Charlotte area musicians are going back to the ’80s for a great cause to benefit Levine Children’s Hospital

 By Mitchell Franklin

December 10, 2018

Leg warmers, hairspray, hair metal, Walkmen, fingerless gloves, video arcades: the ‘80s had it all. Eighties nostalgia is in full force in 2018 from Stranger Things to Ready Player One to the rise of arcade bars and a resurgence of the decade’s fashion. To celebrate all that is the 1980s, Neighborhood Theatre is hosting the 12th Tribute to Benefit Levine Children’s Hospital on Saturday, December 15. A slew of talented local and traveling musicians will be performing tribute sets of their favorite musicians from those ten years.

Māya Beth Atkins & Charlotte O’Boyle. Photo: Daniel Coston

Justin Fedor started the Tribute to Benefit series in July of 2013 and has hosted the bi-annual event ever since. Previous themes have included the ‘90s, Tom Petty, Women of Music, and The Doors. “Some friends of mine had just gone through a very difficult time trying to save their son’s life. Watching that process, I felt completely helpless to support or comfort them beyond kind words or a bent ear and that bothered me,” explained Fedor. “Tribute To Benefit has provided me with a way to utilize my talents to not stand by idle while so many struggle with very real and difficult problems everyday.”

The concert series has been a tremendous success and has shown the strength of the Charlotte community when working together toward a common goal. The concerts have a suggested donation of $10 at the door and have raised nearly $70,000 for the hospital since its inception. “There’s a tremendous sense of accomplishment and community at the end of these shows,” Fedor said. “All of the artists are donating their time to learn and perform covers, and it feels very fortunate to share these nights with so many killer bands. It certainly gives me a more hopeful view of humanity to see so many come together over this series.”

Stephen Warwick and Justin Fedor of Ancient Cities. Photo: Daniel Coston

For this tribute, fans can expect to hear songs from some of the best artists of the ‘80s including Hall & Oates, INXS, Tina Turner, and Guns N’ Roses. And keeping the Tribute to Benefit tradition, the evening will close out with a superjam. “Most of the shows are closed with a one-time-only band comprised of members from many different acts. This time around, Bruce Hazel of Temperance League will front the superjam singing ‘80s Springsteen tunes, and if you know Bruce, you know that he’s going to kill this,” said Fedor.

The series has had an amazing reception in the Queen City, which has helped excite Justin Fedor to continue to host these charity events. “The ever growing community that continues to choose to support this show has been a beautiful unexpected reward,” Fedor said. “The first show had no intention to be a concert series headed into its sixth year; however with each show, my resolve to continue to build and  push forward with this event is rekindled with every shared moment.” These shows are a fun, unique way to raise money for an extremely important cause and to build a sense of community and goodwill in Charlotte.

Tribute to the 80’s is on December 15 at Neighborhood Theatre. Time Sawyer, Ashley Armstrong, The Sammies, Kodiak Brotherhood, Modern Primitives, Evergone, The Business People, The Wormholes, and  a superjam featuring members of The New Familiars, Ancient Cities, Chosovi, Houston Brothers, Mirror Man and more will be performing.

Check out more on the Tribute to Benefit concert from the Facebook event page.

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