The Nashville music industry recently joined forces with local charities to distribute food boxes to their out-of-work colleagues.
The Musicians Mission of Mercy is based in North Carolina, but they’re in Nashville helping out. A partnership with the CMA and the Music Health Alliance brought food boxes to several Nashville families. Volunteers packed the food boxes, many of them from Nashville’s music industry.
“The volunteer days have been so beautiful because it’s been a who’s who in the music industry helping each other out,” Catherine Steele told WKRN, a local news outlet in Nashville. “If they didn’t need food, they would take boxes to crew members. Maybe their families could use it to help them save money on groceries and pay their rent.”
Volunteers packed enough food boxes to provide relief to over 1,000 Nashville families employed in the music industry.
“The music industry that’s been out of work since COVID-19 hit back in February and March, their benefits have run out, so when we had the call to come here, we were happy to do so,” Steel says. “I also wanted to add a huge thank you to Music Cares for financial support for out of work musicians.”
Also provided by the charity were vouchers for families to use at Nashville Farmers Markets. The vouchers are valid through December 31st and will help distribute 60,000 pounds of food in relief to Nashville families. Many musicians find themselves struggling as federal unemployment benefits are running out.
The COVID-19 response in Nashville has been less than ideal. At least one former Nashville city council member died from COVID-19, despite being a skeptic. He died after more than five weeks in the hospital, fighting for his life. Tony Tenpenny, 57, spent much of his time online denying the existence of the disease.
In June, Tenpenny shared a meme that equated wearing a mask “to being controlled by a socialist agenda.” Tenpenny ran last year for his District 16 seat but lost to current council member Ginny Welsch. “The message to me is that COVID-19 is no joke, it knows no boundary, and no matter what you might believe, it doesn’t care,” Welsch said in a statement after Tenpenny’s death was announced.
“Anyone can be felled by it.”