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ROCK ON! This Week's Sound Bites...12/18/14

By Danny Coleman

originally published: 12/18/2014
"It started small, just a few musicians, it was a clothing drive and very small," said Ernie White as we spoke prior to this Sunday's 15th Annual edition of his now highly successful Christmas Show, taking place at The Princeton Manor Banquet Facility located at 661 Rte. 33 in Hamilton (formerly known as Cedar Gardens). "Yeah it's hard to believe it huh? Fifteen years?," he continued with a laugh.

White, one of the more popular and definitely one of the most well respected musicians in Mercer County and beyond, assembles an amazing array of local talented groups and solo acts, along with a "Rock 'N' Roll Choir" and a full house band to spread holiday cheer all in the name of charity.

"Uh, it's hard to calculate exactly how many bands and musicians will show from year to year," he said. "Last year we had a 40 song set list, this year we have a few more; we stand at 44 and it's a monster! Every year I say I'm going try and whittle it down and it gets bigger (laughing)! Plus my band will be the backing band for the solo artists; you know the people like Billy Hill who will once again be singing for us and the pit band led by Tommy Reock, we all know how amazing he is; he's my mainstay. I mean we rehearse at his place, he's my main partner in this. We have a full horn section and of course (laughing) the Rock 'N' Roll Choir."

Always a sell out (last year's crowd was close to 700 attendees) this event flies seemingly under the radar as does much of the benefit /charitable work which White does. "We started, as I said, just as a small gathering. Then our first bigger show was at The Conduit in Trenton. Then we moved over to what was then Katmandu and from there over to the War Memorial and now at Princeton Manor for the last couple of years. The War Memorial was more of a concert format, where you had seats. People began requesting the chance to talk, to mix and mingle; by having it in Princeton Manor, people can see the show up front and talk in the back."

Those who were there last year were treated to an appearance by former Bon Jovi band mate, Richie Sambora. "Yeah, how about that huh?," said white. "I didn't know until literally a couple of days before. Rich was in town because his mother was ill and she lives in the shore area. I got the call and he said he'd be coming by." This year Ernie claims that there are "No surprises; yet" but he did say that popular vocalist Mark Giovi will be back in town and contributing to the evening's festivities.

Over the decade and a half which Ernie has been doing this Christmas Show he says that funds raised for the various charities have been approximately $200,000. This year the recipient will once again be The Trenton Area Soup Kitchen; where last year's event netted approximatekly $16,000 for the organization. "We've donated here a few times," said White as he lamented the work that the T.A.S.K performs. "Yeah, several times they've received the money. We figured after donating to Sandy victims the year prior to last that we'd take it back home to Trenton then and again now. Dennis Micai does such a great job feeding so many people and we know he needs the help, so...." It should be noted that Ernie takes the check to T.A.S.K personally to see first hand the work which they do, and it motivates him to continue to do the great work that he does.

I'm told that this year's show will have the same great regulars and a few surprises, bands and players such as Honey Spot Blvd., John Bushnell, Paul Plumeri and Joe Zook will be returning once again, along with some new faces. "I can't give it all away," said Ernie with a chuckle, "But it will be a great cast once again! We've got Billy Hill coming back, Matt and Rachel from Radio Fiction, Duke Williams, Michael White will be joining his dear old dad on stageand a special appearance by some of my students and they are called Kids R Us."

All of this totals up to approximately 40 acts, each doing one holiday tune of their choice in what amounts to a human jukebox; as one act leaves the next takes over and so it goes over the course of this three hour program beginning at 7 p.m.Tickets for the event are $25 for this all ages show and all children must be accompanied by an adult. Tickets may be purchased at The Music Box, Princeton Manor, Cedar Gardens Pub or at any of Ernie White's band shows as well as on

Asbury Music Awards are tonight (Thursday 12/18) at the legendary Stone Pony located at 913 Ocean Avenue at 6 p.m.

Also in Asbury Park on Friday evening beginning at 6:30 p.m., The Saint plays host to "Cook Smith's Annual Winter Solstice Party. Admission is $10, $8 if you bring a canned good or non-perishable food donation. The Saint is located at 601 Main Street.

Saturday night The Cryers Christmas Show will be rocking The Record Collector at 8 p.m. located at 358 Farnsworth Avenue in Boredentown City, NJ Tickets are just $12 and if unable to attend in person; it can be heard live and in its entirety on DJ Dave a.k.a The Midnight Cobbler and Rock On Radio's Danny Coleman will be broadcasting beginning at 7:45 p.m.

That's it for this week! Please continue to support live and original music and until next week....ROCK ON!
Alchemist & Barrister
28 Witherspoon Street Princeton
(609) 924-5555

Thurs. 10 p.m. Arnie Baird

Sun. 9 p.m. Pat Foran

Wed. 10 p.m. Open Mic. Night (sign ups 9 p.m.)

All shows 21+

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Amalfi's Restaurant

146 Lawrenceville-Pennington Rd. Lawrenceville

(609) 912-1599

Fri./Sat. 8:30 p.m. (TBA)

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Amarones Windsor Inn

29 Church St. Windsor

(609) 448-7144

Thurs. 6:30 p.m. Scott Cager & Debbie

Fri. 8 p.m. Larry D

Sat. 8 p.m. Tony Malandro

Tues. 7:30 p.m. Texas Hold'em

Big Shots Bar and Grill/Hebe Music Lounge

Advertise with New Jersey Stage for $50-$100 per month, click here for info

835 E Rte. 130 South, Burlington

(609) 267-1200

Thurs. 8 p.m. Country Night feat. Tony DeSimone Band.

