Keith Okie & Rebel Sol are expanding their national tour.

by Keith Okie
Keith Okie (middle) and Rebel Sol members Jason Teague, and Thomas “Doc” Glendenning

“The music of Rebel Sol comes from a deep spiritual desire to shine light and love on the world. Not just your average party band; these guys serve a higher purpose. They know the true power of love and walk through life in awareness of the strength that comes from the musical gifts that have been bestowed upon them. 

This vibration shines through in the music. It encourages us to care for one another, to live in harmony with our families and community, to dissolve mental and spiritual boundaries and to break the bonds of conditioning that bind us as individuals and a society.

Rebel Sol reminds us that even after the darkest night, the sun always rises, the light will always shine and that the universe is an infinitely wonderful place.

Upcoming Tour Dates:

SATURDAY JUL. 6, 2019 at the Orpheum Theater in Flagstaff AZ.
Keith Okie & Friends with special guests Zoe and Petey of Kill Babylon Coalition
“Southwest Acoustic Reggae Showcase”
Doors at 8 pm
Show at 9 pm
$5 at the door
https://www.orpheumflagstaff.com/

This is one of the biggest and best local theaters here in northern Arizona. great spot! They actually sought us out on this one to put a show together for their fourth of July weekend series.

THURSDAY, JUL. 18th, 2019 at the Marquee Theater in Tempe, AZ.
Toots and the Maytals with Keith Okie & Rebel Sol and others.
Doors at 6
Show at 7
$33 (or $20 presales from opening bands)
https://www.marqueetheatreaz.com/

Toots and the Maytals are one of the all-time greatest reggae bands ever. Toots Hibbert is credited with inventing the word reggae and is one of the most soulful, well-known and prolific artists in reggae history. A real original legend.

SATURDAY, AUG. 24, 2019 at The Hut in Tucson AZ.
E.N. Young with Keith Okie & Rebel Sol and ZeeCeeKeely
Show at 9:30
$5
Rebel Sol set is 10:45 to 11:45
https://m.facebook.com/TheHutTucson/
(This is their main web hub)

E.N. Young plays with one of the biggest national reggae bands call tribal seeds. He also owns a studio called imperial sound and a label called Roots musician records. Big player in the national reggae scene. Really good music to. Everyone is excited for this one. Orpheum Theaterorpheumflagstaff.com

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 12th Havasu Landing Tribal Reggae Festival
Havasu Landing Resort and Casino (on lake Havasu outside of needles, CA)
Set time and details to follow.
www.havasulanding.com

Media Contact: Edie Okamoto at edie.okamoto@riovida.net or 510-693-0166
Feel free to contact her for any further information, videos, photos and to schedule interviews.

Keith Okie, spreading love and smiles.

Booking Contact: Keith Okie

Email- okiekeith@gmail.com
Phone- (928)-963-0359

Facebook- http://www.facebook.com/keithokiemusic
Instagram – @keithokie
Soundcloud- http://www.soundcloud.com/keith-okie

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Rolando Morales June Calendar

Rolando Morales is joined by David Belove and Celso Alberti for the June 28, 2019 Havana Show
Rolando Morales Newsletter
Rolando Morales at a private event in Los Altos

“Rolando at a private event in Los Altos”

June 12, 2019

 ¡Hola, mi Gente!

I’ve been flying under the radar yet again, doing more private events throughout La Bahia.  That, as well as investing the hours it takes to create these opportunities and bring them to fruition.  

I do love flexing my creative muscles to tailor my resources from small intimate parties to large-scale private events.  I just did one for about 35 people and am putting things in place for another for about 2,000 people.  So if YOU have an event coming up, small or large, know that I have the experience to fulfill your vision and needs.  Send me an email or text and we’ll make it happen!  rmusic@pacbell.net, (510) 282-7778.

This week, in addition to another private event, I’m doing another fun public duet show this Friday June 14 with the irrepressible Estaire Godinez on Latin percussion and voice at Havana in Walnut Creek.  When we do these, we like to dive deep into our repertoire into new, old and never done before tunes, including spontaneous new inventions that surprise even us.  Make your reservations!  Details below.

Then on Father’s Day, this Sunday June 16, Estaire invited me to play with her band in concert at the Dads and Jazz Festival at the Dunsmuir Historic Estate, also known as the Dunsmuir House in Oakland.  The festival runs from 2-6pm, and we’ll be playing about 2:30-3:30pm.  They’ll have 2 other bands and tons of activities your Dad will love.  We’ll have a great Quintet featuring musicians you know and love.  Check out all the details below.

This month I’m also happy to finally be returning to Barone’s in Pleasanton after being away 2 months.  I’ll be there Friday AND Saturday June 21st and 22nd from about 7:30-10:30pm.  Details below.

And last, I have the Rolando Morales Trio appearing on Friday June 28 at Havana in Walnut Creek.  This will be the first time bringing in this version of the trio into this venue: master musicians David Belove on bass, the great Celso Alberti on drums, and Yours Truly on guitar, guitar synth and voice.  Reserve your seats early, because it will fill up.  Details below.   See you at the show!

Ciao,

Rolando  

PUBLIC PERFORMANCES FOR JUNE 2019

Friday June 14, Havana Cuban Cuisine, 1516 Bonanza St., Walnut Creek, approx 9-11:30pm. Rolando returns for this special series of duet engagements at this fine Cuban restaurant and live music venue.  Tonight will feature the charismatic Latin percussionist-vocalist who played with George Benson and Prince, the entertaining Estaire Godinez; and on guitar, vocals and his pedal board of magic, Rolando Morales.  Together they create a unique musical alchemy, so don’t miss it!   www.havanarestaurant.net,   (925) 939-4555.

