Instead of referring to a newscast or column in a paper, on Friday night, Local Coverage will mean something else completely: an eclectic cast of Milwaukee bands each playing a 15 minute cover set of another participating local act they selected the previous October.
It’s music for a purpose. This year it’s benefiting the Milwaukee Women’s Center, a non-profit that provides services for those affected by domestic violence, addiction, mental health issues and poverty.
Milwaukee Record co-founder and concert organizer Tyler Maas explains why they wanted to have bands swap each other’s music. "I want to nudge unfamiliar bands into working with each other. [I thought] why don't we just all work on something with each other, for the greater good, and just to do something really interesting in the dead of winter when there's really nothing happening."
Maas says as the creative covers are happening, it's also fun to watch the reactions of the original band. "[In previous years] I'm watching the front row, and the band [being covered] is just going nuts," he says. "They're either laughing, having fun, or a little bit of tears as well watching someone re-imagine their music and make it sound even more beautiful or different."
As for the Women's Center, Maas says it's been struggling with funding cuts. "I went there, and it's very small. It needs a lot of help. So, I wanted to allocate all the money for this year for people who need it now."
"We want to help the city that we write about," he adds. Mass notes that the philanthropy was also inspired by the bands, who are donating their time.
Local Coverage is at Turner Hall Ballroom on Friday January 19. Doors open at 6:30PM.