Brad Paisley has been having as much fun crashing virtual happy hours as the unsuspecting guests attending these video-conference connections. But when he dropped in on Marcus Ellis and Benjamin Smith’s driveway party in Rochester, New York, he shared a real party with a purpose….along with his new song, “No I in Beer.”
According to Rochester First, the best friends, who happen to be of different races, put out the very simple offer: “Black or white, relax and have a beer.” They then brought their families out, invited the neighbors, set up lawn chairs in the driveway and enjoyed a few cold bottles of beer.
Today, I had a chance to catch up with two great guys, Benjamin Smith and Marcus Ellis. These two best friends have set up camp at Smith's house in Pittsford on Jeff. Road, saying "Black or white, relax and have a beer." #ROC @News_8 pic.twitter.com/N5fP2qtxWH
— Dan Gross (@DJG_Music) June 3, 2020
When Brad heard about their parties, he invited himself and, like any good guest, he brought beer. Lots of it. “Man, I am so thrilled to meet you, face to face like this,” Brad told them via Zoom. “I’m so inspired by you, and we thought we should deliver more beer than you could possibly drink.”
He went on to say, “I’ve been so inspired by what you guys are doing, I mean, it’s these simple things – sit around with your buddies and talk about it. It’s a little beer summit…It’s nothing but love.” Later, Brad added, “This is a really heavy time and I’m trying to learn. I’m trying to hear out my friends in the black community and I know that’s what you guys are together doing the same thing, trying to learn.”
He joked, “I’m all ears. Always have been.”
Brad didn’t wear out his welcome, but he did ask the friends to send him pictures the next morning when they were asleep in the driveway. He also invited them out to a show as soon as concerts return.
This is surreal. Remember Benjamin Smith and Marcus Ellis? The two best friends who offered: "Black or white, relax and have a beer" on their driveway?
— Dan Gross (@DJG_Music) June 7, 2020