By Sarah Bennett
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Wally Ingram has literally loaned his hands to scores of bigger-name rock acts, but the time has come for the affable percussionist/drummer to accept something back. Namely, David Lindley, Common Sense, the World Anthem Band and the Missiles of October coming together for a benefit concert Wednesday night at the Coach House to aid Ingram in his fight against throat and neck cancer. According to Ingram, who recently underwent surgery and will soon receive extensive chemotherapy and radiation treatment, his squamous cell cancer was detected early, and he and his doctors are hopeful for a full recovery.
I've had the pleasure of seeing Ingram and string wizard David Lindley perform live as a duo numerous times, and as unpredictable as the shows could be, the one constant was the undeniable chemistry that unfolded between the two men. Lurking behind Mr. Dave's garish polyester attire, Wally's big grin and such wonderfully silly tunes as "Meatgrinder Blues," "Tiki Torches at Twilight" and "When a Guy Gets Boobs" lays an enduring friendship and professional respect that has nourished the pair's creative process.
In addition to recording and touring with Lindley (remember the super-fine, reggae-and-world beat-influenced Twango Bango series of live shows/CDs?), the Wisconsin-bred Ingram is well-respected in rock circles, having played alongside Shawn Colvin, Sheryl Crow, Tracy Chapman, Bonnie Raitt, Timbuk 3, Eric Burdon, Taj Mahal, Crowded House and others. He's also played with each band on this benefit's bill, and Wally—who will be in attendance—hopes to sit in with each artist throughout the program. Prayers, get-well wishes and good jokes can be sent to Wally at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Wally Ingram Benefit Concert, featuring David Lindley, Common Sense, the World Anthem Band and Missiles of October, at the Coach House, 33157 Camino Capistrano, San Juan Capistrano, (949) 496-8930; www.thecoachhouse.com. Wed., 7 p.m. $25. All ages.