Music For Marshall: Everything You Need To Know About The Boulder Fire Benefit

Jan 22, 2022News, Previews

Music For Marshall: Boulder County Fire Victims Benefit at Boulder Theater

Featuring Drunken Hearts & Friends, Buffalo Commons, Pick & Howl


Music For Marshall presented by Avery Brewing Co., Jack Daniels, and The Colorado Sound will take place at the Boulder Theater in Boulder, CO on February 4, 2022.  Drunken Hearts will be joined by members of The String Cheese Incident, The Motet, Leftover Salmon, Elephant Revival, and more.  The event will be live-streamed, and there will be a silent auction.



On December 30, 2021, just as many were looking to finally bring to a close a year that has, for many, been filled with challenges, the unthinkable happened in Boulder County. As winds unexpectedly topped 115 MPH, several fires broke out along the Front Range.  One of these fires, named the Marshall Fire due to its place of origin, could not be controlled.

As we now know, the Marshall Fire quickly ripped through the towns of Louisville and Superior, destroying nearly everything in its path.  Among that path of devastation were over 1000 homes1000 homes.  That bears repeating.


Now, several weeks later, as thousands of Boulder County residents are literally trying to pick up the shattered pieces of their lives, the community is joining together in an attempt to help.

As inevitably happens in times of struggle, the local music community is at the forefront of the relief efforts. This is a community that has been hit as hard as anyone over the past 2 years by the effects of COVID, yet here they are, doing everything they can to lend a hand to their friends in need.


Drunken Hearts

Music For Marshall featuring Drunken Hearts and Friends, Buffalo Commons, Pick & Howl.


Andrew McConathy and his band, Drunken Hearts had a show scheduled at the Fox Theater in Boulder for February 4.  When the Marshall Fires broke out, McConathy, who lives only a few miles from the evacuation zone, immediately started thinking about what he could do to help.  It seemed obvious to him that the upcoming Fox show needed to be used as a benefit concert. As McConathy says, it “just seemed like the right thing to do.”

In the days that followed, McConathy reached out to the bands involved and all were on board without question, agreeing to donate their time for the event. 

As the true devastation of the Marshall Fire became known, more and more artists wanted to be a part of the benefit.  With the list of artists quickly increasing, the event eventually outgrew the Fox Theater and was moved to The Boulder Theater, which happened to be available.

McConathy then removed his ‘artist’ hat and replaced it with his ‘event organizer’ hat.  It’s a hat that may have collected a bit of dust in the past few years, but certainly one that has been well worn in McConathy’s years of putting on Yarmony Festival in Bond, CO.

Music For Marshall was born.

Bill and Jillian Nershi

Bill and Jillian Nershi (image courtesy of The String Cheese Incident)

Music for Marshall: The Music

The originally scheduled event – prior to the Marshall fires – was to feature Drunken Hearts with support from Buffalo Commons and Pick & Howl.  All three of these bands are now donating their time to the benefit.

Pick & Howl and Buffalo Commons will open the show with their own sets of music.  Drunken Hearts will then play the role of house band as they are joined throughout the evening by an all-star cast of local artists.

Joining the Dunken Hearts will be Bill and Jillian Nershi.  Colorado native Bill Nershi is well known as a founding member of The String Cheese Incident. Also from String Cheese, percussionist extraordinaire Jason Hann is on the roster. From the Polyethnic Cajun Slamgrass band Leftover Salmon, banjo phenom (and viral video sensation with his Foxy videos) Andy Thorn will be sitting in.

Also joining the Drunken Hearts throughout the evening will be Charlie Rose (Elephant Revival), Silas Herman, Shawn Eckles (Andy Frasco & The UN), Michael Kirkpatrick, and many more amazing local musicians.

And two more artists of special note on the bill for this benefit: Dave Watts (The Motet) and Andy Manz.

Both Watts and Manz lost their homes in the Marshall Fire.  Their entire homes.  Everything.  And yet, when given the opportunity, both men are still stepping up to give all they have left – their music.  Two artists whose families are certainly in need of assistance themselves, yet here they are, working to help their fellow Coloradans in need.  The definition of charity.


Joining these artists to serve as MC of the event is Boulder local and liaison-to-the-stars, Annabel Lukins Stelling (Cloud 9 Adventures).  Annabel and her family were also displaced by the fires, suffering irreparable damage to their home and property.  Her inclusion in this event is a testament to her strong will and huge heart.  Annabel will also be joined by a special surprise guest MC!


