For the last 10 years, Friends of Statts has rallied to raise money for Jason Statts through a benefit concert each year.
The shooting victim of an an attempted robbery in 2008 that left him paralyzed from the chest down, Statts has relied on the benefit show each year to help shoulder the heavy cost of his health care.
“[Statts Fest] is a huge part of this whole machine we have going,” Statts said.
David Williams, Statts' bandmate who was also shot during the robbery, said without the community's support, they would have both had enormous trouble handling the medical costs.
“They raised a ton of money for us,” Williams said. “I had lost my job a week prior to us getting shot. I didn’t have insurance; I didn’t have anything. The community, especially all the people who run The Jinx, and go to The Jinx that know us, really saved my life. I would have been on the streets if it wasn’t for them.”
Each year, the Friends of Statts organization mixes up the annual charity concert to keep it fresh. Statts Fest Goes Bananas saw the concert move into Grayson Stadium for a couple of years, but this year, the concert is moving back to its inception point at The Jinx.
The 10th anniversary will also feature a split concert between daytime and nighttime shows. Cost of entry for the Sept. 29 concert is $20. Patrons who purchase tickets for the daytime show, happening at The Rail Pub, will receive a wristband to get into the Statts After Dark show at The Jinx.
Beginning at 3 p.m., the dayside show is a blast of local fare, featuring the best in alt-country, blues and roots music. Beginning with the man who can play anything with strings Joe Nelson and James Pittman kicking out jams, followed by Ray Lundy’s excellent roots band Bottles & Cans, the always solid country of Damon and the Sh!tkickers and finally Savannah’s hardest gigging, alt-country heroes The Train Wrecks, dayside/part one will be a ripping good time.
Fresh off tour and the release of their second album, Rude Dude and the Creek Freaks get things started at The Jinx’s Statts After Dark show, starting around 8 p.m., allegedly. Nancy Druid, the indie-rock solo work of COEDS co-front Anna Chandler backed by members of every other band in Savannah, will definitely rock your face.
The only out-of-town band to play this year’s Statts Fest, the power-punk, jet-fuel infused Athens rockers Shehehe, are set to play in the penultimate spot. There will also be a silent auction full of stuff you will want, like beer, paintings, guitars, etc. All proceeds go to Statts.
Returning to The Jinx stage to headline the night is Savannah’s legendary rock ’n’ roll group, GAM. What began in 1991 as a rock opera with electric frontman Keith Kozel and guitarist Kevin Rose evolved into nigh three decades of occasional insanity.
After two decades of playing, GAM sort of hibernated each year until Halloween, becoming The Jinx’s October ghosts. This rare showing of the Savannah rock gods will surely not disappoint and is probably worth all 20 of your dollars on its own.
To recap: 20 bucks, eight great bands, 10 hours of live music, a rare GAM showing, live auction, and all proceeds go to the incredibly cool and kind Jason Statts, who needs your help. Do it.
IF YOU GO
What: 10th annual Statts Fest
When: 3 p.m. Sept. 29
Where: The Rail Pub, 405 W. Congress St.
Cost: $20 (includes wristband for Statts After Dark); ages 21 and up
What: Statts After Dark
When: 8 p.m. Sept. 29
Where: The Jinx, 127 W. Congress St.
Cost: $20; ages 21 and up