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Cooper Benefit Concert Features Legendary Rocker, Local Musicians

In order to raise money to replace old uniforms, the Robbinsdale Cooper High School marching band is hosting a concert with Badfinger's Joey Molland, who played alongside the Beatles, and other well-known artists.

The Cooper High School marching band uniforms are falling apart. Mold and mildew stains plague the 13-year-old clothes, and even thorough dry cleaning can't get the stains out.

In order to buy new uniforms for every marching band member, students and parents are taking matters into their own hands.

On Nov. 9, in an effort to raise money, Cooper's Marching Hawks will host an indoor concert called "Beatlemania." The marching band will play songs written by the Beatles and team up with musicians from the Shady Oak Groove Society, the WCCO Blues Band and Badfinger rocker Joey Molland. WCCO legend Don Shelby will Emcee the event.

"I'm just trying to help, really," Molland, who played alongside the Beatles in the 1970s, said. "I hope the kids raise the money."

Currently living in Shorewood, Molland made it big in the music industry in 1969 when he joined Badfinger. In the 1970s, the group had a few hits, including "Come and Get It," which was written and produced by Paul McCartney. The band signed with the Beatles' label, Apple Records.

"I’ve had a very fortunate life as a musician," Molland said. "I just want to encourage these kids to have fun."

Golden Valley resident Callista Abide's son started playing percussion in eight grade and hasn't stopped. Today, the Cooper High School junior can thank his mom for the detailed concert line-up. Abide is part of the Marching Band Uniform Fundraising Committee and is co-chair of Beatlemania. She said that band members need to raise $60,000 to replace 135 uniforms.

"We’re hoping this will be the inaugural concert and that every year we can have something like this," Abide said. "We've been planning this event since July. I'm so grateful to everyone that's helped out."

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Tickets for the concert are $15 each or $20 at the door. To buy a ticket, download a Beatlemania Ticket Order Form. All ticket proceeds go to the marching band uniform fund.

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