Crystal Lake blues concert to benefit McHenry County veteran program

A night of blues music featuring Roger Adler and the Blues Deluxe Band will benefit a program that provides housing and resources for McHenry County veterans.

Inspired by a fan of both Adler and TLS Veterans, also known as Transitional Living Services, the “Red, White & Blues Concert” will take place at 8 p.m. Oct. 14 in The Listening Room at Lakeside Arts Park, 401 Country Club Road, Crystal Lake. Tickets cost $18 in advance or 815-455-8000 or $20 the day of the show.

Organizers would like to see the event become annual.

“We hope over time to turn this into an all-day outdoor blues festival for vets,” said Paul Turnbaugh, who originally approached both Adler and TLS executive director Laura Franz with the idea for “Red, White & Blues.”

Turnbaugh had gone to regular blues concerts performed by Adler at The Listening Room, and Adler happened to meet Turnbaugh, of Marengo, while viewing his guitar-themed artwork at a show at the Starline Factory in Harvard.

With friends who are veterans, the two had a shared interest in TLS, which operates New Horizons, a transitional living program in Hebron, and a resource center in McHenry for veterans and their families. Money raised at the concert will go toward the agency’s employment program, Franz said.

Having lost federal grant funding, the program helps veterans find jobs, prepare for interviews and receive the support they need to keep jobs, she said, with funding going toward everything from clothes to wear to interviews to gas money.

“We’ve been trying to raise funds to keep that program going on a slightly smaller scale,” she said.

An in-demand guitarist and composer for commercials, film and television, Adler was the co-creator and music director of the multi-Emmy Award-winning television series, “Wild Chicago,” and music director for “Best of Comic Relief” on A&E. He also appeared in “Groundhog Day,” playing guitar.

He performs a seasoned blend of blues, rock and soul with his band. The concert will include an open jam opportunity.