STUDENTS WHO SUPPORT local music and radio are encouraged to attend 1 Night All Rawk 2, a fundraiser for the University of Ottawa’s radio station, CHUO 89.1. The event, set to occur March 24 at Avant Garde bar, will feature local rock bands, and all proceeds will go to CHUO.
Andrew Lacelle, Ottawa promoter and drummer from local grunge band Celery Troff, came up with the idea after meeting CHUO’s production coordinator, Tom Radford, at a concert.
“They were talking about community radio and how cool it was that there was an outlet for new and emerging artists,” says Karen McHarg, CHUO’s sales and marketing director.
“Lacelle told Radford about the show he had organized for [Carleton’s] CKCU funding drive in the fall … Radford thought it was a great idea and came to work telling us about this offer; we jumped on the chance for another event during the funding drive.”
Lacelle, who was initially apprehensive to organize a second event, agreed to hosting the fundraiser upon realizing Ottawa’s university radio stations are important to our community.
“These are the only radio stations in the city that [promote] local bands,” he explains. “Without them, the real local indie bands will never get out.”
CHUO’s on-air fundraising drive lasts 17 days and allows listeners to call in and support the radio station through donations. This year, the station hopes to raise a total of $45, 000.
McHarg adds the funding drive isn’t just about the money for CHUO, but also about listener involvement.
“[The] funding drive … is a participatory process where our listeners can get involved. For example, the Jamaica Association called and offered to answer the phones during the Caribbean programming,” says McHarg. “This is just another way of members of the community telling us they appreciate what we do here, just like the way Lacelle has.”
The show’s bill consists of local acts, such as garage rock band Hunter Walks, hard rockers Pretty Little Death Machine (PLDM), Lacelle’s band Celery Troff, female-led rock band The Cowards, and Halifax rockers This Ship.
The decision to hold the event at Avant Garde was an easy one for Lacelle.
“There is no other place I want to play … because of what [owner] Alex [Yugin] has done for us. He cares about his business and the local scene.”
Lacelle encourages students to support the fundraiser because of the importance he believes CHUO holds for local music.
“Come out and support the last bastion of actual radio that helps local community,” says Lacelle. “It’s important. If we don’t use it, we lose it, and once it’s gone, we’re gonna realize how much we miss it.”
Tyler Black of PLDM, and Kyle Sheehan of The Cowards, also voiced their gratitude to CHUO.
“We’re an independent DIY band, so local community outlets like university radio [are] of invaluable importance to us,” says Black.
“It’s an honour and pleasure to play with these bands … especially when the cause is community radio, seeing as all these people … volunteer their time and energy to bring us wicked music,” adds Sheehan.
Lacelle also mentions there will be other incentives for students to attend the event.
“There will be draws, 50/50, great local band stuff … [and lead singer] Vanessa Côté from The Cowards will be giving out hugs and kisses.”
As well, students can definitely expect local band merchandise to be won, and an overall great night of rock music for CHUO.
1 Night All Rawk 2 will be held at Avant Garde Bar (135 1/2 Besserer St.) on March 24. Tickets are available in advance at CHUO (UCU 0038), or at the door for $8, with the option of additional donation. To check out CHUO’s other fundraising initiatives, visit Chuo.fm.