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Well-wishers donate $10,000 to help ‘Shine’

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Well-wishers yesterday donated some $10,000 to help popular musician Wendell ‘Shine' Hayward to pay off rental arrears and keep his business open.

Mr Hayward has until 5pm this Friday to produce $61,312 to avoid being turfed out of the Hamilton home of his “House of Music” bar.

The flood of donations started when a Bermudian hotel worker gave $10 and triggered an instant radio telethon to raise funds to help Mr Hayward.

What started as a kind gesture by well-known talk-show caller Leroy Riley, by the end of the day had turned into the “Shine Give-a-thon” hosted by Sherri Simmons on Magic 102.7FM Radio.

And after extending her show until 6pm, the outpouring of support for the well-loved saxophonist extended to $10,000 in cash and cheques to go toward Mr Hayward's rental arrears.

Ms Simmons, who opens her weekday talk-show at 11am with a look at the day's headlines, read the story on the Supreme Court ruling yesterday that gave Mr Hayward until Friday to produce the outstanding rent owed.

When contacted, he was overwhelmed by the response.

“I was at the Salvation Army doing a sound check for a funeral when a man came by to talk to me about the story in the newspaper,” Mr Hayward said.

“He told me something was going on Sherri's show. When I found out I was shocked, surprised and touched.

“People reminded me of things I have done for them that I didn't even remember and that got me a bit emotional. I'm deeply touched, words can't explain it.”

Asked if the continued support will help offset his debt and possibly save his business, he was less optimistic but still upbeat.

“Everything helps but at the end of the day there has been an order by the Supreme Court, so in order for me to hang on to the lease I have terms to settle by Friday.”

Asked if a down payment would delay termination of his five-year lease he said explained “what's happening with the club is just one aspect” of his financial situation.

“The club has other issues with suppliers, but I believe all things are possible.

“I feel the club is worth saving and I feel with support saving it is possible if people believe in the concept of live entertainment for a mature audience.

“When Bermudians pull together then we can do it,” he said.

“A lot of prayers have gone out and I've left everything in God's hands because I'm helpless right now.

“I guess with any business today the recession is a factor but at the same time Bermudians are known to come through in the end.

“I remember when Hubies bar was closing. Based on the turnout for that last night you wondered why it was closing with all the people there that night. But it was not reflective of what was the norm,” he said.

“I'm holding on in faith, I'm optimistic and I'm greatly moved.”

Meanwhile, two friends have stepped up efforts to stage a benefit concert on November 11 at Somerset Cricket Club to raise funds.

Carol Lynn Smith and Dexter Flood are hoping a long line-up of local artists will step up in support of a fellow musician.

Ms Smith, a long-time follower of live music in Bermuda since the dinner and show days in Bermuda's hotels years ago said they would give their support.

“When Shine's House of Music opened I was there, so elated to have the old days back,” she said.

“The news came as a big shock and I was upset because Shine Hayward is a renowned musician who has done so much for Bermuda.

“We both came to an agreement that live music cannot fail nor be stamped out this way and that we have to help in any way we can. So we came together to solicit help for people to donate their talent and time to Shine's cause.

“I telephoned Sherri J to inform her of our intentions. Our phones rang off the hook and Sherri's show became pledge office instantly.”

Artists scheduled to perform include Gina Davis, Toni Robinson, Shawnette Somner, Sybil Barrington and several others.

“CedarBridge Academy students will be giving us a performance, violinist Tiffany Fox, and Peggy Burns will be on hand to sell her heritage music books ‘Music on the Rocks'. She plans to donate part proceeds to Shine,” said Ms Smith.

“Somerset Cricket Club has donated their field for this event and I want to thank them as well. The show will be on November 11 from 1pm to 4pm.

“We are hosting the event in the day time as this is a fully volunteer-based production. However, should a sound company wish to donate lighting for such a production to be held in the dark we can gladly discuss this with SCC and volunteers to make this an evening event.

“Captain's Lounge has donated their venue so we are working on a function to be held at that location also.”

A meeting will be held tomorrow to discuss further plans to put the show together on short notice.

For more information call 236-9318, 292-5606 or 334-7380.

A spokesman for landlord Benjamin Rego, Jr, said: “There are additional sums which are owed over and above this which will need to be subsequently cleared.

“We would like to point out that the landlord has been accommodating in this matter, trying to facilitate payment terms with Mr Hayward who has been in arrears for over a year.”

Magic 102.7 FM Radio host Sherri Simmons receives a cash donation from Suzette Butterfield Gowrie, during her instant radio telethon to help raise funds to save Shine Hayward's Club. (Photo by Akil Simmons)
Carol Smith and Fudge are holding a fundraising concert to help save Shine Hayward's Club. (Photo by Akil Simmons)

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Published October 16, 2013 at 9:00 am (Updated October 16, 2013 at 1:28 am)

Well-wishers donate $10,000 to help ‘Shine’

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