Dan Reynolds says he’s going to put on a benefit music festival to raise money for anti-gun-violence causes.
In a series of tweets that began last Tuesday, the Imagine Dragons frontman first floated the idea of a music festival “protesting violence and hate in America ,” and then followed it up with the idea of a number of festivals across the country…to show our leaders that we aren’t as divided as they may think” and that “ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.”
On Wednesday, he asked his followers to “brainstorm with me,” and then proposed that “tickets raise money for a ‘gun amnesty’ program in each city.” He added a proposal for “incentivizing people to turn in their illegal firearms.” But by the end of the day, he’d stepped back from it, writing that “after talking with my little girls and [his wife] Aja I’ve decided it’s probably not a safe [or] responsible thing for me to go do this.” He said he would instead “stay home and plan something.”
Reynolds tweeted on Thursday, “With the failure of WOODSTOCK I pose this question: What artists/speakers are willing to play for free to put on a festival raising money for organizations that are fighting for new legislation regarding gun laws?” He suggested that corporate dollars could cover crews, travel and other costs.
By his next tweet, he’d committed to this idea, explaining “We are gonna DO this I promise you that. This isn’t political. This is a festival about our people being KILLED. It needs to stop. And honestly. It’s gonna take our artists and people of influence stepping up. Because law makers ARE NOT.” He explained later that he’d meant “non-partisan” rather than “non-political.”
On Friday, Reynolds thanked those artists who had responded positively to his proposal. Billboard later reported The Head and The Heart, Zedd, Mt. Joy and I Don’t Know How But They Found Me as some of those on board. In his final tweet before the weekend — he didn’t add anything on Saturday or Sunday — Reynolds clarified that this “is not my festival. It will be a festival put on by tons of artists and activists. Lots of people working together to make this happen. This is a festival for the world to show that we have had enough and real action MUST be taken.”