Yorktown Heights, NY–September 20th was 2014’s last summer evening and the best of the year for The Justin Veatch Fund as Livingston Taylor headlined its fundraising concert at Yorktown Stage. Earlier in the day Mr. Taylor spent more than two hours with area performers who signed up for his condensed master class on stage performance. The performers included members of The Justin Veatch Fund All Stars who would be the opening act for Livingston that night.
The concert drew 350, a good night for Yorktown Stage, but not as good as The Fund had hoped for. “Those who came went away very happy,” said Jeffrey Veatch, President of The Fund and father of the late Justin Veatch. “We had people from all over the area outside of Yorktown including fans from New York City, New Jersey, Massachusetts and even a couple who flew in from Houston, Texas”. And Livingston was happy to share the stage with the young performers as he joined the All Stars in “Wagon Wheel”, the last song in their opening act.”
“The vibes were fantastic, said Christine Errol who sang and played guitar and banjo for the concert. “people really came together for the music and it was really refreshing.” Esteban Rivera, front man for Last Exit in New York who sang and played guitar as part of the All Stars agreed. “The whole experience felt like an all star experience,” said Rivera. “I truly appreciate it and I’ll remember that show for a very long time. The Justin Veatch Fund does great things.”
Many who attended didn’t leave with just a fond memory of a night of great music, but also brought home some great mementos, like two guitars signed by Livingston donated by Guitar Center and Taylor Guitars as well as other music memorabilia made available especially for the concert. People attending the meet-and-greet reception after the show went home with pictures posed with Livingston, signed CD’s and books as well as personally signed posters that had advertised the concert.
In one of the highlights of the evening four of the Justin Veatch Fund All Stars were invited back on stage for Livingston’s encore of Somewhere Over the Rainbow, a song that has been one of his frequent closers.
“As a concert, rare for Yorktown, it was a great event, “ said Veatch. “To upgrade Yorktown Stage’s sound we hired Audio Production Services, Inc. from White Plains, NY. The room sounded great and even got a compliment from Livingston during the show. Guitar Center provided a piano and other stage equipment as rental donations. I consider the event a huge success bringing a fine headliner to Yorktown and giving young local performers an experience they won’t soon forget.”
The Justin Veatch Fund is a 501(c)3 organization founded by the Veatch family after the death of 17 year old Justin Veatch from an accidental drug overdose in 2008. The Fund provides annual scholarships to graduating high school seniors planning further study of music as well as programs for musically talented teens. Jeffrey Veatch has also travels to schools in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut to present his multi media talk “A Message from Justin” which tells Justin’s story with the goal of creating a healthier teen culture to deal with the drug problem that has plagued most communities.