Rolando Morales will join Estaire Godinez for the Dads and Jazz Concert at Dunsmuir House

Sunday June 16, Dads and Jazz Fathers Day Festival, Dunsmuir Hellman Historic Estate, 2960 Peralta Oaks Court, Oakland, Festival 2-6pm, our show about 2:30-3:30pm.  Rolando Morales joins forces with Estaire Godinez who will be leading her band in this special performance at this historic Oakland venue.  Celebrate your dad with an experience he’s sure to remember!  Beer tasting, cigar lounge, golf challenge games, 3 bands and so much more.  Fun, right?  Leading the band will be the Latin percussionist-vocalist from George Benson and Prince, the charismatic Estaire Godinez; on guitar, guitar synth and voice, the passionate Rolando Morales; the drummer from Brazil who played with Airto and Steve Winwood, the exciting Celso Alberti; the rock-solid bassist who played with Pete Escovedo and Tito Puente, the great David Belove; and Estaire’s sister Beatrice Godinez lending her talents on vocals. General Admission $35.  Local food vendors on site.  See www.DadsandJazz.com to buy tix, for more info, including table options.  Don’t miss it!

Rolando Morales will join Estaire Godinez for the Dads and Jazz Concert at Dunsmuir House

Friday June 21, Barone’s Restaurant, 475 St. John St., Pleasanton CA, approx 7:30-10:30pm.  After 2 months away, Rolando returns two nights in a row to one of Pleasanton’s premiere dining establishments.  Enjoy exquisite meals and service, libations and Rolando’s vast repertoire in the lively Cocktail Lounge.   See www.baronespleasanton.com, (925) 426-0987.

Saturday June 22, Barone’s Restaurant, 475 St. John St., Pleasanton CA, approx 7:30-10:30pm.  Rolando returns two nights in a row to one of Pleasanton’s premiere dining establishments.  Enjoy exquisite meals and service, libations and Rolando’s vast repertoire in the lively Cocktail Lounge.   See www.baronespleasanton.com, (925) 426-0987.

Rolando Morales Trio will perform at Havana's in Walnut Creek, Friday June 28, 2021

Friday June 28, Havana Cuban Cuisine, 1516 Bonanza St., Walnut Creek, approx 9-11:30pm. The Rolando Morales Trio finally comes to the East Bay!  This version of the exciting trio makes its debut at this fine Cuban restaurant and live music venue.  Tonight will feature for the first time at this venue, the exciting drummer from Brazil who played with Airto and Steve Winwood, the great Celso Alberti; the rock-solid bassist who played with Pete Escovedo and Tito Puente, the great David Belove; and on guitar, guitar synth and voice, Rolando Morales.  This is a rare treat, first time publicly in the East Bay.  You won’t believe what just three guys can create!  Reserve early.  It’ll fill up.   www.havanarestaurant.net,   (925) 939-4555.

CD SALES

If you would like to order a CD, read on.  If you’d like to order our CD “Rolando Y Qué?!”, you can pick it up at my website, the gigs or by mail.  They’re $15.00 at the gigs, or $17.00 by mail to cover postage and handling. TO ORDER THE NEWEST CD “ROLANDO, Y QUÉ?!” by mail: Send a check or money order payable to Rolando Morales for $17.00 for the CD and postage to Rolando Morales, 9028 Burr Street, Oakland, CA 94605. and I’ll send it to you.  Let me know if you’d like .it signed.

TO ORDER THE ORIGINAL “PASSPORT: 10th ANNIVERSARY EDITION” CD by mail, send $17.00 to the same address as above. Be sure to include your return address.

BOTH CDs ARE AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE AT WWW.ROLANDOMORALES.COM

All other shows are private. Why not hire Rolando for your own private event? He’s available for corporate shows, weddings, parties, concerts and festivals. The Rolando Morales Group is available as sextet, quintet, quartet, trio and duo depending on your entertainment needs and budget.

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World Environment Day reminds us of the reason once a year what we should work on each day.

Whales are endangered due to our careless and feckless behaviors and policies.

So far in the Western United States scientist of the NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) shared more whales than ever have died and washed ashore in California, Oregon, Washington and Alaska. So far 73 whales have washed up. Whales are dying due to malnutrition and it is suspected that the plastics causes indigestion and the microplastics in the water is damaging their organs. Whales are important to the eco balance of the oceans in ways we don’t even understand fully as yet.

Microplastics, which are tiny pieces of plastic, no larger than 5 mm, float around in the fill the water at the Monterey Bay according to Anela Choy. “Our findings buttress a growing body of scientific evidence pointing to the waters and animals of the deep sea, Earth’s largest habitat, as the biggest repository of small plastic debris,” said Anela Choy, the lead author of a study paper by the MBARI.

MBARI’s uses underwater robots to filter plastic particles out of seawater multiple times at two the Monterey Bay and in Moss Landing Harbor at the Pacific Coast of California. The study showed microplastic samples from five to 1,000 meters below the surface. They found identical concentrations of microplastic particles near the surface and in the deepest waters surveyed. However in the mid range, at 200 to 600 meters down, the pollution was 4x higher than at the surface. Shockingly they found that all of the animal specimens they surveyed had internal microplastic.

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Juneteenth Celebration San Jose headlined by Faith Evans and Tyler Gordon

Juneteenth commemorates the ending of slavery in the United States otherwise known as Freedom Day. Juneteenth is an abbreviation of “June nineteenth” the day of the abolition of slavery in Texas on June 19, 1865. The date was fortified in our collective memory thanks to the trend that started on January 11, 1865 in Kansas and spread over 39 other states. It helps to celebrate the accomplishments of our forebearers and hopefully it will encourage us to hold on the freedoms gained and to continue to free slaves. Unfortunately the number of people working in servitude and outright slavery in the US is on the rise again. This make it even more important to observe this holiday.

San Jose, California will be celebrated at 194 S. Market Street, San Jose

For over 38 years, the Juneteenth Festival in San Jose/Silicon Valley has averaged over 6,000 attendees. This year they are featuring the amazingly talented painter, 12-years-old Tyler Gordon in the Family Activities area.

Tyler Gordon is a phenomenal painting who can be observed live in the “Live Painting” area.

Faith Evans is the Headliner for this year’s Juneteenth in San Jose

Faith Evans is a talented singer who has 3.1 millions of fans listening to her monthly on Spotify. This talented artist often stays in the headlines due to her turbulent private life.

Faith Evans is a great example of an amazing singer who has a turbulent private life. After divorcing Soul and Spiritual singer Kiyamma, with whom she had one child Chyna Griffin. She was married to Notorious Big, with whom Faith Evans shared a son called Christopher Jordan Wallaces. Faith was supposedly accused by Jay-Z of having an affair with Tupac Shakur. After Notorious Big was shot in a drive by shooting, she married to the record producer Todd Russaw. Faith Evans and Todd Russaw had two boys, Joshua and Ryder. The split in 2005 and were divorced in 2011.

