Posts Tagged ‘Aaron Reed’

The Business Monthly

By Susan Kim, Staff Writer

MAY 4, 2015


A Columbia family is honoring the memory of their son and brother by introducing music to kids who don’t have the resources to purchase an instrument or take lessons.

In his short career, Aaron Reed was a founding member of two bands, The Runways (2006–2010) and New World Commotion (2010–2014). While spending time in Ireland, he also recorded a solo album.

A graduate of Hammond High School, Reed also found great joy in leading others to pick up a musical instrument.

Tragically, he died suddenly in February 2014 in Buffalo, N.Y., when he was 21. His family, still grieving the loss, has started a foundation through which they hope to carry forth his passion for getting people to play music.

The Pick Me Up Foundation, named for the last song he composed, has the mission of providing musical instruments, equipment and lessons to under-resourced kids.

His parents, who live in Kings Contrivance, along with his sister Julia, a University of Maryland student, have been collecting used musical instruments and, by working with nonprofit partners, giving them to kids who are entering the world of music.

The effort is even more poignant given that, after driving his son’s belongings back from Buffalo, Brian Reed parked his loaded van in his driveway overnight. Sometime during the night, someone broke into the vehicle and stole Aaron’s prized electric guitar — a Fender Stratocaster — along with his amp, and other equipment worth more than $10,000.

First, Hear the Music

Brian Reed said the foundation is about more than collecting instruments and funds; it’s about keeping his son’s love of music alive. Aaron Reed’s songs are posted on the foundation’s web site at

“We decided to start the foundation because Aaron loved playing music and getting other people turned onto music, especially in his own age group,” said Reed. “When he was in high school, he bought his own recording equipment. He turned the downstairs into a recording studio. He loved recording the music of others, and it made him genuinely happy to see how excited they were when they heard their music on a CD. We just thought a good way to honor him would be to come up with a foundation that would help kids that don’t have access to musical instruments or lessons or things like that.”

Now, the foundation is raising money to repair and recondition the collected instruments. “We now have more than 250 instruments. On average, it costs $50 to recondition each instrument before it can be placed in a kid’s hand,” explained Reed. “That’s $12,500.”

To help raise that money, Reed — a professor and the chair of chemical, biochemical and environmental engineering at University of Maryland, Baltimore County — will be bike riding this July from Columbia, taking off from the restaurant Nottingham’s, to Buffalo, a journey of some 400 miles.

And that’s where the business community can participate, Reed said. “We are doing two things to raise money: We are asking people one-on-one, and we are also having a group challenge that people can take into their workplaces, their churches, neighborhoods and other groups.”

Adding a celebrity flair, the Goo Goo Dolls rock band donated a signed guitar that the foundation will raffle off to those who sponsor the ride. Reed is calling the trip “Ride for Music.”

Chamber Getting the Word Out

When Reed first started the instrument drive, he cast a wide net, he said. “I was figuring out ways to get the word out.”

He joined the Howard County Chamber of Commerce and began networking with businesses, and they, in turn, have begun informing other businesses about Pick Me Up’s mission.

“[The Chamber has] been very supportive,” said Reed. “They posted information on their web site about the instrument drive and will post details about the bike ride as well. The Chamber is one of the best ways of getting local companies involved on a more continual basis.”

Local Businesses Chipping In

Already, local businesspeople are helping to support the Pick Me Up Foundation. Reed is working with Jim Gross, owner of Kidz In Training, who also coaches track at Hammond High School, as his trainer for his long bike ride. Scott Ewart, who runs ScottE Software, is assisting Pick Me Up Foundation with web site design as well as Facebook and Twitter updates. When Reed is on the ride, Ewart will help locate him and send updates to his supporters via social media.

“We are not just about soliciting funds,” said Reed. “What really honors Aaron’s spirit of generosity is getting that instrument in a kid’s hand. That’s the outcome we want.”

Reed is definitely looking for corporate sponsors, but more than that, he’d like his son’s music to be heard. “I want to get Aaron’s music out there and have it make an impact. Just think if his music was listened to by thousands of people.”

– See original article at:

Aaron Reed TPMUF

There has been an update to the fundraising event on February 21st: Almost a 100 confirmed guest! Corner Stable has agreed to actually allow the fundraiser to be in the entire restaurant, so feel free to bring your families for dinner and 15% of your check will go to the Pick me up foundation !

Learn more about the event here:

You can register for the event on Totally HoCo here:


Aaron Reed

Hosted by Shelby Dodson

In loving memory of Aaron Reed and the amazing friend he was to everybody he met, we would like to start a new tradition of an event to help raise money and awareness to his parents charity: The Pick Me Up Foundation

On Saturday, February 21st at 5:00pm Corner Stable in Columbia has graciously agreed to donate 15% of your checks directly to The Pick me up Foundation. We will also have a table where you can donate independently.

The Pick Me Up Foundation hopes to spread the dream that Aaron lived. To provide those with limited access and resources to get the tools they need to compose music. The mission is to help underprivileged individuals live their dreams of becoming a musician.
For more info:

For those who don’t already know, February 19th is Aarons Birthday so this is a great opportunity to celebrate what a wonderful friend, son, brother, cousin, and person he was.

Please help spread the word to all of your friends, the more the merrier, and it would be truly appreciated.

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From WBAL News Radio 1090 on November 20th

Anne Kramer

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A Howard County father is keeping his son’s memory alive through music.

Aaron Reed died suddenly back in January while in New York. He was 21.

He loved music. His father Brian says the best way to keep his son’s generous spirit alive was to start the foundation to try and help less fortunate kids have the chance to play musical instruments.

Aaron’s family suffered a double loss the day he died.

After coming back home with his prized instruments, the family’s van was broken into and the instruments stolen. Howard County Police never found the instruments. There have been no arrests.

Brian Reed says all the donated instruments will be reconditioned and given to children who can not afford to rent or buy an instrument.

The instrument drive takes place Saturday November 22nd at Kings Contrivance Village Center in Columbia from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The Pick Me Up Foundation is working with Music & Arts which is offering drop-off locations in Ellicott City, Arundel Mills, and Laurel for instruments as well.

The Foundation will continue to collect used instruments throughout the year.

You can read the original article from WBAL here:

From ABC2News on November 19th

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Aaron Reed passed away suddenly in January