We all know them as the Grammy-nominated, rock 'n' roll band, BUT did you know, NEEDTOBREATHE are avid golfers also? Well on Monday, March 21st, Atlantic recording group, NEEDTOBREATHE, will host the fourth annual NEEDTOBREATHE Classic which raises money to benefit the Palmetto Medical Initiative (PMI). ESPN Music had a chance to catch up with NEEDTOBREATHE frontman, Bear Rinehart, who gave us the lowdown on the star-studded golf outing.
While all the band members play golf to a varying degree, Bear Rinehart gave credit where credit was due, naming bass player Seth Bolt as the best of the four. Rinehart telling ESPN Music, “Seth played in high school, so he definitely knows what he’s doing. He can be beat though, but not often.” Alongside the rocker foursome, this year's roster includes NBA legend Rick Barry, PGA player Russell Henley, NFL star receiver Adam Humphries, multi-platinum rock band Switchfoot, singer-songwriter Mat Kearney, and alt-rock group American Authors, just to name a few.
The golf portion of the day is all fun and games but more importantly, the NEEDTOBREATHE Classic brings together the world of music and sports for a truly special charity that is near and dear to the band’s hearts. “The Palmetto Medical Initiative is important to me, because I've seen how effective they are at meeting the need for medical care in a sustainable way.” Rinehart continues, “We've actually been to Africa with them on numerous trips, and seen how it works first hand.” In 2015 alone, the band raised over $250,000 for PMI and was able to fund the organization’s first clinic in Nicaragua in its’ entirety.
With plans to continue hosting the NEEDTOBREATHE Classic for years to come, Rinehart described the event as “one of the best parts of the year for us.” With so many incredible moments year to year, there’s one in particular that really stood out for the singer/guitarist: “During the live auction at the first tournament, we raised around $60,000 and that blew us all away. It's much more professional now, but we had stayed up the night before to make up the items.” Rinehart went on to say, “We weren't expecting the response to be so great. I also love having the professional athletes here. I'm definitely one of the musicians that wants to be an athlete.”
Lucky for us, Rinehart has no plans to become a professional athlete anytime soon. NEEDTOBREATHE is hard at work recording their sixth studio album which is expected to be released late 2016. “Can't say much about it yet, but we can't wait to get out there and play it for people!,” said Rinehart.
Now, it wouldn’t be a NEEDTOBREATHE Golf tournament without some music, right?! Rinehart tells ESPN Music, “There’s a concert the night of the tournament that we’ll have a lot of fun with. It's an intimate setting, and a lot of our friends in the music world come down to play and support.”
The NEEDTOBREATHE Classic takes place at the Daniel Island Country Club in South Carolina. For those of you who can’t make it to the tournament and still want to help support NEEDTOBREATHE in their mission to raise money to benefit PMI, please visit www.commonwealthcares.org.