The usual suspects at the Craterian Theater
The Rogue Suspects will continue their new role as an advocate for nonprofit organizations with a show set for Thursday, April 22, at the Craterian Theater. The performance will be a benefit geared toward raising awareness (and money) for Mediation Works, a community dispute resolution center based in Medford.
"Usually nonprofits contact us to play at their benefits," says Greg Frederick, the group's bassist and manager. "Now, we've taken on the role of managing and producing these shows. We're calling it Suspect Productions."
The Mediation Works benefit follows the Suspects' Haitian relief concert in January, which featured a dozen musicians at the Historic Ashland Armory and raised more than $12,500 for the American Red Cross.
Frederick says that he and the band would like to produce a benefit concert every season, with beneficiaries to include organizations such as United Way and the Rogue Valley Symphony.
"The traditional ways of raising money such as silent auctions and fundraising dinners aren't working as well as they used to," Frederick says. "Nonprofits are facing many challenges due to the economy.
"We want to help by producing large events that will include many artists in the community. We want to offer people a classy night out as well as an opportunity to make a difference.
"It's better than a fruit basket," Frederick says.
The lineup of entertainment slated for the April 22 show at the Craterian will include the Suspects — featuring Frederick on fretless bass, David Bolen on Drums, Dean Angermeier on keys and lead guitarist Dirk Price — along with the usual local colleagues, including vocalists Shae Johnson and Bret Levick; the Rock Hard Horns (Rico Salas, Jim King and Gary Nelson); and Bohemian Soul, with guitarist Jeff Pevar and vocalist Inter Jorgensen. Also on the bill will be Cornflower, Jaese Lecuyer, Frankie Hernandez and Sol See, Annie McIntyre (formerly of AnnieMac) and Bob Evoniuk of Ashland alt-country band One Horse Shy.
Teen Musical Theatre of Oregon, directed by John Taylor, will showcase some of Southern Oregon's brightest young talent, and the Hamazons — featuring Kyndra Laughery, Carolyn Myers, Eve Smyth and Cil Stengel — will present improvisational comedy.
After the individual acts, all of the musicians will form an ensemble to spotlight vocalists Johnson, Jorgensen and McIntyre.
"Frederick has a heart for musicians and artists working in the Rogue Valley," says Cameron McCandless, executive director of Mediation Works. "The concert will be an opportunity for the community to enjoy a musical celebration and further the efforts of Mediation Works.
Tickets cost $25 and are available at Music Coop and Paddington Station in Ashland, Musichead in Medford, online at www.craterian.org or by calling 541-779-3000.