Woodsongs prepares nearly 1,000 instruments to donate to Kentucky tornado relief

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – Woodsongs Old-Time Radio Hour in Lexington has been gathering instruments to donate to those affected by the December tornadoes.

The Woodsongs community is nationwide, and they have worked with music stores all over the country, including Musicians Pro in Bowling Green, to get more than 1,000 instruments that will be given for free to anyone who lost theirs to the tornado.

“A few things inspired the Woodsongs tornado program,” said Michael Johnathon, executive producer at Woodsongs. “One was watching Gov. Beshear on-site, how emotional he was, and he said that there is no camera lens wide enough to capture all the damage.”

The second inspiration came from the importance of music and art to the recovery of the human spirit, said Johnathon.

“I believe in the music of America’s front porch, and all those front porches are gone. And so I thought, ‘This is a contribution we could do.'”

Johnathan said Woodsongs received many emails about the program, one of which was sent by a couple who had lost the husband’s great-grandfather’s 150-year-old fiddle and a Martin guitar.

“We’ve found a Martin guitar and a beautiful old fiddle to replace theirs with,” said Johnathon. “We’re being very conscientious on not only replacing the instrument but the spirit that goes along with it.”

“You know, whenever a musician, song writer, artist gets in a time of extremes, whether it’s joy or sadness or stress or whatever it is, they invariably reach for their instrument for comfort to express how they feel, to you know, just get through the moment. And I mean, we’re just talking about hundreds and hundreds of musicians that have lost their instruments. And so this is one way can help our brothers and sisters that were in crisis.”

Instruments will be distributed March 18 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. in Mayfield and March 19 from noon to 4 p.m. in Dawson Springs and 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in Owensboro.

If you want to get involved or were affected and want to pick up an instrument, go to woodsongs.com/tornado.