From Rikki Dee Hall:
A good friend and great guitar player has just passed. God bless Randy Witte and our condolences to the Witte family. The Ultimate Big Band just added one of the best to their line-up. Going to miss you, Dude. We’ll meet again.
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Sometimes bad things happen to good people. That was very much the case one January night when Leighton Peterson, half of Denver’s Safe Boating is No Accident was the victim of a house fire. He and his roommate lost pretty much everything. But both of them (and Peterson’s dog) are fine and safe, and due to a gofundme page, you can help them repurchase the things that can be replaced.
“I was hanging out in my room working on new Safe Boating songs when I noticed the smell of fabric burning,” Peterson says. “I got up and starting looking to try to find the source. It was then that I noticed our entire back patio was on fire.”
Within minutes the fire spread from the patio to the kitchen and the rest of the house. Peterson was able to get out with his pup, but “almost everything was [burned] within a few minutes, before the fire department arrived.”
All of the band’s physical merchandise, which Peterson kept in the house, was destroyed. Thankfully, he keeps the band’s main guitar and amplifiers at their rehearsal space, but a few of his other guitars are badly damaged. He hopes his vintage 1961 Silvertone can be salvaged. It was, unfortunately, a little worse for his roommate.
“He lost his home and all of his possessions just like I did, but it’s his house,” Peterson says. “He owned it. He grew up there … I will do anything I can to help him out.”
There is a way to help both of them out. Wednesday, a close friend set up a gofundme page, and it quickly spread through the social media sphere of Denver musicians and fans. In just one day $2,350 has been raised to help the two guys.
If you would like to donate, you can visit the page here. Since Peterson is a local musician, we recommend buying some of his music as well. You can do so here and listen to all Bonus Features (which was one of our favorite Colorado albums this year).
“I really don’t have anything but gratitude in my heart for my wonderful family, friends, community, and kindhearted strangers that have shown us so much generosity in the last few days,” he says. “Its completely overwhelming and has made me a better person.”
By Isa Jones