Start bidding! Long Sleeve Relief auction has begun

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ORLANDO | Florida Catholic’s online auction to benefit Florida’s farmworkers has been delayed a week. Originally the auction was to start May 6, but now it will start May 13. It will run for 10 days and all proceeds will be donated to the Florida Farmworker Assocation. The postponement was due to a last-minute item we received at the Florida Catholic’s offices.

A generous Florida Catholic reader sent a concert T-shirt, cassette tapes and a personal business card of Grammy award-winning singer Solomon Burke. The reader was also Burke’s manager during his early career. Although the singer did not wear the shirt himself, the items were personally sent to the reader from the singer himself. A lucky reader could own a piece of 1960’s soul music history.

Burke was an American preacher and singer who shaped the sound of rhythm and blues as one of the founding fathers of soul music in the 1960s. He has been called a “a key transitional figure bridging R&B and soul.”

He had a string of hits including “Cry to Me,” “If You Need Me,” “Got to Get You Off My Mind,” “Down in the Valley” and “Everybody Needs Somebody to Love.” The song “Cry to Me” was featured in the film and on the soundtrack of “Dirty Dancing.”

During the 55 years that he performed professionally, Burke released 38 studio albums on at least 17 record labels, and had 35 singles that charted in the U.S., including 26 singles that made the Billboard R&B charts. In 2001, Burke was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a performer. His album “Don’t Give Up on Me” won the Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Blues Album at the 45th Grammy Awards in 2003. By 2005 Burke was credited with selling 17 million albums. Rolling Stone ranked Burke as No. 89 on its 2008 list of “100 Greatest Singers of All Time.” He died in 2010.

Other items in the auction will be two shirts from local Orlando-area news anchors — Greg Fox from WESH 2 and Amy Kaufeldt from FOX 35. In addition, there will be a Miami Dolphins football signed by Jordan Lucas.

The items will be under the entertainment memorabilia category on the eBay auction site. When the auction is live, we will post the links on our Facebook and Twitter accounts: and @FloridaCatholic.

Although staff of the Florida Catholic were hoping to auction off dozens and dozens of famous shirts, they are grateful to the generous people who donated the shirts off their back for a great cause.
“It’s always interesting to embark on something new like this auction,” Ann Borowski-Slade, associate publisher, said. “I hope readers will find it a fun way to participate in the campaign.”