Rainey Day Fund

Pursuing a career in music is a difficult undertaking even in the best of circumstances and, as in life itself, minority artists have far from the best of circumstances. To help achieve a better balance of powers, the Rainey Day Fund provides assistance to artists of color, artists with disabilities, artists within the LGBTQ+ community, and others who add to the rich fabric of roots music. Named after Ma Rainey — the queer, Black “Mother of the Blues” — the Rainey Day Fund hopes to lighten that load through its two main components: 1) a micro-grant fund with cash gifts of up to $1,000, and 2) a suite of donated professional services — each available to minority artists and marginalized voices at key moments in their careers.

The founders of the Rainey Day Fund were supporting the artists they loved even before the project had a name. Recipients of Rainey Day grants include Grammy nominees Amythyst Kiah and Yola, as well as wonderful emerging artists like Tré Burt, Chastity Brown, Birds of Chicago, Jensen McRae, Joy Oladokun, and more. In 2020, RDF partnered with Rissi Palmer to create the Color Me Country Artist Fund to assist BIPOC in the country music space, with 2021 bringing another offshoot, the Rosetta Fund, envisioned by music journalist Marissa R. Moss to support marginalized creators on that side of the industry, as well. In a perfect marriage of music and mission, we also folded the funds into Newport Festivals Foundation.


Photo Credit: Beehive Productions