North Suffolk cafe hosts live music nights

Published 11:24 pm Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Healing Time Coffee Café is adding a little mood music to help create a place for community residents to relax and take time for themselves.

The café is hosting live music nights every Thursday in June from 7 to 9 p.m., featuring performances by local musician Thomas Oliver.

Healing Time owner Toney Saunders said when he opened Healing Time last year, his goal was to make a place designed to serve the needs of the community and also create a spot for local artists to show off their talents.

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Healing Time, located on Bridge Road in the Bennett’s Creek area, regularly displays the artwork of residents, but a few months ago, Saunders reached out to performing artists by having an open mic night.

It was at the open mic night, at which Oliver performed, that the partnership between Oliver and Saunders formed.

When Saunders asked what it would take to develop a live music night, Oliver told him it was as easy as setting a date.

From there, the first live music night was held May 26.

Aside from providing music for the community, Oliver hopes the performances will make a difference for the local economy.

Oliver, who lives in Chuckatuck, said he especially was motivated to perform at Healing Time because he wanted to help out a local small business.

He said he hopes his performances will bring more people to Healing Time.

“Everything is a national chain here, and that’s because that’s who people give their money to,” he said. “They don’t give small businesses a chance.”

He said he is a firm believer in supporting the local economy and helping small businesses stay afloat.

“Everyone is worried about the economy, but no one seems to give their money to local small businesses,” Oliver said.  “I just want to see Toney’s business thrive. It’s a good establishment.”

Both Saunders and Oliver said they have noticed an increase in traffic from the first performance to the last.

Saunders said he greatly appreciates Oliver performing and supporting his business.

“It’s a way of getting more traffic in the door,” he said. “I am very thankful he’s doing it.”

Saunders said he thinks many people in the community don’t know about the café, and he hopes the music nights will alert people to the shop’s location. He added he hopes the live music nights will be a regular occurrence at Healing Time even after June.

Also, while Oliver is the main act during the music night, other artists are welcome to come and perform a song or two of their own.

At the music nights, Oliver performs cover songs with his band, including his drummer Ricky Provost. He said he plays an eclectic blend of music with something for everyone, performing everything from Jimi Hendrix to radio artists.

For more information on the live music nights, contact Toney Saunders at 708-0212.