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Fundraiser will help the hospital and local musicians

Bandcamp Day for SAH helps folks discover local music while raising funds to assist the hospital
2017-07-09 Northern Lights Festival Boreal DMH-16
Sault Ste. Marie's MD Dunn on the main stage at the 46th annual Northern Lights Festival Boreal at Sudbury's Bell Park. Donna Hopper/SooToday

Nicole Dyble, an Economic and Social Development student at Algoma University, recently saw an opportunity to help the hospital and local musicians and went for it.

On Friday, May 7, the planning effort of a number of local artists will culminate with a day dedicated to raising funds for the Sault Area Hospital Foundation (SAHF) and Dyble has made it their mission to tell everyone about it and get them involved.

The event, known as Bandcamp Day for SAH, will have various artists from Northern Ontario forward their music sales for that day to the SAHF’s COVID emergency fund.

Dyble credits Mark Dunn (known professionally as MD Dunn) as the “initial force behind” the event.

“Mark Dunn sent a group chat on Facebook to a bunch of local musicians asking if they wanted to be involved in this initiative,” Dyble said, in an interview with SooToday. “I volunteered to help promote the event. I’ve been helping with social media promotions.”

Bandcamp is an online platform where musicians can upload their music for the public to purchase. About once a month, the website waives its fees for 24 hours so artists can donate their revenues to different causes. The next such day will be on May 7.

In Northern Ontario, a group of local artists began organizing a fundraiser around this opportunity on the week of April 12.

Some artists will also stream live performances, while others will release new music on that day.

“We thought it would be a low-stress way to raise funds for the hospital,” said Dyble.

Dyble stresses that organizing this project is “very much a collaborative effort of local music scene networking.

“People have messaged me and said, I’d like to be involved. And then I add their artist name to the list and their Bandcamp link.”

Dyble notes that Bandcamp Day for SAH has the secondary purpose of promoting local artists. “It’s a way to promote local musicians and get their work out there.”

They also encourage other local artists to get in touch via Facebook if they are interested in participating in the event.

Sault Area Hospital Foundation is thankful for all the fundraising support it can get as COVID is taking a toll on its equipment.

According to its website, the number of “pieces of equipment that unexpectedly or urgently need to be replaced” has drastically gone up since the COVID-19 pandemic.