Boulder’s getting into the holiday spirit this weekend to help those in need.
That’s always a good thing to do.
Rapper Fashawn knows a thing or two about growing up in an economically challenged household. That’s why the hip-hop artist is psyched to help out impoverished kids this holiday season.
Who: How the Grouch Stole Christmas Tour, with The Grouch, Mistah Fab, Fashawn and Exile
When: 9 p.m. Friday
Where: Fox Theatre, 1135 13th St., Boulder
Fashawn is part of How the Grouch Christmas Tour, which hits the Fox Theatre on Friday. This concert has a special holiday mission, as the bands are encouraging fans to donate items to Toys for Tots.
Fashawn is a hip-hop artist on the rise and he’s gaining a solid reputation for his positive lyrics.
“I did have a lot of turmoil in my life, but it just became the fuel for my material,” Fashawn said. “I made my first mixtape when I was 15 and I decided this is what I was going to do.
“I try to put a positive spin on my raps. I like to talk about my view of the world, the economy and politics — anything that makes me want to smile or cry.”
Fashawn’s touring to promote his 2009 CD, Boy Meets World. The rapper jumped at the chance to travel with Grouch and his collection of hip-hop artists.
“Grouch took a liking to my music and invited me on this tour,” Fashawn said. “We’re going to be innovative and step things up for this show at the Fox.
“At every show, we’re going to be collecting for Toys for Tots. I had a rough childhood, so I like that we’re doing that.”
Mark Vann Foundation
Mark Vann was the late, great banjo player for Leftover Salmon, so every year the Mark Vann Foundation Holiday Benefit Show is held in his honor.
The concert benefits worthwhile causes, and Saturday’s fundraiser will take place at the Boulder Theater. The event features a star-studded roster of musicians that are ready to rock for charity.
“We’ve been doing this for seven years, and we raise money for charities and to help implement programs,” Great American Taxi keyboardist Chad Staehly said. “This year we decided to do more locally.
“This show will help out RSVP Boulder with its elderly and disabled care. We’ll also be helping There With Care — they support families of terminally ill kids. They’re both good organizations.”
Staehly and his band mates are also excited about the show’s musical guests.
“We have a stellar line-up,” Staehly said. “American Taxi’s playing, and we have a band featuring Tim Carbone from Railroad Earth and String Cheese’s Keith Moseley.
“We also have up-and-coming bands like Elephant Revival and Euforquestra. People should come out and get six hours of top-notch music — and help out some worthy causes.”
KBCO’s Studio C Volume 21 will go on sale Saturday at Ultimate Electronics stores. The recording will benefit the Boulder County AIDS Project.
This year’s volume features tunes by Brandi Carlile, The Fray, Michael Franti & Spearhead, David Gray, Brett Dennen, Gomez, Matt Nathanson, Ziggy Marley, Widespread Panic, Gregory Alan Isakov and more.
Carlile always packs Colorado venues and her song “The Story” was selected for the new Studio C volume. The performer’s also playing a holiday show tonight at Casselman’s for KBCO listeners.
“KBCO has a top-of-the line studio and everyone there is so kind, so I always know they’re going to make really beautiful sounding CDs,” Carlile said. “Helping out causes is something that’s near and dear to me. If I was putting out a compilation CD, this is what I would aspire to do.
“I will be coming back to Denver on Jan. 16. I’ve also been writing some new songs, and I’m putting together a symphony tour for 2010.”