New Orleans is a place that brings people together through music. With 47 live music clubs, regular live music at bars and in the street, and front yard performances, it's clear that the gift of live music is cherished by everyone who lives and visits the city. Of course, the wonderful togetherness of performance wouldn't be possible without the performers! For an entire year, the coronavirus pandemic forced many musicians out of their livelihood and out of their passion. As a result, many elderly musicians have been left in vulnerable situations. But, the communal spirit of the New Orleans community is still here.
The New Orleans Musicians' Assistance Foundation's Makin Groceries program is excited to work with Elektra Music Group to distribute hurricane kits to over 100 elderly and medically vulnerable New Orleans musicians. The music industry partners are confident in requesting the help of the community in sponsoring kits or items so that the city's cultural bearers are safe during the 2021 storm season. Vice President of Elektra Music Group Suzi Akyuz explained that the group feels proud to give any support they can to local musicians because "New Orleans is such an important city—arguably the most important—in music history and culture." This project began as a pandemic response, but has since developed into a multi-year, multi-partner program. This initiative to protect vulnerable musicians sets a wonderful example of collective care in the community to inspire other organizations and programs.
You can be involved in the effort too! Participate by sponsoring a hurricane kit. Items to donate include AM/FM radios, can openers, flashlights, life straws, and perishable foods. You can purchase items directly from the Amazon wish list at bit.ly/mghurricaneprep or make "New Orleans Musicians' Assistance Foundation" your charity of choice on Amazon Smile. To view the full list of items and details regarding how to support, visit nomaf.org/makinggroceries.