A fantastic night of music from beginning to end was the experience of the lucky guests who attended our spring benefit concert “Bringin’ It Home” on May 26 at Terrapin Crossroads in San Rafael. It was also a special night, for almost all of the performers are volunteers for our institutional audiences in need of joy and uplifting through live music.
Singer-songwriter/guitarist Caroline Sky greeted everyone on the waterfront patio with songs from her self-titled debut CD including Awake Now while sponsors and their guests enjoyed delicious canapés, Kokomo wines and a sneak preview of the live auction items.
San Francisco’s Urban School Jazz Ensemble brought a festive air to the event kicking off the music with their jazz bebop in the Grate Room as guests took their seats for a night to remember. Bread & Roses Presents Executive Director Dave Perron welcomed everyone and staff presented roses to board members Stacy Nelson, Gregory Beattie, John Botti, Raj Gopal, Chris Gorog, Catherine Less, Michael McElligott, Donna Mezias, Joe Piazza, Philip Pillsbury and Alex Wellins.
There aren’t many performers who have both a strong left throwing arm as well as a songwriter’s gift for writing catchy hooks. We were fortunate to have beloved Bay Area baseball player and singer-songwriter/guitarist Barry Zito emcee the concert and set a poignant tone performing his original songs Let It and There’s A Cross.
The six-piece folk/pop ‘almost country’ band The Lady Crooners wowed the crowd with the stellar harmonies of siblings Nadia, Joseph and Megan Krilanovich with lead guitarist Kevin Conness, bassist Jason Braatz and John Smart on percussion/mandolin. Their songs from their latest release “Carry Me Home” captivated the crowd with their joyous sophistication and upbeat lyrics about love and life.
The live auction provided an engaging and important opportunity to support our mission with packages focused on entertainment, sports, best of the west vacation get-aways, a Sonoma Raceway party and Bay Area music-related art and culture. A fund-a-need provided the opportunity for all to raise their paddles with a special run-around at the end for the prize of an autographed Giants jersey and A's cap by Barry Zito.
Before the final set by Fantastic Negrito and his sizzling band, Washington Post Reporter Jason Rezaian took the stage to share about his recent experience in an Iranian prison for 545 days, some of it in solitary confinement. He spoke about the profound impact of being isolated and the hopelessness he felt with no-one to talk to or interact with. He shared how important it is to bring music to those who are isolated and urged all to show their support.
Fantastic Negrito and his band brought it home by sharing songs from their brand new CD “The Last Days of Oakland” including Lost In A Crowd. Everyone knew it was a unique opportunity to hear this major talent and rising star in an intimate setting. Just back from his first European tour and headed to perform at Bottlerock in Napa the next day, the audience was mesmerized by his authentic style, ability to tell it like it is and the unique sound of his black roots music.
As volunteer host and supporter Ted Cosgriff said after the event, “A spirit of generosity and a generosity of spirit” pervaded the room that night.
Bread & Roses Presents the healing power of live music to those in need – the sick, the disabled and the disadvantaged. Through the continued generosity of many devoted performing artists and volunteers as well as our extraordinary supporters, we provide thousands of our isolated neighbors hope, joy and the assurance that they are not forgotten.
Post by Marian Hubler
Photos by Ken Friedman
Captions: 1) Caroline Sky; 2) Urban School Jazz Ensemble; 3) Board member Philip Pillsbury receives a rose from Develoment Director Elissa Burke; 4) Singer-songwriter/guitarist Barry Zito; 5) The Lady Crooners (l-r) Kevin Conness, Nadia Krilanovich, John Smart, Joseph Krilanovich, Jason Braatz, Megan Krilanovich ; 6) (l-r) Michael Pritchard, Dave Perron, Jason Rezaian, Barry Zito; 7) Fantastic Negrito