7th Annual Shakers’ Ball to take place March 30th at Aladdin Theater

With Casey Neill & The Norway Rats, Ian Moore & The Lossy Coils, and Rob Stroup & The Blame. Plus special guest performers from the Shakers’ Sessions CD.

The 7th Annual Shakers’ Ball will be held on Friday, March 30th at The Aladdin Theater, hosted by it’s founder, Rob Barteletti.  The event will honor and benefit two organizations that have served the local Parkinson’s community for years; Parkinson’s Resources of Oregon (PRO) and The Parkinson’s Center of Oregon at OHSU (PCO).
Tickets for the show are $15 and are available through Ticketmaster, or through The Aladdin Theater box office. Box office hours are Monday through Saturday, 11:00 am to 6:00 pm.   Doors open at 6:00pm and the show starts at 7:00pm.
Parkinson’s disease is a chronic, progressive, and incurable neurological movement disorder marked by tremors, rigidity, slow movements, and posture instability. It occurs when dopamine-producing cells in one of the movement-control centers of the brain begin to die for unknown reasons. Its symptoms can be managed with varying degrees of success by various therapies, most commonly through medication. So far, however, no cure is in sight.
“Though that can change, given all the trials and experiments in the pipeline,” says Barteletti. “But money is still the bottom line – both for continued research as well as support for those of us who may not be able to wait for a cure. That’s why I host this event each year: to do my small part to help in this battle.”
The show will feature Casey Neill & The Norway Rats, Ian Moore & The Lossy Coils, and Rob Stroup & The Blame.  Rob Stroup & The Blame will also be the backing band for guests vocalists, including Wilkinson Blades’ Steve Wilkinson, Nick Peets, Bart Ferguson, Rob Stroup, Casey Neill, and Ian Moore, who will all be performing the song they sing on the Barteletti-penned The Shakers’ Session.
Holly Chaimov, executive director of Parkinson’s Resources of Oregon says of Barteletti, “Rob has blended his energy and enthusiasm for music with his dedication to supporting the Parkinson’s cause. We appreciate his efforts to bring awareness as well as donations to help us help those with this disease.”
The Shakers’ Sessions was released by Burgerville Records and sold exclusively at Burgerville’s restaurants, raising over $56,000 for The Brian Grant Foundation, an organization founded in 2010 by former Trail Blazers’ power forward/center Brian Grant to support efforts to build awareness and education of Parkinson’s disease in order to increase earlier diagnosis, educate patients and their families, and to provide a viable forum for people affected by Parkinson’s.  Both Grant and Barteletti have Parkinson’s and have been helped and supported by the Parkinson’s Resources of Oregon and The Parkinson’s Center of Oregon at OHSU.
The album is a 12-track collection of roots-oriented, folk-pop-tinged Americana, with each guest vocalist adding their own interpretation to Barteletti’s rustic Americana songwriting style.
The track listing:
  • 1. Being Jesus Again – Rob Stroup
  • 2. Queen of Sheba – Fernando
  • 3. Mr. Heartache – Nick Peets
  • 4. Ask Me Why – Pete Droge
  • 5. The Box – Ian Moore
  • 6. Voices – Storm Large
  • 7. Fool that Is Me – Bart Ferguson
  • 8. Bird on the Wing – Steve Wilkinson
  • 9. Reckoning Day – Mike Coykendall
  • 10. Wild Woman Blues – Ken DeRouchie
  • 11. Under Icy Falls – Casey Neill
  • 12. Her Man, Her Lover, Her Friend – Rob Barteletti
The record was released November 15, 2011 at all Burgerville locations and was sold throughout January 2012, culminating in a presentation from Burgerville to Brian Grant and his foundation with a check for $56,000 at the Rose Garden during half-time of a Trail Blazers’ game versus Charlotte Bobcats (the game ended in a 112-68 victory over the Bobcats).
Every day, 195 people are newly diagnosed with Parkinson’s and it affects more than just the person who has it – it also affects the entire family dealing with Parkinson’s disease.  One such person is songwriter (and former high school teacher) Rob Barteletti, who was diagnosed with early-onset Parkinson’s disease in 2002.
“At the time I was teaching a theology course that asked the question, ‘Why do bad things happen to good people?’ As I had learned from reading Harold Kushner’s book When Bad Things Happen to Good People, ‘Why?’ is the wrong question; the better question is ‘What are you going to do about it?  How are you going to make the most of the bad things that happen to you and your loved ones?'” Barteletti says without hesitation.  “Perfect,” I thought.  “My chance to put into practice what I have been teaching.”
He continued teaching for more than five years after his diagnosis, retiring in 2007 after 31 years.  After retiring, Barteletti, who realized the clock was ticking on his songwriting, his ability to play and write music on the guitar, dove into his music full-time, writing constantly.
Following a conversation with close friend, and recording engineer/producer Rob Stroup from 8 Ball Studios, the idea was born to do a benefit album for Parkinson’s patients, with local musicians coming in and signing songs Barteletti had penned.
“I had just written a series of swampy, tongue-in-cheek, sad, hopeful songs.  I brought rough demos to Rob Stroup for his opinion.  As we discussed this, we came up with the idea to invite the best singers in Portland and the Northwest to each record one of my songs.  The album would be sold as a benefit, with all profits earmarked for Parkinson’s support organizations,” recalls Barteletti .
Phone calls were made.  Emails were sent.  Soon, Barteletti found Northwest musicians more than willing to participate, including Storm Large, Pete Droge, Fernando Viciconte, Ian Moore, Mike Coykendall, Casey Neill, Bart Ferguson, Steve Wilkinson, Ken DeRouchie, Rob Stroup, and even the one-time student of Barteletti at Jesuit High School, Nick  Peets.
“There are three irrefutable cold, hard facts about Parkinson’s disease: it is chronic, it is progressive, and it is incurable.  Every Parkinson’s patient hears this somber mantra upon diagnosis,” informs Barteletti. “I now understand the reality of those words more than any time since I was diagnosed seven and half years ago.”
He continues, “Over the past few years, my musical skills have diminished, but it’s as if my songwriting has been set free by the disease.  This fills me with hope and inspiration.”
Honored that so many Northwest icons were willing to participate in the making of The Shakers’ Sessions, Barteletti hopes to inspire others with the disease, educate those unfamiliar with its impact on lives, and ultimately raise money to help those living with the incurable disease.
“The collaborative goal is to bring these songs not just public artistic recognition, but more importantly to share this music to bring awareness and funding to The Brian Grant Foundation, to further their cause, and help them provide assistant to those less fortunate than me, who are also living with Parkinson’s.  My dream is to see the day when a cure can be found for this insidious, relentless disease.
But, in the mean time, I hope The Shakers’ Sessions can inspire and offer hope to others like me.  Much like it has done for me,” Barteletti says.

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