Professionally Faith Evans is an accomplished R&B, Soul Music performer. She is considered to be the star that fortified Bad Boys Records’s Success and Sean John Combs success as a producer. Faith Evans is successful in her own rights not just as a singer who spans genres including R&B, Soul, and Hip Hop. She also is a published writer Keep the Faith: A Memoir.  She describes her life as a child raised by her foster parents who were related to her very young mother, and the challenges she faces as she made her way through life as an actress and performer during the turbulent times of the 90s and 2000s. She and her co-writer Aliya S. King earned the 2008 African American Literary Award for the Best Biography/Memoir category for the book.

Faith Evans sings much about love, honesty, faith, survival and summarizes the pain and loss of her husband to gun violence in her 20 year memorial album, “The King & I” which include songs like “Somebody Knows.” and “It was worth it.” Her recent marriage to Stevie J. surprised many, since he has battled drug and sex addiction problems for much of his life. Unsurprisingly, he fathered 6 children with 5 different women prior to this marriage. In a surprising move Stevie J. who is known as a seedy Casanova due to his involvement in the someone low brow show Love & Hip Hop. A promising sign that the respectable singer Faith Evans may have had indeed a positive influence on him.

The event will include performers like 90s star Case, Jaguar Wright, Jon B., Reuben Studdard to groups like the Drifters with a wide range of local artists from Rap/Hip Hop to R&B, Gospel, and Jazz. 

There will be over 30 vendors with many black artists and crafts artists. Great way to enjoy the summer and the fact that about 250 years ago we started the journey toward equality and freedom for all.

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Bessie Smith tribute by Lavay Smith and Denise Perrier on June 23, 2019 at 3 PM at The Back Room

Divas Denise Perrier and Lavay Smith will perform a Tribute to Bessie Smith and 1920’s Jazz and Blues

Featuring the songs of Bessie Smith and 1920’s Jazz and Blues, with Lavay Smith and Denise Perrier (vocals), Chris Siebert (piano), Pete Devine (drums), Joe Kyle (bass) and Rob Barics (reeds).

Internationally recognized as the finest voices in classic Jazz and Blues, Lavay Smith and Denise Perrier pay tribute to the Jazzy Blues songs of Bessie Smith and the 1920’s. Accompanied by an all-star band that sounds as tight as the legendary musicians they emulate, you’ll think The Back Room was a Roaring ‘20’s speakeasy.

Tickets are $25 and are available at the link below, or you may purchase your tickets at the door the night of the show. Doors open one half hour before show time. We accept cash only at the door (ATMs are nearby). Children under 12 are free. The Back Room is an all-ages, BYOB (for those 21+) space, dedicated to (mostly) acoustic music of all kinds. You are welcome to bring your own adult beverage with no additional corkage fee. If you need more information or have any questions, please call us: #510-654-3808. Thank you for your support!

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Join Rolando Morales with Estaire Godinez this Friday!

Rolando Morales Newsletter
Rolando Morales with his mom

“Drew Youngs, Celso Alberti grooving with Rolando Morales at a private event last Saturday”

May 28, 2019

 ¡Hola, mi Gente!

I’ve been flying under the radar again, doing some private events that really kept me occupied. One kept me jumping for a couple months and we just finished it Saturday night.  It was a performance with my 6-piece band, sound and lighting crew.  I was proud of my guys: Celso Alberti, David Belove, Omar Ledezma, Drew Youngs, Bob Crawford, and Jeff Cressman running sound.  We made our client very, very happy.  No small feat, considering he played bass in the early days of the Eagles. 

Remember, we can do this for YOU as well!  Feel free to contact me if you have an event or party coming up and can use some live music.  We’ll contour a package to meet your needs.  Don’t be shy and contact us early!

This week is largely private again, but I do have a fun duet show coming up this Friday May 31st with the irrepressible Estaire Godinez on Latin percussion and voice at Havana in Walnut Creek.  It’s been several months since she’s performed with me at this venue.  Last time, we really got the place going, and we certainly intend to do so again.  Make your reservations!  Details below.

We’ll have much more for you next month.  I’ll have the full June Calendar for you next week after I confirm details.  You can also check my website Calendar Page as we get closer, as I’ll probably be posting there before the letter goes out.  See you at the show!

Ciao,

Rolando 

LAST PUBLIC PERFORMANCES FOR MAY 2019

Rolando Morales will be joined by Estaire Godinez in Walnut Creek and May 31, 2019

Friday May 31, Havana Cuban Cuisine, 1516 Bonanza St., Walnut Creek, approx. 9-11:30pm. Rolando returns for this special series of duet engagements at this fine Cuban restaurant and live music venue.  Tonight will feature the charismatic Latin percussionist-vocalist who played with George Benson and Prince, the entertaining Estaire Godinez; and on guitar, vocals and his pedal board of magic, Rolando Morales.  Together they create a unique musical alchemy, so don’t miss it! www.havanarestaurant.net,   (925) 939-4555.

CD SALES

If you would like to order a CD, read on.  If you’d like to order our CD “Rolando Y Qué?!”, you can pick it up at my website, the gigs or by mail.  They’re $15.00 at the gigs, or $17.00 by mail to cover postage and handling. TO ORDER THE NEWEST CD “ROLANDO, Y QUÉ?!” by mail: Send a check or money order payable to Rolando Morales for $17.00 for the CD and postage to Rolando Morales, 9028 Burr Street, Oakland, CA 94605. and I’ll send it to you.  Let me know if you’d like .it signed.

TO ORDER THE ORIGINAL “PASSPORT: 10th ANNIVERSARY EDITION” CD by mail, send $17.00 to the same address as above. Be sure to include your return address.

BOTH CDs ARE AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE AT WWW.ROLANDOMORALES.COM

All other shows are private. Why not hire Rolando for your own private event? He’s available for corporate shows, weddings, parties, concerts and festivals. The Rolando Morales Group is available as sextet, quintet, quartet, trio and duo depending on your entertainment needs and budget.

This email was sent to you for Rolando Morales: RMG, 9028 Burr Street, Oakland, CA 94605

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Are we still living in a merit based society?

San Francisco culture of mutual support helped create great opportunities for entrepreneurs to achieve their dreams.

Since before the formation of this country by great men like Benjamin Franklin one of the best parts of living on this continent is that everyone has a chance to create the life they want to have. Benjamin Franklin is a great example of someone who grew up in a modest home, ventured out on his own to become a very wealthy world leader. Self-educated Abe Lincoln is another example of a young half orphan who made his own way in the world, reaching great achievements as a lawyer and US president. Andrew Carnegie was born into a Scottish weaver’s family that shared a one room house with their neighbors. Yet, later in the US he became synonymous with the Gilded Age. John D. Rockefeller who as the son of a con man and a very religious mother started out as a bookkeeper built one of the greatest wealth an American family ever enjoyed. He is quoted as saying: “The growth of a large business is merely a survival of the fittest”. Even though he was a very tough and sometimes ruthless competitor he ended up donating more than $500 million to various philanthropic causes. Back in his days this was quite a lot of money.

In recent history we have Steve Jobs, the son of a Syrian refugee, was adopted and started his career in the warehouse. Ray Kroc started as an ambulance driver at 15 years old and later started McDonald’s corporation, considered one of the fastest growing companies. Sarah Breedlove, later known by one of her married names Madam C. J. Walker’s parents and siblings were slaves, yet she became the first known African American female Millionaire. Andy Grove spent part of his childhood in a Nazi concentration camp and came to the US penniless when he had to flee Hungary from Soviet Oppression at age 20. Later he became associated with the success of Intel, a company he led to international success as its CEO. Arthur Rock’s dad had a candy store and Arthur’s education was possible thanks to the G.I. bill. Arthur Rock founded one of the first investment firms in Silicon Valley, called Davis & Rock. He is considered one of the founders of Silicon Valley. Eric Hippeau received a wonderful education in France and chose to come to the US to achieve his fame and fortune. He came to the US as an ad sales manager for IDG, before becoming publisher of PC Magazine, CEO of Ziff-Davis, Softbank, and now runs a very successful venture firm, Lerer Hippeau.

In the US if you work hard and smart you can succeed. Yes, it is quite clear that in most cases being well educated or rather being able to educate yourself and re-educate yourself is a prerequisite for success. And yes, it possible to reach amazing success in the United States, regardless of background and family ties.

Is it easier to achieve success when you have a loving and supportive family that can afford to pay for a great education and make wonderful introductions? Of course, it is. Is it harder for children who have to overcome the long-term physiological and psychological challenges of ACE (Adverse Childhood Experiences)? Yes, it is harder. However, it is possible. This is what is unique about the USA. Many businesses in the US are merit based, especially in California.

When communities, business leaders, and educational institutions come together to focus on helping kids become successful adults, entire cities and villages thrive. Providing education that provides students with the life-long ability to learn may be one of the top gifts we can give our local communities. Most thriving towns have benevolent leaders who care about all its inhabitants. Why not bring the leaders in your community together to facilitate a local plan to create a thriving and high-quality place to live and grow up in. Amazing success will be up to the individual, luck, hard work, lots of studying, and the willingness to put in the necessary effort. There are no shortcuts to wealth, short of inheriting it. And as every successful business leader knows making the first money is easier than to hold on to the money and growing the business. This takes management skills, knowledge, competitiveness and most importantly content and satisfied customers.

It is best if we remind ourselves and future generations that only because someone else inherited their wealth, doesn’t make them the only ones who can thrive. With a strong desire to succeed, great networking skills, and the willingness to learn, the road to success is open to everyone in the USA. For self-made people there are no short cuts to success. It takes work and diligence, and the willingness to try over and over until the necessary skills are perfected.

In China during the Han Dynasty in the 6th century BC, when Confucius has a strong impact on culture the society was merit-based. Education became the key for social mobility back then in China. Europe opened its mind to become a merit-based society in the 17th Century and is still waffling about it. The US is the only country that was founded on the principles of being merit based. The West Coast naturally has embraced being merit-based since it was founded by people from all walks of life who were seeking fame and fortune in the 19th century during the gold rush era. Life in the Wild West required that towns people were there for each other and pool resources. This spirit of collaboration has survived in California. This is the reason why living is pleasant and easy. There is a “live and let live” attitude, and openness to new and different ways of looking at things, and the willingness to create teams, tribes, mutually beneficial groups, and everyone who is a good fit and is willing to contribute to the overall good is welcome.

Towns who are willing to support their neighbors’ kids thrive more than towns who live in brutally hierarchical ways without caring about each other. Businesses that get help from financiers, an educated workforce thrive easier. Every town has a chance to adopt these logical and simple principles if leaders choose to come together for the benefit of the entire population.

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Mesmerica feels uplifting

The show is designed to literally play with your emotions in an uplifting way. It works. The music immediately puts you into spa mode. The body relaxes as if you are having a hot rock treatment, with a body scrub, and your favorite full body massage.

The video provides uplifting messages about relaxation, forgiveness, togetherness and they are intermingled with the sounds of gongs that bring back memories of fabulous mediation sessions. Instant relaxation.

James Hood has perfected his musical genius. He is still able to make you feel your own feelings, like he did back when he played with the Pretenders. Since then he became one of the founding musicians of the world music genre. He perfected his art with a two-decades-plus run as a visionary ambient/electronica composer and performer. His sonic incense “Ceremony” and Pure Ceremony reached #1 on World and New Age charts in US and Canada.  

Mesamerica is an instant classic that will be celebrated for many years to come. It represents a trend that will certainly swell as more people become aware of the soothing and healing effect it has – literally – on the body by encouraging the release of endorphins, seratonin, and other happy hormones. Mesamerica is there to reboot your body and soul and it has a long lasting effect.

It was produced by Poseidon Music who report: “The show is now running simultaneously in 12 North American cities, selling out 9/10 shows. 40,000 tickets and counting.”

And then there is the art and the production of this master piece. The art is world class.

The most spectacular thing about this experience to me is the art by Tatiana Plakhova. It is mesmerizing on this little video. Just imagine it or watch it in a setting that allows you to see a large dome of into which the video will draw you travel as you experience the cosmic journey with surround sound.

Tatiana Plakhova describes her art as infographics, which makes sense. She transmits so much more than just a pretty pictures. Her art communicates – it is the art of the future, now.

“The main idea is to show a new way of “infographic” drawings. Because everything we see is biological, mathematical or geological information. It can also be cultural patterns or any other thing. Complexity Graphics works are based on mathematical simplicity and harmony. I would describe them as infographic abstracts. This mathematical style helps me to illustrate everything from biological cell to the space and meditative worlds. That’s why I admire by math, because it’s everywhere and nowhere” 
Tatiana Plakhova

We will try to find out more information behind the many amazing people behind this new form of entertainment that is certainly here to stay. Stay tuned!

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Is it wise for those benefitting from the economy to allow the middle and lower middle class to shrink?

We believe in the American philosophy that free markets help each person rise to the best possible economic achievement for themselves. We are all in favor of a thriving economy.

The economy is thriving particularly well for the top 25% of the American population.  Around the world poverty is at a 100-year low.  According to Politifacts.com who compared World Bank statistics and other studies: “By World Bank figures, Smith actually understated the reduction. We’ve cut extreme poverty by 58 percent using the 2008 definition of extreme poverty, and 74.1 percent by the 2015 definition.”

Many business leaders plan to stay with a company only for a few years and therefore the long term stability of their companies is less important than the managers ability to cash out. If the economy shrinks, employees are upset, the companies are vulnerable to foreign or even domestic competition, it does not affect the manager personally as quickly, as it affects the rest of the economy.

Why might we encourage business leaders to watch the American, European, and Japanese middle-class standards of living?  After all ever more people from the upper middle class are thriving. There are 7.1 million households in this country that have investable assets of $1 million or more. So why be concerned about the middle and lower-income brackets of the middle class?

What does income inequality even mean?

A recent study by the Fed reported in the Wall Street Journal stated that 25% of working individuals say they have no retirement savings at all, and 44% worried that their saving isn’t on track. Among younger workers, aged 18 to 29, 42% have nothing set aside, and only 26% believe they are adequately prepared for retirement. Even more disturbing 40% of Americans said they don’t have enough cash on hand to cover an unexpected $400 expense and 17% reported they did not have sufficient funds to meet their current obligations. This indicates that 57% lived either beyond their means or they did not earn enough. With the unemployment rate solidly below 4% it is most likely the later.

San Francisco has the highest median income in the country. It is reportedly at $110,816.  This sounds great until you realize that how many people are not participating in driving the median income up to these wonderful levels, however they still have to pay the same for housing. The average cost for a 1-bed room apartment is $3,391.12 per month and naturally the rent or mortage for a dwelling fit for a family is even more. This spells trouble for employees who are not in managerial positions, particularly since Numbeo suggests that it takes $4,106.34 for living expenses for a family with 4 members before the rent. Add some student loan payments, the need to save money to take care of their kids the dream of maybe buying a house and it starts to look dismal for those who earn their living as teachers, truck drivers or service personal. This is when reality shows that a shrinking middle and lower-part of the middle class indeed will not foster the consumerism that Westerners have enjoyed for the past 70 years.

When the US economy is turned and/or allowed to be turned into a “third world economy,” the US will become a third world country.

7.1 Millions of extremely wealthy end up living in a country surrounded by 315.9 Million people, some of whom can’t afford to save $400 for their next emergency. Currently more than 50% of the US population earns less than $50,000. In many cases much less 20.3% of US households or every 5th household earned less than $25K per per year. For millennials the outlook explains why they prefer experiences instead of accumulating products. 58% of 35-yr-olds earn less than $50,000 per year and 81% of 25-yr-olds earn less than $50,000 per year. They barely can afford rent. Yes, many move to places that have more affordable homes, however their salaries may drop drop relative to the price of housing.

Yes, there are a few “Unicorns,” companies that make more money than ever. Apple is slated to become the first $1 Trillion dollar company. However the US economy is reliant on small businesses. There are 28,000,000 small businesses in the US and only 18,500 large companies. One half of the US economy is based on and relies on small business. Small businesses are the first to suffer when the middle class erodes. In the 70s 1 out of 5 small businesses folded in the first year. Today 50% of small businesses fail often due to lack of earnings. When the expendable income for so many Americans gets eroded due to the lack of “living wages” the US will turn into a third-world country. Currently in San Francisco and Marin County 1 in 5 is in need of food assistance, and 1 in 4 is at risk of going hungry, according to the San Francisco Foodbank. California is the tenth most affluent State in the US with the nearly 900,000 millionnaires.

While business leaders are not immediately and personally affected by the ever lower standard of living of 70% of Americans, shrinking Americans expendable income to Zero is not healthy for the overall economy, as sales for anything that is not a necessity will suffer and this is already happening. Retail is down, housing size is shrinking , large houses stay unoccupied due to the fact that more than 1/2 of households can’t afford the mortgages.

Deloitte just releases their 2019 report is based on the views of 13,416 millennials questioned across 42 countries and 3,009 Gen Zs from 10 countries. While this does not provide a statistically correct sample for each country, it does give us a bit of an idea that could be considered a possible trend. The news is somewhat positive. 60% of the Millennials surveyed were confident that they could reach their own goals if they applied themselves. This could mean they are optimistic, or it could mean that they blame themselves for not being as successful as they wished they were.

Board of Directors may do well to start thinking a bit longer term. If a company doesn’t have a long range vision like most Chinese and European companies do, the US economy may be structurally damaged in ways that will affect its investors and business leaders.

Fortunately there are great examples of how communities can come together to make sure all the boats are lifted. Check out the articles about how Oakland, a city that was beleaguered by inequality problems, pulled together to lift the city out of poverty. It takes vision and it takes the will of those who have the power to effect change.

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Cha, cha, cha, changes… so timely. Thx David Bowie!

Ch Ch Ch Changes

Low Down, ooh, still don’t know what I was waiting for…
and my time was running wild, a million dead-end streets and
Everytime I thought I got it made, the taste was not so sweet…
So I turned myself to face me, but I never caught a glimpse,
of how the others must see the faker,
I’m much too fast to take that test.

Ch Ch Ch Changes turn and face the strange ch ch changes
Don’t wanna be a richer man
Ch Ch Ch Changes turn and face the strange ch ch changes
Just gonna have to be a different man
time may change me, but I can’t trace time

Ooh yeah

I watch the ripples change their size but never leave the stream of warm impermanence
and so the days float through my eyes, but the days still seem the same
and these children that you spit on as the try to change their world
they are immune to your consultations
they are quite aware of what they are going through

Ch Ch Ch Changes turn and face the strange ch ch changes
don’t tell them to grow up and out of it

Ch Ch Ch Changes turn and face the strange ch ch changes
you’ve left us up to our neck in it
Time may change me but you can’t trace time
strange fascination fascinating me
Ah, changes are taking the pace I’m going through

Ch Ch Ch Changes turn and face the strange ch ch changes
ooh, look out you rock ‘n rollers
Ch Ch Ch Changes turn and face the strange ch ch changes
pretty soon you’re gonna get older
Time may change me, but I can’t trace time.
I’ve said that time may change me,
but I can’t trace time.

David Bowie performs Changes

Rock ‘n Rollers pretty soon you will get older

Boomers and Generation X is older now and here we are with global warming, the world in upheaval and a shrinking replacement generation which may have trouble taking care of themselves, their student loans, their kids, and especially the bulging and self-entitled older generation. As David Bowie tried to explain many decades ago:

“Time may change me, but I can’t trace time. Gonna have to be a different man. We never saw the fakers.”

Great song and timely lyrics. Families that pull together will make it through the next 50 years. David Bowie called it. And here we are and it will be fine especially for those who stop judging and instead support each other at a local basis.

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Why foster self respect for boys and men?

The media is not really helping in promoting positive role models for boys.

Many men feel they are judged as cruel or mean. Why?

The general media often portrays men as cruel, insensitive brutes who only think about themselves and don’t respect women and children. While this improves reader and viewership for the general media, it does not foster self-respect among our young men and older men.

We need to take this outcry seriously because men are genuinely under severe stress. 129 suicides per happen each day and there are 3600 suicide attempts each day. It is the 10th highest cause of death in the US now. We need to help men cope to feel protected and worthy, even if they prefer not to engage in the horrible behaviors that are often highlighted. Of course, white men can’t be protected instead of everyone else, but they need to be protected alongside everyone else.

These days the suicide rate among white men is at an all-time high and it is growing rapidly. The American Foundation of Suicide Prevention found in 2017:

  • The age-adjusted suicide rate in 2017 was 14.0 per 100,000 individuals.
  • The rate of suicide is highest in middle-age white men in particular.
  • In 2017, men died by suicide 3.54x more often than women.
  • On average, there are 129 suicides per day.
  • White males accounted for 69.67% of suicide deaths in 2017.
  • In 2017, firearms accounted for 50.57% of all suicide deaths.

The general media eager to sell subscriptions is focused on highlighting men who beat up women, defraud companies, cheats on their wives or girlfriends, and recently they are assisting politicians with exceedingly harmful policies. Devastating the environment, cutting sick people off medical care, engage in racist insults and killings, and commit fraud, abuse workers, and worse. White men are portrayed as self-serving, prejudiced, greedy, selfish and mean. This is most likely an important reason why men, especially young men and men in their old age feel disillusioned, unwanted and unloved.

Some old and even younger white men are causing this reputation

These Alabama men have decided that men have the right to impregnate women against their will, rape them and these rapists are rewarded by the state of Alabama forcing the raped women to carry the rapists’ children for nine to ten months against their will.

The lack of positive role models in the media is hurtful to men.

The current president lies consistently, is needy and greedy and often behaves rudely and has no respect for anyone but those who are willing to act out his will without question regardless how self-damaging it may be for their own lives.

The president thinks it is a show of strength if he reneges on promises made to partner countries, praises mass murdering dictators, pays shut up money to tricksters to silence prostitutes with whom he had affairs during his current wife’s pregnancy. He is proud that he shut these cheaters up in order to win the presidential election that he may have lost if the truth would have come to light before the electorate chose him as president against the will of the majority of American voters.

Is this what manhood is all about for all men? Of course not, however it is no surprise that so many white men and boys feel lost. If men live up to the general media’s “ideals” they are creepy, and if they are not willing to engage in these abhorrent and mean behaviors, they are called weak. Many choose death at alarmingly growing rates.

As a society we have a choice. We can choose to highlight and praise good men and restore the good name of men in general by focusing on genuinely great men and leaders.

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Artist Highlight – Estaire Godinez

When I first met Estaire Godinez I was completely in awe of her grace. She is a genuinely graceful and stunningly beautiful women. It seemed that every time she spoke she reintroduced the concept of “Lady” to the world.

Estaire Godinez is also an international sensation. As a vocalist she seduces the audiences with her smokey voice that is clear and comes with a full range. A rare pleasure. She is reminiscent of each Blossom Dearie, Montserrat Caballé, and Billy Holiday. In short, her voice is unique and amazing. Her intonation and range of voice is perfect for ballads that make you sad, happy, or glad, for pop songs, for classical music, and especially for the bossa nova. This Maestra is clearly influenced by the many Boston’s Berkelee School of Music classes she internalized. She also trained privately with the celebrated Congero Giovanni Hidalgo.

Estaire Godinez, Besame Mucho from her latest Album “Estaire Godinez, This Time…”

Estaire Godinez “Live at the Dakota”

Her debut release “Live at the Dakota” published by Under the Radar Music Group, established Estaire Godinez as a singer and bandleader. This productive woman worked on her first album while traveling on tour world wide with the legendary George Benson. Peter Schimke (piano/keyboards), Eric Leeds (sax) Mike Scott (guitar), Stokely Williams (drums) and Serge Akou (bass). Mutually appreciative of her talents, their instruments weave effortlessly in and around her conga beats, creating a hypnotic fusion of jazz, pop and Brazilian/Afro- Cuban. They all plan with seductive ease, exchanging musical flirtations with airtight execution.

Estaire Godinez, “Live at the Dakota” at The Dakota Jazz Club in Minnesota.

Estaire Godinez, recording artists and live performer

She contributed her experiences as a performer in over sixty album recordings working with Prince, Coke Escovedo, Brothers Johnson, George Benson, Larry Graham and Norman Brown, the legendary composer Leon Ware, Rolando Morales, and many others. Estaire Godinez has a huge stage present. She is a sought to appear in live performances and performed with the Manakato Symphony as their featured vocalist, singing an aria and her original; the orchestral arrangements were done by her dear friend Pepper Williams. She appeared on stage alongside Peter Tosh, Actor/musician, Jeff Goldblum & The Mildred Snitzer Orchestra, Bow-Wow-wow, Duncan Du, Javier Ruibal, and pop star Joaquin Sabina. In Europe, as the lead in the popular Madrid-based all-original pop-rock mainstays, Estaire Godinez and the Face Band.

Estaire Godinez has appeared in, sang for many films and advertisements. She also is a published author of The Yelva which was turned into a feature film. She was chosen to adapt the book for the screen. Estaire Godinez is a standing member at the commercials and film, including a movie produced by and starring Benjamin Bratt. She starred in the film and sang on the movie score.

Early on in her entertainment career, Estaire Godinez was dancer and one of the Bay Area’s co-founders of the unique dance troupe called Bachanal, an Afro Cuban/Haitian dance troupe comprised of some of the best dancers in the City, led by their fearless leader Gloria Toolsie from New York. Bachanal was one of the first of its kind in the Bay Area to perform with such a large ensemble and costumes.

Estaire Godinez, singer, composer, lyricist, congera, published author and film maker.

Estaire grew up around music with her 8 siblings. Her mother, a housewife, has a beautiful soprano voice and her father sang in a Baritone voice. Her parents immigrated to the US and settled in Oakland, where Estaire was born. Oakland is the most ethnically mixed city in the US and as a result Estaire grew up enjoying every type of musical style. Mexican Trios, Smooth Jazz, Pop, Rock, Big Band Jazz, Bossa Nova, Native American Music, Soul Music, Brazilian and African sounds. from Mexico well she grew up listening to Trios, and All styles of music coming from the influences of her older siblings. She plays frequently with brothers Salvador and Carlos both prominent musicians and song writers.

When asking Estaire Godinez for a quote about recent project she explains: “Estaire is also a published author, a book she published in 2015 titled THE YELVA (to which she has also wrote the screenplay adaptation for a feature film. Along with her published book she also has a short story and two books finished which she intends to publish. She stays true to her first love which is music. She is working on the music for her third album with Peter Schimke; this one will be released in 2019. This one will be dedicated to the musical stylings of Latin Jazz. “

Rolando Morales is joined by Estaire Godinez at Havana's in Walnut Creek on May 31st, 2019
Rolando Morales is joined by Estaire Godinez at Havana’s in Walnut Creek on May 31st, 2019

Estaire Godinez is currently working on a new film project. However, you can catch her on May 31, 2019 at Havana’s in Walnut Creek where she joins her good friend, vocalist and Guitarist Rolando Morales.

Estaire Godinez, this accomplished all around artist, dancer, singer, congera, performer, recording artist, actress, author and film maker brings grace and overall quality to everything she creates. Her bio reads: “Whether swing or Samba, backbeats or Bossa Nova, Godinez has always been fascinated by the push and pull of different rhythmic styles, mirroring her musical diversity, she is multilingual (Spanish, Portuguese, English) and has lived and performed throughout the world.

Stay tuned. This year Estaire Godinez plans to finish her third collaboration together with Peter Schimke. She is publishing her book, and adapting it to a movie script. In Maui, Hawai, she owns a company with her sister, where they will sell their art work and Jewelry, and offer Estaire Godinez’ music and books. Visit her own website to learn more.

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Today Oakland is a model city that has pulled together to create a new future for all its citizens. Part 4

Jonah Melvon & Adesha will join the Art & Soul Festival this year. The most ethnically diverse fun festival on the West Coast. Great music, great food, great art and good vibes.

The citizens were ready for the change. It started to gentrify without pushing out locals. The East Bay Times reports that the Fruitvale district is a great example that this is possible: “Schildt said it’s possible to invest in a community without causing displacement — particularly if it’s public investment or community-driven. Oakland’s Fruitvale Village is held up as a national model. As Scott Morris reports, the mixed-use development near Fruitvale BART improved the socio-economic well-being of residents in the immediate neighborhood and preserved the area’s racial and ethnic diversity.”

Today 38% of people in Oakland hold secondary degrees, crime is down to the same level as San Francisco, aside of Long Beach California it is the most racially mixed town in the world. When researching the most crime ridden towns in the US no California town made it into the top 30 most dangerous towns in the US. Niche voted Oakland as the 26th best US city to live in.

How did Oakland do it? This is the story that Oakland born and raised artists “Jonah Melvon featuring Adesha” wish to tell. Their song 1099 available on Spotify tells the story of how cities need to pull together to become whole again. Jonah Melvon works closely with business leaders and educational and community outreach organizations to bring about a spirit of “togetherness, love, peace and understanding.” Adesha works with the Boys and Girls Club as a Community Relations Manager. They have lived the story and they want to help cities around the world to help create living conditions that are pleasing for all ethnic groups. It can be done! Oakland is proof that it can be done.

Jonah Melvon believes, as his lyrics explain, that we all need to support local businesses, make education available and accessable to everyone who wishes to improve their lifestyle and take part of a thriving economy. In Oakland, Peralta Colleges came together to provide educational access to everyone at affordable rates. Businesses cleaned up neighborhoods and provide access to comfortable yet affordable housing. Charities pitched in with Kindergardens and Schools. When all people, regardless of ethnic background join forces to create a nice place to live, with compassionate support for those least among us, and businesses create access to well paying jobs through education, mentorships, classes cities can be reclaimed. Today WeWorks, General Assembly, Kickstart Coding, App Academy, Springboard, help young and mature people find ways to succeed.

Most importantly the soul based neighborhood spirit that teaches belief in each of our ability to participate in a thriving economy creates a new mindset. Love is the answer. Diversity is beautiful. By opening people’s minds through the Peralta Study Abroad Programs and by offering genuine assistance the East Bay and especially Oakland are becoming a thriving metropolis again. http://web.peralta.edu/foundation/scholarships-and-grants/

This program is immensely successful and has brought peace and prosperity through education to Oakland. The Peralta Study Abroad program brings students from around the world together and allows them to see the world, broadening their horizons while boosting their confidence.

