Alex Cuba

Alex Cuba helps kick off St. Joseph’s playground fundraiser

Smithers artist Alex Cuba rocked the house at St. Joseph’s Elementary School to kick off a fundraising effort with the school

Smithers artist Alex Cuba rocked the house at St. Joseph’s Elementary School to kick off a fundraising effort to build a new playground for the school last week.

Cuba, along Jake Jenne and Ian Olmstead, performed songs from his newest album called Healer.

“I’m really excited about my new album, it’s been an exciting journey for me,” said Cuba, who travelled to New York to record it.

“It’s been amazing, I think it’s a really beautiful album,” he said. “Lots of new music, lots of healing touches to the music, very peaceful, happy, bright and uplifting.”

Unlike previous albums, Cuba called on the public’s help to record it through an online fundraising campaign called PledgeMusic.

“I released a campaign online to allow the funds to contribute in the recording process. This means they basically funded my album by pre-ordering the album,” said Cuba, adding that the campaign was very successful with the album being 69 per cent funded on the first day, and fully-funded within a month.

He wrote the album over the past year from places all around the world including, Mexico, Miami, California and, of course, Smithers.

More than 60 people got a taste of Cuba’s newest album at the school last Friday.

The performance also kicked off fundraising efforts for the school’s field restoration and equipment replacement project.

Trevor Bruintjes, co-chair of St. Joseph’s School council, said the $250,000-project will be used to give the current playground a complete face lift.

They plan to resurface the current field and implement proper drainage, replace playground equipment, provide picnic tables, install lights on the basketball court and fencing that encircles the whole outdoor area.

“About a year ago, I decided that this was a project that really needed to get completed, not just for the good of the school, but also the community,” said Bruintjes, adding that some of the equipment has been there for 40 years.

Two of Cuba’s children also attend the school.

“I couldn’t say no, I love this community,” said Cuba.

Proceeds from the album will also be donated to SkeenaWild.

To donate to the project, email trevorbruintjes@hotmail.com.