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Playing a benefit in Montgomery, AL this weekend!


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Hey, all,


I know that I have posted about one of my bands, 12 Miles North, and the various benefits and fundraisers that we help with every year. (Some of these are the events I bemoaned in the recent "Playing Outside" thread.) Regardless of the weather woes, or other problems, this is something I've always been proud to do. The past year in Alabama has seemed to bring about more of a "help others" attitude to many in our state, me included. And after the thread from a couple of days ago, where Wade was talking about playing for the retirement homes, I have a renewed sense of urgency to do more of those things to "pay it forward" in some small way.


Kind of appropriate, then, that the other project I am involved with( Leah Seawright, whom I play keys for) has been asked to participate in a fundraising concert in Montgomery, AL, this weekend. I really felt compelled to bring this particular case to light, and mention it on here. I sincerely hope it is not a violation of any of the forum rules.


I'm not sure how many folks on our board are from Alabama, but if you are it's very possible you heard about Jessie Crumpton West. Around NYE 2011, this lady was involved in an altercation with an uncle over a vehicle. The uncle, in a fit of rage, threw 4 gallons of boiling collard greens on her, causing 2nd and 3rd degree burns on her body.


While in the hospital, she experienced more complications. Her kidneys began to shut down, she started dialysis, and eventually lost both legs and an arm. Her medical bills stand at around $1.7M right now.


You can see more information on her story, including a video interview with her, by clicking this link. (Details for the benefit are located here.)


Like I said, I am in no way affiliated with this person, other than being a part of a musical act that was asked by sponsors to help out. But I would love to ask that anybody that's in the area come out to support this wife and mother of 3 as she struggles to overcome this heinous act of domestic violence.


Thanks so much for reading this,




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Well, initial reports are in for the benefit. OVER $17K raised at the benefit and from the auction. (In one case, a Nick Saban-autographed football went for $1100! ROLL TIDE!") Another $6700 was raised via internet donations.


Meeting Jessie was an absolutely fabulous experience! She was all smiles the whole night. When we arrived at the venue for our load-in, my wife and Leah went in before any of us. She recognized Leah, and requested one of her songs specifically.


Later, after our set, when I went over to meet her, she hugged me and told me that we were "amazing!". The only words I could muster were, "No. YOU Are amazing! We are just people."


Samantha Landrum, who performed after us, had written a special song for Jessie. As she sang it, they brought out two prosthetic legs that Jessie had been fitted with in the days before the event. As the song was being sung, and with help from her family, Jessie stood on her new legs (which had "Believe" scripted down each limb) and listened to the song written about her. At that point, I had to officially hand in my man card and leave the room, as did one of our guitarists. It's the next week, and I am still thinking about it.


As a bit of trivia for those of you who live/have lived in, or are familiar with the Atlanta/metro area: Found out (after the show) that Jessie's in-laws are Lanny West and Leslie Fram, former co-hosts of "Morning X" on the now-defunct 99X! (Leslie is now a Senior VP at CMT!)


Anyway, thought I'd provide the update!


I would like to add the following links for the other artists that donated their time to the show! Please check them out, and support them when you can, as they came out to support Jessie and her family!


(Main stage):

Dennis D'Amico (couldn't find a link):


Shannon Labrie:

Lauren St. Jane and the Dead Westerns:

Marshall Seese and the Abandoned:

Samantha Landrum (who wrote the song for Jessie):

Wayne Mills:


(Deck Stage)

Wes Darnell:

Chase 56:

The Lecroy Brothers:

Joe Wright (sorry, all I could find was a MySpace page! :- ):

Brandon Self:





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