ASCC, Artists Supporting a Cure for Cancer Now, is running a contest until October 5th, asking artists or anyone with a creative streak to create a piece of artwork inspired by the life and music of Spencer Bell. The chosen person will "will receive roundtrip airfare and a ticket to attend one of the 100 Monkey concerts in November (TBD)".
Want to win a trip to see 100 Monkeys play live?
Want to meet Ben Graupner, Ben Johnson, Jackson Rathbone, Jerad Anderson, and Uncle Larry?
Here is your chance!! In the month of September, we will be running a contest for the best fan art. Go to http://www.spencerbellmemorial.com/ and listen to Spencer Bell's amazing music. Create an original piece of art based on one of Spencer Bell's songs. Send that art in with your application and a $25 application fee (cash or check accepted). The top ten finalists will be chosen by a panel of judges and displayed on this site. Popular vote will determine the winner.
Who is Spencer Bell? And why is he connected to the Monkeys?
Spencer Bell of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan was just 20 years old when he was diagnosed with adrenal cancer in November of 2006. He died just eleven days after learning he had cancer. By the time Spencer began suffering symptoms, the cancer was so advanced that surgery was not an option. You'll notice listed in his band members, is Ben Johnson, now a member of 100 Monkeys.
Spencer's family posted this about his life on their memorial on the Spencer Bell Legacy Project.
After living in Brooklyn, NY for two years, writing and performing music with his band (“Cactus”—eventually called “The Stevedores” as they came to learn that another band already owned the “Cactus“ name) and attending the New York Film Academy learning 3D computer animation, Spencer briefly returned home in May 2006—just long enough to charge his batteries, deliver a few pizzas, sock away a few bucks and then join his band mates, Ben Johnson (drums), Adam Webb-Orenstein (bass), Sean Fernando (keyboards) and Jake Miller (guitar) in Madison, Wisconsin, to continue their musical lives together all under one roof. It was a dream come true for Spencer and the guys.
Over the next few months the band polished their work, created new music and waited as their first planned CD (Tamuawok) was in the final mixing stages before release. The plan was to begin work on a second album in their basement while playing gigs around the area and selling their CD to fans at those venues.
Everything seemed to be coming together when, in November, Spencer began to have some stomach pain and associative symptoms. Not overly concerned, Spencer sought the normal remedies until he decided to ask a doctor for some advice. The doctor (quite naturally) suggested Prilosec, a healthier diet and lots of water. After all, a twenty year old with stomach aches isn’t at all unusual.
Undeterred by his growing discomfort, Spencer began planning a Thanksgiving feast for his friends. He’d even managed to go the grocery store and purchase the necessary turkey and fixings. In addition to a few close friends for Thanksgiving Dinner, his brother Brady was planning a visit for the Holiday weekend.
Brady relates that when his brother went to pick him up at the airport Thanksgiving Eve, Spencer was in some pain and easily out of breath — pausing for a few minutes after giving Brady a hug, Spencer needed to sit and rest. Over the course of the evening at “The Cactus House” Spencer mainly sat as comfortably as possible in a bean bag chair visiting with Brady and friends. It was too painful to move around unnecessarily.
The next morning, however, Spencer was in a nearly impossible state of pain and discomfort. Brady helped convince him that they needed to seek medical attention and went to the Emergency Room at the University of Wisconsin Medical Center.
Based on Spencer’s symptoms, the attending doctor opted to check Spencer for kidney stones and ordered a CT Scan which uncovered a 7.5” tumor in his abdomen area. The doctor then delivered the news to Spencer -20 and Brady -16 that Spencer had cancer and that he needed to immediately be checked into the hospital.
Click to read the rest of the letter
Another interesting tidbit from ASCC's site is this:
Deep Ellum Arts Festival, April 2-4, 2010, Dallas, TX
Kelly Garrett Rathbone is creating a collection to be displayed at the Deep Ellum Arts Festival. She has generously agreed to donate part of her profits to adrenal cancer research.
Spencer Bell Legacy Concert, April 3, 2010, Venue TBD, Dallas, TX
This show is completely dependant on the support of this website.
Links to Spencer's Myspace and music
Spencer Bell Legacy Project
“A beautiful soul, that Spencer Bell” ~Jackson Rathbone