Local Musicians Rock for Christmas Amalgamated


The local music scene has exploded in the last few years and while there may be somewhat of a lack of venues, many bands are playing paid gigs in the region and getting good exposure. We often forget that these musicians are people, too. And, many of them have big hearts. Sunday night is traditionally their night off, but four local bands showed us where their hearts are, when they donated their time and talent at the 2nd Annual Christmas Amalgamated Fundraiser.

It was held at the Blue Grotto on Sunday December 9th. The event was put on by members of the band Someone to Blame and the Blue Grotto. Organizers reported that they raised $600 in cash along with a bucket-load of toys.


Photo courtesy The Blue Grotto

The night was emceed by Richard Wood and many door prizes and a 50/50 draw were included in the evening’s festivities. The bands performing were The Suzi Rawn Band, InVerse, Someone to Blame, and Half Step Down.

The Suzi Rawn Band showed their versatility with great covers from the music of Amy Winehouse, Led Zeppelin, The Beatles, Etta James and Janis Joplin. Rawn showed off her amazing, versatile, vocal prowess in Whole Lotta Love by Zeppelin and At Last, which was made popular by the late Etta James.


The second band to perform was InVerse. They were a fill-in for another band that couldn’t make it due to an illness. They put their own spin on covers of “Jolene,” which was originally done by Dolly Parton, Elton John’s “Rocket Man,” “Radioactive” by Imagine Dragons and others. They, also, got into the Christmas spirit with their fun, festive, Christmas sweaters.


InVerse got a good response from the audience that included a fun-loving, dancing, mascot wolf.


Next up was the band that hosted the evening, Someone to Blame. They did solid covers of Tom Petty’s “Rescue Me,” a cool mash up of Bruce Springstein’s “On the Dark Side” mixed with the Romantics “What I Like About You.” Other crowd pleasers were Cake’s “Short Skirt/Long Jacket,” and Loverboy’s “Workin’ for the Weekend.” They have become a well-deserved fixture on the local music scene, due to their hard work and talent.


Lastly, it was metal time and Half Step Down, armed with two great lead guitars, did not disappoint. Singer Nikki Omen showed great stage presence. Highlights included “Slither” by Velvet Revolver, “That Song” from Big Wreck, and it wouldn’t be a metal show without a song from the great Metallica, and Half Step Down played “Fuel.”


It was a great night of entertainment for Christmas Amalgamated. Brett and Peggy of The Someone to Blame “family’ coordinated the evening. David “Pup” Johnston of the Grotto provided the venue and his staff, local businesses, many from the downtown area, provided prizes and the local musicians provided the talent. It was a fun night for a great cause.