New York -- All this week, VH1 and NBC's Today show
are teaming up on an on-air musical-instrument drive to benefit the cable network's
"Save the Music" campaign.
VH1 president John Sykes created the program two years ago
to help support music-education programs in American schools.
For the "VH1 Save the Music Today!" campaign this
week, Today viewers are being asked to bring musical instruments for donation to
the sidewalks outside of the Today studio at Rockefeller Center here during the
early morning show's hours.
Throughout the week, celebrity guests will help to collect
the instruments, which will be donated to schoolchildren across the country.
Today (June 7), Sykes, National School Boards Association
board member Joan Schmidt and singer Natalie Merchant will kick off the instrument drive
on the show.
First lady Hillary Rodham Clinton will appear Thursday,
along with Sykes and musical artist Jewel. Other celebrities, including Latin sensation
Ricky Martin, will fill in on the other days.
Last week, Today co-hosts Katie Couric and Matt
Lauer chatted up the Save the Music campaign, asking New York-area residents to check
their closets for old musical instruments.
Couric and Lauer debated whether their kazoos and
harmonicas would qualify as donations.
"I still play my harmonica," Couric quipped
on-air. "I'm not ready to give it up yet."
VH1 has been successful in drumming up celebrity support
for the campaign. Proceeds from its annual Divas Live concert go to Save the Music.