New Jersey Stage
New Jersey Stage on social media


Did you know NJ Stage offers FREE Event Listings? Nearly 100,000 listings were viewed in January. Be sure to add your events to our calendar and get your shows noticed!

Review of Friends of Muther Poetry & Acoustic Music Show

By Gary Wien


(ASBURY PARK, NJ) December 13, 2005 -- It was the annual Christmas poetry and music show hosted by Kris Oehme at the Saint, but it was far from jolly. The host was dressed up in a very interested Santa Klaus suit and handed out candy - perhaps as a reminder not to take candy from strangers. After all, the words spoken last night in the various songs and poems gave the impression that it will be one dark, dark Christmas season.

An assortment of local, solo musicians and poets filled the show billed as Friends of Muther Poetry & Acoustic Music Show. I loved the songs and most of the poems, but the show definitely seemed darker than in previous years. Maybe it was the lack of an Xmas film this year or because the weather is so friggin' cold; maybe it's because people are struggling to have money to buy gifts or because the country is still fighting a war we neither understand nor believe in. Whatever the reason, everything seemed darker.

Janey Todd opened the night with a great set and once again provided a wonderful buffet of food (book her all of the time!). She will be releasing a record with Indigo Planet Records sometime in 2006 and I'd guess some of her songs performed last night will be on the record.

Rick Barry abandoned the songs off his recent album for some material he wrote on his recent trip to California. He's definitely in quite a groove right now. It's always exciting to see a songwriter when they get in a stretch like Rick is in - each song sounds better than the last one written. I think the only song he did last night that he's performed regularly before was "A Stupid American Song" and you should have seen people shake their head in amazement when he uttered the "my cock is my weapon in the battle for your cunt" line. A few people at the bar quickly asked each other if they had really heard what they thought they heard. Meanwhile, I think the words may have escaped Scott Stamper as Rick seemed to rush them out a bit...

Tony Tedesco was the next musician on stage and prefaced his set by stating that the songs would be very dark. It's kind of ironic (and shows you how dark the night was) when one of the peppiest songs dealt with someone's hands shaking with a razor blade inside it. This was truly a suicidal kind of Christmas night. I told Kriz Oehme that he should get Stolinacha or Absolut to sponsor the show next year. It definitely makes you want to drink. But I loved Tony's set. Like Rick Barry, Tony concentrated on new material - stuff he said was written in the past week or so.

Amsterdam followed a bit later with a solo acoustic set. Several people in the audience hadn't seen Brian Amsterdam in many years and talked about how young he was when he used to play at the Stone Pony. His set also featured new music including some songs that Brian was still working on. Interesting stuff... Very alternative, but not as techno as his record. That might be from playing solo, but I think he's going after a lot of different sounds.

In between the music was lots of poets from Greg Schwartz, Mark Rasmussen, Jon Davies, Jessie Smith and more. There was everything from poems dealing with current politics to not getting laid for Christmas. All in all, it was kind of like watching "It's A Wonderful Life" backwards - things just seemed to keep getting worse. Or not really worse, just darker.

So, if you were one of the depressed this holiday season it was probably a great fit. If not, you probably wound up doing a lot of shots and having second thoughts as to how great the holidays really are. In a world where all the networks show are happy go-lucky Christmas specials, maybe we need more reality-based nights like this one. Then you really get to know what you're thankful ful at this time of year.



