Health Team

Cancer surgeons rock out, score record deal

Posted February 5, 2009
Updated March 9, 2009

— Each member of a new rock band in town has hands steady as a surgeon's – because they are surgeons, treating women with gynecological cancers.

The members of the band N.E.D. combine their musical hobbies with their real-life, life-saving jobs. And the musicians say their band has a mission they take seriously.

"It's not a gimmick. It's not a joke," said Dr. John Boggess, a gynecological surgeon at UNC Hospitals in Chapel Hill.

UNC doctor-rockers score record deal UNC doctor-rockers score record deal

When he isn't fingering controls in robotic surgery, Boggess is plucking a guitar, writing songs and singing lead. His colleague and fellow UNC surgeon, Dr. John Soper, keeps up a steady guitar rhythm.

They're joined by other clinicians who have gynecological oncology practices in New York City; Amarillo, Texas; and Portland, Oregon.

"We all rehearse almost on a daily basis, trying to elevate our level of accomplishment musically," Boggess said.

Their work inspired the name, N.E.D. – "which, to a cancer patient, is actually something they enjoy hearing, because it means 'no evidence of disease,'" Soper said.

Their lyrics have also been inspired by the doctors' daily experiences helping women and their families through battles with cancer.

N.E.D. has signed with Motema Music, a New York-based record company, to produce a CD, scheduled for release in the fall. In November, they'll go to Washington, D.C., to play at the first GCAM – Gynecologic Cancer Awareness Movement.

All the proceeds from the CD and GCAM go the Gynecologic Cancer Foundation.

The N.E.D. doctors formed their band to raise awareness about gynecological cancer and raise funds for research.

They saw "the potential we could communicate to patients, communicate to survivors, communicate to physicians, all the industries that surround the fight against cancer," Boggess said.


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  • JustOneGodLessThanU Feb 9, 2009

    Here are successful cancer surgeons who heal the sick every day and are also great musicians. Yet, they still don't make as much $$ or get as much attention as a pro sports player.

    How long will we continue with these misplaced priorities? Where would society be if education and altruism were emphasized?

  • ProudConservative2 Feb 5, 2009

    Do they cover Wierd Al's "Like a Surgeon?"

  • ArkAngels Feb 5, 2009

    Dr. Soper is my doctor and I was so glad to see him in the band! Dr. Soper saved my life back in 2000 and I am so greatful to him. He has the best bedside manner of any surgeon I have ever known. I cannot wait to go and see him at the end of the month... I am getting an autograph!