You can subtitle this one, “the Bands for Baby Ava benefit.”
At some unknown future point in another venue, I’m going to point out all the good the local musicians do for the community.
That spirit of giving was on display last week – a full month after Christmas – when a number of bands and assorted one-off impromptu groups gathered to help raise money for Ava DelRicco, a toddler who was seriously injured in a December auto accident just a piece up the road from the Pour House in Ocean City. Since then she’s been recovering at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore.
So as the Pour House mascot looked on approvingly, we were treated to almost 10 solid hours of musical entertainment from the various bands and DJs Skip Dixxon and Bigler.
And the order of presentation was fairly interesting, as a couple of the bands already had other gigs planned for the day but felt in their heart they needed to come and participate.
So you had a more experienced group who would otherwise be one of the headliners leading off. Paul Lewis and Y-Not had an evening engagement across the Bay Bridge so they were the first band in this instance. They also made one of the more popular donations to the silent auction, which I will get to in due course.
They were one of the few bands who played some originals as well, which was a good touch considering many of the participants specialized in covers of various rock genres.
And by the way, the Sons of Patriots motorcycle club came in as a group right behind me as the event started – about a dozen or so to help fill the room nicely to start the show.
I think the next group has a collective mancrush on Sublime, since there were two of their covers I heard in their set.
Sunny Side Up began as half of the youthful group The Hooplas, which, as you may recall, made their debut at the 12 Bands of Christmas back in December. They picked up some vocal help for the latter part of their set.
The place was beginning to fill up quite nicely at this point, and it was heartwarming to see the community support.
That open mike feel to the event was a recurring theme. But I also learned an old musicians’ trick, thanks to Bryan Russo.
That guitar case isn’t carelessly laid on the floor. It’s by his foot with a microphone inside so when Russo taps his foot it becomes his bass drum. Very multitalented and smart.
Brian brought a bluesy feel to the event with his attire and his playlist, which also featured a number of originals. He also announced that he would donate a portion of the proceeds from the CDs he had for sale at the event to the cause.
He was the one-man band at the event. But we’re not quite done with Bryan yet.
As Russo was clearing out, Blake Haley made a request: to play a song. He wasn’t on the bill but wanted to make his presence known, too.
And since Bryan hadn’t completely packed up and left he helped Blake out with his song.
Next up was Easy Action, a group of classic rockers who reset the stage with a more traditional feel.
As I said above, it was an open mike night of sorts. So Witches Brew singer Susan Witchey stepped in to help Easy Action with vocals on a couple tracks.
Her band didn’t participate either, but she stayed most of the night to support the cause.
Then it was time to put the host to work playing his drum set.
Livin’ the Dream did their normal hard rock show, with the obligatory tribute to KISS as part of the set. And Susan helped out with a song or two on their set as well.
This picture is in there just because I like it.
I’d heard this lady’s name mentioned a number of times but last week was the first time I’d seen Lauren Glick play.
Her band dug back to the era of the late sixties and early seventies for most of their covers, with a country-tinged set.
But that’s what brought people to the dance floor.
After another one-song cameo by the Bob Blair Project (sadly, I have no photo of that) we next heard from Familiar Soul.
And they played some familiar songs that kept the party going, as the dance floor was filled during their set, too.
After Familiar Soul played, I saw an opportunity for a little calm before the storm.
This may be the only month out of the year you can take this shot at 7 p.m. on a Saturday night without a truckload of people in it.
I decided to do something a little different with the Phantom Limbs. Here’s each member of the trio separately.
In the frenetic manner that this trio plays their mosh pit of originals crafted from surf, punk, and rock, it was almost easier to get individual shots, although the group one came out okay as well.
Next up was the hard-rockin’ Dust n’ Bones, with a more modern rock playlist than most of their predecessors on stage.
The last three groups had more of an up-to-date playlist than the earlier groups. High Test came from across the bridge to play the show.
And the Prince George’s-based band probably made a lot of fans with an active show. I was sitting when I took this – the singer was standing on two chairs.
Closing out the show was Vivid Season. We know they bring the hard stuff.
But before they played, we had the conclusion of the silent auction. As I noted up top, Y-Not helped out with this PRS guitar and also donated several other items as a package.
Despite their playoff failure, Ravens items were in high demand, too.
Here’s a look at some of the other items up for bids. There were two other smaller tables, too.
You could even wear your support.
The really good news is that, between the $5 cover charge, the pair of 50-50 raffles, the silent auction table, the various other raffles they had, and straight cash donations, the event raised over $7,000 for the family.
Even better news is that there will be a “sequel” event on March 10, with a venue to be announced. With as many people as there were at the Pour House, they may need a bigger place.