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First $50M from 12-12-12 goes to relief

The organizers of the star-studded concert at Madison Square Garden that was devoted to raising money for the victims of superstorm Sandy said they will begin releasing the first $50 million raised to relief organizations.

The Robin Hood Foundation collected money through the 12-12-12 concert on Dec. 12 through ticket sales, sponsorships, telephone and web donations. And more money continues to pour in through online auctions of signed memorabilia, iTunes sales and DVD and CD sales, organizers said.

"We are forever grateful to the unlimited generosity that was shown to the people of the tri-state area from around the world," the group said in a statement.

"Through the collective efforts of the participating artists, celebrities, corporate partners and sponsors we will be able to make a meaningful difference for so many of our neighbors who were affected across the tri-state area," the statement said.

The concert featured marquee names such as The Rolling Stones, Nirvana, Alicia Keys, Kanye West and Paul McCartney, among others.

It was produced by James Dolan, executive chairman of The Madison Square Garden Co. and chief executive of Cablevision, which owns Newsday; John Sykes, president of Clear Channel Entertainment Enterprises; and Harvey Weinstein, co-founder and chairman of The Weinstein Company. It was presented by Chase.

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