Normally I put these posts up on the weekend and save the weekdays for more serious political items, but since there was a charitable element to most of this post I decided to push the date ahead a few days.
I saw 13 acts in a span of about 48 hours, and all but one was doing their thing for a cause. My friends from Semiblind aren’t strangers to doing charity shows either, but in this case they were out to entertain the patrons at the Oasis Bar and Grill last Friday night and maybe make a few bucks for themselves.
Since a lot of their friends were there and wanted to hear a couple originals, I was happy to hear the band comply. They’re over in Salisbury this Saturday night; alas, I can’t make that show.
I did make this one on Saturday evening though:
Walking in, I heard the jazz-tinged rock of The Permilla Project.
They played a set mostly comprised of originals, with a couple covers thrown in. TPP is a talented group who plays the local upscale joints frequently.
Next up was the ’80’s revival of Bluelight Special.
Before going much farther, it bears mentioning that the half of the local blogosphere I didn’t see at the Conway/Mathias townhall I attended earlier Saturday was at this event. Several contributors to Progressive Delmarva were among the bands playing, plus I met Ridgely Griffith and his daughter Meredith (afterthegoldrush and Twirling…Towards Freedom, respectively.) Melanie of PD is the female member of Bluelight Special, so this was a good time to bring that fact up.
I certainly don’t agree with their politics but give them props for helping out this cause!
Of the bands performing, I was familiar with The Permilla Project and these guys, Not My Own.
After the ’80’s pop of Bluelight Special, these guys multiplied the heaviness quotient about fivefold. Yet they had a good sound about them and they were the first of the three “message” acts which played. Between sets the show featured local clergy who related their stories about the experiences they had in Haiti, with the Brumbleys, or both.
Things quieted down again with the lone solo act featured, Corey Franklin.
Corey played songs which reflected his ministry, as did the headlining act, Reconcile520.
What I can’t figure out about this group is whether they comprise a house band for the Uprising Church (who put on the event) or if they just happen to be church members who started the band on their own. All of them certainly show that the young whippersnappers aren’t the only ones who can rock and minister at the same time.
Unfortunately, I found out later that by missing the afternoon session I didn’t get to catch the sixth band on the bill, Proof Of Love. They had a scheduling conflict and only played the earlier session.
Most importantly, I also learned that the event raised over $1,000 for the Brumbleys’ Haitian mission. The room was about half-full for the evening event so perhaps 300 to 400 attended that show. It’s the first of what will likely be a continuing series of performances until the Haitian mission gets back on its feet.
On Sunday I attended a program with a different (but still noble) cause. The Wicomico Child Advocacy Center put on an interesting fundraiser at Chef Fred’s Chesapeake Steakhouse, and although just three bands were on the bill a total of seven acts contributed entertainment, beginning with Wes Davis.
After his set, we got more classics from two bands who share many of the same personnel. Agent 99 was on the bill, but many of those members also play for the band Full Circle. See if you can figure out the different players in the next two pictures.
Between Agent 99 and Full Circle there was a short break as Davis Ruark announced the CAC will soon have a name change to honor Sarah Foxwell’s memory.
Since this was a fundraiser, there was also a silent auction. I’ve asked Davis Ruark how much was raised but haven’t received an answer yet. These items, though, weren’t moving very briskly.
I didn’t know this, but there were other treats in the musical bag as well. This young man is Michael Sky Chester, and at the tender age of 16 he was doing his first full-set solo.
Mom (a.k.a. Marla, singer/guitarist for Agent 99) had a lot to be proud of. Look for this young man to go places.
Another quick performance came from hip-hop singer Rayz, who performed a song he penned in memory of Sarah Foxwell along with another tune from his recent CD.
Up next was another young musician who had ties to a previous performer – Natalie Davis is Wes’s daughter.
This young woman has a voice on her. Perhaps her and Michael Sky Chester could become a duo act – you never know in the world of local Delmarva music.
Finally, we got to hear the heavy covers of Vivid Season. If you turn on a local rock station like 93.5 the Beach or 96 Rock, you’ll probably hear a good portion of the songs Vivid Season covered.
Unfortunately, their performance was marred by the lead singer being sick, yet he gamely went on with the show as best he could. Next time I run across them hopefully he’s in fine voice again.
Well, this certainly qualifies as a weekend of local rock, does it not? If I get a update from Davis Ruark or the CAC on the proceeds from the event I’ll follow up. But there was some disappointment expressed that the event wasn’t promoted better – local blogs did their part but they don’t reach a huge audience yet. We’re still in an era where promotion requires television or print exposure to succeed.
I look for each event to come back in bigger and better form next time around as the kinks have hopefully been worked out of both.