Stars perform for sold-out #TexasStrong concert

“Harvey Can’t Mess with Texas” is the title for a star-studded benefit concert that’s set to run from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. Friday at the Frank Erwin Center in Austin.

AUSTIN, Texas -- A star-studded lineup of Lone Star State favorites will headline the "Harvey Can’t Mess with Texas” benefit concert tonight in Austin. Part of the four-hour concert at the Frank Erwin Center in Austin will air on KHOU 11 at 9 p.m. KHOU 11's parent company Tegna helped organize the event.

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Performers include Willie Nelson, Paul Simon, James Taylor, Bonnie Raitt, Lyle Lovett, Leon Bridges, Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats and more. Matthew McConaughey, Renee Zellweger, Andy Roddick and Brooklyn Decker are among those schedule to make an appearance.

Along Willie Nelson Boulevard, in the heart of Austin, love for the great state of Texas pours out. “The Friendliness of people,” is what Francise Pine loves about the Lone Star State.

“Yeah, no. Willie Nelson, the ultimate, consummate Texan. You know,” said John Lawler.

The concert benefits the Dell Foundation’s Rebuild Texas campaign. Michael Dell, the leader of the tech company, is from Houston and donated $36 million to Harvey relief efforts.

On his blog, Dell described the pain he felt when he saw images of his childhood neighborhood under water.

Photos: #TexasStrong concert lineup

On Sept. 2, 2017, the Dell Foundation announced its goal of $100 million, which will be matched in part by Google, to help all Texas counties affected by Harvey.

Viewers can support the relief efforts in post-Hurricane Harvey Texas by calling 1-833-2-HELPTX, or by donating online at

Rebuild Texas will focus on four aspects: health and housing, schools and childcare, workforce and transportation and small businesses.

“Sure! I think it sounds a lot better than just a bunch of palettes of Cheese-Itz,” joked Lawler, who’s been able to find humor, even as his hometown, La Porte, dealt with flooding just a few weeks ago.

MORE: Willie Nelson, Paul Simon join Texas Strong concert for Harvey relief

Lawler pointed out the irony in a photo he took. It showed a La Porte bar, called The Bayou Bar, under water.

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“They took the name literally,” Lawler said.

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But as he thought back to the storm, things became real.

“So I was with my folks, my mom, dad, sister and nephew, brother-in law,” said Lawler, who now lives in Austin. “Saturday night was scary.”

Money raised will come from all ticket sales and donations from concert viewers like Pine.

“I am actually working the concert. The money that I’m making tomorrow evening as an usher, I’m going to donate," Pine said.

Tickets for all 17,900 available seats for the Friday night concert sold out in less than 24 hours.

Including KHOU 11, a total of 12 Tegna-owned television stations in Texas air a portion of the concert. It will also be streamed live at, 93.3. KGSR and KVET-FM in Austin, and KUHF News 88.7 in Houston from 9-10 p.m.

Viewers can donate to REBUILDTX.ORG by phone, text or online throughout the evening.