|COUSINS AND CO. MUSIC LAUNCHES MUSICAL ENDEAVOR|
|October 27, 2006 11:00 pm|
By Ryn Gargulinski
Pilot staff writer
If the sound of music soon sprouts from the heart of Brookings, it means Kim Banfield has done her job.
This Cousins and Co. Music store owner is looking to expand, relocate and involve the community in what could be deemed a musical movement.
"Every big city has a cultural center," said Amy Terebesi, who heads community relations and sales for the Harbor-based company.
"We're not a big city, but I think that it could really work."
The "it" in this case is a community oriented learning and performance center where music and other arts are taught, indulged in, enjoyed.
"We have a lot of talent in this town," Banfield said. "The young and old and everybody in between need to interact."
Banfield and Terebesi have visions of music teachers passing on their skills, a full time repair service, discounts on merchandise, free or discounted admission to events, musician referral services and other services to help low income students.
On the performing end, they envision stages for a variety of performances and jam sessions, recording studios and even a record label to help local talent succeed.
They are kicking around the idea of having monthly or annual dues for members to enjoy all the benefits.
"It could be a studio for everything," Terebesi added. "Music, dance, poetry slams."
They would also like to move closer to the center of Brookings to a larger space that could easier house the reality of their ideas.
Not that Cousins and Co. Music store is currently anything to scoff at.
They recently had a facelift and have one stage and one practice room set up.
"We have a list of students that's growing," Banfield said, adding volunteers to teach music are in dire need.
The store also offers an array of instruments from guitars to dolcimers, sheet music for flute to ukulele, and all the fixings students need for school band reeds, the music books, maintenance supplies.
In fact, Banfield originally bought the store 10 years ago when it was going out of business and she could think of no other way to ensure her son had reeds for his saxophone.
"We'll still be doing retail," Banfield said. "But the focus is shifting to be more of a music center."
It's easy for Banfield to explain why a musical and cultural center would be good for the community.
"The Brookings-Harbor area has always had a shortage of activities for young people," she said. "Music training has been proven to be beneficial in all areas of their education."
She added few options are currently available other than school band or private lessons scattered here and there.
Music should be available to everyone, she said, "regardless of age or ability."
Banfield's own musical background spans back generations. Her grandmother was a concert pianist while her grandfather made and played violins. Other family members play piano and guitar.
Banfield herself is a guitar player who plays in the rock band Here and Now. They'll be performing from 7 to 11 p.m. on Saturday at the Brookings Elks Lodge for Elks members as well as guests. Call (541) 469-6316 for details.
Terebesi plays harmonica and has been trained in speech and song. She even has opera lessons under her belt.
Both women are ready to share their talents and visions with the community. But they definitely need some help.
"Not just monetary donations," Terebesi said, "but volunteers."
Their goal is to have the center underway in some capacity by Jan. 1 and hold a raffle for a player piano.
Although the center will start small, Banfield and Terebesi said their are no limits on how far it can reach.
"I imagine serving tea and crumpets," Terebesi said.
Name that music store
Cousins and Co. Music is seeking a new name to match their new endeavors.
"We're looking for something that will catch," Banfield said, "and tells what we're really about."
People can drop off their name entries at Cousins and Co. Music, 15714 Highway 101 S. in Harbor.
The winner will receive a $50 gift certificate in the store. Runner up gets a $25 in store gift certificate.