Jeff Burrows, acclaimed local drummer of Canadian rockers The Tea Party, is returning to Good Time Charly for his annual 24-Hour Drum Marathon on May 25-27 to raise funds for numerous charities. The Marathon will see Burrows taking a seat at his drum kit, playing for 24-hours and laying down the rhythm for a host of bands and special guest musicians. This will be the 12th year for the fundraiser, which has donated a total of more than $200,000 to local charities in need.
“The marathon was started out of an idea I had to give back to my community and host an event that was different from your typical fundraiser,” Burrows told YQG Rocks. “I’m fortunate to get such a great response from our musical community. Everyone is always so generous with their time.”
Banging on a drum kit for a full 24-hours can be challenging for the best and most fit drummers in the world, but raising money for local charities is the driving factor that keeps Burrows going until the end. This year he’s selected a handful of organizations to donate the funds to: Maryvale Adolescent and Family Services, Harmony in Action, The House of Sophrosyne, and St. Clair College Scholarship Fund.
“My mainstay for the last 12 years was always Transition to Betterness,” he said. “I added the college a few years ago and this year I have changed it completely to mental health facilities in our community. I’ve decided to lean towards charities that don’t receive much government help or funding. Mental health is something that needs to be dealt with immediately in every community.”
Each charity has a special place in his heart:
“Harmony in Action is a facility that assists adults with mental disabilities – amazing stuff, with amazing participants. Maryvale Adolescent and Family Services is a facility for teenagers who need help due to anxiety, stress or mental health issues they may be dealing with. I also participate in their run every year – they’re a great organization. The House of Sophrosyne is a very special place for women to get the proper care for their individual needs and situations – it’s a safe place.”
To prepare for the marathon, Burrows ups his game a little by adding to his workouts.
“I always stop drinking beer a month or two before hand and I up my daily running game by a mile or so,” he revealed. “Unfortunately, I’m waiting to see if I need surgery – hopefully it’s just a breeze so I can get back to the workouts!”
It’s such a personal event for Burrows that he even returns to the bar to tear down his gear.
“It’s true,” he noted. “Every year on the following day, I meet organizer Gary Demmans at the bar and we tear down all the gear (laughs).”
Bands and musicians participating in the marathon will be announced at a later date.
Along with the drum marathon, Burrows is also excited to see the release of new Tea Party music this spring. Although no official date has been announced, the new music is the culmination of three years of writing and recording between Canada and Australia (where lead vocalist and guitarist Jeff Martin currently lives).
Wristbands for the 12th Annual Jeff Burrows 24-Hour Drum Marathon are available for $10 from Good Time Charly and participating bands. The event begins on Friday, May 15 at 4pm and ends at 1am on Sunday, May 17 – Burrows usually takes to the stage starting at midnight on Friday. More information can be found on the Facebook event page. He’s also accepting PayPal donations from those who can’t attend the event – Jeff Burrows PayPal.