Thursday, July 13, 2006

Buzz Montsinger's comeback ... one note at a time

Richmond Times-Dispatch sportswriter John O’Connor’s Saturday (July 8th) feature -- "Toughing it out" -- on Buzz Montsinger’s spinal injury (April 30th), and subsequent rehabilitation efforts, should be read by a lot of people, for various reasons:

If you remember the 1968 University of Richmond football team that beat Ohio University, 49-42, in the Tangerine Bowl, Buzz was a key player on that team. Was there ever a better Spiders team?
Buzz Montsinger (lower left) with his teammates on the Hababas softball team, circa 1977
If you remember bands such as The Escorts, Jokers Wild, and Ron Moody & the Centaurs, Buzz was in those bands. Buzz’s sturdy saxophone has been heard behind such vocalists as Steve Bassett and Robbin Thompson for decades.

If you played softball in the Fan District Softball League during its amazing 20 years of existence, 1975-94), Buzz was one of the originals on the fun-loving Hababas team.

Yes, I could go on, but if you read O’Connor’s piece that will bring you up to speed. It will also give out information about the upcoming benefit -- July 16 at Plant Zero -- for my longtime friend Buzz Montsinger, who, like lots of musicians (and some writers, too), had no health insurance. A tip of SLANTblog's cap goes out to O'Connor for his timely piece.

Note: This latest update has come in from Shannon Montsinger, Buzz’s daughter:

"On Sunday, July 16, come join us for the First Annual "Give Love To Buzz" Fest, to support Buzz Montsinger and to help him celebrate his "fifty-something" birthday. This will be the event of the year -- guaranteed!

Location: Plant Zero, East 4th Street, at Hull Street (Manchester area)
When: Sunday, July 16, 1 p.m. to 7 p.m.

The schedule for bands to perform is as follows:
1:30 - 2:15: Steve Bassett & Robbin Thompson (solos and with Band)
2:30 - 3:15: Bruce & Adrian Olsen Band
3:30 - 4:15: Billy Ray Hatley (with Big City & Show Dogs)
4:30 - 5:15: Ron Moody & The Centaurs
5:30 - 6:30: All-Star Encore Jam

Food by Big Daddy's BBQ, Cafe Diem, The Forest and Melito's.

Wine/Beer -- Cash Bar.

Raffle prizes from: Tobacco Company Restaurant; Omni Hotel; Joe Niamtu Cosmetic Surgeon; University of Richmond Spiders; Sterling Boutique; Cocoanut Jewelry; Jeff Curry Art; Joe's Inn.

A $35 donation is requested at the door. Kids free. Tickets can also be purchased at Sterling Boutique in Bon Air Shopping Center. Phone: Home (804) 261-1933; Venue: (804) 726 4442

For full details on Sunday's one-of-a-kind show, and more information on Buzz's spinal cord injury, click here.

Photo: Danny Brisbane

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