You may not recognize his name or face, but if you've been to Cat's Cradle in the last decade, odds are you've heard the work of Andy Young. Cutting his teeth in the early eighties with his brother Darrell's beach band, Andy has spent virtually his entire adult life as a sound engineer. He was touring with the Squirrel Nut Zippers when he began doing sound at the Cradle in 2007, going full-time when he retired from the road in 2010. He became the venue's technical director soon after. But earlier this year, the celebrated sound engineer was sidelined by a serious injury. This weekend, a bevy of local bands are stepping in to help him out.
"I remember being terrified of that stage and Andy being so patient and kind when I was an insufferable kid that had no idea what I was doing," recalls Rachel Hirsh of BRUXES. "He worked at the first Girls Rock NC showcase this summer and still had that same patience and kindness, even with about eighty little campers running around and yelling."
Boone's Rainbow Kitten Surprise convinced Young to get back on the road with them last year, and he did eighty dates with the band before breaking his hip in Minneapolis in April.
"I was shadow-dancing with Prince when he made a couple really good moves, and I couldn't keep up," he jokes. The resulting hip replacement surgery left him with six figures worth of medical bills and kept him from work partway into June. Though he now plans on staying off the road for good, he's kept a positive outlook on the experience.
Beginning at 3 p.m. on Sunday, seventeen acts are split between the main room—which Young will be mixing—and the back room, including BRUXES, The Old Ceremony, Happy Abandon, John Howie Jr., Jon Shain with FJ Ventre, and Loamlands' Kym Register. Admission is free, with donations to Young's medical bills encouraged. —Spencer Griffith