Music industry voting advocacy group #iVoted announced additions to its 2020 advisory board and November venue holds Wednesday.
Walk The Moon’s Kevin Ray and APA’s Steve Ferguson will join a robust 2020 board that also includes MIT economist Jon Gruber, attorney Joyce Dollinger, Lyte’s Lawrence Peryer, analytics expert Talia Borodin and 46 for 46 founder Kyle Frenette, who were all voted onto the board in 2019.
“The work we pulled off in 2018 was essentially myself and an intern,” said Emily White, who co-founded #iVoted with industry vet Mike Luba and Wilco’s Pat Sansone, in a statement. “Expanding our board strategically to add experts in various areas of the industry has been crucial. Furthermore, bringing in Kevin Ray’s passion and enthusiasm for our concept, along with Steve’s expertise as a longtime agent has taken our work to the next level and beyond.
#iVoted drives voter engagement by letting fans into venues on national election nights for special shows, provided those fans present a selfie from outside their polling place. Unlike some other political advocacy groups affiliated with the music industry, #iVoted is non-partisan.
“I meet so many people [of] so many different beliefs and backgrounds every day when I’m on the road, in different cities, different countries,” said Ray in a statement. “The more people that vote, the better represented we all are.”
According to the release, #iVoted is already working to secure venues across the country, including in Wisconsin. Beyond being White’s home state, Wisconsin is a crucial presidential swing state; Bon Iver has already booked shows there for October in conjunction with 46 for 46.
White encourages venues, artists and other interested parties to contact #iVoted at [email protected], and hopes others can help spread the word about #iVoted. SXSW attendees later this month will be able to attend a panel featuring White, Frenette, Madame Gandhi and Run The Jewels manager Amaechi Uzoigwe.
“It’s inspiring to see so many in music coalesce around the concept and I’m looking forward to seeing what #iVoted can accomplish on November 3rd and beyond,” White said.
“Obviously, historically, artists have been at the forefront of political change,” she said. “Yet, at the same time, in the modern era I think artists are sometimes told to lay low with their opinions. […] Whether it’s artists, promoters, or other types of industry folks, we all have a platform. Those who are willing to speak up and use it can have major impact on audiences and communities alike.”