Art rockers Devo will be returning to their roots for an October 17 political benefit in their native Akron, OH. All proceeds from the Duty Now for the Future concert will go towards the Summit County Democratic Party’s campaign efforts for presidential nominee Senator Barack Obama.
Reserved seats for the event, booked at the Akron Civic Theatre, are priced at face value intervals of $25, $35 and $50. A VIP ticket package is also available for a face value of $150, and will grant access to a post-show reception with the band.
The four founding members of Devo (comprised of two sets of brothers) will be in attendance: Mark Mothersbaugh, Bob Mothersbaugh, Gerry Casale and Bob Casale. The group chose their homestate for the benefit because of its election-time status as a key battleground state.
In a statement on the band’s Web site, frontman and California resident Mark Mothersbaugh explained, “Ohio is where we need to be…. It’s great that we’re all for Obama [in California], but sitting around in our ‘blue’ bubble doesn’t do anything for his chances in the battleground states. We all have a vested interest in what happens here [in Ohio] — our families and friends who have been hurt by the nonsense of the past eight years.”
Benefit concerts and political rallies have been a hot item among members of the music industry throughout the current election season. During the primaries, artists like Dave Matthews, Arcade Fire and The Decemberists performed benefits for Obama. Country musician John Rich, of the popular duo Big & Rich, supported Senator John McCain with his political anthem “Raisin’ McCain.”
With the leader polls vacillating between Obama and McCain and the November 4 election date just around the corner, many more musicians have booked last-minute benefits to support their chosen political party and candidate. While Devo is just the latest band to pitch their support behind a candidate during this year’s close presidential race, the price tag on the band’s Ohio concert is modest in comparison to similar fundraisers.
Jon Bon Jovi hosted an early September benefit for the Democratic National Committee in his New Jersey home, with admission priced at $28,500. Meanwhile, iconic singer Barbra Streisand also pitched her support behind Obama, performing a $2,500-per-person fundraiser for him in California on September 16. However, the highest profile benefit, featuring Bruce Springsteen and Billy Joel in concert on October 16, has tickets with face values ranging from $500 to $10,000.