Noise For the Needy purchased the right to post on Slog for a week in Strangercrombie, our annual charity auction. More info about our charity auction here.

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There are three things you need to create a benefit concert: A cause, bands, and a venue. Lucky for us, Seattle has some very supportive club owners. We would like to give a shout out to all the clubs that have helped out and hosted NFTN shows in the past:

Sunset Tavern, Tractor Tavern, Conor Byrne, Neumos, The Rendezvous, Underground Events Center, Woodshed Studios, Comet Tavern, Wildrose, King Cobra (RIP), The Crocodile, The Triple Door, The Bus Stop, High Dive, Nectar Lounge, Funhouse, Lo-Fi Performance Gallery, Baltic Room, Vito’s.

Take, for instance, Neumos. They have been involved with NFTN for years now. They have always helped us out where necessary and we do appreciate it! NFTN Booker Michelle Smith had a chance to interview Steven Severin, part-owner of Neumos and founder of Wake Up Productions.

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MS: Please explain Neumos’ relationship to Noise for the Needy, and why Neumos hosts shows for NFTN.

SS: I believe we started working together at the jump. Basically Mamma Casserole hit us up and asked if we’d be willing to host these fundraisers. Once we realized that NFTN had all their shit together and could actually pull off these events, we were totally game. We host them because we get to have great shows and raise money for folks in need.

MS: Any fun stories or anecdotes about working with NFTN?

SS: Everything runs pretty smooth so nothing major to report.

MS: Your general impressions about NFTN and it’s value in the community?

SS: It’s a fantastic annual event that raises money for different charities. You get your rock and roll party and all the warm fuzzies for helping folks out. What’s not to love? A lot of folks call us to do fundraisers, but they don’t realize how difficult it actually is. People do fundraisers all the time that either lose money or break even because they don’t have the right artists that can draw a lot of people or the knowledge of how to run an event.

MS: What is your personal history with fundraising and rock and roll in Seattle?

SS: I have been doing fundraisers since I started in this industry about 12 years ago. I’ve done them for everybody from The Vera Project to Music for America to my personal favorite, Northwest Food Harvest.

The Constantines live at Neumos, NFTN 2009
  • The Constantines live at Neumos, NFTN 2009

MS: How has the politics of being a club owner affected your community involvement?

SS: It's gotten me way more active. I started getting interested in the political aspect of music, doing 5 shows on the East Coast with Music for America in the 2004 Elections. Now that I own a venue, I have become way more politically active. Our old regime came in almost two years ago now and created some new rules that almost cost us to lose Neumos and Moe Bar. After that I realized that we had to be involved or we would not be able to defend ourselves. I was on the Mayor's Music and Nightlife board and was heavily involved in getting Pete Holmes, Mike McGinn, and a handful of City Council folks elected through our work with Seattle Nightlife Music Association.

Noise for the Needy depends on the support of the local club scene. We would like to thank all of the venues who have hosted our shows, and we look forward to working with all of you again!

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Stay tuned, NFTN announces the 2010 charity on Wednesday, January 27th!

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