On July 27, Kris Johnson -- one of the founders of Bad Stain Records -- was leaving O'Brien's (35th Avenue and Northern) when he was approached by two teenage assailants, a male and a female. Johnson didn't know these people -- had never seen them before -- yet without exchanging words, the male shot him in the torso, puncturing major internal organs. Luckily, Johnson survived, but his recovery will be long and arduous. In an effort to help with his rising medical bills, his rocker friends are putting on a benefit show.
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The driving force behind this show is Numbers on Napkins. The Phoenix band is a quick-paced, simple pop-punk band, ideal for those who love Blink 182 and Bayside. It formed out of the ashes of Yars' Revenge, and if you remember that band, you deserve a gold star. Show openers Helen's Wheels is punk rock, too, but not quite as mainstream -- gritty, with shout-style vocals reminiscent of Stretch Armstrong. The band just formed earlier this year, but the members have known one another for a decade, which might explain why it sounds cohesive.
Besides the fine lineup, this show is a way to support a longtime friend to the local music community. If a bunch of unsigned musicians can offer up money and time to help, you should be able to spare a little of your own.
Kris Johnson Benefit Show, featuring Numbers on Napkins, Lesser Criminals, All Too Much, Grounded, and Helen's Wheels
Scheduled for Friday, September 16, at Alice Cooper'stown. The show is free and donations are encouraged.