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Uptown Music Collective International Blues Challenge Project Update
By Jared Mondell
December 15, 2011
On November 26, the Uptown Music Collective, a 501c 3 non profit school of music, held a highly successful fundraising event at Jeremiah’s, above the Bullfrog Brewery in Williamsport.
The event, Send the Young Bloods To Memphis, was intended to raise money for the school’s International Blues Challenge Project, the goal of which is to raise the $5,900 it will require to take six Uptown Music Collective students on a musical pilgrimage to the Memphis, Tennessee, to take part in the Blue’s Foundations International Blues Challenge.
The students, all part of the Uptown Music Collective’s Performance Blues Workshop (better known as The Uptown “Young Blood” Blues Band), will travel south to Memphis, Tennessee in February 2012, to participate in this International event.
Band members include: Gabe Stillman, Shannon Cantor, Maverick Vicars, Garrett Gaetano, A.J. Robbins and Carly Gardner. If the fundraising effort is successful these six students will travel to Memphis and represent the Billtown Blues Association in the International Blues Challenge’s Youth Showcase.
The Send the Young Bloods To Memphis event featured performances by an all- star band consisting of Doug McMinn, Chris Bovard, Joel Vincent, and Charlie Moore, and well as teachers and staff of the Uptown Music Collective. The Uptown “Young Blood” Blues Band closed out the night with an amazing set of classic blues tunes. Guests were treated to free “blues” food and a cash bar along with a silent auction with all proceeds going to the project.
In the end the event raised over $3,000 towards the project, this coupled with earlier donations and generous support from the Billtown Blues Association and the Hartman Group, brought the total amount raised to date up to $4,700, just $1,200 shy of their goal. More fundraising concerts are being planned for January 2012.
For more information on the International Blues Challenge Project go to www.uptownmusic.org/ibc, there you will find their itinerary, proposed budget and links to information about the band, etc. Anyone wishing to donate to the project may do so online at www.uptownmusic.org/donateibcp or by sending a check to the Uptown Music Collective, attention Blues Challenge Project at 848 West Fourth Street, Williamsport PA 17701.