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Farm Aid started as a benefit concert on September 22, 1985, in Champaign, Illinoismarker, held to raise money for family farmers in the United Statesmarker. The concert was organized by Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp and Neil Young, spurred on by Bob Dylan's comments at Live Aid earlier in that year. (Dylan said, "I hope that some of the money...maybe they can just take a little bit of it, or two million, maybe...and use it, say, to pay the mortgages on some of the farms and, the farmers here, owe to the banks....") Nelson and Mellencamp then brought family farmers before Congress to testify about the state of family farming in America. Congress subsequently passed the Agricultural Credit Act of 1987 to help save family farms from foreclosure.

Today, Farm Aid is an organization that works to increase awareness of the importance of family farms, and puts on an annual concert of country, blues and rock music with a variety of stars. The board of directors includes Nelson, Mellencamp, Neil Young, and Dave Matthews. Young's speeches about the environment are a highlight of the annual shows.

The 2005 concert, marked the 20th anniversary of Farm Aid, took place at the Tweeter Center in Tinley Park, Illinois, with events in downtown Chicagomarker as well. The 2007 Concert took place at Randalls Island in New York City (1st Farm Aid in New York) and was recorded in High Definition to be broadcast on HDNet as a 2 Hour Special highlighting many of the performances from the Allman Brothers and Counting Crows to John Mellencamp and Willie Nelson.

List of concerts

, Farm Aid concerts have been held in the following locations:

Farm Aid
City, State
Lineup Included
Farm Aid
September 22, 1985
Champaign, Illinoismarker
Memorial Stadiummarker
Alabama, Hoyt Axton, The Beach Boys, Jon Bon Jovi, Glen Campbell, Johnny Cash, David Allan Coe, John Conlee, Charlie Daniels Band, John Denver, Bob Dylan, John Fogerty, Foreigner, Vince Gill, Arlo Guthrie, Sammy Hagar, Merle Haggard, Daryl Hall, Emmylou Harris, Don Henley, Waylon Jennings, Billy Joel, George Jones, Rickie Lee Jones, B.
King, Carole King, Kris Kristofferson, Huey Lewis, Loretta Lynn, John Mellencamp, Roger Miller, Joni Mitchell, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band,Willie Nelson, Roy Orbison, Tom Petty, Charley Pride, Lou Reed, Kenny Rogers, Brian Setzer, Sissy Spacek, Tanya Tucker, Eddie Van Halen, Debra Winger, Neil Young, Dave Milsap, Joe Ely, Judy Rodman, X
The very first Farm Aid
Farm Aid II
July 4, 1986
Manor, Texasmarker
Manor Downsmarker Racetrack
Alabama, The Beach Boys, The Blasters, Judy Collins, Rita Coolidge, Bob Dylan, Steve Earle, Joe Ely, Exile, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, Emmylou Harris, Julio Iglesias, Rick James, Jason & the Scorchers, Waylon Jennings, George Jones, Jon Bon Jovi, Nicolette Larson, Los Lobos, John Mellencamp, Vince Neil, Willie Nelson, Tom Petty, Steppenwolf, Taj Mahal, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Joe Walsh, Neil Young, X
Bob Dylan and Tom Petty were off site via satellite
Farm Aid III
September 19, 1987
Lincoln, Nebraskamarker
Memorial Stadium
Alex Harvey, Emmylou Harris, Steppenwolf, Vince Gill, Lyle Lovett, John Denver, Lou Reed, John Mellencamp, Neil Young, Bandaloo Doctors, Joe Walsh, Willie Nelson, The Unforgiven
Farm Aid 1989
Willie Nelson
Farm Aid President Willie Nelson took Farm Aid on the road for 16 of his own show dates
Farm Aid IV
April 7, 1990
Indianapolis, Indianamarker
Hoosier Domemarker
Bonnie Raitt, John Mellencamp, John Hiatt, Carl Perkins, Arlo Guthrie, Garth Brooks, John Denver, Bill Monroe, Alan Jackson, Asleep at the Wheel, Jackson Browne, Willie Nelson, Elton John, Lou Reed, Don Henley, Taj Mahal, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Neil Young, Willie Nelson, Guns N' Roses
Steven Adler's last show with Guns N' Roses
Farm Aid V
March 14, 1992
Irving, Texasmarker
Texas Stadiummarker
Arlo Guthrie, Kentucky Headhunters, Texas Tornadoes, Bandaloo Doctors, Bonnie Raitt, Little Village, Tracy Chapman, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Petra, Paul Simon, Neil Young, Mary Chapin Carpenter, The Highwaymen, Lorrie Morgan, Ricky Van Shelton, Willie Nelson, Neil Young, John Mellencamp
Farm Aid VI
April 24, 1993
Ames, Iowamarker
Jack Trice Stadiummarker
Arlo Guthrie, The Jayhawks, Jann Arden, Lyle Lovett, Johnny Cash, Neil Young, Ricky Van Shelton, Willie Nelson, Kentucky Headhunters, Marty Stuart, Charlie Daniels Band, Martina McBride, Bruce Hornsby, Bryan Adams, Ringo Starr, Black 47, The Highwaymen, and Dwight Yoakam
Farm Aid VII
September 18, 1994
New Orleans, Louisianamarker
Louisiana Superdomemarker
Neville Brothers, Spin Doctors, Gin Blossoms, John Conlee, Kris Kristofferson, Willie Nelson, Neil Young, John Mellencamp, Deana Carter, Titty Bingo
Farm Aid '95: 10th Anniversary
October 1, 1995
Louisville, Kentuckymarker
Cardinal Stadiummarker
Hootie and the Blowfish, Dave Matthews Band, BlackHawk, John Conlee, The Supersuckers, Steve Earle, Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp, Neil Young
The 10th Anniversary of Farm Aid
Farm Aid '96
October 12, 1996
Columbia, South Carolinamarker
Williams-Brice Stadiummarker
Hootie and the Blowfish, Marshall Chapman, Beach Boys, Son Volt, Robert Earl Keen, Martina McBride, John Conlee, Jewel, Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp, Neil Young
Farm Aid '97
October 4, 1997
Tinley Park, Illinoismarker
Tweeter Centermarker
Willie Nelson, Neil Young, John Fogerty, Beck, Dave Matthews Band, The Allman Brothers Band
Farm Aid '98
October 3, 1998
Tinley Park, Illinoismarker
Tweeter Centermarker
Willie Nelson, Phish, Neil Young, John Mellencamp, Steve Earle, Del McCoury Band, Wilco
Farm Aid '99
September 12, 1999
Bristow, Virginiamarker
Nissan Pavilionmarker
Susan Tedeschi, Keb' Mo', Deana Carter, Barenaked Ladies, Dave Matthews Band, John Mellencamp, Willie Nelson, Neil Young
Farm Aid 2000
September 17, 2000
Bristow, Virginiamarker
Nissan Pavilionmarker
Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Arlo Guthrie, Sawyer Brown, Alan Jackson, Travis Tritt, Barenaked Ladies, Tipper Gore, Willie Nelson
The 15th Anniversary of Farm Aid
Farm Aid 2001: A Concert for America
September 29, 2001
Noblesville, Indianamarker
Verizon Wireless Music Centermarker
Willie Nelson, Neil Young, John Mellencamp, Dave Matthews, Doobie Brothers, Martina McBride
Farm Aid '02
September 21, 2002
Burgettstown, Pennsylvaniamarker
Post-Gazette Pavilionmarker
Willie Nelson, Neil Young, John Mellencamp, Dave Matthews, Keith Urban, Lee Ann Womack, Kid Rock, Gillian Welch, Kenny Wayne Shepherd with Double Trouble, The Drive-By Truckers, Los Lonely Boys, Anthony Smith
Farm Aid '03
September 7, 2003
Columbus, Ohiomarker
Germain Amphitheatermarker
Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp, Dave Matthews, Neil Young and Crazy Horse, Emmylou Harris, Hootie & the Blowfish, Los Lonely Boys, Sheryl Crow, Brooks & Dunn, ,Titty Bingo, Trick Pony, Billy Bob Thornton, Daniel Lanois
Farm Aid '04
September 18, 2004
Auburn, Washingtonmarker
White River Amphitheater
Willie Nelson, Neil Young, John Mellencamp, Dave Matthews, Lucinda Williams, Steve Earle, Jerry Lee Lewis, Trick Pony, Tony Coleman, Blue Merle, Tegan and Sara, Kate Voegele, Kitty Jerry, Marc Broussard
Farm Aid 2005: 20th Anniversary
September 18, 2005
Tinley Park, Illinoismarker
Tweeter Centermarker
Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp, Neil Young, Dave Matthews, Arlo Guthrie, Buddy Guy, Congressman Collin Peterson and the Second Amendments, Drew Davis Band, Elizabeth Rainey, Emmylou Harris, James McMurtry, Jimmy Sturr & His Orchestra, John Mayer, Kate Voegele, Kathleen Edwards, Kenny Chesney, Los Lonely Boys, Shannon Brown, Supersuckers, Susan Tedeschi, Widespread Panic, Wilco
The 20th Anniversary of Farm Aid
Farm Aid 2006
September 30, 2006
Camden, New Jerseymarker
Tweeter Centermarker
Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp, Neil Young, Dave Matthews, Jerry Lee Lewis with Roy Head, Los Lonely Boys, Arlo Guthrie, Gov't Mule, Steve Earle and Allison Moorer, Steel Pulse, Shelby Lynne, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Jimmy Sturr & his Orchestra, Pauline Reese, Danielle Evin
Farm Aid 2007: A Homegrown Festival
September 9, 2007
New York City, New Yorkmarker
Randall's Islandmarker
Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp, Neil Young and Dave Matthews with Merle Haggard, Ray Price, Billy Joe Shaver, Tim Reynolds, Gregg Allman, The Allman Brothers Band, Counting Crows, Matisyahu, Guster, The Derek Trucks Band, Warren Haynes, Supersuckers, The Ditty Bops, Montgomery Gentry, Jimmy Sturr, Danielle Evin, Jesse Lenat, Pauline Reese, Paula Nelson, Titty Bingo, 40 Points
Farm Aid 2008
September 20, 2008
Mansfield, Massachusettsmarker
Comcast Centermarker
Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp, Neil Young, Dave Matthews and Tim Reynolds with Jerry Lee Lewis, Kenny Chesney, The Pretenders, moe., Arlo Guthrie, Steve Earle, Nation Beat, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, Jakob Dylan and The Gold Mountain Rebels, Danielle Evin, Jamey Johnson, Jesse Lenat, Will Dailey, One Flew South, The Elms
Farm Aid 2009
October 4, 2009
Maryland Heights, Missourimarker
Verizon Wireless Amphitheatermarker
Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp, Neil Young, Dave Matthews and Tim Reynolds with Jamey Johnson, Jason Mraz, Phosphorescent, and Wilco.
More performers to be announced.

The Board of Directors

Image:Willie Nelson.jpg|Willie NelsonImage:Ny-ottawa-jul-2006.jpg|Neil YoungImage:JohnMellencamp01a.jpg|John MellencampImage:DaveMatthews2.jpg|Dave Matthews

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