For the Common Good
CHRIS “OZ” FERRARA AND HIS BAND “THE COMMON GOOD” ARE MUSIC WITH A POSITIVE MOVEMENT
Nashville since 2013.
Ask a recording artist what the driving force behind making their music is, and “for the common good” is hardly the standard answer. But for this Boston-area native, there’s no other way.
Chris “OZ” Ferrara grew up playing music. He played in a band during college, and after graduation continued to play around Boston while working as a shipping coordinator for a fashion company. Shortly after, he realized he could make a living playing songs, and joined artist Joe Bachman on the road as his guitar player and right-hand man. The duo eventually formed a cover band called The Tailgaters and were hired by the media outlet The Chive as their go-to party band, landing gigs like playing a party for Bill Murray and an aircraft carrier returning from deployment.
But it was a night in late 2016 that permanently set his mission in motion. It was right after the tragic fires in Gatlinburg, and Chris had discovered that two people fairly close to him lost homes in the blaze. Arriving in Chicago one night for a show opening for Sister Hazel, he realized the shipment of merchandise he’d been sent had been damaged, leaving it neither returnable nor sellable. He decided to give it away each night of the show, and threw items out to the audience, saying that if they wanted to throw money on the stage, he would donate all of it to charity. He raised $2,500, enough to hand each family a check to help rebuild. His mission immediately became clear.
He shares the story of returning to his car after a charity event in St. Louis to find his stereo and guitar had been stolen. Though it could have been devastating, his overwhelming feeling was still one of positivity about the event, which had raised $40,000 that night. ”It was in that moment where I was just like, ‘I really need to start putting so much more effort behind this,’” he says.
Chris continues to highlight positivity and community in a variety of ways through his artist career. “I can do flash charity drives or I’m gonna bring up somebody and spotlight them onstage and give them that moment,” he says. He also donates the first week of profits from his single releases to a particular charity of his choosing. For his first single, he highlighted the local Denis Leary Firefighters Foundation in honor of his brother, who is a firefighter.
“The people that are doing this for the betterment of those around them are the people who deserve to get spotlighted,” he says. “Those are the people who deserve to have a light shine on them because they’re letting their light shine in the world. So why not showcase them, and I would love to be the person who does that.”
Connect with Chris and listen to music on his website: http://www.iamchrisferrara.com