"At our CORE we are for
people making a difference
in our world."

COREfor… To Present Free Concert Tonight

The Morning News - Friday, September 15, 2000
By Bettina Lehovec

Four area musicians who have joined forces to raise money for cancer research under the name COREfor... will give a free concert at the Jones Center for Families in Springdale tonight.

The concert, which starts at 6 p.m. on the Jones Center lawn, will feature music from the group's forthcoming CD, "Of Things To Come." The CD is a tribute to the memory of Ryan Turner, then 7 years old, who died from leukemia in 1997. Twenty-five percent of CD proceeds will go toward cancer research.

The group's music is largely instrumental, a blend of smooth jazz, rhythm and blues, gospel and pop. Ryan's story is told through the feel of the music rather than through words, said Ryan's father, Shaun Turner, who plays saxophone with the group.

"The message has been the motivation for the music," Turner said. Keyboardist Russell Dorch wrote most of the songs, with input from bass player Blake Fougerousse, drummer Darren Novotny and Turner. The four met making music in their church. They have been playing together for almost three years but have called themselves COREfor...... for only the last six months.

The group formed to spread a message of faith and inspiration, Turner said. "We wanted to embrace the belief that ordinary people can impact the lives of others."

The faith Ryan showed throughout his illness inspired everyone who met him, Turner said. The work Turner and COREfor... have done since then continues to raise awareness and funds for cancer research.

COREfor... played at an event given for volunteers who worked on the Bella Vista Cancer Challenge in June. Organizers of the Cancer Challenge have reserved 1,500 copies of "Of Things to Come" to give to staff and volunteers next year, Turner said.

COREfor... will donate 25 percent of all CD sales to the Ryan Turner Endowment at the Stanford University School of Medicine, where Ryan was treated. The school is a member of the Pediatrics Oncology Group, which shares data, research and treatment with hospitals around the country. In this way, Turner said, money raised from the CD will benefit children nationwide.

Turner said three-quarters of the money donated to the endowment will be used for pure research. The remaining money will go to the recreation therapy department at the children's hospital to fund such things as computer hook-ups, programs and games for critically ill children.

The CD project has generated attention nationwide, Turner said. Nationally acclaimed cello player Cameron Stone laid down a sound track for the CD. Arnold Schwarzenegger, one of Ryan's heroes, is mentioned in the liner notes. A national Web site Turner created, ryanturner.org, has captured interest around the world.

"I'm very optimistic that this project is going to reach a lot of people outside Northwest Arkansas," Turner said. He hopes to raise $50,000 for cancer research.

COREfor... musicians have been making music individually for years. Dorch, whom Turner called "the creative genius" of the group, has played keyboards since he was 2. A prolific composer who doesn't read music, Dorch works as a music minister at Fellowship Bible Church in Lowell.

Darren Novotny is vice president of Springdale Acoustics and head of his own recording studio, where the CD is being produced. He has played drums with local jazz groups since the early 1980s.

Blake Fougerousse played steel guitar professionally for 22 years before changing careers to computer operations. He has played at clubs and in music shows in Eureka Springs and Hot Springs, among other places

Turner played saxophone in high school and college. He picked the instrument up again three years ago, following Ryan's death.

Three other musicians play with COREfor.... David Erwin plays keyboard and accordion, Mike Lovelady plays percussion, drums and keyboard and Paul Hughes plays guitar.

The diversity of the musicians enhances COREfor...'s appeal, Turner said. "We're all over the board ... Every song has something different to offer."

Tonight's concert is one of a series of outdoor summer concerts offered by the Jones Center. Families are invited to bring blankets, lawn chairs and picnic suppers to the event. In case of rain, the concert will move indoors.

For more information about COREfor... or to order CDs, contact the group at www.corefor.com.

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