Volunteer Jam provides an outlet to thank non-staff volunteers and supporters who have rocked it big time during the past month, and who have gone above and beyond in generous support of the Rock the Earth cause. We want to sincerely thank each of you for giving so generously of your time, and applaud you for your contributions:
Abby Simon, Amanda Wright, Amy Whippman, Andrea Desmond, Axel Tomac, Brendan Koning, Brian Patterson, Camille Marino, Capri Figueroa, David Grace, David Malavenda, Elias Makrides, Emilee Dunton, Hillary Molare, Ian Knoop, Jamie Enthoven, Jen Farthing, Joe Fitzgerald, Joe Morrissette, Jordyn Walker, Kelly Horan, Kevin O’Donohue, Kyle Loving, Laura Beard, Lisa Shara, Lorena Rovero, Mark Garzon, Rob Hillard, Samantha Adler, and Shannon Keib.
Volunteer Highlight: Eli Biagi-Lee
Name: Elias John Makrides aka “Putty”
Age: One score and eighteen
City: New York, New York
Volunteer since: Early 2013
How did you first hear about Rock the Earth?
I had gotten shut out of ticket sales for a New Year’s run show at Best Buy Theater and a friend suggested that I could get into the show by volunteering for Rock the Earth. I had done volunteering before, mostly signature gathering, so I went for it. I’ve been working with RtE for a three years now! I help spread the message, get memberships and gather donations for this excellent cause.
What has been your most memorable moment with Rock the Earth?
I have had so many! My favorite aspect of the volunteering (besides being able to do good in the community I hold so dear) is the ability to be inside the concerts before “doors.” I have been privy to numerous soundchecks, often hearing new material before the public does. Last year, I watched the Disco Biscuits perform Shakedown Street for 20 minutes before they debuted it. It was a truly magical experience – I was allll like, “AAAAAAAAAAH!”
What do you do when you are not volunteering with Rock the Earth?
I work for a software company and am passionate about my work, but my dream is to be an artist for hire. I work in multiple media but I prefer oil pens. I work on customs hats, canvas, automobiles … you name it, I paint it. I started working with acrylics lately. I am terrible at it. Ha! It’s not the easiest to work with, but if you are not challenging yourself, you are not living to your fullest potential.
What is the best concert you’ve ever been to?
Best concert I have ever been too is a tough question. I would have to say I have a revolving top ten, but the top three never really change. Most recently, I believe it was last summer at Gathering of the Vibes, I got to see Rodrigo y Gabriela. Did they blow me away – such talent! Number one was seeing Jerry play “Black Peter” at the Knick in ‘95. I was 17. Stuff of legends, man.
What environmental issue is most important to you in 2015?
Mother Ocean…hands down. I think other issues have taken the forefront, but our world is slowly dying and not many people are taking notice. Fukishima is still very much a problem and the radiation levels in our food supply are rising. Our fish are showing up dead in thousands, harmful algae is at an all-time high, and large mammals are beaching themselves. If we poison the ocean, we will have no home … and this bright blue ball with go a sour green and red.
You’re from New York, so I have one last question for you: who serves the best New York slice?
This is highly debatable and as soon as I think of one, another pops up. Everybody loves Spumoni Gardens – they are real unique, and “Artichoke” has some real wild choices, but for me … its Frank ‘n Eddies on 86th and 3rd in Bayridge, Brooklyn. Yeah baby. Best Sicilian on the planet. It will rock your world and the guys in there are as sweet as their pies. Good humans, good pizza. Not much more you can ask for… except for another slice!