Musicians’ aide

Carol Bear


To celebrate her 50th birthday, Chico State re-entry student Carol Bear wanted to engage in an act of philanthropy. So on Saturday, Aug. 29, she hosted a Starving Musicians Fund and Food Drive at Café Flo in Chico. The three-hour party drew in $64 and an array of nonperishable food items, which will be distributed by a three-person board to musicians who encounter various crises and food emergencies. Local musicians, including Jeff Pershing and Glenn Tucker, provided entertainment. G.R.U.B. (Growing Food Responsibly Uniting Bellies) and the Chico State Organic Vegetable Project provided foods lovingly prepared by Bear and friends. Bear is a business administration major with minors in MIS (management of information systems) and health administration. Sustainability is her passion, and she works on behalf of many sustainability causes on campus. She graduates next spring. To contact Bear, e-mail <script type="text/javascript" language="javascript">{ document.write(String.fromCharCode(60,97,32,104,114,101,102,61,34,109,97,105,108,116,111,58,99,98,101,97,114,49,64,109,97,105,108,46,99,115,117,99,104,105,99,111,46,101,100,117,34,62,99,98,101,97,114,49,64,109,97,105,108,46,99,115,117,99,104,105,99,111,46,101,100,117,60,47,97,62)) } </script>.

How did your event go?

Great! Every guest had a fun time, and the good music set the vibe. All the musicians played what they wanted to play—it was a true jam. We collected money and many nonperishable food items. Some guests who came in saw the fabulous food we’d prepared and canceled their orders for coffee, ordering wine instead. “This is wine food!” they said.

How did you get the idea for the fundraiser?

Glenn Tucker inspired it. His Korg [keyboard] broke down—and it’s still broken! When his keyboard is broken, five bands are without a keyboard player, so I thought: Why not hold a fundraiser and build a sustainable fund that can help every musician who has a setback? It’s hard for us to individually support our Chico musicians, but as a collective, we can gather funds to help any local musician who has an unexpected crisis. Our musicians work hard to provide us with great music, but they don’t make a lot of money. They deserve some help, in view of all they give us.

How did you come to care about musicians?

My parents are musicians. My mother played clarinet, and my father played French horn with the Sacramento Symphony. My parents met in a school band in college. Music is just always present for me—in my head, in my soul, in my searches. I know many musicians in Chico!

What will happen next with the SMFFD?

Every second Tuesday or Wednesday of the month there will be a musical event—usually an open jam to raise funds for the Fund and Food Shelf. Any venues interested in hosting this monthly fundraiser may contact me. Café Flo was great about this first event. They gave us food, dishwashing, clean-up—everything. They set a good model for how local establishments can help support local musicians.