Three years ago, Brandon Reilly asked some friends with bands to get together for a self-titled benefit concert.
"It was for the club The Hangnail. We had 10 local bands perform for free to give this place money for a drink machine," the 22-year-old said. "We raised $500 on a $4 show, and they (the club) closed down two months later."
But the damage was done.
Given the response to the show, Mr. Reilly has continued to book Brandonfest, which begins at noon Saturday at Sector 7G , as a way to promote local teen bands.
"I never booked shows until Brandonfest, and I don't book shows except for Brandonfest," said Mr. Reilly, a customer service specialist for Comcast. "I don't make money off of this; I do it to make the bands money."
Mr. Reilly said a show such as his fills two voids.
"With most music these days, and I listen to everything, nothing really does anything for the kids. Radio plays Top 40 but this (show) just gives the kids time to have fun with their friends and not get in trouble," he said. "And then they can get to know about other bands they might not have heard of."
Mr. Reilly said the show, which will be held at the all-ages, no-drinking, no-smoking venue, continues to be a big draw for young music fans and bands.
It's "the show" in Augusta, according to members of the band Veara, which shares the bill with other acts including Glass Bottom Boat, Agnes, A Rough Sketch, Stiletto Fight and others in the indie rock, pop punk, hard-core and metal genres.
"We try to incorporate all types of music," Mr. Reilly said of the daylong concert. "Augusta is a big hot spot for music, so I'm trying to get these lesser know bands out there. (The local music scene) is pretty good. I'm pretty proud of what everybody is doing."
With 400 attendees last year and more expected this year, Mr. Reilly said he's seen the Cinderella-like transformation of what was once a benefit concert for a now-defunct venue into an event that young music-lovers across the area look forward to.
"It's turned into a huge summer extravaganza," he said. "It's good so kids can have one show before school starts that they can afford and they can get all their friends together for and have a good time."
Attendees might even get to sing Happy Birthday to You to Mr. Reilly, who celebrates his 23rd birthday Sunday.
Reach Kamille Bostick at (706) 823-3223 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
WHAT: Brandonfest, featuring acts including Glass Bottom Boat, A Rough Sketch, Veara, By the Sins Fell Angels, Agnes, Stiletto Fight, [filtered word] Biscuit
WHEN: Saturday, from noon to midnight
WHERE: Sector 7G, 631 Ellis St.
COST: $8 from noon to 3 p.m., and $10 from 3 p.m. to midnight
Hear part of the song "At the Break of the Dawn."
Listen to the song! [MP3]
|Glass Bottom Boat
Hear part of the song "Voyager 127."
Listen to the song! [MP3]