In 2014 Alex Holmes was a 26-year-old musician who had just returned home to Falmouth after living in western Massachusetts, Boston and Oakland, California, when his life was tragically cut short in a car accident. On Saturday, June 15 from 5 to 8 PM, there will be a memorial concert celebrating his life at Grumpy’s Pub in Falmouth.
The Paradise Rock Band will be performing live with special guests Mckenna Carlson and Maurice Soque. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Alex Holmes Memorial Scholarship and Studio at The Cultural Center of Cape Cod. The studio is available for Cape teens and young adults to create music free of charge.
According to Alex’s family and friends, he didn’t just love to sing and play guitar; he also put a lot of time and energy into helping other local musicians. Throughout his high school years he organized and promoted local, all-ages concerts. “Remember what it was like,” he posted on his Facebook page a month before his passing. “We all had someone to inspire us. I want to do something about this. I would love to have a hand in inspiring people. It’s a reason to do awesome work.”
Alex’s mother described him as a humble soul who was very spiritual and loved being outdoors.
Paradise Rock is a band that’s been performing original music and classic rock covers locally for more than 30 years. The band is a rarity, as it has been around long enough to have two generations of members. Tomorrow it will be joined by founder and frontman Craigo Carlson’s daughter, Mckenna Carlson. While Craigo didn’t know Alex personally, he said he got to know him through his family and friends sharing memories with him. “He was well loved,” Craigo said, “He was an uplifting presence.”
He said his daughter was influenced positively by Alex’s legacy when she was able to use the Alex Holmes Memorial Studio to record a five-song demo that helped her gain acceptance to Berklee School of Music.
Mckenna will be opening the show, performing three of her original songs and then joining the band. Saxophonist Maurice Soque, a previous recipient of the Alex Holmes Memorial Scholarship, will also be joining the band. “We’re gonna have a lot of people up on stage,” Craigo said. “It’s gonna be quite a jam. Playing with my daughter is awesome. She is a great vocalist with spot-on harmonies and she’ll be playing percussion with the band.”
While Alex is missed dearly by his friends and family, his legacy continues to touch the lives of local musicians through the scholarship and studio that bear his name, and that is a reason to celebrate.
The Alex Holmes Memorial Concert is open to all ages. There will be food available for purchase from The Barking Claw. Tickets are $15.