For more by this author, click here






State Theatre New Jersey presents Cirque Dreams Holidaze
(NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ) -- State Theatre New Jersey presents Cirque Dreams Holidaze on Friday, December 7 at 8:00pm, Saturday, December 8 at 2:00pm and 8:00pm, and Sunday, December 9 at 2:00pm. Cirque Dreams Holidaze, a division of Cirque du Soleil, has become a critically acclaimed, state-of-the-art Broadway musical, and a fun-filled, holiday family show. Tickets range from $35-$98.
NJSO presents 2019 Winter Festival, 'Music Speaks'
(NEWARK, NJ) -- A trio of renowned guest artists with distinct musical voices—pianists Emanuel Ax and Daniil Trifonov and soprano Dawn Upshaw—headline the NJSO’s Winter Festival, “Music Speaks,” in January 2019. The Orchestra’s signature artistic event takes place across three weekends, January 10–27, in six New Jersey venues.
RVCC Chorale to Perform Annual Holiday Concert on December 8th
(BRANCHBURG, NJ) --The RVCC Chorale will give its annual holiday concert on Saturday, December 8 at 8:00pm in the Welpe Theatre at Raritan Valley Community College’s Branchburg campus. The program will feature Johann Sebastian Bach’s cantata, Das Neugeborne Kindelein, as well as a cappella pieces from by Sergei Rachmaninov, Zoltan Kodaly and Giuseppe Verdi. The program also will include an audience singalong of traditional carols.
Classic Stones Live! The Complete Rolling Stones Tribute Show Comes To SOPAC
(SOUTH ORANGE, NJ) -- The Rolling Stones, the greatest Blues band of all time, couldn’t make it to SOPAC on their 2018 tour. Instead, the acclaimed tribute band Classic Stones Live! makes an appearance on the SOPAC stage December 15 at 8:00pm for those who like to hear their Rolling Stones hits live.
Tony Trischka Presents "Of a Winter's Night" at the Morristown Unitarian Fellowship
(MORRISTOWN, NJ) -- Of a Winter’s Night is Tony Trischka's acoustic celebration of the holiday season. Based on his CD release of the same name, this concert features Trischka’s considerable melodic inventiveness on a wide variety of seasonal tunes. He turns his inventiveness loose on bluegrass and Americana music for the holidays. This one of a kind concert will take place at the Morristown Unitarian Fellowship on Saturday, December 8 at 7:30pm.


"An Amazing Musical Genius!" Brian Wilson LIVE! at the State Theatre
In the music room in the back of our house, there’s an electric bass and amp, two acoustic guitars, a microphone and PA speakers, several pieces of music recording equipment, and a bookcase filled with books on music, not to mention a slew of assorted music memorabilia. But, perhaps, one of the most highly prized items in the room is hanging directly above the piano next to the college music diplomas.
Jazz Saxophonist Don Braden LIVE! at Toms River’s Grunin Center
It’s a breezy day for a new installment of the Jazz On a Sunday Afternoon concert series at Toms River, NJ’s Grunin Center of the Arts this Sunday Oct. 27, 2018 afternoon. Today’s special 3pm performance is entitled Earth, Wind and Wonder and is presented by jazz saxophonist Don Braden.
Charlie Thomas’ Drifters, The Classics IV, and The Brooklyn Bridge LIVE! at The Strand, Lakewood
The stars are out this Saturday Oct. 26, 2018 evening in Lakewood, NJ for a “Golden Oldies” concert featuring Charlie Thomas’ Drifters, The Classics IV, and The Brooklyn Bridge!
PODCAST: Grammy Winner Terri Lyne Carrington At TD James Moody Jazz Festival
Drummer, leader, and composer Terri Lyne Carrington made history as the first woman to win a Grammy for Best Instrumental Jazz for her album “Money Jungle: Provocative in Blue.” Now, she brings her interpretation of Duke Ellington’s “Money Jungle” to the TD James Moody Jazz Festival at NJPAC on November 11, 2018, as part of a program called “Jazz Vinyl Revisited.” Producer Susan Wallner talks to Carrington about her connections to the jazz greats Clark Terry and Max Roach; her newest project, the Berklee Institute of Jazz and Gender Justice; and why she thinks drummers make natural leaders.
Sha Na Na LIVE! at the Newton Theatre
The audience is streaming into the Newton Theatre auditorium in Newton, NJ this Friday, Oct. 19, 2018 for a live concert starring Sha Na Na!










Event calendar
Thursday, Nov 15, 2018


MUSIC

New Politics @ House of Independents, Asbury Park - 8:00pm

THE REPUTATIONS @ The Saint, Asbury Park - 7:30pm

TOTO @ Mayo Performing Arts Center (MPAC), Morristown - 8:00pm


THEATRE

An Actor's Carol @ Cape May Stage, Cape May - 7:30pm

ANNIE, The Musical @ Axelrod Performing Arts Center, Deal Park - 8:00pm

Apples In Winter @ Centenary Stage Company - Kutz Theater of the Lackland Center, Hackettstown - 7:30pm

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat @ The Levoy Theatre, Millville - 7:30pm

Spring Awakening: The Rock Musical @ Black Box PAC, Teaneck - 8:00pm







DANCE

PARSONS DANCE @ State Theatre New Jersey, New Brunswick - 8:00pm


FILM

Crybaby Matinee: March of the Penguins @ Hopewell Theater, Hopewell - 11:00am

View all events
























New Jersey Stage © 2018 by Wine Time Media, LLC | PO Box 140, Spring Lake, NJ 07762 (732) 280-7625 | info@newjerseystage.com

Images used on this site have been sent to us from publicists, artists, and PR firms.
If there is a problem with the rights to any image, please contact us and we will look into the matter.