On October 11th, 2008, Blusion® for World Fusion partnered with our
friends at Solar Works to present a music show and community building event we called Local Eyes.
The place was Odd Fellows Hall in Sebastopol California. This was the first in a planned series of
events aimed at strengthening our local community and encouraging citizens to engage in progressive
activism, while having as much fun as possible.
This first Local Eyes featured singer/songwriter/keyboardist/guitarist Joanne Rand.
Although Joanne now lives in Humboldt County, where she is completing her course study for a
degree in music from Humboldt State University, she was a Sonoma County resident for many years.
Her unique brand of rock, folk and socio/political music found a very receptive audience here.
That audience has grown steadily over the years expanding into national and international territory.
Joanne served up a searing set of acoustic songs. Drummer Jack Springett, whose playing was the
perfrect compliment to Joanne's sometimes-furious, sometimes-delicate style, joined her onstage.
Joanne was in great form and the audience was very appreciative. The performance was further
enhanced by the impromptu appearance of bassist Jeff Martin who played several tunes with the duo.
Martin was an important member of Joanne Rand's "Little Big Band" in the '90s. It was an
exciting set and a great kick-off to the Local Eyes series.
Following Joanne's supberb performance, Blusion® played a set of
their original politico funk jazz-fusion music. For many in the audience, this was their first
Blusion® experience. The reviews were great and we thank everyone
for their attendance. Special thanks goes out to Greg Hourigan, who captured the first 45 minutes
of the Blusion® set on video while managing not to sing, hoot or
howl into this camera's internal microphone for almost the entire segment. An edited version of
Greg's stunning videograpical expertise can be
Why Local Eyes?
Although billed primarily as a music event, the music was only part of the picture. We have been
gathering ideas for several years on how to merge our music with various worthwhile social and
political movements. The idea for this event was to partner with local businesses, organizations
and individulas that are engaged in actions to protect our environment, develop and strengthen
local sustainable practices, create a local economy in an effort to gain independence from the
corporate/warfare state, and help build a just social and economic system for the benefit of us all.
We wanted to encourage community involvement, information sharing, music, fun and activism. Here
are some fo the great folks that helped.
Our good friends at Solar Works provided us with invaluable support that made this event possible.
We were honored to have them involved becasue we feel that their ethics and their actions are the
product of a deep understanding of the issues that face us all. Their involvement in renewable
energy and resource conserving services and education began long before 'green' became 'sexy'.
Solar Works does the right thing because it's the right thing. We thank you not only for your help
in making this event a success, but also for having a presence in the community that makes many of
us feel that for you and your employees, your 'bottom line' includeds us all.
Occidental Arts and Ecology Center
Local Eyes was a benefit for the Occidental Arts and Ecology Center, whose strong reputation
standing for all things good and pure is unassailalbe. An education center and organic farm founded
in 1994 by a group of biologists, horticulturists, activists and artists, OAEC's work addresses the
challenges of creating democratic communities that are ecologically, economically and culturally
We also extend heartfelt thanks to Sebastopol's former mayor, current city councilman, poet, writer
and musician Larry Robinson, for graciously accepting our invitation to emcee the festivities. His
presence and participation added a kind of depth and dimension to the event that was much appreciated.
This is an organization dedicated to creating a stronger local economy and devising methods by which
we might keep more of our money in circulation here. We invited GoLocal to set up an information
booth at the Local Eyes event to raise awareness and support for their endeavors. We applaud
GoLocal's work and support their efforts to create local economic opportunities. Why should the lion's
share of all money spent anywhere be immediately siphoned off by multinational monopolists into a
corrupt financial system? No, let's go local instead.
In the true spirit of localizing and building community GoLocal's marketing director Jay Beckwith
immediately jumped in offering his assistance. From resource networking to grunt work Jay never
hesitated to help us mount this production. We look forward to joining forces again with our newfound
friend and extend our sincere gratitude for his enthusiastic support.
Now here's a gal you've got to love and she is absolutely lovable. From the heart staight to the recycling
center 'greening events' is what she's all about. In an effort to dramatically reduce waste and lower the
environmental impact of the Local Eyes party, Green Mary provided reusable glasses and eating utensils,
as well as recycling containers for bottles, paper, cardboard and compostable waste. It is what she does,
and it is a job that desperately needs doing. Green Mary, thank you for your vital contribution to our effort
and for everything you do. You made it possible for us to have an event without creating a mountain of trash.
Special thanks go to our dear friend and electronics guru Ron Armstrong. If it were not for his wizardry
with the sound system none of the evening's festivities would have been audible. Ron spent patient hours ringing
out the room, sound checking, dialing it all in then running the entire show. Ron is an immensely talented live
sound engineer, a world-class bass and guitar luthier, an electronics whiz and a top-notch designer of pickups for
all sorts of stringed musical instruments, among his many other talents.
Our good friend, the jovial Jack Jacobsen, was extremely generous with his time and energy. He shared with us
his near-total mastery of all things material as he spearheaded the successful effort to construct practical, reusable,
organic and (mostly) cruelty-free stage sections and drum risers. Jack is a fine musician (ten years touring with
Huey Lewis and the News), a contractor with abundant skills, and a recording studio designer and builder, just to
mention a few of his many talents. Thank you Jack, your help was very much appreciated and your friendship is truly
If it weren't for Jane, Rustie might not have survived the experience. For two days, nearly round the clock, our very
dear friend Jane worked tirelessly helping to set up and decorate, transforming the otherwise dank venue into a work
of art. When the party was over, Jane was still there carrying out the last metal sculpture with Rustie and locking up
the joint. An astounding talent, Jane Clark, of Jane Clark Studios in Sebastopol, CA, is easily one of the top five
recording engineers in the Bay Area. After thirteen years with Motown and with over twenty Platinum and Gold records
Jane is probably one of the best-kept secrets in Sonoma County. Low key, generous and humble Jane instinctively
understands the concepts of community, integrity and friendship.
Lagunitas Brewing Company
Lagunitas Brewing generously donated more than sufficient quantities of their excellent beer and expressed unreserved
support for the cause. A locally owned and operated business, Lagunitas is always quick to lend their support to local
efforts, community based events and causes for the greater good. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts, not to
mention our beer mugs.
Slice of Life
David Burns of Slice of Life in Sebastopol furthered the casue immeasurably by generously donating enough pizza and salad
to feed the entire crew for the event. Business doesn't get much more local than David Burns. Slice of Life began in 1974
in the local Cotati nightspot Inn of the Beginning. Good for the environment and our health, Slice of Life is a treat in
vegetarian and vegan cuisine. Thanks for your help, it was very much appreciated and absolutely delicious.
But wait...there's more;
Additional thanks and recognition to the following businesses, all of whose contributions and assistance were invaluable.