HomeEntertainmentMusicCountry MusicTennessee Bill Inspires All-Star Benefit Concert in Nashville Featuring Jason Isbell, Maren Morris

Tennessee Bill Inspires All-Star Benefit Concert in Nashville Featuring Jason Isbell, Maren Morris

by Craig Garrett
Jason Isbell
(Photo by: Todd Owyoung/NBC via Getty Images)

Jason Isbell, Maren Morris, and Sheryl Crowe are among the artists performing on March 20th at a benefit concert in Nashville. Named “Love Rising”, the show will donate proceeds to the Tennessee Equality Project and other local LGBTQ+ nonprofits, Variety reports. The concert was prompted by Tennessee’s recent aggressive legislative moves against drag performances. Jason Isbell shared the news about the event on Twitter.

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For the Bridgestone show, Maren Morris and Brothers Osborne will be participating. They’re two artists who have been vocal advocates of LGBTQ issues even in country music’s mainstream world. Paramore’s Haylee Williams, Allison Russell, and Yola are just a few notable names from different genres included in the line-up. Julien Baker with Joy Oladokun; Jake Wesley Rogers; Mya Byrne alongside the Rainbow Coalition Band complete line-up for now.

Jason Isbell weighs in on Senate Bill 3 and House Bill 9

“Senate Bill 3 and House Bill 9 are clearly targeted attacks on Tennesseans who haven’t done anything wrong,” explained Isbell in a statement. “These bills add up to an attempt to eradicate a valuable part of our community. [They] force good people to live in fear. We can’t in good conscience just stand by and let that happen.” Tickets for the event go on sale Wednesday at 10 am CT.

The press release claims that “since 2015, Tennessee has enacted more anti-LGBTQIA+ laws than any other state in the country.” Recently, Senate Bill 3 and House Bill 9 have been making headlines across the nation. This is mainly due to their attempts to limit performances involving cross-dressing from taking place in public spaces. Also included are locations open for minors or within 1,000 feet of any schools, parks, or churches.

Other lawmakers are joining Tennessee in introducing legislation against drag performers.

Under this proposed legislation, it would be classified as a misdemeanor for the first offense and a felony for any subsequent offenses to put on an “adult cabaret performance” outside of an establishment featuring entertainment such as go-go dancers, exotic performers, strippers or male/female impersonators that appeals to innate “prurient” desires. Opponents of the bills worry that any appearance by an artist in drag could be considered “prurient” and punishable under the law. Even first-time offenders who commit a misdemeanor offense can face up to one year of imprisonment.

More than ten Republican-led legislatures across the country have joined Tennessee in introducing legislation against drag performers.

Allison Russell, the winner of the Americana Honors album of the year award, weighed in on the issue. “As a queer, intersectional artist and mother, raising my child in Nashville, it’s important to me to support these wonderful Tennessee LGBTQIA+ advocacy organizations, working so hard to build bridges, reduce harm and promote equality for all Tennesseans. LGBTQIA+ contributions and creativity are foundational to every genre of modern song and arts performance. I think it speaks volumes that so many in our community are feeling the same call to support, celebrate and uplift.”