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CHET HELMS MEMORIAL AUCTION ANNOUNCED TO COINCIDE WITH JULY 29 Benefit Concert at the Great American Music HALL:eBay Auction Benefits Chet Helms Memorial Fund

San Francisco, CA, July 17, 2004.

The Chet Helms Memorial Auction begins July 28th on eBay, one day prior to the sold-out ChetFest, A Tribute to the life of Chet Helms concert at Great American Music Hall (http://www.gamh.com/artist_pages/chetfest_072905.htm). Auction proceeds benefit The CHET HELMS MEMORIAL FUND and a small portion to the hearing health programs of San Francisco nonprofit organization Hearing Education and Awareness for Rockers (H.E.A.R.) who will also be managing the auction. To donate music memorabilia or other items for the auction, please contact Kathy Peck at 415-409-3277 or (info@hearrecords.com) The webpage for the auction is:http://members.ebay.com/aboutme/hear/

The auction will run July 28 - Aug 7.
Auction items will include:

20 Poster Paks from the ChetFest, A Tribute to the life of Chet Helms Concert
One Week at Jorma Kaukonen's Fur Peace Ranch Guitar Camp
Electric Guitar, to be signed by performers at ChetFest donated by Graham Cooper at Spitzer’s Music in Concord
Herb Greene photos of Janis and rare Dyan and The Grateful Dead
Jim Marshall Photo of Chet Helms
Jim Marshall Photo of Janis Joplin
Grace Slick Original Painting
Janis Joplin Original Painting
Janis Joplin Poster donated by Wolfgang's Vault
Joel Selvin first edition autographed hard copy The Summer of Love with extensive inteview with Chet Helms.
Wavy Gravy Artwork donated by Wavy and Vin Glo Arts
Greg Douglas donated 1 free hour of guitar lessons in the San Diego area
Dennis Newhall and DIG Music in Sacramento donating CD catalogs
as well as guitars and other instruments, music memorabilia, photographic art, hotel and spa packages and special gift items.
Previews of the items will be posted on the auction homepage (http://members.ebay.com/aboutme/hear) as they become available.

Chet Helms Memorial Auction organizers are currently accepting donations of music, musical equipment, music memorabilia and other items, as well as cash gifts. For donation information, and information about H.E.A.R. 415-409-3277, info@hearrecords.com or visit the auction homepage: http://members.ebay.com/aboutme/hear

Auction Organizers
Auction manager:
Kathy Peck
1405 Lyon St.
San Francisco, CA 94115

Webmaster for auction contact: Dav@fuzzmonster.com

Auction donation facilitator: Mike Somavilla: howdyman@rcn.com

Auction Homepage: http://members.ebay.com/aboutme/hear

Chet Helms, San Francisco rock promoter, manager and key figure in 1967's Summer of Love, died Saturday of complications from a stroke suffered earlier in the week. He was sixty-two.

Born in Santa Maria, California, Helms was the oldest of three boys. After his father died when Helms was nine, the family moved to Texas. Helms remained in Texas for the next decade, enrolling in and dropping out of the University of Texas before moving to San Francisco in 1962. His beginnings as a music promoter were modest, as Helms served as a host of jam sessions in his Haight-Ashbury district home. Big Brother and the Holding Company was one of the groups that played, and while serving as their manager, Helms dramatically altered the course of the band by recruiting an old college acquaintance by the name of Janis Joplin to be their singer.

Helms was an early partner of legendary promoter Bill Graham, with the two putting on several shows at the Fillmore before parting ways. Graham continued to promote shows at the Fillmore, while Helms and his Family Dog production company moved to the Avalon Ballroom, with the Grateful Dead a mainstay, and everyone from the Doors to Bo Diddley passing through.

Country Joe and the Fish honed their chops underneath the Avalon's psychedelic light shows, and the band's guitarist Barry Melton credits Helms with fostering the kind of nurturing environment that helped bands progress. "There was an ethic unique to the time and place of San Francisco in the Sixties, an extraordinary ethic of tolerance and acceptance," he says. "Chet was the living embodiment of that tolerance and acceptance and openness that made it all happen. That element was very much a reflection of who he was."

After the scene dissipated, Helms took a hiatus from concert promotion in 1970, returning to the business off and on in 1978. In 1980 he began running Atelier Dore, an art gallery in San Francisco, and became passionate about digital photography in recent years.

"He was so tough that it's a surprise," says his widow Judy Davis. "This last year he was having a lot of problems with hepatitis C, and by the time he had his stroke he was weakened. He had a beautiful death. There were about ten people around the bed."

Helms is survived by his wife, a stepdaughter and three grandchildren.

(Posted Jun 27, 2005)


H.E.A.R. is a non-profit organization dedicated to preventing hearing loss
and tinnitus in musicians, music fans, and music industry workers. Since
1988, we've raised awareness of the dangers of excessive sound levels;
we've distributed earplugs to many thousands of people annually; our
volunteers have tested the hearing of music industry workers; and we've
trained educators on hearing protection. We've accomplished this with the
support of the music industry, musicians, audiologists, physicians, hearing
health organizations, health manufacturers and individual donors.

Our H.E.A.R. Partners ™ Program is a national network of hearing
professionals who support our mission. We've delivered vital information on
hearing loss and tinnitus to over a million people through
www.HearNet.com, public service campaigns, and
educational programs. For a free online hearing test, or to find a H.E.A.R. Partner audiologist near you, please visit www.HearNet.com.


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