Local musician Eddie Zimmerman, better known as Eddie Z, is hoping to use good music and food to teach people about kidney health.
The inaugural Eddie Z’s Concert for Kidneys is Saturday, April 9, from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Runde Park. Zimmerman’s band Charity Case will perform along with Porter Blue.
“It’s a family-friendly show,” Zimmerman said.
The show is a chance to raise awareness of kidney disease, an issue close to Eddie Z’s heart. He had a kidney transplant in 2014 and suffered complications soon after.
“I was a mess for a year after that,” Zimmerman said.
He had to fight off a medically induced coma for seven months and couldn’t walk. The concert will be his first one in Tega Cay for three years.
“It’s a big deal for me to even be back on the stage,” Zimmerman said. “I’m excited to be back there, the people have been really supportive of me.”
Eddie Z hopes to help people avoid the experience he endured. The National Kidney Foundation will be there to hand out literature and educate people on kidney health. Donations will be accepted, but Zimmerman said that’s not his main goal.
“It’s not about trying to raise money, it’s about trying to raise awareness,” he said. “To me, that is way more important.”
Zimmerman uses his radio show on kidneyrealtalk.com to educate people on simple ways they can stay healthy.
“It’s an everyday person’s guide on how to avoid kidney disease,” he said. “I’m trying to teach people everyday life things they can understand and keep them off the dialysis machine.”
People can control their high blood pressure and high blood sugar, two major causes of kidney disease, Zimmerman said. It’s as simple as avoiding food with high salt and sugar content.
“Those are dietary choices you make every day,” he said.
“You don’t have to change everything you do, you just have to be conscious. It’s the difference between taking out your kidneys or not in many cases.”
That’s the message Zimmerman hopes to share in a fun way during the first Concert for Kidneys.
“We’re not there to preach, we’re there to teach,” he said.
People will enjoy music they can sing and dance along to and a range of food trucks, including Spoon’s BBQ, the Plated Palette, Maki Taco and Comfort Goods on Wheels, along with a beer and wine vendor. There will also be a kid’s area with bounce castles.
Eddie Z is hoping the fun day will also be a message for people about taking care of themselves.
“When you fight and never give up, this is what it looks like,” he said.
Want to go?
Eddie Z’s Concert for Kidneys
Saturday, April 9
6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Runde Park in Tega Cay
There is limited parking at Runde Park available on a first come, first serve basis. Parking is available at Turner Field with free trolley service and the lower level Tennis Courts – just a short walk from Runde Park. Admission is free.