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Justin Moore Offers Help to Hurricane Sandy Victims

photo by Randi Radcliff

Thomas Rhett may have said it best: "That's just country music for you. I'm not talking down to other genres by any means, but in country music you can always count on good dudes doing good things for people who need help."

The good dude he is speaking of is Justin Moore. The good thing was a benefit concert last night (Nov. 27) at Nashville's Wildhorse Saloon with the help of Thomas Rhett, Jake Owen and Randy Houser. And the people who need help are the victims of October's Hurricane Sandy—specifically, his publicist, Carly Caramanna, whose family lost their home and their business. Most tragically, Carly's father passed away from a stress-related heart attack two days after the storm.

Backstage prior to the event, Carly said that while there is still a great deal of recovery work to be done, the evening of music and laughs is a great diversion for her family. "It's nice to get this one night to relax and take a second to breathe amidst everything that has gone on," she tells Country Weekly. "Music is a way to heal."

For Thomas Rhett, Jake and Randy, the event was about answering the call of their buddy Justin. And for Jake, the scenario was all too familiar. "Growing up in Florida, I've dealt with things like that, but it wasn't anything like this storm," he says. "The main thing is, I don't know her or her family, but when your buddies call you and they need your help, you help them out. . . . In this business, good friends are hard to come by and he's a really good friend of mine." A sentiment echoed by Randy—"Justin is one of my good buddies and has been for a long time. He told me the situation with Carly and her family, and [about] the needs of so many people whose needs had not been met. If we can help, it's really easy for us to pick up a guitar and do something."

Justin, who hosted the benefit, visited with all the artists and the Caramanna family backstage before sitting down with CW. "I'm a Christian and the Bible says, 'To whom much is given, much is required,'" he explains. "We’re fortunate to have the platform we do. And it really surprises me that I have this platform, but I do think it’s part of our job to use it for good. This is way bigger than a hit record or a gold album; this is way bigger than that. And we’re happy to be able to be in a position to do it." He says he also owes a huge debt of thanks to Thomas Rhett, Jake and Randy. "I texted them late, late notice and they all said, with no hesitation, 'Absolutely, let me know when to be there and where to be.'"




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