With all of these artists on hand, it will certainly be an unparalleled night of music in Boulder.  Expect Drunken Hearts to play several songs on their own, mixed in with a well-curated setlist of poignant covers and originals, catered specifically to each guest as they join the band.  And expect some truly magical moments.

Buffalo Commons | Image by Festi Addict

Buffalo Commons (Image Courtesy of Festi Addict )

Music For Marshall: The Cause

Music for Marshall is a benefit aimed at generating donations for the Community Foundation Boulder County and the Boulder County Wildfire Fund.

From the Community Foundation’s website:

As Boulder County’s trusted philanthropic partner for over 30 years, Community Foundation Boulder County will work closely with our government and nonprofit partners to coordinate, align resources and fill gaps to support those most impacted by the wildfires. Our experience has shown us the importance of deep local relationships in meeting short- and long-term community needs in a crisis with equity, transparency, and integrity.

In addition, there will be a Silent Auction during the benefit, proceeds from which will go towards the Community Foundation and to Conscious Alliance.  (See Silent Auction details below)

Conscious Alliance is a pillar of giving and a shining star within the music community. 

With its “Art That Feeds” mission, Conscious Alliance is “a movement of artists, musicians, food makers, and music lovers on a mission to end hunger in underserved communities nationwide.”  In the wake of the Marshall Fires, they have already raised 94% of their $300,000 goal to support the needs of the victims. Hopefully, by the time you are reading this, that goal has been achieved!





Billy Strings signed yellow splatter "Renewal" vinyl

One of the Silent Auction items: a rare, signed Billy Strings vinyl!

Music For Marshall: Silent Auction and Contributors


Items for the Silent Auction have been generously donated by artists, musicians, businesses, and other members of the community.

Donations include a rare Yellow Splatter “Renewal” Vinyl signed by Billy Strings, a pair of black crows skis, a pair of 3 Day GA Passes to Planet Bluegrass‘s Folk Festival, a pair of 3 Day GA Passes to WinterWonderGrass Steamboat.

Donated items from The Lil’ Smokies, Railroad Earth, The Infamous Stringdusters Leftover Salmon, Kitchen Dwellers, will also be included in the Silent Auction, and more TBA!


In addition to the contributions in the Silent Auction, many more organizations and individuals have donated time, items, and money to the cause.

Dog House Music Studios in Lafayette has donated rehearsal space to Drunken Hearts as they prepare for Music for Marshall.  Boulder Lifestyle Magazine has contributed advertisements for the event.

Presenting sponsors, Avery Brewing Co., Jack Daniels, and The Colorado Sound have all contributed advertisements and promotions as well as cash donations to the cause.

Backline – an amazing organization focusing on mental health and wellness resources for the music community – will be onsite during the event.

Countless others have come out to support Music For Marshall in a number of different ways.


Andy Thorn of Leftover Salmon is among the artists contributing to Music For Marshall

Music for Marshall Live Stream

Can’t make it to the Boulder Theater on February 4?  Don’t live in Colorado, but still want to support the relief efforts and enjoy the show?

No worries!  The entire evening will be viewable via a FREE LIVE STREAM on!

There will be donation links available during the stream so you can show your support in real-time.

Streaming platform details are forthcoming, so keep an eye on the Festy GoNuts NoCoast, and Drunken Hearts Facebook pages for updates.

NoCoast TV

Music For Marshall: Tickets

Tickets for Music For Marshall are only $15 ($17 for under 21) and proceeds directly benefit Community Foundation Boulder.


Tickets for Music For Marshall are available through Z2 Entertainment’s website. (NOTE: Z2 will charge service fees that DO NOT benefit the victims of the Marshall Fire)


In addition, FEE FREE tickets are available directly through Andrew McConathy, ensuring 100% of your ticket price goes directly to the cause.

To inquire about FEE FREE tickets, email Andrew will provide Venmo payment details and have the tickets available at Will-call.  (NOTE: there is a small Venmo business transaction fee, so if you want to be even more helpful, throw in an extra buck!)


Music For Marshall: Contribute NOW!

With all of these incredible artists and organizations, Music For Marshall is sure to be a huge success, a wonderful night of music, and, most importantly, a lifeline to those who so desperately need one.

But why wait until February 4?

You can donate RIGHT NOW to the Boulder County Wildfire Fund!

Do you know someone affected by the Marshall Fire?  Are you in need of assistance?

Here is a fantastic list of resources for those in need, and those looking to help:



Music For Marshall event poster

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About The Author


Jason has been in love with the festy lifestyle ever since his first festival experience, The Great Went in August of 1997. Whew. That was a while ago. Jason loves the way festivals free us from the constraints of the outside world, and let us be our true "fest" selves!

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