Sheryl Crow has been swept up into a scandal surrounding bailout money. Northern Trust Bank received around $1.6 billion in federal funds, which they did not even ask to be given. The funding was to help pay for the millions they would spend on a PGA tournament in CA a week ago. While they did spend millions (about $6.3) on the tournament, they also spent an insane amount elsewhere. Clients were flown in (some on private charted planes) and over 100 guests (per hotel) were set up at the Beverly Wilshire, Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel, the Ritz Carlton, and Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica. They were shuttled back and forth in Mercedes to the tournament and evening festivities, which were at rented out venues with incredibly expensive food menus and “goodie” bags from Tiffany’s for the female guests. At these trendy venues there were impressive music acts, such as Sheryl Crow performing at the House of Blues.
So now Sheryl Crow is being linked to the bailout money since the bailout money is how she was paid. The bank claims they paid for the parties with operation costs, but these parties also come 2 months after the bank had laid off 4% of its workforce. A representative from the bank also claimed all the expenses were part of a marketing strategy, showing customers the bank appreciates its business. How can the justify spending taxpayer money in such a frivolous manner? Some democrat representatives are requesting that the bank pay back the equivalent of what was spent on the parties last week.
That is the back-story and for whatever reason most of the criticism for accepting payment for their performance has crashed down on Sheryl Crow, even though Chicago and Earth Wind & Fire performed as well. She is being targeted for accepting the government funds while the rest of America is working 9 to 5 and eating off the $1 menu at McDonalds to save money. Blog posts such as Lime Life are infuriated with the spending, but only mention Sheryl Crow’s name when speaking about the parties, thus connecting only her name. A further blunder by Crow is that a few days after her show was paid for by Americans who did not see the show, nor cared to see it, she is now urging Congress to force radio stations for pay artists every time one of their songs is played.
If I were her publicist, I would not have let her speak out pleading for radio stations to pay for songs when the first fiasco concerning money had not even begun to die down. I would have released a statement saying she did not know that she was being paid by payout money (I am assuming that is true, I hope she did not perform knowing that!) I would look online to fan forums, urging them to stand behind Crow, using that they know she would not be taking from them intentionally because the truly know Sheryl Crow. I do not know if Crow would actually do this, but I would encourage her to give back all or some portion of the money to government or donate it to a charity. I would also look into a potential benefit concert she could put on that would be giving back to the community that she (hopefully) unintentionally took from.