Oklahoma singer Shelton to headline May 29 tornado relief benefit
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Oklahoma country singer Blake Shelton said on Friday that he will headline a concert to benefit the victims of the Oklahoma tornado that swept through the city of Moore earlier this week, leaving 24 dead and thousands homeless.
Shelton, a native of Ada, Oklahoma, which is 75 miles northwest of Moore, said the "Healing in the Heartland: Relief Benefit Concert" will be held on May 29 at the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, and will be televised live at 9 p.m. EDT on NBC.
The singer, 36, also recruited Grammy-winning country stars Reba McEntire, Vince Gill, and Miranda Lambert - Shelton's wife - for the concert. It will raise money for the United Way of Central Oklahoma May Tornadoes Relief Fund, to aid long-term recovery efforts. McEntire and Gill are also Oklahoma natives.
Tickets are $25 each, and go on sale on May 25.
"Everyone has their way to help, and mine as an entertainer is to perform to help raise money and awareness for this tragedy. This is why I want to do this special and especially hold it in Oklahoma City, which is near ground zero," Shelton said in a statement.
Shelton, who is currently a judge on NBC's reality television show "The Voice," performed a tribute song with Lambert at the start of Tuesday's show.
Last November, NBC's star-studded telethon with Bruce Springsteen and Billy Joel for the victims of Superstorm Sandy helped raise more than $23 million, while ABC's "Day of Giving" event raised more than $10 million for the American Red Cross.
NBC is a unit of Comcast Corp.
(Reporting by Piya Sinha-Roy; Editing by Eric Walsh)
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