A new Ann Arbor charitable organization is ready to groove from the heart.
Known as Groovin’ for Good, the organization hosts benefit shows and creative events to raise funds for local people in need. It will host its inaugural event, “Break the Cycle: A Benefit to End Domestic Violence,” Friday at The Blind Pig with The Funk Factory, ZZvava, Ma Baker and the Tetra Music Project.
“We developed this concept to throw these benefit shows and have the shows go to a good cause. We found out October is domestic violence awareness month, and we were planning it in April and thinking a fall show would be good,” said Erika Ratliff, who co-founded Groovin’ for Good in April with Sara Adas, MSW and LLMSW, and Stormy Chromer drummer Amin Lanseur.
“We had the concept, and then we had the cause, and we started calling around. We made a list of different area nonprofits that focus on domestic violence and sexual assault, and we settled on First Step. We’re really excited that they’re involved, and they’re going to be at the event, too.”
All ticket sales from Friday’s show will go directly to First Step, a Wayne County nonprofit based in Plymouth that provides comprehensive services for victims of domestic and sexual assault. Services include a 24-hour help line, information and referrals, community education, transitional housing, temporary emergency housing, assault response, and children’s advocacy and prevention programs.
In addition, Friday’s show will feature a silent auction with creative items and services donated by visual artists and local vendors. All proceeds from the silent auction will go directly to First Step.
Groovin’ for Good also will feature live painting from Chris Rodriguez, a Toledo visual artist from Mind & Soul Collective, and event sponsorship from FROGtown GlassROOTs, a Toledo arts and entertainment event planning company, and The Intentional Living Collective, an Ann Arbor nonprofit that provides resources and programs for learning and growth.
“The Intentional Living Collective does some programming that specifically helps survivors as well,” said Ratliff, who’s currently pursuing a master of social work at the University of Michigan. “We’re happy to get them on board, and we’re happy to have their support.”
Several Ann Arbor and Toledo music artists will lend their support to Friday’s Groovin’ for Good show as well. Jam fusion quartet Ma Baker will share their feel-good improvisational funk and soul with a special super jam featuring Tessa Heldmeyer and other local collaborators.
The super jam serves as the genesis of Ann Arbor’s Ma Baker, which initially started as an eight- to 10-piece groove collective called Bearfoot with a rotating cast of musicians and morphed into the lineup today featuring Jared Weimer (drums), Dylan Risinger (bass), Guy Williams (guitar) and Jordan Smith (guitar, keys).
“I see Groovin’ for Good as a way for the entire music community to continue doing what we love most and transform that into something that benefits people or causes who are in need,” Smith said.
“I think we all have a deep desire to help others but don’t always have extra funds to be able to contribute financially to those we feel strongly about. Groovin’ for Good gives us an organized avenue to contribute by being ourselves and pursuing our passions, and I’m extremely grateful for it.”
During Friday’s show, Ypsilanti’s Tetra Music Project will share genre-defiant live electronic music for dance and meditation. She will blend elements of world bass, deep house, acid jazz, blues, drums and bass, and chillwave to take show attendees on a musical journey.
Tetra Music Project’s set will feature older songs and some new surprises to gear up fans for FutureDream 3, a one-day music festival at Detroit’s Tangent Gallery scheduled for Dec. 21 that will support the St. Clair Butterfly Foundation.
“Groovin’ for Good is a great opportunity to raise awareness for relevant issues while allowing a space for people to come together and have a good time and unite for a good cause,” said Kim Tetra Wiesner, a multi-instrumentalist for the Tetra Music Project.
“You never know whose life may be touched or affected by an event like this, and I always seek to inspire and help people through my music project. This will be a great opportunity for that.”
Doors | 8 p.m. Friday
The Blind Pig, 208 S. First St. in Ann Arbor
Tickets: $10 – All ticket proceeds will go directly to First Step.