Musicians, Wilson to honor Bill Myers

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A night to honor local music legend Bill Myers is in the works, but organizers are seeking sponsors to make the event spectacular.

“Wilson is lucky to have so many people we can be proud of,and one of them is Bill Myers,” said Steve Williams. “He is such a great guy with many accolades, but one of his biggest is his legacy of pioneering good music in Wilson.”

Williams and others have come together to honor Myers with “Big Man, Big Band, Big Nite: A Musical Tribute to Bill Myers” featuring the Moonlight Swing Band. The event will kick off with a cocktail reception for sponsors at Bill’s Grill on Nash on Sept. 20 with a 90-minute show by the 17-piece band at the Boykin Center.

Tickets will be $20 each, but Williams said organizers are seeking sponsorships of $200 — which include two tickets to the performance — to ensure a fun night and a substantial donation to the Oliver Nestus Freeman Round House and African-American Museum.

“If you grew up with music in Wilson like I did, you knew Bill Myers,” Williams said. “I was in the first integrated class at Fike, and I saw how music transcended the division and brought people together. I don’t think that Wilson or the African American community has ever had a more eloquent, wonderful person than Bill who has reached out to everybody through his music.”

Donations of $200 can be made out to The Moonlight Swing Band, Bill Myers Event and mailed to Moonlight Swing Band, in care of Steve Williams, P.O. Box 8102, Wilson NC 27893. As the event nears, more information will be released about purchasing tickets.

“In as much as we’re determined to let Bill have an opportunity to be recognized and enjoy a night without being made to perform, we will invite him up to play if he would like,” Williams said.