Music Matters

Local musicians create homegrown fest to support one of their own

Local musicians create homegrown festival to support one of their own

LAX Austin Andrew Collins Erin Jantzen
Members of L.A.X., including Andrew Collins (middle) and Erin Jantzen (to his right). Courtesy of Erin Jantzen

Next weekend, the Austin music community is banding together to support one of its own. In August, local musician Andrew Collins was in a serious motorcycle accident that left him in a coma. Collins sustained four broken ribs, a broken nose, broken leg, broken scapula, and a basilar fracture in his skull which caused bleeding in his brain. 

Though Collins is out of the hospital and on the mend, the musician — best known as the vocalist for Austin bands including At All Cost, L.A.X. and Vegatron — faces extensive bills. That's where the greater "Austin music family" comes in, says Erin Jantzen. 
Jantzen, who has played music with Andrew for years, is organizing AndrewFest, a benefit at Red 7 on December 19-20 that has been months in the making. "I decided to put on AndrewFest a few days after Andrew was in the motorcycle accident. He was still in a coma and there wasn't much I could think to do for him," says Jantzen. "I had a lot of mutual friends posting on social media to raise money and knew that we'd have a lot of support from our Austin music family, so I started making some calls."
Thanks to support from Transmission Events (who is presenting the festival) and a host of local bands, the fest has come together seamlessly. "It's been incredible to see how many people have pulled together to support this event. I have been in the music scene for 10 years and called on contacts that I've made over those 10 years — every single person I spoke to offered to help in some way," Jantzen explains. 
The folks at Red 7 and Transmission Events offered two nights for the event, which will feature more than a dozen bands on two stages. Headliners include Wild Child and Eagle Claw on Friday, and The Rise on Saturday.
Two-day passes are available for $30 and all door proceeds will go directly to Collins' extensive medical and legal bills, says Jantzen. "He was in the hospital for three weeks and has had to have a lot of physical therapy and rehab since released from the hospital. He also hasn't been able to work much so there's no money coming in for day-to-day expenses."
In addition to supporting Collins, AndrewFest reinforces the greater mindset of the Austin music community. "I can't speak for other cities, but I can say that Austin has an incredibly supportive music scene," Jantzen says. "No one I know wants to see a fellow musician down on their luck. We all want to help him get back on his feet so that he can go back to doing what we all love — creating music."
More information about AndrewFest is available here