The Vote for Change Tour raised more than $15 million to get out the vote for John Kerry. Now artists from the historic shows, including R.E.M., Dave Matthews Band, Pearl Jam and Bonnie Raitt, are looking beyond the election with a new drive to fund renewable-energy programs in states where the bands played.
Led by Pearl Jam guitarist Stone Gossard and his fiancee, Liz Weber (a consultant for environmentally friendly construction projects), the bands have donated more than $80,000 of their own money so far and have announced two contributions: a solar hot-water and electric-power system for the Family Center agencies in Madison, Wisconsin, and a solar-powered hurricane shelter installed at Palm Beach Central High School in Wellington, Florida.
“I started to think about what was important and what I wanted to see happen differently,” says Gossard. “Sometimes that means getting involved in the political process, and sometimes it means moving an issue you care about forward.”