Co-ordinating 20-plus musicians to perform over four nights during a pandemic isn’t exactly what Jeff Burrows had in mind for his annual 24-hour drum marathon. But he did it. Again!
On a beautiful afternoon at the LiUNA!625 office in Windsor, Burrows gathered with the representatives with six local service organizations to present a giant cheque for $40,000 to be shared amongst those charities.
“After last year’s half marathon event, I thought we’d have COVID -19 behind us or at least to a point where social gatherings would be well underway by the time May rolled around,” said Burrows, LiUNA!625’s Community Relations Director.
Postponed until early July, Burrows and local bands performed six-hour sets over four nights, minus patrons, taped live at Good Time Charly’s and presented on Bluesfest Windsor’s You Tube channel. https://www.youtube.com/user/bluesfestwindsor.
“I didn’t think it would happen this year”, declared Burrows. “But then we came up with the idea to do it in six hour increments, normally I have approximately 24 performers. So if I do that I can bring in the The S’Aints for a one day, then Soul City Music Co-Op in for another six hours to showcase them. Then I’m really only left with 12 hours. So it didn’t end up being that much harder, as far as getting the bands and acts together.
Another nice little portion, I think is the fact that at least the bands and the solo performance, they’ve got a live piece of themselves that they can use to almost like an electronic press kit.”
Over a total time of 24 hours and two minutes, spaced across four separate videos, the drum marathon was streamed online by thousands.
“Jeff’s tireless dedication to community brought together an amazing group of talented artists plus 35 caring sponsors to support the critical funding needs of six essential organizations that deliver various underfunded community programs,” emphasized Rob Petroni, Business Manager, LiUNA!625. “I am extremely proud and truly grateful to everyone, including our Membership, who have made this event a success.”
Sharing the proceeds of the 15th Annual Drum Marathon for their dedication and commitment to create positive change for challenged communities and disadvantaged individuals are Harmony in Action, House of Sophrosyne, Maryvale, St. Clair College, In Honour of The Ones We Love, and Canadian Mental Health Association – Windsor-Essex Branch. Proceeds are distributed through the not-for-profit fundraising arm of LiUNA!625, Champions For Change.
“We are especially pleased to receive these funds in order to offer the programs and activities that we do not receive funding for and to support those participants who otherwise would not be able to participate in our programs due to a lack of personal funds.” added Elizabeth Esposito, Executive Director, Harmony In Action.