SHORT HILLS, N.J.—Given COVID-19, New Eyes for the Needy has put a new spin on Rockin’ for New Eyes (RFNE), an annual benefit concert performed by musicians who work in the optical industry. “We came up with the idea of a ‘Recorded Live’ event and airing it on New Year’s Eve because none of us are going to any parties or large gatherings,” John Alofs, a New Eyes board member and RFNE musician, said. “It’s intended to bring the entire optical industry together, to listen to great 70s music in the comfort of your own home, knowing that you are sharing this experience with other optical folks throughout North America and the world!”
The 2020 in the Rearview Mirror concert will air on New Eyes’ YouTube channel on Dec. 31, from 8 p.m. until 10 p.m. (EST). The event benefits New Eyes’ prescription eyeglass program in the U.S., serving people in financial need.
While the concert is free for all, New Eyes is encouraging viewers to donate $23, going towards a pair of eyeglasses for an individual.
The concert features two bands; Visionary and Bass Curve Band, recorded in Orange County, California, and Atlanta, respectively.
Alofs and his Visionary bandmates were tested for COVID prior to the day-long rehearsal. They rehearsed nearly 20 songs, and recorded 13 songs “live.”
“When we all got together at Sounds Good Studio in Newport Beach, I had never met three of the five other members of the band, and had only played with Pete Heyward, our bass player,” said Alofs, who, when he is not wearing his musician hat, is CEO of Eyewear by ROI.
“Our look, sound and feel are much like that of a ‘garage band,’ raw and real,” he added. “The audience will enjoy our two sets of mostly 70s tunes and they’ll see although we had never met, let alone played together until rehearsal day, that The Visionary Band sounds pretty good. I hope that they sing along at home, as they should know every song that is played.”
For more information on RFNE, visit https://new-eyes.org/odeto2020
New Eyes is thrilled to have exceeded its fundraising goal for Rockin’ for New Eyes. Through the generosity of the sponsors, New Eyes has raised $105,000, going towards the nonprofit’s U.S. eyeglass program.
National Vision Inc. is a Diamond Sponsor of Rockin’ for New Eyes. Additional sponsors are:
Jobson Optical Group
Aerial Vision International
Cat Eyewear by Inspecs
Eyewear by R.O.I.
Eyewear Designs LTD
Denise Mogil, Member, New Eyes Board of Trustees
Robert Stein, Member, New Eyes Board of Trustees
Kristine Van Amsterdam, President, New Eyes Board of Trustees