Weezer, Mark Knopfler, Leon Bridges Give Instruments to NITO Auction - Rolling Stone
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Weezer, Mark Knopfler, Leon Bridges Donate Instruments to Auction to Save Live Music

Sale will benefit the National Independent Talent Organization’s efforts to help those in the struggling concert industry

Leon Bridges, Weezer's Rivers Cuomo, Mark Knopfler

Amy Harris/Invision/AP Images (2); Luca Bruno/AP Images

UPDATE (12/8): Conor Oberst, Joan Baez, Stephen Stills, Zakk Wylde, Ani DiFranco and Blue Öyster Cult have all donated instruments to NITO’s ongoing auction. The sale has also been extended to end December 14th.

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Weezer, Mark Knopfler, and Leon Bridges are among the artists who have donated instruments to a new auction benefiting efforts to help the struggling live music industry.

The auction was organized by the National Independent Talent Organization (NITO), which comprises over 1,000 independent talent agencies, management firms, live touring entities, and more. Per a release, the sale will raise funds for their “continued efforts to ensure that the live touring industry has a united voice both in Washington, D.C., and in a rapidly changing economy.” The auction marks NITO’s first fundraising initiative, and it launches Thursday, December 3rd, and wraps on December 13th.

Other artists to donate guitars or stringed instruments (some of which are signed) to the sale include Fall Out Boy, Jack Johnson, Nick Lowe, Steve Martin, J Mascis, John Mellencamp, Thurston Moore, Graham Nash, Bonnie Raitt, Nathaniel Rateliff, Joe Satriani, Los Straitjackets, Lars Ulrich, Steve Vai, Kurt Vile, and the War on Drugs. The full catalog is available to peruse on the auction’s website.

NITO, like the National Independent Venue Association, has been part of the lobbying efforts in Washington, D.C., advocating for the passage of relief bills like the RESTART Act and Save Our Stages, which would help the independent venues and businesses hit hardest by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“These good people are an essential part of our local and international community,” Satriani said in a statement supporting the auction. “Without them, the live music scene will collapse. The current pandemic is mercilessly putting our collective health and livelihoods in great jeopardy. NITO can make our voices heard in Congress and Washington.”

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