Melissa Morstad was just 29 years old when she died of breast cancer, leaving three young daughters behind. It was a loss that hit country superstar Jason Aldean hard, and he realized his celebrity status could carry a lot of weight in bringing awareness — and a ton of money — to the fight against the devastating disease that took his friend’s life.
The singer organized his first Concert for the Cure to honor Morstad and other victims in 2006, with help from his then-wife Jessica, who was very close to their late friend and is kin to her widower. Every year since, the Aldean camp has designated one stop on the singer’s tour schedule as a show to benefit the Susan G. Komen foundation, which funds research and aid for those facing breast cancer. They also donate a portion of the entire tour’s ticket sales to the designated city’s local Komen programs.
This year’s show is set for October 24th at the Coral Sky Amphitheatre in West Palm Beach, Florida. Aldean has set a new tradition for the tenth anniversary: He will honor two breast cancer survivors in every city on his 2015 Burn It Down Tour, chosen from fan submissions posted to ww5.komen.org/jasonAldean.aspx. And this week, fans can download the Georgia native’s Old Boots, New Dirt LP for free on Google Play, with Aldean donating $1 for every complete album download to this year’s Concert for the Cure tally.
“We’re always looking for ways to raise more money for Komen, but it’s also really important to me to take time to support people in all stages of the battle against this disease,” says the musician. “This year, we’re going to be sure we take the time every night to single out and celebrate a couple of fans who have won the fight and hopefully beat our record with a huge check for Komen this fall.”
The check from last year’s show in Detroit was more than $660,000. Other Cure cities have included Dallas, Nashville and New Orleans.
Aldean’s 2015 Burn It Down Tour kicked off last weekend, with Tyler Farr and Cole Swindell also on the bill. The trek will merge with Kenny Chesney’s Big Revival Tour for ten joint shows this spring and summer.