BOSTON (Reuters) - Rock band Aerosmith took a detour around the world from Singapore to “warm the cockles of peoples’ hearts” in Boston as one of more than a dozen acts gathering on Thursday night to raise money for victims of last month’s marathon bombing.
Aerosmith, which started in Boston in 1970 and has maintained strong ties to the city, will be joined at TD Garden by James Taylor, the New Kids on the Block and the Dropkick Murphys in what is expected to be a raucous yet emotional tribute to the city.
Tickets priced between $35 and $285 sold out fast at the 17,500-seat venue, with net proceeds to be donated to The One Fund, a reserve established by Boston Mayor Thomas Menino and Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick that has so far received more than $31 million in donations to compensate victims of the April 15 bombing.
Three people were killed and 264 injured, many losing their legs, by homemade pressure-cooker bombs that exploded at the finish line of the world-renowned Boston Marathon.
“Live Nation and TD Garden have hosted thousands of concerts over the years, but none with such a sense of purpose,” said Don Law, president of Live Nation New England which organized the Boston Strong concert.
The Boston Herald reported that Steven Tyler, Aerosmith’s lead singer, said from a gig this week in Singapore that “it means everything to get back and play this show...we want to warm the cockles of peoples’ hearts.”
Concert organizers have declined to say yet how much money the concert will raise for The One Fund.
Kenneth Feinberg, a lawyer who specializes in mediation, was tapped by Menino and Patrick to run the fund. Feinberg has warned victims to lower their expectations of how much money the fund would be able to pay individual beneficiaries.
Boston bomb suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, an ethnic Chechen with roots in Russia’s volatile northern Caucasus, was captured in a dramatic police manhunt days after the bombing. He was criminally charged and is being held in jail.
His brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, was also identified by the FBI as a suspect but he was killed in a gunfight with police. U.S. security officials have said they believe the brothers had Islamic militant sympathies.
Writing by Richard Valdmanis; Editing by Scott Malone and Grant McCool