Mike Moothart - Photo by Greg "Slim Lively" Johnson.
There are many great things about living in Oregon and the Pacific Northwest. Really way too many to list here. But a couple I will list are the fantastic music scene we have and all the outstanding musicians that pull together when one of us is in need. I know. I can speak from personal experience. I was helped a number of times by the folks here in Portland and in Eugene, when going through health issues. If it wasn't for Randy Lilya, Jan Bisconer, Greg Lively,the C.B.A, Terry Currier, Bill Shreve, Paul Biondi, M.E.M.A (Musicians Emergency Medical Assoc.) and all the musicians, I probably would be living out on the street.
Well, that time has come up again. One of the Northwest's most outstanding Blues Harmonica players needs help.Mike Moothart was recently diagnosed with stage four prostate cancer. It had spread to five tumors on his spine. One tumor was removed and this eliminated him being paralyzed from the waist down. Mike has been receiving hormone/chemo/radiation treatments and the doctor have found the results encouraging so far, saying that he has responded well to the treatments.
I'm not pulling any punches here. The cost of this is huge. Add all this to the fact that two weeks before he was diagnosed, he was "let go" from his job of thirty years. He still has some insurance for himself and his daughter but the monthly costs of that are large.
Mike has been a solid Blues musician and Blues supporter for over 40 plus years. He grew up with Curtis Salgado in Eugene, OR, and played in many bands there. He offered his home to musicians traveling through like Big Walter Horton, Sonny Rhodes and many others. After moving to Portland, he played with the Jim Mesi Band, Jimmy Lloyd Rea & the Switchmasters and has frequently been seen at the Blues Harmonica Blow-Off's and Summit's. At one point he even drove the van for the Paul deLay Band. Mike loves Blues music and is hands down, one of the most hard blowing harp players out there. He used to ask people not to stand in front of him when he played because of the danger of being "sucked up into the harmonica."
Now Thanks to Randy Lilya, Sonny Hess, the Spare Room and an award winning list of Portland musicians, a benefit will be held to help Mike off-set the enormous costs of his treatments. On Sunday May 18th at the Spare Room - located at 4830 N.E. 42nd Ave - here in Portland, OR., an All-Star cast of players will get together and play from 5:00 pm to 10:00 pm.
Donations will be accepted throughout the evening and there will a "ton" of unbelievable music and musicians!
Let me throw some names out and see if this gets your attention. Curtis Salgado, Linda Hornbuckle, Norman Sylvester D.K. Stewart, Lloyd Jones, Jim Mesi, Terry Robb, Andy Stokes, Sonny Hess, Steve Bradley, Bill Rhoades, Alan Hager, Jim Wallace, Jimmy Lloyd Rea, Sir Henry Cooper, John Koonce, Doug Rowell, Newell C. Briggs, Randy Lilya and Robbi Laws.
There will be many more players showing up. Way too many to list. A line-up not to be missed!
So please put that date on your calendar. May 18th - Sunday 5 pm to 10 pm at the Spare Room. Once again we can show that not only do the musicians here in the Northwest play great together but that they look out for each other and help when the time comes up.
Don't miss this show - like J.B. Hutto used to say "It will be heavy!