GW, local bands hold Haiti benefit at Skye Lounge

East Coast Caravan performs at a benefit show for Haiti. Francis Rivera/Hatchet photographer

GW bands TNTrio and East Coast Caravan teamed up with three other local acts to host a Haiti benefit concert at Skye Lounge Thursday night, part of a widespread effort among the city’s music community to raise funds for the struggling Caribbean island.

Co-sponsored by music organization District Collective and Wild North Productions, the concert began at 8:30 p.m., and lasted nearly five hours. The show featured reggae, hip-hop, jazz, rock and a DJ to close the night.

TNTrio kicked off the event with a half-hour set of originals and well-executed covers. Emcee Tony Fowler’s take on “My Funny Valentine” was a highlight, as was the group’s rendition of Elton John’s “Rocket Man.”

Jam bands The Method and East Coast Caravan provided a solid hour of, well, jamming, but both acts were tight and offered considerably more than haphazard attempts at improvisation: The Method’s version of “Magical Myster Tour,” was particularly well-received by the crowd. Although they lacked their keyboardist, the group’s two guitarists and sax player filled the void with bluesy, fluid riffs and grooves.

Reggae outfit Lucky Dub followed, enjoying an almost-full house. Their sunny, danceable sound is always a reliable bet; they’ll be playing at Madam’s Organ Jan. 24.

DJ TJ ended the evening, and provided concert-goers with one last chance to work it out on the dance floor.

A $10 donation was encouraged at the door, although no specific relief organization was named as a recipient of the money. Each act expressed its gratitude for the audience’s support.

“You guys are not sitting at home,” Eric Walker, East Coast Caravan’s lead singer, told the crowd. “You came out to support a cause.”

Benefit concerts for Haiti have been scheduled at venues around the District through February.

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