On March 23, 2018, JOHNNY “CHOPS” RICHARDSON will release his sophomore album, JOHNNY CHOPS AND THE RAZORS (pre-order now via Pledge Music). Currently on-tour as a member of the Randy Rogers Band (his "day job"), Johnny's been filling the gaps in the schedule by releasing new singles and videos, while looking ahead to a busy year on the road. THE ROCK FATHER™ Magazine recently caught up with Johnny to get an overview of where he's been and where he's headed, along with an early listen to some new songs from JOHNNY CHOPS AND THE RAZORS!
Since 2014, The Rock Father™ Santa Holiday Toy Delivery Program has been something that I've looked forward to every year. It's an opportunity to give back to my community through a hyper-local, extremely focused effort to provide holiday gifts for the children of families that could use a hand. For our fourth annual run, I changed things up a little bit - reacting to a sub-par effort in 2016 (donations were way down) by starting preparations earlier. The ultimate goal is simple: to provide toys to as many local children and families as possible, as served by our local township. While there's plenty of bigger organizations that do great work, I wanted our families' efforts to have an impact on our immediate community - friends and neighbors that we may not really know, but people we may be crossing paths with every day. For Avon Township, which serves the villages of Round Lake, Round Lake Beach, Round Lake Park, Round Lake Heights Grayslake, Hainesville & Third Lake, Illinois, a recent estimate was that 4,000 people were being served by Avon Cares Food Pantry each month. I have no idea how many children are in that number, but if I could help all of them, I would. This year, we provided gifts for 72 of them.
This holiday season, (RED) and Amazon are teaming-up for (SHOPATHON)RED – a special shopping experience offering people a selection of exclusive (RED) products that raise money for the Global Fund to fight AIDS in Africa. From now through the end of December, shoppers can choose from more than 150 (RED) products including fashion, cosmetics, kitchen goods, tech and more at Amazon.com/RED or via the Amazon App. On December 1st, World AIDS Day, Amazon will highlight (RED), the Global Fund, and (RED) products to bring awareness to the fight, and throughout the campaign special video content from (RED) celebrity supporters will encourage people to shop (RED) and save lives this holiday season.
I'm all about recognizing those that are doing good, and while I work on my own, hyper-local Rock Father Santa Holiday Toy Delivery Program during the Holiday season, it's always great to see what the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program is accomplishing nationwide. Sadly, I've heard that their donations have been light the past few years (something I ran into here last year), but this year they're getting a big boost, and it comes from the good folks at Hasbro. For 2017, Hasbro has unveiled a new holiday matching campaign that will bring joy to even more children in need. For every new, unwrapped toy or game donated by individuals to any Toys for Tots local campaign through the 2017 holiday season, Hasbro will also donate a new toy or game as part of its BE FEARLESS BE KIND philanthropic initiative, up to one million gifts!
The holiday season is an important time here at Rock Father HQ. I often write about holiday traditions, activities and of course, my annual Holiday Wish Guide™. For many families, their wish is simple - to have a roof over their heads and food on the table. The Salvation Army Chicago can help with that - serving communities in Chicago, Northern Illinois, and Lake County, Indiana by providing emergency financial assistance, grocery assistance through local food pantries; educational and recreational programs for children, adults and seniors; in addition to leadership training and character development programs for youth. One thing we make very clear to our daughters is that the season is one of giving, and whenever we see the familiar Red Kettle, The Rock Daughters™ drop some coins and often get a chance to ring the bell.
They say that "friendship is magic," and with that in mind, Hasbro - makers of MY LITTLE PONY - celebrated International Friendship day by unveiling what they're calling their first "brand anthem" for MY LITTLE PONY, titled ‘Through the Eyes of a Friend.’ It's social experiment that invited parents to hear how their child was doing in school; and surprised them with a report card from their child’s best friend. Check out that video below, but keep scrolling as there's much more...