Everymen's Cowboy Benefit at Propaganda, February 4

Everymen's Show for Cowboy
Propaganda, Lake Worth
Friday, February 4, 2011

View a slide show from the concert here.

Handmade washboard key chains, washboard T-shirts, and a book signed by too many to count told part of the tale of Friday's benefit show for critically injured and hospitalized Cowboy, washboard player for area swamp punkabilly act Everymen. The large crowd of well-wishers packing Propaganda during the band's set told rest of the story.

During Everymen's set in the middle of the ten-act night, the band members' faces showed a wealth of emotions -- the anguish frontman Sergio Witis detailed to us prior to the show was still present, but there was also a feeling of release in honor of a friend in the room. Viva Le Vox's Paultergeist did his part to sub for Cowboy on washboard during the set, and his screams were among the loudest every time the band called for an impromptu "COWBOOOOY" yell from the crowd. Each time, it was a chance for everyone in the room -- friends, family, and many tattoo-covered fans alike -- to unite.
"Don't Rain on My Parade" was dedicated to Cowboy's parents, who were in attendance. Witis said, "No matter what, nobody's going to rain on our parade. I never cried and played before." Eventually, a joyous, Paultergeist-incited mosh pit formed in front of the stage. The substitute washboard player relished his mischievous handiwork by sticking out his tongue and rolling his eyes up to the ceiling.
For Everymen's final song of the night, the dedication obviously went to Cowboy. The washboard and spoons were ceded to Cowboy's mom for this one. Once onstage, she squatted down low, smiling and really got into it. She played face to face with guitarist Jesse Baumann, and then she turned to Witis. As the set closed, the Everymen leader went down on his knees before her as she played and kissed her on the forehead. She then leaned up toward the mic and thanked him. "It must run in the family," said Witis.
To follow, Cowboy's dad, donning a cowboy hat, took the stage and said, "Cowboy is here with us tonight. Let's yell his name until we pass out." After a count to three, everyone yelled as loud as they could.

Critic's Notebook

Random detail: All proceeds -- reportedly a tidy sum to be announced later this week -- from tickets, merch, and drinks will go toward Cowboy's medical expenses.

Overheard: Many folks remarked throughout the night that Cowboy would be able to hear this well-meaning ruckus from his hospital bed.

After the fact: "Our hearts are filled with love, so many people to thank..." -- posted on Everymen's Facebook page on Saturday.

Special thanks to Courtney Hambright.

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Reed Fischer
Contact: Reed Fischer