Local musicians have banded together to support popular music venue, Knitting Factory, in Boise, Idaho after a fire on Sept. 11 shut down the building. No one was injured in the blaze, but the venue has been forced to temporarily close and move shows while the investigation into the fire continues.
With the fire investigation going on for several weeks, Knitting Factory employees are unable to work, but in the less than two weeks since the incident local bands put together a benefit concert for the beloved staff.
“When the fire happened and I found out about it, I just wanted to do everything I could possibly do to give something back, to help out. I wasn’t sure how to do it but I reached out to the community and everybody loved the idea,” Boise-based musician, Raider Dean tells Amplify.
On Sunday, Sept. 23, Dean helped round up 11 Boise bands to play the Knitting Factory Benefit show that lasted from 1pm to midnight with a collection rock and metal. Tickets to get into the event were $10 for those over 21 and $5 for those 20 years-old or younger. All proceeds went to the Knitting Factory staff.
“The staff is outstanding. They have always treated us with respect and like we were family. They have given a lot of the local bands great opportunities to go out there and give it our all and get attention that we probably wouldn’t normally be able to get,” says Dean. “Without the staff at that place, it wouldn’t be able to happen as smoothly as it does. They are tremendously important to all of us.”
“When I heard about the benefit, it was incredible. It really speaks to the Boise community and how tight knit it truly is,” Knitting Factory Presents talent buyer, Danny Glazier, tells Amplify. “For all the shows that I have booked, for all the shows that the staff works, we like to think that it has an affect on people and to hear that it is coming full circle and people are coming back and helping us out, that’s incredible.”
Locals musicians such as Black Tooth Grin, Dean’s Septic Era, Traitor’s Gate, Break Surface, Rise of the Fallen and more have all played the Knitting Factory at some point in their career and were eager to help out the venue that has been in the community for ten years.
“We had a great selection of musicians,” Dean says. “There are a lot of bands that are very senior and some that are young and new to the Knitting Factory.”
“We have a lot of staff right now that is upset. This building is a home for them. For somebody to step forward and realize that and create an event blows me away,” says Glazier.
In addition to the musical element, the event featured food trucks, raffles and custom merchandise sales.
“It did go very well. We were able to raffle off a bunch of items. We had some friends and family make a bunch of shirts and stickers to go towards the cause. We were able to get a lot of those sold,” says Dean.
The benefit show was held at Mardi Gras Ballroom in Boise, a family-owned venue that donated the space for the day. Other local venues also stepped up to help out in the wake of the fire. Two days after the fire, Knitting Factory’s Thursday night Lizzo performance was moved to Revolution Concert House. Since then shows have been placed around town from Revolution Concert House, the Egyptian Theatre and Neurolux Lounge.
“Regardless of us being in an industry that is so competitive, it is incredibly nice to know that in times of trouble everybody bands together,” says Glazier. “We’re all trying to bring people concerts. I think we all realize that we might not play on the same team on a day to day basis, but when it comes down to it we’re all trying to achieve one goal.”
Glazier adds that the fire investigation is ongoing and that the Knitting Factory is planning its return in the near future. For the time being, a list of relocated shows can be found on the venue’s Facebook page.
“More than anything right now, I am excited. The sadness has passed and I am excited to see how the Knit comes back,” says Glazier. “I think it is going to be awesome.”