In aid of Stagehand's #ILoveLive campaign, Pete Townshend is raising money for UK stage crew affected by the pandemic.
by Pete Townshend in United Kingdom
Thank you for your support in helping us raise £28,062 for stage crew impacted by the pandemic.
Thanks to your generosity, the campaign has exceeded our expectations. We raised a total of £535,840 which will go directly to Stagehand Charity who will distribute the funds to stage crew who have suffered due to Covid-19.
Many congratulations to Una from Donegal, Ireland who won the prize draw. Thanks again and we hope to see you all again very soon.
Pete Townshend is raising money for stage crew charity Stagehand’s #ILoveLive campaign, which is providing financial help for all UK stage crew who are in the greatest need. Stage crew seem to be the forgotten ones in the current pandemic. They’re the unsung heroes of the live entertainment world. Without them shows just couldn’t happen.
The impact of Covid-19 has been devastating for the whole music industry but particularly for the stage techs, sound engineers, guitar techs, keyboard techs, drum techs, stage managers, production managers, tour managers and other live support personnel who make shows possible.
With no shows since March, crew’s income has been slashed with many finding that they are ineligible for any kind of government financial aid. Many are in desperate need and most are sitting with mental health issues.
Let’s help raise some money to support them this winter. It could literally save lives.
Pete is donating the Gold 1999 American Fender Stratocaster he used during The Who's iconic Wembley Stadium performance in 2019 to this prize draw fundraising campaign.
To be in with a chance of winning the 'Gold' Stratocaster we are holding a prize draw with each entry costing £5. You can enter multiple times.
Entries can be purchased between Friday 27th November and Thursday 17th December. The winner will be announced on Wednesday 23rd December.
You could win this guitar ↓
Photo: William Snyder / Trinifold Archive
Pete Townshend is a visionary musician, composer and author. He is best known as the songwriter and guitarist with seminal rock band The Who but he has also gained acclaim as a solo artist. His work includes the rock operas ‘Tommy’ and ‘Quadrophenia’.
In a 2015 Rolling Stone Magazine poll of his peers Pete was named in the top 10 of the greatest guitarists of all time. Responsible for evergreen anthems such as ‘My Generation’, ‘Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere’ and ‘Won’t Get Fooled Again’ he has given a voice not just to his generation but to all those who have followed.
Pete used this number 6 Gold Strat on most of the U.S. and Euro 2006 tours, he performed with it on Eminence Front and Baba O’Riley. More recently, he performed with the guitar at The Who’s 2019 Wembley Stadium show.
The guitar is an American made Fender Stratocaster from 1999. It is an Eric Clapton signature model, modified with a Fishman Power Bridge to Pete's specifications. It features an extra control mounted behind the bridge which allows Pete to blend the signal from the piezo pickup in the bridge with the magnetic pickups’ output, creating a variety of eminently useful and unique tones to match his sonic visions.
A super cool guitar... Here it is in full swing:
“I’m so glad of this opportunity to try to help touring crew people who have been out of work now since March. I have two family members, nephews who work in stage lighting, and despite government help their employing companies are really struggling.
Many of the backline crew for The Who have equally become family friends. Most crew people work hand to mouth. It’s true that they are fairly well paid compared to some others, and their life is interesting and exciting in some ways. But it is extraordinarily tough. They endure long periods away from home, tricky partnership issues, away from their children and parents for long periods. Physically it can be brutal. The mental issues that arise from the life are not as well known as those suffered by spoiled brats on the stage like me, but they are equally disturbing and hard to treat. Their entire circle of family and friends are affected. Many don’t have much of a life when they are not on the road, and touring becomes what they life for.
When live performing returns we will expect all these people to suddenly pull themselves together and do their jobs again, without complaint, and with smiling faces. As individuals there is not a lot I can do to help the thousands of people who have been hit by this pandemic. I do help some individuals of course, but this prize draw and campaign is chance to show how much we care for everyone in this industry, and that we understand exactly what privations all our people are suffering, especially those who get the shows up and running for us in every venue.” - Pete Townshend
This is the exact guitar you could win ↓
Photo: William Snyder / Trinifold Archive
By buying at least one entry at £5 you will be entered into the prize draw. If you buy multiple entries you stand a higher chance of winning. To enter you must select one of the entry reward options on this page. You can also enter the prize draw without donating by post. See terms and conditions below for details. By donating and entering the prize draw you agree to the terms and conditions.
You can make a donation without entering the prize draw using the donation box toward the top of the page.
Founded in 1996, the PSA is the trade association for individuals and businesses providing technical production services to live events. A member funded, member focussed, organisation, the PSA membership consists of around 2000 self employed technicians and 300 memberships in technical supply businesses.
Stagehand is the public facing name of the PSA Welfare and Benevolent Fund; a registered charity launched over 2 decades ago with the aim of raising and distributing funds for members, former members and their families who fall on hard times through illness or injury. More recently, the trustees launched a ring-fenced fund to subsidise Mental Health First Aid training for self employed members, as part of our mission to improve our sector’s approach to mental health.
The crisis in our sector caused by the Covid-19 pandemic has shifted the focus to those unable to work due to the current crisis. Live production workers and businesses were amongst the first to be affected, it is now clear that many live production crews are reaching a critical point with basic living expenses outstripping income. This applies across the board, from those people that earn a living building and operating shows at grassroots level to those that work with the largest stadium artists.
Extensions to the Job Retention Scheme have come too late for many companies; they were forced to make redundancies in the summer. 20% of self employed workers fell through the cracks in support; these are the people we intend to support through this fund.
Our immediate plan is to help the crew in most need, those who are close to losing the roof over their head, or those that are struggling to put food on the table. Grants will be considered to any UK crew worker who is working in the live music sector. They do not have to be PSA members.
This project offers rewards in return for your donation.