Neil Young joined Willie Nelson and John Mellencamp for the 33rd annual Farm Aid benefit concert on Sept. 22, and the Toronto-born rocker had some harsh words for America’s 45th president at a press conference ahead of the show.
“Whoever you vote for, I respect you for voting,” said the 72-year-old rock icon during the pre-show press conference (above). “I’m a Canadian, I can’t vote. I’ve been called a lot of things by this d**khead in the White House, but I am a Canadian, and I love America. There’s nothing here that needs to be made ‘great again.’”
Young also trumpeted his message of supporting farmers by eating fresh and local. “When you see a farmers market, just stop and go in and get to know them and buy something,” Young implored. “Buy something good. Don’t buy the s**t you get at Safeway. Buy something that’s really safe… All the crap you get in these big stores is not good. It’s got a lot of chemicals in it and it kills the earth.”
Young echoed those remarks during his performance, telling concert attendees how big-box stores are wiping “mom and pop” grocery stores off the map.
“This is real s**t,” he told the crowd. “You’ve gotta pay attention or you’re gonna lose this. Look what’s happening in the world. Please pay attention and support your family farms. Let’s see if we can get them growing again.”
Farm Aid was launched in 1985 as a one-off benefit show to raise money for family farms that were in danger of losing everything due to mortgage debt; since then, event co-founders Young, Nelson, and Mellencamp have continued their efforts, raising more than $48 million since the first concert.
One of the highlights of the 2018 event was Young’s electrifying performance of “Powderfinger”, backed by Lukas Nelson and Promise of the Real. Watch: