Metallica, Elton John Donate to Australian Fire Relief

Metallica, Elton John
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David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images for Macmillan, Brett Hemmings/Getty Images, Kevin Mazur/Getty Images

Metallica and Elton John are the latest in a series of musicians from around the world making significant donations to the Australian bushfire relief fund.

The Australian fires have been exacerbated by the drought and one of the hottest years o n record. Since September, the bush fires have been raging through 41,000 square miles, killing 28 people (including three volunteer firefighters) and over 500,000,000 animals, and destroying more than 2,400 homes. 

Metallica and their foundation All Within My Hands are focusing their efforts on combatting the wildfires as they shared their $750,000 pledge to the NSW Rural Fire Service and to the Country Fire Authority in Victoria. 

“We are totally overwhelmed by the news of the wildfires sweeping through millions of acres across Australia, with major impact in New South Wales and Victoria,” Metallica announced in a statement. “The resulting destruction and devastating effects on all residents, animals, the environment and the incredible land in Australia is truly heartbreaking. Please join us...”

John also shared a poignant speech during a concert on Tuesday in Sydney, sharing with the crowd, "You should all be in awe of the work that the firefighters are doing. There are people out there who have lost their lives trying to save homes. There are people who have lost their lives and their homes."

The singer added, "And last is the plight of the animals and loss of their habitat that, frankly, is on a biblical scale and heartbreaking. Therefore, tonight I will be pledging $1 million to support the bushfire relief." 

Other high-profile cultural figures continue to raise awareness towards fire relief services while contributing to the donation effort. Pink, Chris Hemsworth, Keith Urban, Nicole Kidman and Flume have all announced donations. 

Major Australian concert promoters have additionally announced Fire Fight Australia, a benefit show of big name international and local artists to be held in Sydney on February 16. While the full lineup of entertainment has yet to be revealed, British rock legends Queen have been rumored to be signed for the charity fundraiser. 

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