NC Music Royalty Reunite This Weekend for Be Loud! Benefit


Let’s Active, Connells, Pressure Boys, Dex Romweber Duo, A Number of Things, Tom Maxwell and others – what’s not to like?

By Fred Mills

Back in May it was announced that a slew of NC musicians were going to be putting on a weekend festival, Aug. 8-9, at Carrboro venue Cat’s Cradle as a benefit for the Be Loud! Sophie Foundation, which supports adolescent and young adult cancer patients, along with their families, being treated at UNC Hospitals. The foundation was formed last year by Niklaus Steiner, UNC’s director of the Center for Global Initiatives, following his 14-year old daughter Sophie’s passing in November 2012 of germ-cell cancer; he’d been impressed by the level of care Sophie had been given at her hospital and he decided he wanted to pay it forward by working to help hospitals in their efforts to provide more inclusive age-appropriate care for teenagers and young adults (younger pediatric patients typically receive the more focused types of care in that regard).

The Be Loud! Sophie Foundation got its name from a poem young Sophie had once written: “Be loud/ And move with grace/ Explod with light/ Have no fear.”

The aforementioned benefit is kicking off tonight (Friday) and features legendary punk/ska/college rock kings The Pressure Boys, reuniting for only the second time in a decade, along with pop maestros The Connells and roots legend Dex Romweber (who, along with his sister Sara, comprises the Dex Romweber Duo. Then on Saturday there will be the Pressure Boys again (founder John Plymale was one of the core instigators of the benefit concert), Chapel Hill ‘80s punks A Number Of Things, and the against-all-odds reunited (though just as a one-off) Let’s Active, featuring Mitch Easter and Sara Romweber along with Suzi Ziegler, who signed up to sit in for late original bassist Faye Hunter (who, tragically, took her own life last year). Meanwhile, also on Saturday, there will be a matinee featuring ex-Squirrel Nut Zippers songwriter Tom Maxwell (recently featured HERE at Blurt) along with several other groups – check the poster, above.

Sounds like a fantastic reason to get off the proverbial duff and hit the Cat’s Cradle this weekend – check the Cradle website for ticket info. And go HERE to read an interview from earlier this week with Easter, who talked to the News & Observer music critic David Menconi.

Then go HERE to find out more about the foundation and how you can donate even if you’re unable to go to the shows.


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