Best friends Benjamin Smith and Marcus Ellis received the best surprise from country music superstar Brad Paisley after their viral post online.
Following the death of George Floyd and amid ongoing protests in the United States, the pair wanted to unite their community with a simple, yet powerful proposal.
Setting up lawn chairs and a table on their driveway in Rochester, NY, the two friends displayed cardboard signs that read, “Black or white, relax and have a 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
The post quickly went viral and caught the attention of Paisley, who took them up on their invite, surprising them on a Zoom call.
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
According to News 8 WROC, the “No I in Beer” singer also bought hundreds of dollars worth of beer at a local variety store and sent it to the pair before the virtual call.
“It’s such a cool feeling that we’re making such a big impact across the community, and what seems to be across the U.S.,” Smith told reporter Dan Gross.
“I came out Black, he came out white, let’s have a beer.” added Ellis. “Alcohol brings people together, and we like to smile and laugh, so it’s perfect.”
Smith and Ellis met while building cell phone towers and describe themselves as “Batman and Robin”.