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Local bands play benefit concert for Haiti

SARASOTA — Music is power to Jon Mickels.

With that power, Mickels of Sarasota hopes to throw a festive concert to benefit the relief efforts in Haiti.

Called the Haitian Earthquake Relief Benefit, or HERB, the Feb. 6 concert at Sarasota’s Cock & Bull Pub will feature a mix of area bands ranging from punk rock and country to hip-hop and rap.

While music lovers enjoy their favorite local bands, they’ll also be helping their fellow man.

“I think it’s important to help,” said Mickels. “What happened in Haiti is a big deal.”

About 10 bands are slated to play for the event, which begins at 6 p.m. and continues until 2 a.m. The lineup includes Mickel’s band, Devil Made Microphones, along with The Once and Future Kings, Rocky Mountain Fast Guy, KT the Legend and others.

Drawings for an assortment of prizes also will be held.

Mickels hopes to raise at least a $1,000 but with growing interest in the event, he’s sure that will be more.

The money will be given to Agape Flights, which sends missionaries to Haiti, and L’Hopital de la Communaute Haitienne, based in the quake-torn country.

Mickels is no stranger to providing aid during traumatic times.

After Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans in 2005, he planned a smaller benefit concert that raised $1,000.

Proceeds were given to the Red Cross.

“I always like to use my music to help others,” Mickels said.

He’s not the only one.

Bradenton resident Nick Papas of the band The Once and Future Kings is excited about being involved in the event because he’ll be helping out the relatives of several co-workers. “I can see the stuff that they are going through,” said the 32-year-old Snapple office manager. “Every little bit helps.”

And the more people who attended HERB, “the more money that can help,” Papas said.

January Holmes, features writer, can be reached at 745-7057.

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