The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update


November 10, 2012

'Essence of funk'

Rico Lewis and band will raise cancer awareness, funds at concert

ANDERSON, Ind. — Rico Lewis knows how to describe funk: “The essence of funk I think is freedom. ... It’s more of a feel. You’re supposed to be able to let your hair down, do what you feel.”

Lewis should know.

He played drums for 15 years with the influential Parliament and Funkadelic bands led by funk guru George Clinton, who once reportedly said, “Funk is nothing but jazzed-up blues.”

Lewis recently retired from the band to move back to the Midwest and to focus on his newly created not-for-profit, Funk for the Cure. Lewis, his brother Maurice Jackson and Funk for the Cure co-founder Michelle Draper hope their organization will benefit such groups as the Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation.

The Komen foundation raisers awareness and funds to fight breast cancer.

Cancer is a disease that has struck members of their families.

“Cancer has really affected all of us and not in a good way. Our grandfather died of cancer a few years ago. My grandmother died of cancer,” said Maurice Jackson. “We want to do something to give back and help.”

On the day earlier this year when Jackson and Lewis’ grandmother, Virginia Patterson, was buried, Draper’s mother passed away. Her mother had worked with the Komen foundation in Florida.

“My mom passed away in May and that’s what inspired me,” Draper said. “Our main goal is raise funds and get more awareness out there.”

Funk for the Cure organizers hope that by bringing live — and funky — music to are venues, attention will be drawn to the cause.

“It’s not a young thing; it’s not an old thing. It’s not a black thing; it’s not a white thing,” said Lewis. “It’s a unity thing. I want people to come to the concerts and support a good cause.”

They’ll kick off the concerts with a performance by Sons of F.U.N.K., a Lewis-led band that is scheduled to include some members of the Parliament-Funkadelic (P-Funk) family. Also set to perform are Lewis’ cousin Teddy Patterson, who was a member of the funk group Power Train. The Patterson family still gets together for a reunion where they play music. Rico Lewis is the brother of well-known basketball star Troy Lewis.

Though Rico Lewis can define the essence of funk, he’s hoping the music presented at the Nov. 21 concert will appeal to all.

“We’re catering to everyone’s needs for this Thanksgiving bash,” he said.

“I had the privilege to grow up when music was music. You had to know how to play something,” said Lewis. “My mother grounded me once because I missed marching band practice. But I’m glad she did. It made me the person I am today.”

Text Only
  • FEA HB0801 Heart_328 Tickets going fast for Heart Anyone wanting to rock out to Heart Friday night who hasn’t reserved tickets may be out of luck. Only a handful of tickets are still available for the band’s concert at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Live music: Aug. 1 Live entertainment at local venues as published in the Friday edition of The Herald Bulletin.

    July 31, 2014

  • Band Day schedule Four high school bands from Madison County will compete in the Music Travel Consultants Band Day set for Aug. 2 at the Hoosier Lottery Grandstand at the Indiana State Fair.

    July 30, 2014

  • NWS - HB0730 - frankton band day - 2 Frankton embraces challenges, advantages to starting Band Day James Handshoe is trying to clear away all the distractions.

    July 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • FEA HB0730 Gordon Brooks Berky strives to unite community through the arts His theater was originally going to be a place where he could perform when he’s not on tour, but then actor and mask maker Doug Berky had a bigger idea: Unite the community through entertainment.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • NWS - HB0730 - NeverTooLate Portwood tells story of struggles in 'Never Too Late' Former TV personality Amber Portwood, who spent 17 months in prison, unveiled the cover of her forthcoming book, "Never Too Late," this week. The publication date is Aug. 26.

    July 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • 'Pawn Stars' TV star plans stores near famous shop

    The long parade of tourists who regularly stop by the downtown Las Vegas shop featured on the History Channel reality show "Pawn Stars" could soon have something better to do while waiting in line.

    July 29, 2014

  • Markleville Jamboree begins July 31 Is your baby the prettiest? Does your pet do amazing tricks? Do you bake, sew, craft? Do you like tractors? If any of this sounds like you, you're invited to join in the contests at the Markleville Jamboree.

    July 28, 2014

  • NWS - HB0728 - Colts Camp - 006 Armed Forces Day at Colts camp pairs Girl Scout cookies with veterans

    Pair Girl Scouts and their world-famous cookies with Armed Forces Day at Indianapolis Colts training camp, and you've got a winning combination. Operation: Cookie Drop, as it's called, is a program where customers buy boxes of cookies for delivery to active and retired military throughout central Indiana.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • FEA-HB0727-MCWinery-JC6.JPG Having a wine time

    Cathy Hensley’s never been much of a drinker. It wasn’t something that interested her very much, so it seemed unfathomable that she would ever run a winery. But after her son Eric offered her and her husband, Duke, some wine he made, it changed things.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo