Beyond the Music with Laura: Ty Herndon’s 2017 Concert for Love & Acceptance Series - Intro

by Laura Lou / 2542 days ago / Comments

Close your eyes.  Remember back to your childhood.  Did you feel that you could not be your authentic, genuine self?  Did you ever feel that who you were wrong, as defined by the family you grew up in or the people around you?  Did you feel that you could not make it another day being bullied or treated “less than” by peers?  Did you feel that there was no alternative other than to run away and hide?  Did you ever find yourself at such a sad, lonely and hopeless place that you were ready to end your life?

These are hard questions to read.  They are even harder if you have experienced any of them.  They are devastating if you have lost a loved one who felt they had no other choice but to hide who they were, living in fear of judgment and fear of ridicule or worse make the decision to take their life to stop the suffering they were living every moment of every day.

The topics of “sexual orientation” and “suicide” are such taboo topics and there are so many opinions held by everyone.  The reality is, the only thing that really matters is that the person struggling with whatever situation they are dealing with knows that there is somewhere to turn. 

There is a movement towards acceptance.  However, while huge strides have been made and several walls have been knocked down, there are so many at-risk youths still hiding, still terrified to say, “this is who I am and I am owning my authentic self”.  There are still parents and families that literally disown or negate their own children.  There are still bullies in schools that are tormenting our children based on a stereotype.  While there has been movement, there are miles to travel until we can have a society where you can be your true, authentic, genuine self, without the judgment of others and without having to hide who you are, no matter who that is.  Until that time, there are some truly outstanding organizations that are dedicated to helping these at-risk youths.

During CMA Fest week, Country Music icon, Ty Herndon gathered a few of his friends together to throw a little party/fundraiser for the third year in a row, called the 2017 Concert for Love and Acceptance.  When I say “little” that is under estimating the interest and support this year’s event had. 

The past two years, the event has been held at the City Winery, a 600 -seat capacity venue, and was moved to the Wildhorse Saloon this year, which bodes a 3,000 -seat capacity.  In part due to the overwhelming response from artists who wanted to participate and bring their voice to this cause, as well as the audience that wanted to attend.  For a minimal $25, this was the hottest ticket in Nashville during CMA Fest week.

Herndon assembled a star-studded lineup, including CMT’s Cody Alan as co-host for the event. Performances by Michael Ray, Mickey Guyton, Billy Gilman, Street Corner Symphony, Fifth and Main, Trey Pearson, Ryan Kinder, Thompson Square, Noah Guthrie, Dana Goldberg, Sarah Kate Ellis, Trent Harmon, Kree Harrison, Ken Block of Sister Hazel, Kingston, Bastian Baker as well as Herndon himself rounded out the evening. 

Check out our series, 2017 Concert for Love & Acceptance, as we bring you interviews from the red carpet with some of the performers as well as Herndon himself.  Hear why this event means so much to so many and why there was no question they would be involved.  2018’s concert is already in the works including artists already slated to perform.

All-in-all, this was “the” event for the week.  I cannot remember a time being at a concert of this size where the focus of every person in the room was love, acceptance, making a difference and supporting each other.  It was truly a judgment free zone where you could genuinely be “you” and that was what the evening was about. 

All donations collected from the event went to the Oasis House in Nashville as well as GLAAD.  You can still donate to these organizations at the links below.


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Ty Herndon Tour Dates

06/28/2024 : Untamed Wine Estates: Johnson City, TX
06/29/2024 : The Texas Theater: Waxahachie, TX
07/12/2024 : ND Country Fest: New Salem, ND
07/19/2024 : Ponderosa Lounge & Grill: Portland, OR
07/20/2024 : Win-River Resort & Casino: Redding, CA
08/09/2024 : Medicine Bow-Routt National Fo: West Laramie, WY
08/10/2024 : Meritus Park: Hagerstown, MD
08/17/2024 : Happy Harry's Hot Valley Night: Grand Forks, ND
08/23/2024 : Concert in the Corn 2024: Mason, WI
09/07/2024 : Orange Blossom Opry: Weirsdale, FL

About Laura Lou

Laura Lou Journalist

Beginning about age 13, music always been my “safe place”, my “escape”, it became a part of who I am. My background includes being a photographer/journalist for newspapers, magazines and radio stations and more recently I have been an artist manager. What I continue to strive to learn is, what is important to the fans/readers? I find that the answer is always that they want to feel close to the artist they are supporting. The human contact that we all need is something that I want to deliver to anyone that happens to read something I write or see a photograph I shoot. It is important to me to provide that experience, because I am, after all, still always a “fan” and that giddy 13-year-old girl is simply amazed! I never imagined that my passion and love for music would lead me where I am today! I use the hashtag #iamtheluckiestgirliknow because I cannot believe how blessed I am! I’m excited to see “what happens next” and take you all along with me! This is going to be amazing…