Birthday Band Bash will Benefit Bernie

November 27, 2015 by Mark H. Anbinder

Call it a birthday party with a cause. A collection of Ithaca area musicians are playing a benefit show this Saturday night to support Bernie Sanders for President. The show, running from 4pm to midnight at The Dock, fills in for an annual tribute tradition.

Don Bazley (left) and the Fly Rods playing at Porchfest. 14850 Photo.Don Bazley (left) and the Fly Rods playing at Porchfest. 14850 Photo."Each year, I try to select a band or artist that has had a major impact on modern music," says event organizer Don Bazley, who throws benefit concerts as a birthday party for himself each year. "It's been a tribute in years past, but this year it's a tribute to democracy in association with Ithaca/Tompkins County for Bernie Sanders." Bazley is the front man for the Fly Rods, the host band.

Also in the lineup for Saturday's show are the Common Railers, Johnny Dowd, Park Doing, Alter Koker, Bad Hand, Ironwood, Kitestring, Jeannie Burns, Wonder Monday, Dan Aloi, and Alan Rose. "I've asked each band to try to do at least a song or two that are relevant to the campaign," Bazley says.

"It is well known that Ithaca voters, many with ties to Cornell University and Ithaca College, have a penchant for progressive candidates," wrote Becky Chambers Hennessy in a guest column for 14850 Magazine about the local effort to support Bernie Sanders last month. Organizers from the group will be on hand at the concert to talk to potential volunteers and accept donations for the local group or the national campaign.

"In the past, we have had theme shows like tributes to the Velvet Underground, CCR, Black Sabbath, Johnny Cash, NYC theme, 1979 theme," says Bazley. "After throwing a couple of tribute shows in Albany, I realized that it always ends up being a very fun and unique event for everyone, the bands and the crowd. It takes a lot of effort to make it happen for the bands involved to learn material, but in the end it always ends up being worth it."

The show is 4pm-midnight on Saturday, November 28th, and there's a suggested donation of $10 at the door, "with hopes folks will give more to support the campaign," Bazley says.

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