For the Children

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Posted April 18, 2007 by Hearsay in Music

Last Saturday at 6th Street Live, some marquee rawkers piled into the Westside club to do that thing they do and also to raise money for Rock’n For a Cure, a recently created charity organization devoted to funding the fight against childhood leukemia and lymphoma.

From a little after 8 p.m. ’til nearly closing time, The Burning Hotels, Darth Vato, Dallas’ Thief, Stella Rose, and The Red Herrings had the average-sized room at around maximum capacity. About 350 people, according to Ryan Kelley, Rock’n For a Cure’s founder and sole employee, came and went throughout the evening. More than $5,000 was raised, thanks to the attendees who paid the $12-per-person cover charge and corporate sponsors, who made donations both in cash and goods. (One of the biggest corporate donors was Pei Wei Asian Diner, which donated $700 worth of food. The club’s owner, Brian Forella, donated the room.)

The 6th Street Live show represented RFAC’s first foray into live local music as a fund-raising device. A full-time professional in the medical industry, Kelley started his organization about seven months ago, mainly out of his love for local music and his personal experiences as the single father of a son who was diagnosed with childhood leukemia two years ago. Allan, now almost 5, is in remission. “There are so many kids and families out there who aren’t doing well,” he said. “People are coming from all over, out of state, to go to Cook’s,” a leader in childhood leukemia treatment. “They have to pay for hotel rooms and travel. I thought [RFAC] would be a great way to help out.” Kelley is in the process of incorporating. He hopes that soon he’ll be able to generate money not just for childhood leukemia and lymphoma but “all childhood cancers.” Putting together last weekend’s show, he said, took nearly three months. “Through MySpace, I connected with about a hundred bands,” he said. “I narrowed it down to the 20 I wanted.”

More events are already in the works, including a fancy party in May downtown at Aqua Lounge and a huge Halloween concert. Friends and other do-gooders, Kelley said, have helped him every step of the way, from turning the idea into a reality to serving as go-fers last weekend. Kelley’s passion for and knowledge of local music comes from being a long-time scenester. From 1993 ’til ’97, he played in Crystal Ship, a local Doors cover band, and since moving to Fort Worth about 10 years ago, he claims he’s seen just about every rock group in town. “I think Fort Worth has one of the best music scenes around,” he said. “Dallas is dying, and I’ve been to Austin. There’s good music there, but there’s also a lot of crap.” Rock’n For a Cure, he said, is a great opportunity for him to “get local bands out there. People who don’t like local music don’t go to any shows,” implying that naysayers should go before spouting off. Visit Rock’nForACure.com.

… In its month-long celebration of its 10th birthday and in defiance of its impending closure, the Wreck Room (3208 W. 7th St.; 817-348-8303) offers two nights of The Burden Brothers, Thu-Fri, and on Saturday, whiskey-soaked rockers Woodeye will reunite.

Contact HearSay at hearsay@fwweekly.com.


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