October 20, 2018
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Healing and joy through music

By: Stephanie Derammelaere
March 30, 2018

Through a collaboration between the Church of the Oaks and Live Music Lantern, the community in Cotati is being treated to a monthly cabaret that will be offered the last Saturday of every month. This Saturday, March 31, will feature Lorri B & the Jazz Pack and the family event is free and open to all ages.

“Our purpose is to offer healing and joy filled experiences for people in our community,” says Patrick McCarty, minister at Church of the Oaks. “Especially people with high-stress jobs, people with little kids, or those on a tight budget who have their lives full of stuff all the time - they can come and get up and dance.”

The monthly community cabarets started in December, 2017, but the idea had been in the works for some time. About four years ago Church of the Oaks tried to revive the old Cotati Cabaret but there were never enough people to put it together and it didn’t take off. Now, with the help of Live Music Lantern, they hope that this will become a lasting tradition. 

Live Music Lantern is a Rohnert Park-based non-profit organization that “provides self care in the form of live music to educators and social service providers as a way to strengthen the health of everyone in our community.” 

The organization provides access to the experience of live music, usually in the form of free tickets to music events, because they believe that these supporters of our community are overextended and stressed to the point of compassion fatigue and secondary trauma. They attempt to shine a light in their lives through live music.

The music featured at the cabaret will change each month but will encompass a broad mix of music genres including blues, country, rock & roll, folk music and more. December featured a group called Afro Funk, January saw Jon Gonzalez and his string band and February featured the duo Maury and Cheri. Some months will also feature young, talented bands such as The Sanctions, an emerging young rock band, and the Credo High School American Music Ensemble. 

At this point every show runs from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., but they may be later in the summer months. The shows take place in the fellowship hall next to Church of the Oaks in Cotati.

“That building, which was built in 1910, was built for people to have fellowship and joyous experiences and that’s what we’re doing with it,” says McCarty. “I think it’s very cool.”

Live Music Lantern and Church of the Oaks hope their collaboration will improve the quality of life in the community and be an investment in its well being. 

“What I like best is the healing and joy energy that we’re able to provide,” says McCarty. “It helps our community, elevates the consciousness of people and elevates the mental, physical and spiritual health of people. We’re here to elevate consciousness and help people enrich their lives and I think having free, live music is as good a way as any.”

For information on upcoming shows, visit www.facebook.com/churchoftheoaks or www.livemusiclantern.org.