Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore director seeks musicians
May 26, 2015
Music is a universal language and can be used to highlight anything — movies, parties and shopping at the Habitat for Humanity: Summit and Wasatch Counties ReStore.
That’s one of the reasons ReStore director David Jensen and volunteer John Craigle have added a musician’s stage near the facility’s front door.
"We put it in a few months ago with the purpose of presenting live music while people shop," Jensen said when he and Craigle talked with The Park Record last week. "We’ve had a few bands play already, but we’re always looking for a few more."
The stage is ideal for duos, solo artists, trios and quartets, according to Jensen.
"We can also present classical musicians," he said. "Church groups who do gospel music would be great and high-school jazz groups would be ideal as well."
The basic stage measures eight feet by 12 feet, and there are two levels, said Craigle, whose band, Group Therapy, has already performed a few gigs there.
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"It’s tough to fit more than four people on the stage," Craigle said. "Because of the limitations of the stage size, we are looking for more acoustic musicians. We can make room for full bands, if they are more folk-oriented."
Interested musicians should contact the ReStore by calling 435-658-1400.
"When we schedule them, all they have to do is show up because we do have our own sound system," Craigle said. "We have a four-channel PA with two main speakers, two monitors and three microphones on boom stands. They’re good vocal microphones. In fact, this is a good system to amplify voices."
Musicians can also add their own sound system to the mix as well, according to Jensen.
"Obviously, the hard-rock stuff won’t fly during the day, but John’s band was amplified, and we had no problem maintaining conversations at the register, which is set up next to the stage," said Jensen, who became ReStore director in October.
Since Habitat for Humanity’s mission is to give hope and spread love, Jensen would prefer bands and musicians who share uplifting messages.
"That’s something that I would like coming from the bands," he said. "It doesn’t have to be a specifically religious message, but something positive."
The performances at the nonprofit are non-paying, but tip jars are welcome, according to Craigle.
"My band has been playing two-hour gigs from 1 p.m. until 3 p.m., but the times can be negotiated," he said. "We would love someone to come and play two to four hours."
The ReStore is open Wednesday through Friday from 11 a.m. until 6 p.m. and Saturdays from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m.
The biggest traffic day is on Saturday, and Jensen would welcome musicians to play any day in the afternoon from 3 p.m. until 6 p.m. or from 4 p.m. until 6 p.m.,
"A lot of people don’t know we have a stage here," he said. "It’s a perfect set up. People can listen while they’re shopping and people can also come in and sit down, relax and listen to music for a couple of hours. In fact, we turned all the couches and chairs towards the stage so people could come and listen."
Jensen got the idea to offer live music at the Summit and Wasatch County ReStore while he managed another ReStore in Iowa.
"In Iowa, we had a college kid who would come in for a couple of hours, and now they present two or three big concerts a month and also do evening shows when the store closes," he said. "Eventually, I would like to present evening shows here sometime down the road.
"My vision is to make the Habitat ReStore a light that draws people," Jensen said. "We want to make people feel comfortable. We want them to feel like they are walking into a home or a church when they visit us."
Craigle said he enjoys performing at the ReStore.
"When we’re up on the stage playing, we can hear applause from all over the store," he said. "It’s a great audience to play to and it’s a friendly crowd who shops here."
For more information about performing at the Habitat for Humanity: Summit and Wasatch Counties ReStore stage, call 435-658-1400 or visit the facility at 6280 Silver Creek Dr. For more information about Habitat for Humanity: Summit and Wasatch Counties, visit http://www.habitat-utah.org.