On May 2nd, David Crosby and Joe Walsh will perform on the campus of Ohio's Kent State, marking the 50th anniversary of four students being shot dead by National Guardsmen on May 4th, 1970 during anti-war protests. The benefit concert will be held at the Memorial Athletic and Convocation (MAC) Center. ClevelandScene.com reported that Walsh — who was a student at the time at Kent State and witnessed the shootings — will reunite with his '70s band Barnstorm featuring original members Joe Vitale and Kenny Passarelli.
Rod Flauhaus, the project manager for the May 4th 50th Commemoration, said in a statement: “We wanted to make sure the artists we brought in for the concert had a strong understanding of the history of May 4, 1970, and a commitment to helping raise funds for the scholarships. Artists like Joe Walsh and David Crosby provided the soundtrack for both those that went to fight in the Vietnam War and for those who were against it. Their music was the common thread that helped to raise national awareness, inspire activism and helped us to heal as a nation.”
On May 14th, 1970 — just 10 days after the killings — Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young released their single “Ohio” as a tribute to the students killed by the Guardsmen. Crosby and Neil Young were together in the days following the shootings, and were both distraught over the senseless killings and found themselves discussing, arguing, and replaying the tragic events, until Young took a guitar and sat alone and composed “Ohio.” The song, which was recorded right away, was rush-released.
David Crosby recalled to us a trip with Crosby, Stills, & Nash to the university's campus in memorial to the students: “We went back to Kent State not long ago, to the site where those Guardsmen murdered those four kids. And the looks on faces of parents and people there (and) students who were there when it happened, parents and kids that it happened to — when we stood there and sang 'Ohio' . . . I got a great job. I got a great thing to do in life, and if I have to do it in public, then I have to do it in public.”
For ticket information, log on to: https://www.kent.edu/may4kentstate50/concert
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