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Billy Corgan holds benefit concert for Highland Park parade shooting victims

Rock singer Billy Corgan of The Smashing Pumpkins held a benefit concert on Wednesday to raise funds for the victims of the Highland Park parade shooting.

“This is a community reeling,” Corgan said during the show. “I’ve lived here for 20 years. I’ve never seen anything like this in my life.”

Corgan announced plans for the fundraiser, titled “Together and Together Again,” earlier this month.

Corgan’s charity gig served as a moment of reflection and an opportunity to remember those lost, as well as provide a sense of financial relief for surviving victims.

“The reason I named it ‘Together and Together Again’ is we won’t stop. We will always come together,” Corgan said. “We will always bond around what we care about, our community and our love for one another. No one can take that away from us.”

“And tonight we begin to reclaim that for Highland Park, and we want to bring that message to the world.”

The three-hour show was held at Madame Zuzu’s, a plant-based tea house that Corgan owns with his partner Chloe Mendel, located on the same strip where the senseless attack took place.

A sign about HP strong is displayed as people look through a window of Madame Zuzu's, Wednesday, July 27, 2022, in Highland Park, Ill.
The community came together to heal through music during Wednesday’s show.

Mendel, along with her and Corgan’s children, planned to attend the Fourth of July parade the attack took place, but they were delayed by a later flight.

Seven people were killed after a gunman opened fire using a “high-powered” rifle. More than 40 people, ranging in age from 8 to 85, were injured in the shooting. A grand jury indicted the accused gunman on 117 felony charges earlier on Wednesday.

While the crowd was intimate, the show was streamed for free on the Smashing Pumpkins YouTube page.

Corgan raised $57,878 as of early Thursday morning. He performed Smashing Pumpkins’ hits “1979” and his own single “Aeronaut.”

Jimmy Chamberlain, left, performs at Madame Zuzu, Wednesday, July 27, 2022, in Highland Park, Ill. Rock singer Billy Corgan of The Smashing Pumpkins will perform a charity livestream show on July 27 to benefit the victims of the Fourth of July parade shooting in suburban Chicago that killed seven people and wounded more than 30
Performers used the charity show to remember lives lost during the tragic mass shooting.

Jane’s Addiction frontman Perry Farrell joined Corgan on stage in a surprise appearance for the final song of the evening, “Jane Says.”

Viewers were encouraged to donate to the Highland Park Community Foundation.

“The incident on July 4 demonstrated the absolute worst in human nature,” said Highland Park Police Chief Lou Jogmen in a pre-recorded video shared during the benefit.

“Even though a dark cloud has stretched across the entirety of Highland Park, our hearts are heavy and there have been glimmers of hope, signs of resilience, love, and compassion that have cut through the darkness,” he added.

Corgan also held a private show Tuesday night for first responders and victims of the shooting.

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