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Manatee County band gets big break, gives back to community

Posted at 4:05 PM, Oct 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-21 16:05:28-04

MANATEE COUNTY — They say timing is everything. A Manatee County-based band, searching to find their place in the music industry, got their big break, of all times, during the pandemic.

Anthony Caruso always knew he had the talent to connect with people through his music, but getting people to listen was sometimes a challenge.

“Then all of a sudden this thing called COVID hit and we didn’t know what was going to happen either,” said Caruso.

So he put his feelings down on paper, and wrote a little song entitled “Bleed Over Me.”

The song led to a video, and his band, 308 Ghost Train, found themselves rolling full steam ahead with clicks and views across all formats.

“Before you knew it, it was 4 million, then 6 million, then 10 million, and now it’s 41 million,” said Caruso. “It was just a testament to my faith. If I just kept hanging in there and being persistent that it was going to happen.”

He said it just seemed like the right message at the right time.

“That’s what resonated with people, is that everybody took that song to be something from their own personal lives,” said Caruso.

He said with the band’s success, also comes responsibility.

“Some of us are down and those who are up need to pick up those who are down,” said Caruso.

So he started his own charity, One Heart at a Time.

“If we all change one heart, we may change the whole world,” said Caruso.

They are currently in the process of collecting canned goods to be given out, along with turkeys, to families in need on November 21.

“Things that maybe happened to them and it changes their lives and because it changes their lives they are maybe not able to fulfill the normal traditions of the holidays,” said Caruso.

The Blue Lightning Chapter of The Defenders will help the band seek out these families and deliver the food.

“It’s human nature to want to help, it’s a great feeling to be able to give back,” said Scott Heins, with The Defenders.

Caruso and The Defenders are looking for the public’s help when it comes to donations. For more information, search One Heart at a Time on Facebook.