This year's Bridge School Benefit will feature performances by Neil Young, Arcade Fire, Dave Matthews, Eddie Vedder, Foo Fighters, Tony Bennett and Mumford & Sons, Beck, Diana Krall, Jenny Lewis and Los Invisibles, featuring Carlos Santana. As always, every artist will play an acoustic set and the proceeds will benefit the Bridge School, which helps children with severe physical impairments and complex communication needs. The show will be held on October 22nd and 23rd at the Shoreline Ampitheater in Mountain View, California.
Neil Young and his wife Pegi founded the Bridge School in 1986 when they became frustrated over their inability to find an adequate school for their son Ben. The annual concert helps raise much-needed funds for the school. "Neil came up with the acoustic format," Pegi Young told Rolling Stone in 2010. "It was genius. Nobody was doing that at the time. This was before MTV Unplugged or any of that. It was also a good way to keep the costs down and do something a little edgy for a lot of people and really take them out of their comfort zone."
The first Bridge School Benefit, also in 1986, featured Bruce Springsteen; Tom Petty; Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young; Don Henley; Nils Lofgren and a comedy set by Robin Williams. It's managed to assemble an equally star-packed bill every year since, with appearances from David Bowie, Paul McCartney, Simon and Garfunkel, Elton John, the Who, Tom Waits, Phish, Metallica and many others. Neil Young is the only artist to perform every year, though Pearl Jam has played eight times.
Here is the complete line-up for this year's show:
• Neil Young
• Dave Matthews
• Arcade Fire
• Los Invisibles, featuring Carlos Santana, Cindy Blackman Santana and guests
• Eddie Vedder
• Foo Fighters (Sunday only)
• Mumford & Sons
• Tony Bennett (Sunday only)
• Beck (Saturday only)
• Diana Krall (Saturday only)
• Jenny Lewis