Grab your battle vest and black denim, because a smattering of the area's best punk and punk-adjacent bands are putting on an eight hour show this Saturday, August 6th from noon to 8PM. The reunion show, titled SOMAT 2022, will be held at Hopshire Farms and Brewery in Freeville, NY.
Don't bother looking up the acronym for SOMAT, either, because I already tried. "It's an inside joke..." event co-promoter and former Ithaca Free Clinic board member, Kelly White, tells me. "...it's the name of a Cornell dining hall garbage disposal unit from the 1990's."
This rare reunion event is held in memory of friend and local rock star Luke Vitarius, with proceeds benefiting the Ithaca Free Clinic. This is the second SOMAT show, after the first was held to benefit Ithaca Underground at (the now closed) The Nines bar, restaurant, and live music hotspot in 2016.
"Many of the musicians in the 2016 show met while working in the Cornell dining halls during college in the 1990's (and will know what the SOMAT is)," states White, further explaining the show's cryptic title.
She states that after Luke's passing in 2021, "The group of friends decided on having the 2022 show be a combined benefit for the Ithaca Free Clinic and also be a memorial to Luke."
Vitarius was a prolific musician in the Ithaca area, playing in several bands since his time as a Cornell student in the 1990's. As a member of the uninsured hospitality industry for 20 years, he was well known and loved by many in the community. This year there are 6 confirmed acts excited to play tribute to Luke's legacy and memory. Some are local, some are traveling from New York City, Los Angeles, and Ohio, some are reunited college acts, and some are reformed into something totally new. Whatever their story, all of these musicians and event organizers have the deep gratitude of the Ithaca Free Clinic. We are able to carry out and continue our mission of caring for the un- and under-insured because of community support from folks like you.
Though admission is free, a $10 donation is requested. There will be a representative of the Free Clinic tabling for the duration of this outdoor event (noon to 8PM), happy to answer questions and take donations. BBQ and Vegan eats will be available from Holy Smoked Catering. Sound production is being done by New Vine Records. This event is suitable for punk-rockers of all ages, so please bring the whole family!
A link to the Facebook event can be found here. Those unable to make it
in person are encouraged to donate via the Ithaca Free Clinic website.
The Ithaca Free Clinic thanks Hopshire Farms for their generosity, as they are donating $1 from every pint to the clinic as well as the proceeds of special $200 VIP tables.