In an effort to raise money for disaster relief in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, Irma and Maria and the destruction the three storms caused in Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, former US Presidents Barack Obama, George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George H.W. Bush and Jimmy Carter will make an unprecedented group by convening in the Texas capital for the concert.
Republicans George W. and George H.W. Bush and Democrats Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, and Jimmy Carter took the stage together to kick off the event, offering brief remarks praising Americans' unity in the face of adversity.
Texas A&M is home to the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library. But even their popularity paled in comparison to surprise musical guest Lady Gaga who arrived bearing a promised $1 million donation of her own. She tweeted: "Nothing more lovely than everyone putting their differences aside to help humanity in the face of catastrophe". Country music singer Lee Greenwood was the concert's emcee.
The last time the five former presidents were together was in 2013 at the dedication of George W. Bush's presidential library in Dallas. "We came together. We helped one another and through it all we remained resilient", Trump said in a video message played during the "Deep From The Heart, The One America Appeal" concert at Texas A&M University's Reed Arena.
The One America Appeal has already raised $31 million ahead of the concert for relief efforts in Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands following the devastating hurricanes. "This wonderful effort reminds us that we truly are one nation under God, all unified by our values and devotion to one another", he said.
The event, titled 'Deep From the Heart: The One America Appeal, ' also featured Alabama, Lyle Lovett, Cassadee Pope and Yolanda Adams.
There is precedent for former presidents joining forces for post-disaster fundraising.
A website accepting donations, OneAmericaAppeal.org, was created with 100 percent of proceeds pledged to hurricane relief.