Concert for a Cause at the Leif will benefit MD research

February 17, 2015 Meaghan McGoldrick
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The boys of Alpha Phi Delta-Delta Epsilon are looking to change the world, one guitar lick at a time. With one of their own in mind, the John Jay College fraternity will offer up a night of live music (‘90s throwbacks included) on Friday, February 20 at its first-ever Concert for a Cause.

“We as an organization have felt the obligation to give back to the community since our fraternity’s beginnings back in 1914,” explained event organizer Thomas Murray, stressing that his chapter has been giving back to the community since it was reactivated six years ago. “As many organizations do, we focus on those causes that each member holds near and dear.”

This concert’s cause: ending Muscular Dystrophy, commonly known as MD.

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“The ‘Concert for a Cause’ we are hosting is dedicated to one of our brother’s relatives,” Murray explained. “Although that person would rather remain anonymous, we know an event such as this means the world to him. Muscular Dystrophy is not the most well-known philanthropic cause but that’s just more of a reason why we chose to raise awareness and as much funds to donate as possible.”

Eighteen to enter, 21 to drink, Alpha Phi Delta’s fight against MD features an A-list roster of local bands including self-proclaimed “melodic rock and soul” group Amistad, hip-hop-funk-rockers Funknasty and Bay Ridge’s own Stoop Kids, the strictly ‘90s cover band with a soft spot for Gwen Stefani.

BROOKLYN MEDIA GROUP/Photo by Meaghan McGoldrick
BROOKLYN MEDIA GROUP/Photo by Meaghan McGoldrick

“I think that events like this don’t just benefit folks who have MD; they benefit us all,” said Stoop Kids keyboardist and back-up vocalist Rob Randazzo. “Everybody’s lives are enriched by the act of giving. Music is the best way to bring people together for any reason, but especially for a great cause.”

The cause hits close to home for lead singer Courtney Gilbert.

“A kid I went to school with suffered from MD so it definitely touches my heart that we get to do a benefit like this,” said the Bay Ridge resident. “It’s so fulfilling to see people gather and help others. We all share this world we live in and it makes it better when we give what we can to help those in need.”

The boys of Amistad agreed.

“It means a lot to play a show of this kind because not only does it raise money for a good cause, but it also allows people to become aware of something,” noted lead singer Timothy Perez. “Before this show, I didn’t know about MD, but after doing some research, I found out that there’s no cure and medications can only slow down the disease.”

“We’ve always had this mentality that shows shouldn’t always be about furthering ourselves as artists and that if we can bring attention to real world problems by playing for a cause, it’s definitely worth it,” added guitarist Frandie Batista.

Drummer Gabriel Merino agreed.

“Helping out for a benefit show means doing what we love to do for a great cause. It’s a win-win,” he said. “It’s part of who I am in Amistad, and part of being a good friend. That’s what we’re about.”

Alpha Phi Delta’s Concert for a Cause will kick off at 7 p.m. at The Leif Bar (6725 Fifth Avenue). The $10 cover will include food, great music and guaranteed-good vibes.

All proceeds will go towards MD research and finding a cure.

For more information on the show or any of the bands playing, visit

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