Taylor Swift felt compelled to help the victims of the tornadoes which devastated areas of the U.S. southern states last month after watching footage of the storm winds on her terrified dancers and musicians' cellphones.
Many of the people who tour with the country singer are from the areas hit worst by the natural disaster – and they spent desperate hours trying to reach family and friends during rehearsals.
Swift says, "We had some really scary days a few weeks ago in Nashville. We had tornado warnings and, even scarier, we were at rehearsals and all my dancers and band were getting texts from their relatives.
"(There were) pictures of cyclones in their backyards and it was just terrifying.
"I was just thinking of what we could do to help all the victims of the devastation down there and we were at rehearsals, so I was like, ';Could we just open up the rehearsal to the public and sell tickets and give it all to… tornado victims in the south? We could do that, right?' And it turns out we can, so that's what we're gonna do."
Speaking of Tornado relief, the Music Builds: The CMT Disaster Relief Concert, a live, commercial-free, 90-minute concert special featuring a special call to action from President Obama, as well as performances by Hank Williams, Jr., Alabama, Alan Jackson, Gretchen Wilson, Keith Urban,Lady Antebellum, Little Big Town, Ronnie Dunn, Sara Evans, The Blind Boys of Alabama, Tim McGraw, Trace Adkins and more to raise awareness and funds for those affected by the recent devastating storms, flooding and tornadoes.
Co-hosted by ESPN's Erin Andrews, HLN's Robin Meade and comedian Ron White, the fundraising special will air live from Nashville onThursday, May 12 at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT on CMT and will be simulcast on CMT.com. All money raised will benefit the American Red Cross Disaster Relief efforts.
MUSIC BUILDS: THE CMT DISASTER RELIEF CONCERT will highlight a number of regions affected by recent storm, tornado and flooding damage including Tuscaloosa and Birmingham, Ala.; Natchez and Vicksburg, Miss.; Vidalia, La.; Memphis, Dyersburg and Tiptonville, Tenn.; and Raleigh, N.C. to name a few. In addition to performances, the special will include additional calls to action from Big Kenny, Carrie Underwood, Courteney Cox, Ellen Degeneres, University of Alabama Coach Nick Saban, Nicole Kidman, Shania Twain, Taylor Swift, and others.
(Photo: Getty Images)