OFFSTAGE: Dierks Bentley: Raising Spirits & Raising Money

(CMT Offstage keeps a 24/7 watch on everything that’s happening with country music artists behind the scenes and out of the spotlight.)

Dierks Bentley was so moved by the tragic Arizona wildfire, he had to do something. “When those firefighters died, all those kids and all those wives lost the man of their house. So I just wanted to be able to help and serve in some small way. This is just my way of giving back,” Bentley told me about the benefit concert he’s playing and hosting on Monday (July 22) night in Prescott, Ariz. And when I say benefit, I mean that in the most literal way. Bentley told me 100 percent of the money they make that night will go directly to the 19 families of the Granite Mountain Hotshots firefighters who died on June 30 fighting the fire in nearby Yarnell. “Me and The Band Perry and Randy Houser and David Nail, we want to make it as good as it can be. And then I want to shock people with how much we raise.” He said that Prescott is where the firefighters were based, and the town was always kind of a “legendary hang” for him when he was growing up in Arizona. “My sister is an EMT, you know, and those people can be overlooked sometimes,” he said. “So this feels good to be part of something like this. We can raise spirits and money. I’m putting the set list together now, and we’ll have moments when we honor the 19 and moments when we cry and moments when we laugh. The whole town needs to grieve. “So we’ll try to take them through the whole range of emotions, but they’ll walk away feeling good.” Bentley’s Country Cares show sold out immediately, but even if you can’t go you can still give.

Alison makes her living loving country music. She's based in Chicago, but she's always leaving her heart in Nashville.