Extra Life Rock Band Benefit Concert: Dan’s Story

In this post, CHOP Extra Life Guild Member, Dan Palumbo, shares one of his favorite memories as an Extra Life participant.

 

One night last summer, I was watching a friend on Twitch play Rock Band, the video game. He had a list of over 800 songs and was taking song requests from those watching with a small donation to his Extra Life page. I happily donated to his event and watched him perform my song request! Being an avid fan of the game myself, his Twitch stream gave me an idea: If he could perform this pseudo-concert to people online, would it be possible to host one in real life? A Rock Band Benefit Concert, if you will.

 

The gears started cranking as I began to delve into how to set up an event like this. First, I would need the game-and-instrument bundle itself. A quick trip to Gamestop quickly solved that. The manager even hooked me up with a free set of cymbals!

 

Unfortunately, the game only comes with about 80 songs – not much selection to choose from. My friend from Twitch had over 800, so naturally I turned to him for help. He had been buying and collecting songs for the game since Rock Band downloadable content came out. In the spirit of Extra Life, and knowing it would be put to good use, my friend let me use his account, meaning I now had access to ALL of his songs!

 

Now for the tough part: finding a venue to host our event. My first instinct was to reach out to the restaurant that I frequented most – The Craft House in Thorndale, PA. My friends and I had become regulars there, having spent many nights eating dinner and singing karaoke. They were quick to welcome the idea and were more than cooperative with helping us set up the event. They even offered a Dine & Donate program where 10% of sales the night of the concert would also go to Extra Life! Everything was finally coming together!

 

To market our event, we created a Facebook event page (https://www.facebook.com/events/463401284024643/) and invited anyone we thought may be interested. We also created flyers and posted them around The Craft House for exposure. All there was left to do was practice before our big event!

 

The day of the concert came and my friends and I couldn’t have been any more excited. We showed up an hour early to set up and remedy any equipment bugs. Once we were ready, it was time to begin! We played a few commonly known songs to set the mood early, and then donations and song requests starting pouring in!

 

The air was electric and the crowd couldn’t help themselves from singing along. When the crowd was warmed up enough, they started to join in on the action too! We allowed anyone to play any instrument they chose for their song request. The crowd members were singing, playing guitar, playing drums, and even dancing to the songs they loved!

 

The night couldn’t have been any better a success! We ended up raising over $500 for CHoP, including the additional money from the Dine & Donate offer from The Craft House. We had made such a big splash and had such a good time, the manager at The Craft House asked us to perform AGAIN! Naturally, we couldn’t resist, and scheduled a date for another concert – just in time for the winter holidays.

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