Brad Paisley, Keith Urban, Lady Antebellum kick off first national flood relief telethon

By Caitlin R. King, AP
Sunday, May 16, 2010

Brad Paisley donates $100,000 to flood relief

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Brad Paisley kicked off the first national telethon for Tennessee flood relief on Sunday with an energized version of his song “Welcome To The Future.”

When he finished, he looked into the audience where his wife, movie and TV actress Kimberly Williams Paisley, was standing as the show’s co-host.

“My wife’s up there. I think it’s time to start things off with a donation. We’re going to donate $100,000, get it going,” he said, before asking his wife with a sheepish grin, “Is that OK?”

Lady Antebellum took the stage next for the show being broadcast live and commercial-free on GAC.

“Being a Nashville native, born and raised here, it’s been so beautiful to see how the city has rallied together,” said singer Hillary Scott. “I know we will get back to the city that we once were. I know we will.”

The trio performed an acoustic version of their No. 1 hit, “Need You Now.”

Keith Urban also performed without a band, choosing to do an acoustic version of The Beatles’ song “Help.”

Before performing a second song, “Better Life,” he recounted his personal flooding experience.

“We certainly weren’t spared, our place out in Franklin, we had quite a bit of damage out there, and other than a lot of my musical equipment which floated down the river toward Smyrna, I think is where it was seen last, it’s just been a very moving experience for me,” he said.

Just over halfway through the telethon, over $1 million had been raised.

All money will go to the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee. At least 2,000 homes were destroyed or damaged in Nashville by the deadly flooding that struck Tennessee May 1-2. Damages have been estimated at $1.5 billion and climbing.

Also expected to perform were Martina McBride, Dierks Bentley, Kellie Pickler, Rodney Atkins and others in the three-hour show.

Actor and Nashville native James Denton of “Desperate Housewives” was co-hosting the concert and telethon from Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium.

Donations can be made at or by calling 1-877-768-6274.



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