A Benefit to Take Back Our State

 

A Benefit To Take Back Our State

In October 2016, I organized a two-day music festival with the help of my friends. The fundraiser, which featured 32 artists from North Carolina, raised $30,000 for Southerns on New Ground, Democracy NC, Come Out & Show Them, and Common Cause NC.

 
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“Wow, just when you thought the last big festival was over and things had settled down a bit music-fest-wise, here comes another one, and it’s big. Come Out and Show Them is a large-scale anti-HB 2 benefit that will involve thirty-two musical acts at five venues in Raleigh. 

It brings together an all-star slate of the Triangle’s finest—Sylvan Esso, Mipso, Mount Moriah, Tift Merritt, Mac MacCaughan, Tres Chicas—uniting forces for a two-night event that aims to raise funds to not only defeat the state’s absurd bathroom bill but to take back the state itself.”

— INDYWEEK

“The benefit managed to do something that Moogfest could not: Woo Raleigh-raised rapper King Mez from the palm trees of sunny California to come back home (and show them, ostensibly) — his first North Carolina show since linking up with Dr. Dre and co-writing 13 of the 16 songs on Compton: A Soundtrack by Dr. Dre.

Come Out is yet another stake in the ground demonstrating that our state’s most talented and influential artists are almost fully united in their rejection of House Bill 2, among other political grievances. ”

— SUPER EMPTY MAGAZINE

We partnered with five clubs in downtown Raleigh to put on the two-day festival, which featured our favorite artists and musicians from North Carolina. We also hosted a benefit brunch at Gallo Pelón with the Old Ceremony's Django Haskins, A/V Geeks' Skip Elsheimer, Daniel Wallace, and Skylar Gudasz.

With the help of the club owners, artists, local businesses, volunteers, and attendees, we raised $30,000 for four local nonprofits (even in the midst of a devastating hurricane). Each of our beneficiaries worked on voter access and education throughout the 2016 political season. 

King Mez returns for his first Raleigh show in three years. Photo by Jillian Clark.

King Mez returns for his first Raleigh show in three years. Photo by Jillian Clark.

Final touches before Sylvan Esso's sold-out show at Kings. 

Final touches before Sylvan Esso's sold-out show at Kings. 

T-Shirts by Lumina designed, cut, and sewn in North Carolina.

T-Shirts by Lumina designed, cut, and sewn in North Carolina.

Tift Merritt plays with special guests Phil and Bradley Cook at Kings. Photo by Sam Bennett.

Tift Merritt plays with special guests Phil and Bradley Cook at Kings. Photo by Sam Bennett.

 

 

Thanks to everyone who chipped in to make this fundraiser a success, including our small business sponsors The Hibernian, Raleigh Beer Garden, Myriad Media, Slingshot Coffee, and Merge Records. Thanks to Paul Tuorto, who graciously created our branding, and Sam Bennett and Jared Harber, who managed our social accounts and took most of these photos. Thanks, most of all, to our community for coming out & showing them, even in bad weather.