CreaturesFest tribute to Mark Smith and Huntington’s Fund-Raiser
CreaturesFest was held on July 21 of this year, in honor of Mark Smith, the lead singer of the band The Creatures of the Golden Dawn, who passed away from Huntington’s Disease in 2011.
Proceeds from the show which which happened at the North Penn Gun Club in Trumbauersville, PA benefited the PA Chapter of Huntington Disease Society of America.
Gregg Smith kindly wrote a bit about the show to share with those that couldn’t be there
Upon entering the concert room one was confronted with an array of photos of Woody Guthrie and photos of his writings in honor of his 100th birthday. Woody died in 1967 from Huntington’s Disease after spending the last 10 years of his life in hospitals.
In tribute to Guthrie, the show began with two great acoustic duos, Mike McMillan with Laurie Ann Hollinger, and Doug Ashby with Danielle Lubene, performing a sampling of Guthrie’s brilliant songs. Next the new group House of Fire with ex-Creatures of the Golden Dawn Mike Vallone presented a set of scintillating psychedelic with long drones and slow tempos, sounding in part like 1967 era Pink Floyd.
The next group to play, Consolidated Fuzz, are the guys that were in Mark’s last line-up of The Creatures; with JT on vocals and lead guitar. They performed a terrific set which included garage classics like: “It’s The Same All Over The World” and a retro surf instrumental dating back over 25 years to the very first days of The Creatures, They also performed more recent Creatures songs.
Wormwood Scrubs, with former early 90s Creatures lead guitarist Steve Schlack also presented some garage classics such as: “Love Is A Beautiful Thing” by The Young Rascals, “I’m Not Like Everybody Else” by The Kinks, and “Last Time Around” by The Del-Vettes as well as some classic Creatures songs from the 90s. Finally, The Insomniacs from New Jersey, who often played at The Funhouse in Bethlehem, closed out the show with a rousing set of The Jam influenced garage rock.
Of course this was a Memorial for a very sad set of circumstances – CreaturesFest honored the life and tragic loss of Mark Smith, someone who through music, brought joy into the lives of many near and far over the long span of 25 years. Also families from the local Huntington’s Disease Support Group were invited to attend and a clearly afflicted woman and her caretaker husband were seated at the front table. So this was not your standard Saturday night sock hop. In all over 2K was raised and one hopes new breakthroughs in research will soon lead to a cure for this neurological disorder….
There will be another CreaturesFest – to continue in helping raise funds for the Eastern Pennsylvania Chapter of the Huntington’s Disease Society of America, and keep Mark’s spirit alive – this will take place on October 2013.
Gregg Smith – Mark’s brother
Read a local feature article about the event in Allentown PA’s Morning Call here