Tree Love Art Collective of Mount Pleasant put on the event as a fundraiser for Art Road, a non-profit organization hosting free art classes for schools that lost funding for their art classes.
“We think the art aspect is huge and love giving back to the community,” said Royal Oak senior and organizer of Sights and Sounds Gordie Morton. “We did it last year and reached capacity. We want to utilize CMU students, as well.”
Morton said Sights and Sounds took about a month to fully organize. Rubble’s Bar was packed by 11 p.m. with students painting, musicians tuning their instruments and others watching the spectacle take place.
“The whole idea behind the collective is to collaborate with other artists,“ said Traverse City senior Russell “Rain Language” Tandy.
Tandy was a DJ at Sights and Sounds and is a founding member of Tree Love Art Collective.
“We’re trying to build a community on art, sharing art, showing what you can do,” Tandy said. “People are going to have a good time. “It’s a really creative environment.”
Tandy said he wanted to share his style of DJ-ing, which he described as ambient, chill and groovy. He said he wanted to share the different songs he’s discovered as well.
“There’s a whole world out there (to be discovered) just by listening to new stuff instead of just songs you know,” he said. “Most bar scenes are the same. I want to express some down tempo music you can chill to.”
Grand Haven sophomore Tate VerDuin was collaborating with another painter on a canvas near the back of Rubble’s Bar. The pair was working on a painting of an elephant sunflower.
“The music is my favorite part,” VerDuin said. “They’re pretty good. I think they need to do more nights like this.”
Rubble’s Bar was grateful to have a different crowd brought in by the different event. Melissa Gross, the bar’s manager, said they were excited to have an event like Sights and Sounds happen at a local bar.
“It’s always good to get new people and new music and awareness in the bar,” Gross said. “Just getting people aware of the whole downtown scene and seeing local establishments is important.”
Students from all sorts of backgrounds came out to enjoy the experience of a different event. Macomb Township junior Candace VanBuhler said she really enjoyed the event.
“I’d come every week if there was an event like this,” she said. “I think this is awesome. This is what I like to do. There are never any shows in Mount Pleasant where you can check out live painters and music like this.”
VanBuhler said she enjoyed the music the most because of its vibes.
“It’s not mainstream Wayside music,” she said. “It’s organic.”
Tree Love Art Collective plans to host more events in a bigger venue throughout the semester and the rest of the school year. For more information on Tree Love Art Collective and for a list of future events, visit facebook.com/treelovecollective.