William Tennent grad raising money for music education

Radio 104.5 DJ Cole Selleck is hosting the second annual Rock the Troc on May 4, with proceeds benefitting Rock to the Future in Philadelphia

By Samantha Bambino

The Times

Back for seconds: On May 4, Radio 104.5 DJ and William Tennent graduate Cole Selleck is hosting his second annual Rock the Troc, a concert featuring Philadelphia-based artists at the Trocadero, with proceeds benefiting local music education. Source: Cole Selleck

Radio 104.5 host Cole Selleck may have several months to go before he ties the knot with his fiance, but he already understands how the “big day” can pass by in the blink of an eye.

One year ago, Selleck experienced a wedding of sorts. It required months of preparation, and the hours leading up to it were met with an exhilarating mixture of excitement and nerves. But rather than a bride and groom standing before loved ones at the altar, this event saw a slew of local artists playing to hundreds of music lovers.

On May 19, 2018, Selleck hosted his very first Rock the Troc, a concert at Philadelphia’s Trocadero that featured area musicians such as Shane Henderson of Valencia and June Divided, with proceeds benefiting music education through the organization Play On Philly.

Now, the Southampton resident and William Tennent grad is doing it all again. The second annual Rock the Troc, set for Saturday, May 4, is boasting an even bigger lineup, which Selleck unveiled to his social media following earlier this month.

Headlining the show is Ace Enders of The Early November, who will perform a solo set of tracks from his extensive music catalog. For Selleck, who saw the band’s final show at the Trocadero more than a decade ago, it’s a full-circle experience to have its frontman return to the venue.

Rock the Troc is welcoming back Newtown native Henderson, who will grace the audience with both Valencia favorites and songs from his solo career. Also slated to appear is Keith Goodwin of Good Old War and Days Away, Hurry, a band regularly heard on WXPN, and singer-songwriter Joshua Chase Miller.

DJ Reed Streets, the official DJ for the Philadelphia Flyers who can be heard Saturday nights on Radio 104.5, will entertain in between sets. In addition, Selleck promised a handful of surprises, including a special appearance by social media star, Aunt Terri. All of the guests, with the exception of New Jersey’s Enders, are from the Philadelphia area.

According to Selleck, a number of this year’s performers, including Good Old War and Enders, were names he wanted on the bill for 2018. But due to scheduling conflicts and a limited number of slots, it simply wasn’t possible. Thankfully, the outpouring of support and positive feedback from the inaugural Rock the Troc granted him that opportunity.

“It feels really good,” Selleck said. “I felt more at ease this year doing it again, just because there was so much already in place from last year, a lot of the contacts I had, a lot of the same team that was helping me building the show last year was there. So it gave me a little more breathing room. Last year, I was so nervous about things coming together and obviously, I still am because there’s always that expectation of it being bigger.”

But if 2018’s Rock the Troc is any indication of how this year’s event will go, it’s safe to say Selleck has nothing to worry about. Through ticket sales, approximately $3,000 were raised for Play On Philly, which provides classical music education to area children who wouldn’t otherwise have access to it. This year, proceeds will benefit Rock to the Future, a Philadelphia-based organization that offers free instruction in guitar, drums, and other instruments.

Selleck hopes to have some of the organization’s students collaborate with one of the Rock the Troc artists. Last year, a group of Play On Philly children learned several Valencia songs, which they performed on stage alongside Henderson.

New this year, artwork will be available for purchase in the lobby of the Trocadero, with all proceeds going toward Rock to the Future. Through Henderson, Selleck got in touch with artist Kristin Doll, who will have several one-of-a-kind pieces on display.

“It wasn’t something I even thought of,” Selleck said. “It was something where she approached me.”

As Selleck counts down the days until May 4, he continues to reflect on last year’s show with pride.

“There was a lot of hard work. There was a lot of anxiety,” he said of organizing his first large-scale concert. “But as soon as the day started on May 19, I saw everybody there and everybody soundchecking and everybody coming together, doing this thing where it was just an idea in my head. I saw it coming together in front of me.”

By the next morning, despite a severe case of what he called “post-concert depression,” Selleck had already sent a text to his contact at the Trocadero, asking to do it again in 2019.

“A lot of people related it to a wedding. Everybody said it’s one of those things where you do so much for it, and then the day is over before you blink an eye. You just have to take it in because it goes so fast. But it went so well,” he said. “I have no idea what will happen this year for the show, but I’m hoping that every year, we get to do it.”

Even if someone is unfamiliar with the artists in the lineup, Selleck recommends giving the show a chance — especially since it’s for a worthy cause.

“The great thing about Rock the Troc is that it’s a unique experience. You can see some of the bands that these guys are involved with, and you can see them perform at different places. But it’s very much a community show with Philadelphia, and you’re not going to see these performances in this way anywhere else,” Selleck said. “It really is a special night that I would recommend whether you know the bands or not. It’s a fast-moving thing. It never stops once it starts.” ••

If you go…

Rock the Troc will take place Saturday, May 4. Doors open at 6 p.m. (DJ Reed Streets performs), with the show starting at 6:30 p.m. The Trocadero Theatre is located at 1003 Arch St., Philadelphia. Tickets are available at thetroc.com.

Samantha Bambino can be reached at sbambino@newspapermediagroup.com