We have drafted a letter that serves as both an announcement of the May 13 concert and has info for local unions, anti-war groups, other progressive organizations and indivduals wishing to buy tickets or make a contribution to help Anne Feeney as she continues to fight off cancer. Please read the info below and feel free to forward on, reproduce, etc.
Fellow Workers, Union Officers and Friends:
We are pleased to announce that at 8 PM on Friday, May 13, a benefit concert will be held at 1199's Martin Luther King, Jr. auditorium, 310 West 43rd Street in Manhattan, to help Anne Feeney as she recovers from treatment and continues to deal with the effects of lung cancer. Folk music legends Pete Seeger and Peter Yarrow will appear on Anne's behalf as well as The New York City Labor Chorus, Brooklyn Women's Chorus, and each of the musicians who have signed this letter.
Perhaps some of you have NOT heard of Anne Feeney, Pittsburgh's "union maid" labor folksinger, but thousands of union members and local unions have benefited from her work. She has traveled the nation for more than 30 years, singing and writing songs of workers and unions, bringing music, spirit and energy to countless picket lines and battles, and has helped raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for workers on strike or locked out. Her song "Have You Been to Jail for Justice?" is sung all over the world and was recorded by Peter, Paul and Mary. She is also a founding member of Local 1000 of the American Federation of Musicians and the only woman ever elected president of the Pittsburgh Musicians Union.
Now Anne is facing a battle of her own. Last July she was diagnosed with lung cancer, and the months of treatment that she has recently completed have taken their toll on her body and her finances. She has been unable to tour or perform, and she typically does 200 or more concerts and appearances at picket lines and union rallies each year. Like most folksingers, she had very little savings in reserve, and the costs of her treatment and medication have depleted the meager savings she once had.
We are asking local unions and individuals for contributions to help our sister in her time of need. Please feel free to contact George Mann at (email) email@example.com if you have any questions.
Your union or any individual can make a contribution by sending a check to Anne Feeney, 2240 Milligan Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15218. We also encourage you to visit her website at www.annefeeney.com,
where you can make a donation through Paypal or order some of her wonderful CDs. Local unions may also order blocks of tickets to the May 13th benefit from Anne's website.
The finest traditions of the labor movement and its rich catalogue of songs are presented and preserved by Anne's work. We hope that you can reciprocate and bring some financial comfort to one of our greatest labor singers as she battles cancer and hopes to get back to the front lines of the labor movement, where she has spent so much of her life and energy.
Bev Grant, Judy Gorman, Dave Lippman and George Mann