Music and PTSD

Veterans live with the reality of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder everyday and some do find unique ways to help deal with the horrific stress, raise awareness, and even have charity events to raise funds for PTSD.

Using the power of music to unite a community such as ours in the Fayetteville and Ft. Bragg area is very important and gives a positive, constructive way to bond and inspire both men and women from all ranks.

Through music, regardless of genre, gives veterans hope; connecting them to a community of people who can understand where they have been and what they are going through.

Two of the three band members are former battle – scared soldiers and they got together and formed a bond that can be said to be. . .
The Next Best Thing
To the military.
Support Veterans who Support Local Music.



White Knuckle Black Out

In Fayetteville, North Carolina

 RavenAnn Diehl

Editor: Maressa Bullard

That’s right, they snuck in. Naw, they were invited in and I had a blast the night that they played on June the 5th at Two Doors Down located 2918 Fort Bragg Road, Fayettevile, NC.

I met Neal Ward, the drummer of the band on Facebook and I wasn’t aware that he even belonged to a band until we got to talking and he told me about his fabulous Metal band called White Knuckle Black Out. Then Neal found out that I worked for Gary Fisher at deadfish magazine[1] a subsidiary of deadfish music. Neal was intrigued that all of this was located in Fayetteville, North Carolina. He thought it would be cool to play here.

A few weeks later, deadfish music had an opening spot for Metal Night at Two Doors Down, so I decided to ask Neal to run it by the band and see if they would be interested in coming to Fayetteville, North Carolina and fill the stop.

Well, they did! The night was just unbelievable with the lineup that was there. The Jehovah Witness Protection Program played, which I was already very familiar with, and then, Soapbox Arson played, that was my first time ever hearing them play, let’s just say I was impressed! Then, WKBO took the stage and the bars “TWO DOORS” and across the street could hear them! HA! Loved it!

I did a little research on the band before I met them. Franz Schroering, who does lead vocals, lead and rhythm guitar, Mitch Walker who plays the bass guitar, Neal Ward who beats the hell out of some drums, and the very beautiful manager of all the men, Kathryn Johnson, all play a very diligent role in the community. They are involved in many charity events.

Sometime, around May 2013, WKBO played a cancer benefit with other bands such as, Prodigy, Head Shrimp, The Norm; Franz Schroering is to have said, “Cancer services don’t treat cancer, what they do is make  it easier on the patients. Ya Know, they give them gas money so they can get back and forth to their treatments, help them with their groceries, with rent, mortgage and they really make a difference. White Knuckle Black Out, we are about the community, good business.”

I really admire the band’s hard work and commitment to the community, could you tell the readers more about your current charity work and fund raiser events?

Our current charity work involves local families in need. We love to help the community out any chance we get.  We are looking forward to working with you and Gary to get the Metal Festival under way so that a hopefully we can all join forces and make a difference.

It is really wonderful that there are still people out there stepping up for others out there in the community. In the words of Neal, “You Rock!”

Not only did your charitable work standout, your music did as well. I have read you guys came together and formed in Winston Salem, North Carolina.  Is that correct? Could you tell us a little more on how you guys bonded together? Wasn’t there another member once?

 Yes, we are from NC.  We bonded through music, Franz and our other drummer were in a band and I had started road doging for them. I ended up on bass and we’ve been doing it ever since. We did have to replace our drummer…, but it’s all worked out for the better. – Mitch

Neal Ward is just what we needed!  He is a breath of fresh air in a music scene full of bullshit.  He is our brother and has earned his metal time and time again on stage. – Franz

I am honored and privileged to play with this band.  They have really put their time into the music scene and really have their act together.  They are good friends and homies – Neal

Franz, you stopped me dead in my tracks when stopped singing power groove metal to a beautiful ballad called “Honestly”. OMG! This song took me back to the “Power Love Ballads” of the 80s. After the show, you told me that you wrote that for someone that you hate. Can you tell me more about how something so lovely was written for someone that you hate?

 The lyrics of the song detail a past relationship that was killing me.  Let’s face it we all have things we need to get rid of and music is good for exercising demons.  It is slow and powerful.

I know about your albums, but tell your new fans about them, any older ones that you like the best?  Are there any newer ones coming out soon?

I’d be really happy to tell the fans that our first album has sold over 500 copies out of the trunk of cars and tables at venues.  Our first album is called COMMITMENT.  It is available for sale at……..  We are proud of the old songs, but we bring it to a whole new level with the new one, which will be out later this year entitled HATE THE TRUTH.r audience was a bit slim; however WKBO hit it off with Soapbox Arson. Do you see yourselves doing anything together in the near future?

Soapbox Arson are our brothers and we really dig their music. We look forward to playing with them again on any stage they want.

Say maybe, the Metal Festival at the Cape Fear River in Fayetteville, North Carolina? (Hint, Hint) Like you, Gary Fisher, myself, and Kathryn Johnson were discussing.

We look forward to playing with all those involved with the charity Metal Festival…just waiting on details.

What is your vision for that?

To cram as many people and as many talented bands as we can all together for a good cause. I envision it being a great success.

When do you see this happening?

 It is important not to force things, so when the pieces fall where they may, we will all come together to throw one hell of a shin dig.

Well Fayetteville, after the show at Two Doors Down, these Heavy Metal Men were the greatest and the funniest people that I have ever had the pleasure to just sit and talk to. They did give Neal a hard time! I am waiting to go to the tattoo shop and watch Neal get his very first tat!

Oh! Mitch, tell the story of going into the bar next door if you wish. I know that it is funny!

It was a great time, fun little place; I just wish they would’ve let me get on the stripper pole…

I want to thank you guys so much for coming down. Love you guys! Cheers! XXX


[1] This article went into production before closure of deadfish magazine.