Live music: Benoit concert benefits local food bank |

Live music: Benoit concert benefits local food bank

Good tunes for a good cause are right around the corner with the Grand County Blues Society’s Tab Benoit benefit concert and Big Food Drive on Saturday, Nov. 3.

Donations and proceeds from the event benefit the Mountain Family Center’s food bank.

“The response so far has been heartwarming, just like everything you try to do in Grand County,” said John Catt, GCBS founding board member. “Everyone we ask to pitch in has been enthused to help and make the food drive a huge success.”

The event includes a Cajun music feast at 9 p.m. at Smokin’ Moe’s in Winter Park with a special performance by Benoit, who just received an award from the Blues Music Association. Band Leroux (David Peters on drums and Leon Medica on bass) joins him for the evening performance.

“Every gig is a good gig,” Benoit said. “The people make the place what it is, and the people in Grand County have always been great for music and the arts. They are all-around good people.”

Benoit, a well-known musician from Louisiana, is happy to join forces with GCBS, the Mountain Family Center, KCMV, Sky-Hi Daily News and Smokin’ Moe’s to collect food and cash for the Mountain Family Center’s food bank during the Big Food Drive.

Food and monetary donations to benefit the Mountain Family Center will be collected at the event, as well as that day at Safeway, Winter Park Market, Rudi’s Deli, Cooper Creek Square and at the Winter Park/Fraser Valley Chamber of Commerce.

Benoit performs his own brand of Cajun rock ‘n’ blues, which he says is a combination of all the music he grew up with that “becomes part of your sound.” With his casual approach and unique, unrehearsed shows, he has become “one of the premiere roots stylists of the century.”

His increased popularity makes for standing-room-only crowds across the country, from major music cities to small-town blues bars and “each performance is a new experience for both the band and the audience. It always comes out as something different and of the moment.”

He had several songs placed in prime-time TV shows, and his new CD is also selling like hotcakes, “or crabcakes in his case,” according to Catt. “Having Tab in town is the key to having a big crows on the night of the show,” he said.

“Tab always creates excitement throughout Smokin’ Moe’s,” he added. “The dance floor is always full and usually the dancing overflows into the aisles. If you have never seen Tab live, this is as good a chance as you can get.”

“It’s only fitting to help the people around there,” Benoit said, after the community supported him in his efforts to help Voice of the Wetlands during a local concert several years ago. “You’ve got to leave part of your mark on the planet while you’re here,” he added. “As a musician I’m able to do some good … everybody should take advantage of that. If you want to change the world, it starts with you.”

Catt wants to stress that “cash or gift cards to be used for food will be the icing on the cake. People can’t carve a can of creamed corn.”

Patrons are encouraged to give what they can, including monetary donations for fresh items. It would be great, too, if any restaurant wanted to donate gift certificates, Catt said. “Even $10 is a meal or two.”

Tickets are available at Radio Shack, Smokin’ Moe’s, and at

You don’t have to wait until the Benoit concert to donate to the food bank. The Mountain Family Center, a Grand County non-profit since 1979, needs help year round. For more information visit

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