Kaleb Kelleher, Aaron-Andre Miller, Hobbs Magaret, Jim Goodwin and Patrick Pearsall at The Blue Keep.photo provided
Kaleb Kelleher, Aaron-Andre Miller, Hobbs Magaret, Jim Goodwin and Patrick Pearsall at The Blue Keep.photo provided

Hobbs the Band will launch its progressive blues-rock into the fertile musical ether of Sisters Country with a potent show at The Belfry on Friday, January 9.

In addition to serving as the launch-pad for a new music powerhouse, the event, titled "Capricornucopia," will also feature an extraordinary psychedelic visual element provided by Circus Luminescence. Founded by Eli March, the innovative troupe creates an ultraviolet universe of infinite imagination, with award-winning juggling, theatre, flow arts, live music, and high times.

Each member of the newly configured Hobbs the Band has been an important fixture of the Central Oregon music scene for years. The band features Hobbs Magaret (guitar), Jim Goodwin (saxophone and synthesizer), Aaron-Andre Miller (keyboards), Patrick Pearsall (bass) and Kaleb Kelleher (drums). The band that will perform at Capricornucopia represents an evolution of style and content through the combination of the talents and personality of each member.

"These guys are really great musicians," said Goodwin. "It's a privilege, really to play with them... It's a joy. The music is rippin'... I think for me, the word is, it soars. It's just got this largeness to it."

The progressive aspect of the music - sophisticated chord voicings and jazz-inflected stylings, make the music challenging and engaging both to play and to hear.

"It requires a lot of work," Goodwin said, "a lot of rehearsal, a lot of study, a lot of practice."

That work gets done in a rehearsal space in the Sisters Industrial Park dubbed The Blue Keep. The facility was once a daycare center, and it continues to live up to its heritage: "Still a bunch of kids with toys," Goodwin said with a smile.

Hobbs notes that, though the musicians thrive on the challenging, progressive nature of their music, "we don't get far from a relatable root that people can get behind ... effectively, it's kind of a hard soul music."

Hobbs the Band, a blues-based power trio with Pearsall, Kelleher, and Hobbs, was known for playing loud - and a lot.

The new configuration is liberating for the guitarist, who can now play off other leads.

"I can say everything I need to say in a shorter amount of time and let other people say what they have to say," he reflected. "And the music is better."

The full configuration came together serendipitously, as these things often do, with invitations to musician friends to sit in on a set.

Hobbs invited Goodwin to bring his sax along and sit in with the power trio at the Bend Roots Festival. Goodwin wasn't sure his work would fit in, but he enjoyed it. Then he played with Hobbs at Silver Moon Brewing Co. in Bend and ripped into a sax solo on "Day Tripper."

"That was the moment that it was, "this is good,'" Hobbs recalled. Aaron-Andre Miller came in to fill out the sound with keyboards and Hobbs the Band was born.

Goodwin had a storied career as a member of the San Francisco-based band The Call. Though he's kept his hand in the business with recording, playing and operating a record label, Hobbs the Band was a big deal to him.

"For me, personally, it's the first time I've been officially a member of a band for a long time," he said. "I never thought I'd be back being a member of a band officially."

He figures it'll be the last time, too.

"Hopefully this will go on for a while - and then I'll be ancient," he said.

Hobbs and Goodwin spilled a secret plan for the Capricornucopia show: Their encore will be a performance of the entire Pink Floyd "Dark Side of the Moon" album.

"It should be a pretty interesting night," Goodwin said.

He noted that the band wants audience members to bring headlamps (and everybody in Sisters Country has one, right?).

"We'd like the audience headlamps to be the light effect for part of the show," he said.

The evening promises to be an extraordinary experience for audience and band alike. It was important to the musicians to launch the band in Sisters.

"We're happy to be debuting the band at The Belfry," Goodwin said. "We really think of ourselves as a Sisters band."

Both Hobbs and Goodwin spoke in glowing terms about the nurturing climate of the Sisters music community.

"It's a healthy environment to grow music," Goodwin said.

Hobbs is grateful for the opportunity to connect with other musicians on a profound level.

"I'm just glad to be playing music with these guys, at the end of the day, he said.

Showtime for Capricornucopia is 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $10 at the door.