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Fuel for the Roots 

An all-star version of The Mostest rocking Bend Roots '08.Before closing out an intensely jammy set with his band, The Mostest, at the Show Us

An all-star version of The Mostest rocking Bend Roots '08.Before closing out an intensely jammy set with his band, The Mostest, at the Show Us Your Spokes series at Parrilla Grill last Friday night, Mark Ransom took a moment to talk about the Bend Roots Revival, which is slated for September 25-26 at Parrilla and the Victorian Café. He was urging community members to support the festival and help them create a friendly relationship with the neighbors.

Also, he mentioned the fundraiser show on Thursday night to help raise money for the massive community music event that this year is expected to include as many as 55 total acts, in addition to workshops and other activities. Although a community event and project of KPOV, Ransom insists that every performer is paid, even if only a modest amount. With that in mind, Bend Roots - far and away the best local music event of the year - needs some cash, especially this year, when the harsh economy has prevented some contributors to cut back on donations.

"We try to get at least a little stipend to each artist. Even though it's a small amount, the artists and the [musical] community feel appreciated," says Ransom.

The show at the Tulen Center features a strong lineup from the upper echelon of the local music scene including Empty Space Orchestra, Leif James, The Mostest, as well as Brazilian multi-instrumentalist Marcello Bernardes, who will be playing saxophone, flute and probably some other instruments during the show. This should serve not only as a sample of the music you'll see at Bend Roots - all three bands are scheduled for the festival - but also the community spirit that powers the definitively grass roots festival, that's powered completely by local music.

"We're not bringing in a headliner from out of the area to bring people in. These are all local acts some of which are just cutting their teeth and might be playing mainly to their friends and families," says Ransom of the event in September.

While Bend Roots might still be two months off, it's never too earlier to get into the spirit, and this show should be a good start.

Bend Roots Fundraiser: Featuring Empty Space Orchestra, Leif James, The Mostest, Marcello Bernardes
7:30pm Thursday, July 23. Tulen Center, 20 NW Greenwood Ave. $10 suggested donation. Pizza available from Pisano's with proceeds benefiting Bend Roots and KPOV.

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