Matt Sharp concert: 12/22/02 - Los Angeles, CA

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Poster

Matt Sharp, Jason Ruscio, and Evan Astrowsky organized a benefit concert for the family of Ruscio's friend Carlos Ramos, then in the final stages of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Sharp performed a setlist of songs from his solo records, songs written for the Rentals, as well as some cover songs. Sharp was accompanied by Maya Rudolph and Danny Frankel [1].

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Original article

Matt Sharp, Jason Ruscio and Evan Astrowsky's benefit show for Carlos Ramos, Dec. 22nd at Tamarind Theater in Los Feliz.

On December 22, 2002 Matt Sharp will perform an acoustic benefit concert at the Tamarind Theater (5919 Franklin Ave.) in Los Feliz, CA for Carlos Ramos and his family. The show will commence at 8PM, tickets are $20 at the door and all proceeds will go directly to the Ramos Family. Sharp will be previewing songs off of his soon to released debut solo album, as well as acoustic versions of the Rentals catalogue. In conjunction there will be an after-party starting at 9PM at the restaurant, La Pou Belle located at 5907 Franklin Ave (at Bronson). For people with tickets from the Tamarind show admission will be free, otherwise there is a $20 donation at the door.

In 1999 Writer/Director Jason Ruscio befriended Carlos Ramos at LA County/USC Hospital. Ruscio's battle with Epilepsy could have been one of despair and resignation had it not been for the 39 year old Honduran in the bed next to him, suffering form ALS, better known as Lou Gehrig's disease.

ALS is a rare, neurological disease progressively paralyzing the patient, until they literally suffocate, unable to use their own lungs. ALS is almost always fatal.

Ramos' compassion and dignity in the face of obvious adversity not only gave Ruscio the strength to deal with his disease, but also deeply affected every one of the friends, that came to visit him. Ramos, greeted everyone with "Happy Birthday", a phrase he thought captured his positive outlook on life - 'everyday is a gift'. Quickly the catch phrase became popular with patients, visitors and doctors alike, echoing through the morgue-like corridors of County Hospital. Shortly following his release from the hospital, Ramos was robbed at gunpoint in his Compton home. All of his meager belongings stolen, leaving him and his family completely devastated. Ramos' dreams of a new life in a new land couldn't seem to get any worse -- then he found out his loving wife, Anna had ovarian cancer. Doctors at County Hospital, outraged at Ramos' situation, contacted the LA Times who ran an article on the Ramos family plight. California Senator Diane Feinstein saw the article, and took action to help him. She arranged for Romas and his family to be moved to a safe housing project in Los Angeles and assisted with sorting his immigration status.

But the Ramos Family's needs are, by no means, met. They survive on church food donations and contributions from friends. Ramos is now in the final stages of ALS and his one final wish is to visit his mother and family in Honduras.

The Ramos' plight has continued to draw support from the tight-knit artistic community of Silver Lake. Ruscio, with the help of film producer Evan Astrowsky (Dead in the Water, Cabin Fever), and Matt Sharp of Weezer and Rentals fame have pooled resources to create a benefit concert for the Ramos Family. Ruscio and Sharp are long time childhood friends and Ruscio directed two videos for The Rentals, "Friends of P" and "Getting By".

Setlist

  1. "My Summer Girl
  2. "The Rollercoaster Ride" (Belle and Sebastian cover)
  3. "Please Let That Be You"
  4. "Every Time in Blue"
  5. "Getting By"
  6. "Not Tonight" (Tegan and Sara cover)
  7. "So Soon"
  8. "These Days"
  9. "The Man with Two Brains"
  10. "Monica Smiles"
  11. "Two of Us" (Beatles cover)
  12. "The Love I'm Searching For"
  13. "Friends of P."
  14. "Ten Nights" (Spain cover)

Personnel

See also