We can do anything, when we work together. When political leaders, business leaders, eduational leaders, and religious leaders come together with the single purpose to lift up everyone of its citizens success is within reach.

Since 2010 Oakland is a new shining star showing its can do spirit. Now, Jonah Melvon and Adesha want to share how it happened. They want to bring the knowledge that celebration of life, work, and family can bring amazing results and lead to a thriving, safe town. They are supported by Drew Gephart, International Services Manager at the Peralta College Group of fine educational institutions. This group of Junior Colleges serve as feeder schools to UC Hayward, UC Berkeley and UC San Francisco. All we have to do is believe and then act on our beliefs.

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“Mabagwe—a Tribute to Los Mayores” nominated for the Cubadisco Award

Michael Spiro on Facebook: “I am usually very hesitant to post things on Facebook about my accomplishments. It always seems a little self-serving. But in this case, I can’t help it. Jose Luis Seluma and I are very honored and proud to have been nominated for a Cubadisco award (the Cuban “Grammies”) in the “Tradicion Afro-Cubana” category for our CD, “Mabagwe—a Tribute to Los Mayores” .

It is hard for us to imagine that we could even be considered in the same group of artists as “Los Munequitos de Matanzas” and “Ochareo”. It is almost embarrassing for us, since Los Munequitos have always been, and will always be our idols. And so for once the cliché is true—just to be nominated in the same category is the honor of a lifetime. 

We must of course thank our multi-talented producer, Jesus Diaz, and all the great artists who recorded with us—Lali, El Gato Gatell, Fito Reinoso, Colin Douglas, Genesies Reinoso, Beatriz Godinez, Jesus Gonzalez, Ivan Camblor, and El Rubio, Jason McGuire.

Obviously Seluma and I couldn’t be at the nominating ceremony in La Habana, so we don’t yet have our plaque—As soon as we can get a photo, we’ll share it with you!”

Michael Spiro knows how to surround himself and inspire the world’s best musicians.

Michael Spiro writes, performs, and produces critically acclaimed instructional books and DVDs on percussion, and he launched two ground-breaking educational websites which offer complete instruction on Cuban and Brazilian percussion over the internet: CongaMasterClass.com and SambaMasterClass.com. Michael Spiro continues to be in demand as a guest artist at universities worldwide, and is a frequent presenter at national and statewide conventions of the Percussive Arts Society. 

He regularly performs with the reknowned percussionist Karl Perazzo, Wayne Wallace,

“BÁKINI En el Nuevo Mundo” (produced with Joe Galvin) had an official release date of September 21st, 2017. Previously he participated in these Grammy Nominated projects:

2017 – Michael Spiro and Wayne Wallace, Patois Records

2015 – The Wayne Wallace Latin Jazz Quintet, Patois Records

2014 – The Wayne Wallace Latin Jazz Quintet, Patois Records

2012 – John Santos and Grupo Folklorico Kindembo, Machete Records

2010 – The Wayne Wallace Jazz Quintet, Patois Records

2008 – John Santos and Grupo Folklorico Kindembo, Machete Records

2003 – Mark Levine and the Latin Tinge, Left Coast Clave Records (producer and artist)

1996 – Changuito/Patato Valdez/Orestes Vilato, Round World Records

1989 – Mark Murphy/Viva Brasil, Muse Records

https://www.mikespiro.com/bio

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Jerry Brown leads Oakland and slowly the city changes to make Equality possible – Part 3

Oakland was named the most ethnically and economically diverse city

Oakland is the most diverse city in the country and the world.

Even before the city “hit bottom” Jerry Brown and business leaders stepped up to create a plan to fix the city. After a six year out of public service Brown returned to public life, serving as Mayor of Oakland (1999–2007). It took a lot of work to attract new investments. The police corruption that plagued cities all across California had to be dealt with.

A group of four corrupt police officers called “The Rough Riders” finally were dealt with after outrage grew too much that the city kept settling law suits to sweep the offences under the table. The clashes between the racially white police and the largely ethnic population caused much dissatisfaction and distortions about the way Oakland was perceived. Politico reported in their March/April issue of 2015: “Oakland’s cops, a legal advocate for victims of police abuse said at the time, might just be “the worst department in the country. Officer-involved shootings were frequent, and often fatal.” In continued: “Complaints of beatings, shakedowns and unwarranted arrests were rampant and cost the city dearly. All told, from 2001 to 2011, Oakland paid some $57 million for claims, lawsuits and settlements involving alleged misconduct by the Oakland Police Department—not just the largest sum paid by any municipality in California, but more than double what San Francisco, with roughly twice the population, paid in the same time frame. The police force seemed broken, brutal beyond repair.”

Accusations of corruption in Oakland were rampant in 2005 the FBI investigated Perata. The East Bay Times reported: Records show Perata’s son’s and daughter’s businesses have been paid at least $750,000 since 1999 by political committees under his direct control, even as Nick Perata and his businesses have been involved in real estate rentals and sales with his father. Also, Perata’s consulting business brought in more than $100,000 in 2003, and between $10,000 and $100,000 in each of the four years before that; his bigger clients during those years included his son’s business as well as two belonging to Staples. The case was stopped by Schwarzenegger’s call for a special election.

The citizens were ready for the change. It started to gentrify without pushing out locals. The East Bay Times reports that the Fruitvale district is a great example that this is possible: “Schildt said it’s possible to invest in a community without causing displacement — particularly if it’s public investment or community-driven. Oakland’s Fruitvale Village is held up as a national model. As Scott Morris reports, the mixed-use development near Fruitvale BART improved the socio-economic well-being of residents in the immediate neighborhood and preserved the area’s racial and ethnic diversity.”

Education in Trouble

Even in 2009 SF Gate reported that Schwarzenegger decided to California ranks 47th in per-pupil spending, according to “Quality Counts,” a report issued Tuesday from Education Week, a national newspaper specializing in public schools. It showed that while the national average is $9,963 per pupil, California spends $7,571, according to the report. Vermont spends the most, with $15,139. Utah spends the least, with just $5,964 per pupil.

Around the state, school administrators have begun looking at how many employees they can lay off next year and which programs they can cancel.

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