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Driveway duo performing for charity

Oshawa couple Steve Ladwig and Amanda deBoer have been performing in their driveway for charity. (Photo by Randy Nickerson)

By Chris Jones/The Oshawa Express

Oshawa’s streets have been filled with the sound of music as Steve Ladwig and Amanda de Boer bring their sound outside every Friday night for charity.

The pair began playing their music for others virtually 14 weeks ago in their own basement after all of their gigs were cancelled due to COVID-19. Since then, they have moved their set outside, weather allowing.

While the pair has been sharing their passion for music from their driveway, they have jobs of their own as well.

Ladwig is a funeral director, and de Boer is a conservatory trained piano teacher.

The pair doesn’t “define” themselves with a particular style of music, but Ladwig is a big fan of John Lennon and the Beatles, and de Boer loves Billie Holiday. They mostly enjoy playing the blues and rock music.

Typically, the pair will see more than two dozen people “with their deck chairs, tapping their toes to our favourites.”

On average, they will raise approximately $200 per outdoor session, and pick a different charity every week.

Their most recent session was for the Socks Organization, an initiative which aims to make sure everyone in Durham Region has fresh, clean socks on their feet. The pair raised $248.19 at their most recent session.

“The founder tells me that should buy close to 500 pairs of socks for needy children and adults,” says de Boer.

Previously they donated to Life Rally Oshawa, which provides daily meals to the homeless, VON Durham, and the Leukemia Society.

Come December, de Boer notes she will have been leukemia free for five years, which is why they chose the Leukemia Society.

Ladwig and de Boer will be back performing in their own driveway at 484 Lanark Dr. on Friday, June 26 from 7 to 8:15 p.m. with a specific challenge in mind.

“One of our viewers gave us the challenge of performing a song from each decade, starting from the 40’s through to 2020,” says de Boer. “She has pledged $10 per decade song and we have some other people now pledging money too.”

The money collected will be split between Life Rally Oshawa and the Leukemia Society.

She also says the pair is hoping to potentially get booked for more “driveway or lawn gigs” if people are interested.