The rock community's struggle with substance abuse is no secret, but the glamorization of sex, drugs and rock n' roll means that some sad stats often get buried. For example, new studies show that only 8% of women with drug and alcohol problems ever seek help. Musicares MAP Fund benefit, which this year focused on women in recovery and honored Betty Ford, sought to raise both awareness and money for the cause this past Friday night at Club Nokia. The event was also a worthy contender in the how-many-rockstars-can-we-get-to-play-on-stage-at-once jamboree trend of recent years.
Cherie Currie revealed that she was one of the statistics that Musicares MAP (Musician's Assistance Program) Fund helped turn around before ending the all-star concert with a commanding “Cherry Bomb.” But before her climactic turn, there was stellar jam after stellar jam to soak in at the liquor-free event: Exene doing acoustic numbers; Linda Perry tackling Led Zep and Radiohead (a subtle “Creep”); Beth Hart with Slash (undisputed king of the all-star jams) doing a song for Hart's departed sibling, “Sister Heroin” and Zep's “Whole Lotta Love”; Ace Frehely, Corey Parks, Alison Robertson, Matt Sorum and Slash, who Park joked were calling themselves, “Cirrhosis and the Morning Shakes” for the night, huddling together in a mass of flinging hair and fret-molesting mania, joined by Lemmy, and then Chad Smith on drums and finally Wayne Kramer; Annabella Lwin with The Go-Gos' Charlotte Caffey and Kathy Valentine, plus Hole's Patty Schemel; all of whom were later joined by Billy Corgan, and Blondie's Frank Infante and Clem Burke on “I Want Candy” and a mash-up of “Boots” and “We Got The Beat.”
We've seen some massive mega-jams (Camp Freddy's free-for alls, Tom Morello's Nightwatchmen riff rumbles, and every star-packed music awards and benefit show these days), and this one ranked with the best of 'em. A good jam is like a musical orgy; best when everybody gets off. Friday those on stage and in the crowd, did just that, no mood enhancers required.
More about this event (and more) in Thursday's Nightranger column and slideshow. Photos here by Lina Lecaro.