Surf Legend Machado Hosts All-star Belly Up Benefit Concert

NewsNovember 8, 2012UTSanDiego

Surf legend hosts benefit concert with Goo Goo Dolls’ Rzeznik, Switchfoot’s Foreman

Cardiff surf legend Rob Machado will be strumming a guitar with a few of his famous musical friends on Monday, and he’s hoping several hundred friends show up to watch, for the inaugural Rob Machado Foundation Benefit Concert at the Belly Up Tavern.

The fundraiser will feature John Rzeznik of the Goo Goo Dolls, Jon Foreman of Encinitas-born Switchfoot and Jon Swift, a North County singer/songwriter. Machado, 39, will emcee, sit in on a few sessions and help raise money for his foundation, which devotes its efforts to environmental causes.

In years past, Machado said, he raised money for the foundation through beach fairs and golf tournaments, but this year he decided to try something new — “and a lot more fun” — with a concert.

After retiring from his long career as a world champion surfer, Machado took up music. He has played guitar with Jack Johnson and Pearl Jam and has toured the east and west coasts with Swift, whom he has known since they were both 10 years old, growing up together in Cardiff-by-the-Sea.

Switchfoot founder Foreman, 36, is another old friend and fellow surfer, whom Machado met 20 years ago when they grew up on the same street. “It’s been amazing watching them grow from a local band into the huge success they are today,” Machado said.

And Rzeznik — whose alt-rock band Goo Goo Dolls has sold more than 10 million albums in the past 26 years — is a “new friend,” whom Machado became acquainted with through one of his foundation board members.

“We’ve never met, but I am familiar with his music,” Machado said. “We are super stoked to have him.”

Machado said they will each perform a set, and he’ll sit in with Swift, and the free-form evening may include some musical collaborations.

“Once we have a little time to hang out, we might all get up and play a song together,” Machado said. “We’ll probably decide backstage before the show. These guys feed off the crowd so much that who knows what we’ll come up with on the spur of the moment.”

The event will include a silent auction with items such as surfboards, album gift sets, signed posters and certificates from local businesses. The money raised will go toward the foundation’s projects, the latest of which is Hydration Nation. The program installs new filtered water fountains at high schools to discourage the use of bottled water. So far, the foundation has installed new fountains at San Dieguito High School (Machado’s alma mater) and Laguna High School in Laguna Beach.