One Good Thing: Rocks for Socks

Oh God, Thy sea is so great and my boat is so small

No one has to look far to find where the sea has swamped the boat. From a recently widowed neighbor to earthquake victims in Mexico to millions made homeless by a hurricane in Puerto Rico/ Houston/ Florida, the needs of so many feels overwhelming. We look at our own needs – hopefully counting our own blessings while we’re at it – and think, I can’t help all these people. There are too many. What good will a dollar here and there do? 

In late 2015 a local musician named John Kirk rang up his buddy and fellow musician Joseph Blythe. Friends since high school in Red Bluff back in the 1970s, John had an idea; Joe was the guy who could make it happen.

John had heard there was a need for sock donations for the homeless and needy population. “Well, that’s what we need to work on, then,” John said in an interview on Local Motion, a radio show on KKRN. “The one thing that they are getting the least of. Maybe we can change that, those numbers.” The two musicians came up with Rocks for Socks, a benefit concert where the audience pays admission with socks. “Of course we take any kind of warm clothing for the homeless and the less fortunate citizens in our area.” All donations are given to the Good News Rescue Mission for distribution.

That first concert in January 2016 was at the now-sadly-closed California Brewing Company in Palo Cedro, where they packed the place from 10 AM to 10 PM. Joseph said, ” [That show] was a complete success. The people came together. They brought in – oh, we had almost a thousand items of warm clothing, everything from jackets, pants, a ton of socks. And we found out later, when we turned the socks in, that the rescue mission does this sock exchange thing where if you come in and you’re homeless, they have a nurse that will look at your feet and they’ll give you a new pair of socks.” The second Rocks for Socks in October 2016 was even more successful, garnering 1327 items of warm clothing.

2017’s Rocks for Socks is scheduled for Saturday, October 14 at Final Draft Brewing Company. Five bands, sound crews are volunteering their time and talent (there is a Gofundme site for donations toward catering costs to feed the bands). Tracy Goschke of California Brewing Company still donates her time to help catering.

Scheduled to play are:

Still Married – 1:00 PM
Premonition – 3:00 PM
Diesel Horse – 5:00 PM
The Stone Hearts – 7:00 PM
Triple Threat – 9:00 PM

It won’t fix every problem, but a dry pair of warm socks will make a real difference to someone. Multiplied by as many people as can fit into Final Draft, well, that’s a lot of warm clothing for those who will suffer the most in the coming winter. Donate something that keeps people warm and get to hear some great music in exchange – what’s not to like?

Thanks to Joseph Blythe, Hal Johnson, and Shane Hutchins at KKRN for help in writing this article.

Barbara Rice
Barbara Rice is's administrative assistant. She grew up in Igo listening to the devil's music, hearing tales of WWII, and reading James Thurber and Mad Magazine while dreaming of travel to exotic lands. She graduated from Shasta High School, Shasta College, and San Francisco State University. After too many blistering Sacramento Valley summers, she's traded it all for the ocean breezes of Humboldt County. She's been told she's a bad influence and that makes her very happy. She tweets, travels, and spoils cats. There's a dance in the old dame yet.
Comment Policy: We welcome your comments, with some caveats: Please keep your comments positive and civilized. If your comment is critical, please make it constructive. If your comment is rude, we will delete it. If you are constantly negative or a general pest, troll, or hater, we will ban you from the site forever. The definition of terms is left solely up to us. Comments are disabled on articles older than 90 days. Thank you. Carry on.
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments