Campaign raises more than $46,000 to save tank

Children’s music recording artist Lois LaFond spent time making music in the tank last week with several Rangely children (from left: Drew Zadra, Zane Wiley and Caleb Wiley). The Friends of the Tank successfully raised more than $46,000 in three weeks to secure and restore the unused water tank for the next generation of sound-makers.

Children’s music recording artist Lois LaFond spent time making music in the tank last week with several Rangely children (from left: Drew Zadra, Zane Wiley and Caleb Wiley). The Friends of the Tank successfully raised more than $46,000 in three weeks to secure and restore the unused water tank for the next generation of sound-makers.

RANGELY I The “Save the Tank” campaign may be over, but the task of saving the tank is just beginning.
One year ago, the empty 60-by-30-foot water tank west of Rangely, a recording and performance space for musicians and composers for more than three decades, looked like it would be sold and taken down.
By Sunday night, the three-week Kickstarter campaign launched by several of those musicians had raised $46,126 donated by 751 supporters worldwide. The initial fundraising goal was $42,000.
“The upshot of the whole thing for me is that this has been so highly supported, from the whole planet to the community in Rangely,” said musician Lois LaFond, who first sang in the tank in the 1980s. “Going back to what Bruce (Odland) has always said, the goal was to raise money in the world and give it to Rangely.”
LaFond, who came to Rangely last week to visit the tank, spoke at the March 26 meeting of the Rangely Town Council about how that would happen if the campaign was successful.
People coming to the tank will use Rangely hotels, restaurants and gas stations, she said, but the community will remain involved because the tank has to be restored with the help of local businesses and workers.
“The tank folks are really hoping businesses will be enthusiastic in helping us go to the next step,” LaFond said. “Without the businesses, we can’t do it. I think that’s really important.”
For Bruce Odland, the composer and sound artist who spearheaded the campaign, the reverberations in the tank — a space he equates to the Sistine Chapel in sound — have much to offer the community, especially its children.
“All the people who’ve been working on this, we’ve been to the tank, we’ve done our thing there,” Odland said. “It made no sense to save the tank and keep it closed; to use it just for ourselves. So we thought, ‘What do we do?’
“We make a serious effort to connect with people younger than us who can use it,” he said. “We want the people of Rangely to learn from it; to have experiences that will help them shape their lives in some way. This is not just for professional musicians.”
Now that the tank’s funding is secure, the Friends of the Tank want to make certain that supporters are kept in the loop as the project moves forward. That means making the tank’s website, www.tanksounds.org, a hub for organizing and updates. It’s also the place where The Tank Channel, which plays music from the tank and has received 12,000 hits in the last three weeks, will grow its collection of new sounds, some of which Odland hopes will be made by the people living just next door.
“We want to do this in a way that works for the composers and sound aficionados who want to come here, and, in a way, that works for Rangely,” Odland said. “We’ll find a way to generate nice reverberations for both.”

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