Oct. 28, 2011
Courtesy of The Arizona Republic
[Editor’s Note: Rockblock is one of many Things To Do on Phoenix light rail. LightRailConnect makes it easy to live, work and play near light rail]
Phoenix, Ariz. (Sept. 15, 2011) – BillingTree Rock Block returns to Phoenix Sat., Nov. 5, 6pm, bringing a high energy lineup of REO Speedwagon, Boston’s Fran Cosmo and Rossmore.
Downtown Phoenix’s Cityscape, between Jefferson and Washington Streets from 1st Avenue, east to 1st Street, takes over as the new venue for this annual charity rock festival, presented by Phoenix-based BillingTree. Plus, fans will get satisfaction knowing that 100% of ALL ticket monies (i.e., the entire $20 and $100 ticket amounts) goes directly to Season For Sharing, with BillingTree RockBlock serving as the kick-off event for this annual fund raising program.
“This is the third BillingTree RockBlock and our first time as the kick-off event for Arizona Republic and 12 News annual holiday fundraising drive Season For Sharing, and at the fantastic new Cityscape venue,” said Dan Willis of Phoenix-based BillingTree’s Board of Directors. “The concert and festival atmosphere has grown each year and we couldn’t be happier to have legendary acts whose music resonates across generations. BillingTree is Phoenix based and we are fortunate we can offer an enjoyable evening and, at the same time, donate all ticket monies to create a windfall for Season For Sharing charities”.
About Season For sharing. Season for Sharing is The Arizona Republic and 12 News annual holiday fundraising drive. Through eight-week news, editorial, direct mail and ad campaign, readers and viewers are encouraged to donate to Season for Sharing to help health and human service agencies in Arizona. Donations are matched through the Gannett Foundation and 100% of donations, plus the match, are distributed to local agencies that help at-risk children and families, improve educational skills, help domestic-violence victims and serve the elderly.
Last year, 137 agencies received $2.66 million, more than $46 million since the program began in 1993. In addition to creating community resources, the program increases awareness about social issues. Many of the agencies experience an influx of volunteers and donated goods during the campaign. For more information about Season For Sharing, visit www.azcentral.com/season/index.html
BillingTree Rock Block Musical Lineup: REO Speedwagon, Fran Cosmo & Rossmore
About REO Speedwagon. Sure, you can call the members of REO Speedwagon rock stars. But if you have to label them, here’s the more accurate term they prefer: Working musicians.
Formed in 1967, signed in 1971 and fronted by iconic vocalist Kevin Cronin since 1972, REO Speedwagon has – for decades – been a confounding blend of consistency and change.
They rode in station wagons, going from tiny gigs to even tinier gigs, just to get the REO name out in the early days. Later they rode the top of the charts with a RIAA certified 22 million albums sold in the U.S. and 40 million around the globe, with a string of gold and platinum records and international hit singles. The 9-times certified Hi Infidelity remains a high-water mark for rock bands.
Make all the “Ridin’ The Storm Out” or “Roll With The Changes” cracks you want, but that’s exactly what the band has done. REO Speedwagon has that Midwest work ethic.
The band has gone onstage and in the studio and done the work, year after year – dozens of albums, hundreds (or thousands?) of concerts, infinite radio spins. The eyes have always been on the future and on the road – not a year has gone by where REO Speedwagon didn’t perform live, thrilling fans with hits like “Keep On Loving You” and “Can’t Fight This Feeling.”
And yes, they do roll with the changes. With the modern-day music industry disintegrating, the band members recorded Find Your Own Way Home in 2007 and put it out themselves through Walmart – and personally drove to radio stations across the country to get it heard. Ultimately the album (yes, REO Speedwagon still makes albums, not a bunch of songs) had more success than it would ever see with a record company. Whatever the band members need to do to connect with fans, they do it.