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Neil Young has announced he is dropping out of the 2021 edition of Farm Aid due to concerns related to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Young issued a statement via Archives website which reads, “Lots is going on in our world right now. I find myself wondering whether Farmaid [sic] will be safe for everyone with the Covid pandemic surging. I worry about that. I don’t want to let anybody down, but I still can’t shake the feeling that it might not be safe for everyone. I worry about audiences coming together in these times. The show is sold out.”

He continued, “All you people who can’t go to a concert because you still don’t feel safe, I stand with you. I don’t want you to see me playing and think it’s safe now. I don’t want to play until you feel safe, and it is indeed, safe. My soul tells me it would be wrong to risk having anyone die because they wanted to hear music and be with friends. No matter where you are, I am with you. Do what you must, but think it through. We will be back. There is much work to do together.”

Young adds, “Since we know vaccinated people can catch and spread Covid, I worry about the children who could become infected after Farmaid [sic] just by being with someone, maybe a parent, who caught the virus at Farmaid [sic] and didn’t know it. There are already too many children in hospitals.”

He concludes, “While I respect Willie [Nelson], John [Mellencamp] and Dave’s [Matthews] decisions to stick with it and play, I am not of the same mind. It is a tough call. As time passes, I hope the path ahead will become clear.”

Farm Aid is currently set for Saturday, September 25 in Hartford, Conn at the Xfinity Theatre. In addition to Nelson, Mellencamp and Matthews, also set to perform the festival are Sturgill Simpson, Tyler Childers, Margo Price, Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats and many more.

Per FarmAid.org, “All attendees of Farm Aid 2021 will be required to show proof of full vaccination OR proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken no more than 48 hours prior to entering Xfinity Theatre. The requirement of proof of a negative test within 48 hours of entry includes unvaccinated fans under 12 years of age. ”

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Erica Banas is a rock/classic rock news blogger who's well versed in etiquette and extraordinarily nice.