“A Song for MS” is a facebook site dedicated to bringing awareness to people with Multiple Sclerosis. It was started by Mark Alaniz who lives with his beloved, Diane who has Multiple Sclerosis. After Mark did the ALS ice bucket challenge he came up with an idea to begin “A Song For MS” to spread awareness of MS to others. The site on facebook asks for musicians to post a video of their music and then to challenge other musicians to do the same.
Well, the site has gone viral, we are getting videos from around the world from all of Mark’s Cigar Box Guitar friends who are keeping the challenge going. Come to the site and go back in time and listen to a unique group of musicians that are posting their videos.
Mark and Diane have been together for over 22 years, and when Diane was first diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis it was Mark who took care of her when she was bedridden for four months. He came home every day after working long hours as a landscaper, and brought up her dinner and took care of her. He became a caregiver and knew the challenges of helping someone who had MS. That was when he came up with the idea, after taking the ALS ice bath challenge, to start the site “A Song for MS” on facebook.
If you want to continue listening to some of Mark’s music, go to cigar box nation.com and look for “Downtown Vinnie” aka Mark. Or go to Utube and look up Downtown Vinnie, he has over 2000 videos downloaded for you to spend hours listening to his cigar box guitar songs, he also plays cigar box mandolin, cigar box banjos, two string, three string, diddley bows (one string cigar box guitars). He uses his looper devices to lay down one track of let’s say cigar box guitar, then he changes instruments and lays down another track over that with his other instruments. Then he adds drums and other percussion instruments. This produces a full band sound but with only one player.
If you would like to attend another brainstorm of Mark’s the Cigar Box Guitar Fest NW held every year, the first Saturday in June, at the Saturday Market in Eugene Oregon come down to hear some of the finest Cigar Box Guitar Players in the nation. The whole day is set aside for Mark the ringleader showcasing cigar box guitar players from around the state and some coming from other states.
A writer who just published three novels in her paperback book called "The Eve Chronicles". The first book is called"From the Waters of Coyote Springs" the second, "Felix and Eve" and the third is "The Arrangement". All three are available separately in ebook format.I grew up in Wisconsin, then moved out west to Oregon in the early eighties, I worked as a forester all over Oregon and in some of the most remote areas of the Wallowa Mountains near the notrious Hells Canyon around the Snake River in eastern Oregon. The book begins there taken from out of my journals. Eve is looking for her place in the world."Felix and Eve" takes place in the coastal town of Gold Beach, which is known for astounding sunsets. Eve is hired as a live-in caregiver to Felix, a cantankerous man who sees no reason why she is there. They develop a close relationship that turns the summer into a learning experience for each of the."The Arrangement" is about Eve, as a retired baby boomer who finally settles in the eclectic town of Eugene. Eve owns property on the mystical Moon Mountain. Vinnie her long time friend, lives in a yurt in her back yard. Every year she gets a letter with a skeleton key in it, and she travels to Catalina Island to spend the summer with a former lover. Vinnie stays behind to caretake her extensive gardens. He is in love with Eve but remains silent.After my forestry days were done, I returned to my former social service career and worked 20 years with people with disabilities. Ironically I had to retire due to symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis.I found my journals from the eighties in the back of my closet and wrote three fictionalized memoirs. Having to retire due to MS was one of the best things that has happened to me. I retired early and was able to be the author I had always dreamed of.