#GoVote and the power of social sharing

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HeadCount_with_MarcToday, election day in the USA, I am part of more than 300 entertainers organized by HeadCount to post a photo on their social media feeds urging people to #GoVote.

HeadCount organized this because, as they say: “the candidates aren’t very inspiring this year. Midterm elections will have a huge impact on policy and our everyday lives, and they’re predicting record-low turnout. So we’re doing our part and calling on every American to do their part. And we enlisted some famous friends to get the message out there.”

In this photo, I’m with HeadCount co-founder Marc Brownstein who is also founder and bassist of The Disco Biscuits. We grabbed the shot backstage at Gathering of the Vibes music festival this summer.

The power of social sharing

The artists in the #GoVote campaign combined have over 350 million social media followers. The idea of the campaign is to get more people out to vote, so we can make a difference. It could be the difference in some close elections.

Congress has a 15% approval but 90% re-election rate. Why? Because too many people sit out elections and let others make the decisions. So #GoVote today.

"The reach of this campaign is just astounding," Marc Brownstein says. "I know first- hand about the power of the connection between musicians and fans. When you think about having 350 musicians and entertainers all speaking to their fans about voting, it really moves the needle."

HeadCount is a nonpartisan organization that works with musicians to promote participation in democracy in the United States. It is best known for registering voters at concerts, having signed up 300,000 voters since its launch in 2004.

I’m a volunteer on the HeadCount Digital Advisor Board, chaired by Andy Bernstein, co-founder and Executive Director of HeadCount.


#GoVote photo campaign

As a Dead Head, it’s cool that every living member of the Grateful Dead including HeadCount board member Bob Weir are taking part in the #GoVote photo campaign.

GoVoteAnd as a mega music geek it’s fun to page through the musicians taking part, including Dave Matthews, Trey Anastasio of Phish, Jack Johnson, Dave Schools of Widespread Panic, Jeff Tweedy of Wilco (along with his son Spencer and Nick Offerman), Jason Mraz, and Warren Haynes.

There are some iconic names like Chaka Khan, Gregg Allman, Ben & Jerry, Russell Simmons, Herbie Hancock, Mavis Staples and Crosby, Stills & Nash. Some huge arena rock stars like Linkin Park and Fergie. There’s John Legend, and Moby, and T.I., and Ms. Lauryn Hill, and Chanel West Coast.

The campaign also includes many of the artists who stand with HeadCount night in and night out across America, like STS9, Neko Case, The Head and the Heart, Galactic, Rise Against, Big Gigantic, moe., Michael Kang from String Cheese Incident, Dispatch, O.A.R., Tedeschi Trucks, Les Claypool, Umphrey’s McGee, Michael Franti, Andrew Bird, The Antlers, Drive-By-Truckers, Revivalists, The Indigo Girls, Lotus, Cornmeal, The Antlers, The Wood Brothers, Local Natives, Dr. Dog, Lettuce, Trampled by Turtles, Beats Antique, Portugal. The Man, Bassnectar, Edward Sharp and the Magnetic Zeroes, G. Love, and Greensky Bluegrass.

HeadCount Voter Information Hub

Each artist who posts their photo as part of the #GoVote campaign points to the HeadCount comprehensive election information site. It’s a hub for election information, a place to start a search for: 

- An absentee ballot

- Your polling place

- What’s on your ballot

- Your voter registration status

- Voter ID requirements

- Online voter registration

The site links to 100+ other information sources about voting, candidates and organizations. It also highlights iCitizen, a smartphone app with info on candidates and issues.

Now, if you’re an American, it’s the day to #GoVote!