MUSIC | FESTIVAL
“ROCK FOR A CAUSE,” CONTINUED... wavering support. I feel that what sets the festival apart is that we’re bringing this region together to have a great time, but we’re also really showcasing the fight that is central to Team Gleason’s mission. Gleason Fest has always been about community. I love that my family and I get to attend this event every year, coming back to the Pacific Northwest, catching up with old and new friends and enjoying some great music.
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Since the festival began, have there been any advancements in ALS research that mean the most to you? ALS research has begun to more rapidly advance. One of those advancements is an effort Team Gleason helped start: Answer ALS. It’s the single largest coordinated and collaborative ALS research project in history. The goal is to gather an enormous amount of samples and data from 1,000 people living with the disease to discern what specific type of ALS each has. In doing so, researchers can then better develop personalized treatments versus failed attempts to treat all ALS as one disease. Everything Team Gleason does focuses on helping and empowering people living with ALS to continue with their purpose. Our most recent accomplishment, Independence Drive, allows people to drive their power wheelchairs with their eyes. For me, this technology has been incredibly liberating. It’s almost ridiculous to think that there were simply zero options for people like me to drive wheelchairs, and starting this year, we will help deploy this
powerful program to anyone who needs it. What kind of personal connections do you have with the bands performing at Gleason Fest this year? I’ve always loved the Dandy Warhols, and I think they embody the indie-rock genre that seems to fit so nicely with the character of Gleason Fest. I’m stoked that they’re this year’s headliner. In terms of personal connection, I went to high school with the guys in Delbert. I was a few years younger, and they lived in my hood in North Spokane. So growing up, long before Delbert was a band, I looked up to those guys. Then in college, the golden years of Delbert, they would play at our fraternity. I really love those guys. They’re so happy and creative, and their music plasters the walls of my memories. Is there a particular artist that you’d most love to have play the festival? Do you mean besides Pearl Jam, Queen and Led Zeppelin?! I’m really, really into Manchester Orchestra right now, so I’d love to see them play. Either way, we intend to keep things fresh, meaningful and fun for years to come. See you Saturday, Spokane! n Gleason Fest with the Dandy Warhols, the Grizzled Mighty, Delbert and Left Hand Smoke • Sat, Aug. 10 at 3 pm • $30 • All ages • Lilac Bowl Amphitheatre in Riverfront Park • 507 N. Howard • gleasonfest.org
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