A Benefit for Chris Badger
A colossal night of metal in remembrance of an unforgettable friend to many people, the Benefit for Chris Badger, like the man himself, will not be forgotten.
The lineup for this show gathered together bands, band mates and friends more so than any show I've seen, like a reunion from bad ass shows past. I've said it many times before but it's gotta be said again, Northern Colorado is absolutely fortunate to have the best bands, and the best fans that there are in the metal scene today.
First onstage was Deadless, which we unfortunately missed, but heard nothing but very great things about. We will not miss them next time, should there be a next time.
Powering onstage next was the always entertaining, make you headbang band, Mojo Kamikaze. A great band to start the night off, Mojo gives you that kick in the ass that gets you singing along and moving around. Drummer Jeff Olson proves over and over again that he is the fucking man, Mojo being the 2nd band he played with tonight, as he had already played with Deadless earlier in the evening. Mojo's got skills.
SKINNED. I am fucking blown away by the sheer insanity, brutality and mastery that is and always has been... Skinned. No matter who is in this band, they will always be one of the most top knotch, fucking raw and intense bands I've ever seen. I've been a die hard fan of Skinned for over 15 years, and in this time, have never had a moment when I questioned an album, song, or even one single verse they've put out. This IS quintessential Colorado Death Metal.
Immortal Dominion! Okay... so I didn't get out much there for a while, and this is the first ID show I've seen since the lineup change putting Brian Villers on lead vocals, and Louie Micciullo on lead guitar. What the hell was I worried about? Brian is absolutely spectacular up front, and Louie has a stage presence like none other. Being such a longtime fan of Immortal Dominion I have to admit I was kinda freaked out about the change, but this night put all that away as I watched one of the best bands I've ever known rock the metal socks off of every person in the building. With John Colucco on bass and Casey Glass on drums, these guys are still the northern Colorado epitome of heavy metal.
Ending the night with a bang, were Loveland's own resident rock stars, Arcanium. With their newest member Charley Huwig (another local favorite) on drums, the band has taken it up a notch with yet another very talented addition to the already outstanding group of artists. Playing all the fan favorites, and even some Marilyn Manson, Arcanium again gave their fans a reason to come out and kick it, showing much love to the departed and beloved friend of the band, Chris Badger.
Little will be forgotten about friendships past, when you are surrounded by such loving friends and family, as we here in Colorado are so lucky to share in our music scene. This night was to celebrate the life of a dear friend, family member and fan who touched the lives of many that knew him, as a close friend or even just an acquaintance. Rest In Peace, Chris Badger.
Keep your horns up high,
Christopher Arthur Badger
Born Aug. 26, 1958
Died Feb. 10, 2012
in Silver Leaf Park
Chris Badger, known as "Badger" or "The Badge" to his loving family of friends, lived his short but adventure-filled life to the fullest. He loved the outdoors and nature, taking walks around town, cooking his famous Badger Stew, camping, gardening to grow the hottest peppers, children of all ages, his companion, Lori, and music. Especially local music. More specifically, that of his band of brothers in Deadless and later Mojo Kamikaze.
Sadly, Badger had lost contact with his biological family decades ago. He had tried to re-unite with many of his brothers and sisters in the years before his death. He was successful in meeting with his father Donald in the mid 2000's and tried to maintain contact with little to no success. [:(]
But Badger already had a family; his friends. Chris Badger easily made friends wherever he went. He was a people person, and could make anyone crack-up with his boisterously contagious now INFAMOUS laugh. He loved to have a good time and though he did occasionally like to spend time alone, he craved the comfort and attention provided to him by others. He lived a very communal lifestyle, and no one's lighter was ever safe around The Badge. At the same time, he would give you the shirt off of his back, unless of course you'd loaned it to him years ago and suddenly wanted it back...
It would seem now that perhaps Badger always carried more than just a backpack full of clean clothes, oatmeal and ramen noodles with him. Perhaps he also carried an unbearable weight of guilt and sadness over past mistakes, though he had already paid his dues. In the early hours of February 10, 2012, Chris Badger chose to end his life with the help of a rope and a tree branch, and possessed enough determination to keep his knees bent and feet off of the ground until he passed out, when all he had to do was simply stand up.
In his final weeks, he gave many of his loved ones some of the more noticeable signs of suicidal ideation. Unfortunately, those closest to him would never believe in a million years that someone who was as vibrant and happy as Badger could be capable of ending his own life, so the signs and warnings went unheeded.
If you or anyone you know experience thoughts of suicide, please never be afraid to reach out to those closest to you. All you have to do is talk. You might be surprised to learn that many others feel the same way and you are not alone. The feelings of awkwardness, shame and fear that you may experience will be replaced by hope, encouragement and love, as you realize that you ARE loved and needed, you ARE valued and appreciated, and the people who love you would be broken if you ever left them.
We love you always, Badge!!
Submitted and writen by Sandra Marie Tracey