‘A Bernie love-fest’

A local show supports the presidential candidate through music.

Members of local band Treading North pose for portraits on Thursday. The band is hosting a concert with other local bands in support of Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign at the Triple Rock Social Club on Jan. 28.

Maddy Fox

Members of local band Treading North pose for portraits on Thursday. The band is hosting a concert with other local bands in support of Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign at the Triple Rock Social Club on Jan. 28.

Austen Macalus

A 70-something-man gesticulating while performing is rarely the center of a rock show.
The most popular exception to this rule has been, of course, Mick Jagger. But Bernie Sanders  — yes, the Bernie Sanders currently seeking the Democratic Presidential nomination — has joined the rock star in that aspect.
And no disrespect to Mick Jagger, this election season in Minneapolis, it has been all about Bernie. 
“Berning Man,” a Triple Rock Social Club show slated for this Thursday, is a testament to the movement.
Featuring local bands Treading North, Autumn Kid, The Crash Bandits and Jaedyn James & the Hunger, the night serves as a Bernie Sanders promotional event.
The show is a “Bernie love-fest” as described by its curator, Gabriel Rodreick, vocalist of Treading North.
“I think the Bernie campaign really sparked something in me. I have really wanted to get my art and music more involved with political change,” Rodreick said.
Representatives from MN for Bernie and independent T-shirt sellers are hoping to contribute to the Sanders movement.
Many supporters have reached out to Rodreick via social media, reflective of the robust online strategy characteristic of the Sanders campaign. 
“That’s one thing I have really been inspired by with Bernie’s campaign — it’s such a grassroots movement that you kind of realize if people get together and start talking about this and start posting about it on Facebook, it really can change something,” Rodreick said.
The other members, of Treading North, including keyboardist Elena Hansen, are also on board. 
“I am not surprised by people wanting be involved,” she said. “I am surprised by people being able to find us because we are not a big band, but Bernie Sanders is a big man.”
According to Rodreick, with most of the local music community already supporting Sanders, reaching out to friends and setting up the event was easy.
“I think it is evident from all these shows coming up that the artist community likes [Sanders] and they want to be a part of it,” Rodreick said.
In the last two months alone, there have been at least three other local shows supporting Sanders, including “Bernie Down the House” at Honey in December.
“We are all broke artists and I feel like he is fighting for us, as opposed to everyone else who is just fighting with all the other candidates,” Nick Westgor, bassist of the Crash Bandits, said. “He is trying to help us out.”
Sanders has also drawn the support of musicians nationwide.
Christ Shiflett of Foo Fighters, Jeff Tweedy of Wilco, Thurston Moore of Sonic Youth, Alex Ebert of Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, and all of the Red Hot Chili Peppers have endorsed Sanders. 
This is in addition to rappers Lil B, Scarface and Run the Jewels’ Killer Mike. Even composer Hans Zimmer is on team Sanders.
Of course, musician endorsements are widespread in the 2016 political race. 
Ted Nugent supports Donald Trump, Kid Rock endorses Ben Carson and Tony Orlando backs Mike Huckabee.
Jennifer Lopez, Ne-Yo, Jon Bon Jovi, Ariana Grande, Ellie Goulding and Clay Aiken all have pledged support to Hillary Clinton.
“A lot of our generation grew up not trusting politicians, so I think that’s where a lot of the apathy comes from. So I think the excitement comes from a guy like Bernie — who seems like he represents 99 percent of the people,” said Kevin Goff, drummer in the Crash Bandits
“He is a really optimistic, authentic and real politician — and these days it seems like a weird thing to say in a sentence,” said Matt Brown, vocalist of the Crash Bandits.
According to Rodreick, Thursday night’s outing is not just about Sanders, but the larger political climate — even though that means that for most of the performers, the show is new territory.
“This is also the first time we have really been involved in politics,” Hansen said, who added that the “Berning Man” event at its core is meant to spark conversations about political candidates and their platforms.
“It is worth it even if one person goes and registers,” said Goff. “I hope this will just help spread the awareness even a little bit.”
“Berning Man”
Where Triple Rock Social Club, 629 Cedar Ave., Minneapolis
When 8 p.m. Thursday
Cost $7
Ages 18+