Bold Nebraska, which is “aiming to help elect candidates in November who give a damn about protecting our land and water,” according to the announcement.

Tickets for the benefit will go on sale Wednesday, Aug. 20 online via BoldNebraska.org.


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The North Platte Bulletin - Published 8/18/2014
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