Did Toby Keith Refuse to Sign a Guitar for St. Jude?
Country fan favorite Toby Keith is facing allegations that he refused to sign a guitar to help raise money for St. Jude Children’s Hospital.
Radar Online reports that Joel Bieschke, the vice president of a company called Creative Adventures, claims that he got the go-ahead from someone on Keith’s team to have the entertainer sign the guitar at a June 22 show at Nebraskaland Days, which he says he teamed up with radio station KRNY to promote.
“One of the radio station program directors got meet-and-greets and permission to get a guitar signed for St. Jude’s 2013 radio fundraiser. People donate to win a guitar signed by their favorite artist on the air and the money goes to help the children at St. Jude,” Bieschke explains.
He alleges the singer reacted badly when they asked him to sign the instrument backstage. “When we got face-to-face with Toby in the meet-and-greet line, he refused to sign the guitar, and his crew told us to leave or else they were going to call security,” he says. “It would have taken him 10 seconds to sign that guitar to help raise money for children who are terminally ill. I’d like to think he was not that type of guy.”
Bieschke adds that he’s worked with TV and radio stations for 20 years and never had anyone refuse to sign a charity item before. “We promoted Toby’s concert to help sell more tickets, and I’ll never do it again,” he vows.
When contacted by Radar Online for comment, Keith’s tour manager, David Milam, apparently scoffed at the story, pointing out that Keith supports children’s charities through his Toby Keith Foundation and the OK Kids Korral, which provides sick children and their families a place to stay while they are undergoing cancer treatments.
“If it was asked of us for Toby to sign something for St. Jude or any other LEGITIMATE charity, we always do so,” Milam insists. “For them to think that Toby would disregard a great charity like St. Jude when he has his own foundation that supports and has the same goals is just stupid.”