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Bands crank it up for schools

Cover Your Hearts raises money for Ethos Music Center
by: COURTESY OF Inger Klekacz Bryan Free joins an incredible local lineup for an evening of love and '80s cover tunes at the Cover Your Hearts benefit Feb. 12 at the Wonder Ballroom.

Love songs of the 1980s have been the attraction at the Cover Your Hearts benefit, and this year won’t be any different. Several local bands will play covers from the ’80s in the fourth annual benefit for Ethos Music Center, 9 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 12 at the Wonder Ballroom, 128 N.E. Russell St. Admission is $15 for the 21-and-over show. Call 503-284-8686, or see wonderballroom.com for more information. Bands performing this year include Drew Grow and the Pastor’s Wives, Chris Robley, Tango Alpha Tango, Charmparticles, Bryan Free, Deepest Darkest, Dr. Theopolis, UHF and The Ravishers. Proceeds will go to Ethos, which provides music education for children at a time when budget constraints continue to threaten music education in public schools. School funding for music programs has “gotten progressively worse since 1995,” says Charles Lewis, Ethos executive director. During the past 16 years, changing tax structures forced schools to begin to slash budgets, Lewis says. “Unfortunately, there is a need for our services and I don’t see it turning around in the very near future.” The popular show was conceived in 2008 by the band Charmparticles as a way to lure Portland-area bands into rock philanthropy, and it has always coincided with Valentine’s Day. Organizers hope to raise $10,000. “It has turned into one of the largest fundraising concerts for us,” Lewis says. “It’s been incredibly popular.” Lewis says Ethos provided lessons for 2,600 kids , and exposed another 5,000 kids to concerts and presentations last year. — Jason Vondersmith