Fri. 7 p.m. "Acoustic Christmas Weekend" Night 1: Solus Rex, Soraia, Astronauts Really Fly, Andrew Moorer, Jack and Our Now, Josh Holland, Brain Foy, (more TBA)

Sat. 7 p.m. "Acoustic Christmas Weekend" Night 2: John Faye, Corey James, Danielle and Jennifer, Carl Stokking, Dave Charles, Corey R-J, Noah Carmichael, Moving and Storage, (more TBA).

Blend Bar & Bistro

911 Highway 33, Hamilton

(609) 245-8887

Fri. 6 p.m. Happy Hour w/ Rich Schneider, Tom Schneider, Jim Peraino.

Tues. 8 p.m. Triviajam

The Backstage at Championship Bar
931 Chambers St. Trenton

Fri. 6 p.m. All Out War, Secret Santa, Lifeless, Palehorse, Rock Bottom, Sicker Than Most, Bottom Feeder. All ages, $15/$18.

Sat. 5 p.m. Volt, Laguaria, Unholy Dispute, Shitty Wedding Band, (TBA). All ages, $10

Candlelight Lounge
24 Passaic St. Trenton
(609) 695-9612

Advertise with New Jersey Stage for $50-$100 per month, click here for info

Sat. 3 p.m. Monnette Sudler Guitar Quartet. (No cover-$10 minimum)

Chambers Walk Cafe
2667 Main St. Lawrenceville
(609) 896-5995

Fri./Sat. 6 p.m. Dick Gratton

Chickie's & Pete's

183 US Highway 130 North Bordentown

(609) 298-9182

Tues. 8 p.m. Acoustic Music Night feat. The Dawgs

Dubh Linn Square
167 Rte. 130 North Bordentown
(609) 298-7100

Sun. 4 p.m.Billy O'neal

Tues. 9 p.m. Open Mic. Night hosted by Shaun Ruymen

Wed. 9 p.m. Trivia Night

Fran's Pub

116 S. Main St. New Hope, Pa.

Advertise with New Jersey Stage for $50-$100 per month, click here for info


Sat. 8 p.m. Love Street

Sun. 3 p.m. Little Red Rooster

Mon. 8 p.m. Open Mic Blues Jam hosted by Jimmy Pritchard

All shows 21+

Havana New Hope
105 S. Main St. New Hope, Pa.
(215) 862-9897

Thurs. 10 p.m. "Beat the Clock" DJ Dance Party

Fri. 8:30 p.m. Jumper

Sat. 8:30 p.m. The Loop

Sun. 3 p.m. John Eddie Christmas Show. All ages, Doors at 2 p.m., $10 (children under 12)/$15 (12 and older)

Mon. 10 p.m. Karaoke in the Bar w/ DJ Ron Sherr and Bridget


All shows 21+

Ivy Tavern
3108 S. Broad Street, Hamilton
(609) 888-1435

Fri. 10 p.m. Kindred Spirit

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Sat. 10 p.m. Tangled
All shows 21+

John & Peter's
96 S. Main St. New Hope, Pa.
(215) 862-5981

Thurs. 9 p.m. Jerry Feiss

Fri. 9 p.m. Keith Kenny

Sat. (3 p.m.) Fellaheen (9 p.m.) 80's Backseat w/ Molly Rhythm

Sun. (3 p.m.) Jamie Salvatore (9 p.m.) the Orange Drop

Mon. 9 p.m. Open Mic. Night

Tues. 9 p.m. Eric Sommer

Wed. 9 p.m. Christmas Eve w/ The Brooks Ensemble
All shows 21+

JoJo's Tavern

2677 Nottingham Way Hamilton

(609) 586-2678

Sat. 10 p.m. Matt & Rachel

Wed. 10 p.m. Karaoke

Palermo's Of Hamilton
310 Klockner Rd. Hamilton
(609) 838-7979

Thurs. 9 p.m. Karaoke

All shows 21+

Patriot's Crossing

1339 River Rd. Titusville

(609) 737-2780

Fri. 7:30 p.m. TJ Nix and Friends Music Variety Show

Sat. 7:30 p.m. Blues In Disguise

Pete's Steak House
523 Whitehorse Ave. Hamilton
(609) 585-8008

Fri. 9:30 p.m. (TBA)

Sat. 9:30 p.m. (TBA)

RHO Waterfront

50 Riverview Plaza Trenton

(609) 393-7300

Thurs. 9 p.m. College Night w/ DJ Paul Desisto

Fri. 4 p.m. After Work Party

Sat. 9 p.m. "Naughty or Nice" Holiday Party. $10 (before 11 p.m.)

All Shows 21+

Tavern On The Lake

101 Main St. Hightstown
(609) 426-9345

Fri. 9 p.m. Kickback

Sat. 9 p.m. Anything Goes

Wed. 8 p.m. Karaoke Night

The Ivy Inn

248 Nassau St. Princeton

(609) 921-8555

Thurs. 10 p.m. Karaoke w/ Ron Sherr

Fri. 10 p.m. River Dogs

Sat. 10 p.m. DJ Copacetic

Tues. 8 p.m. Quizzo w/ Bob E Luv

Wed. 10 p.m. Theme Night w/ DJ Rockin' Ron

The HOB Tavern

146 Second Street

(609) 291-7020

Fri. 9 p.m. DJ A3RO

Sat. 9 p.m. Karaoke

The Millhill Basement

300 South Broad St Trenton

(609) 989-1600

Check Web site for upcoming events

The Record Collector

358 Farnsworth Ave. Bordentown

(609) 324-0880

Thurs. 8 p.m. Odessa Klezmer. All ages, doors at 7:30 p.m., $12 (advance)

Fri. 8 p.m. Dennis Gruenling w/ Steve Guyger & The Excellos. All ages, doors at 7:30 p.m., $12 (advance)

Sat. 8 p.m. The Cryers Christmas show/Steve Holley. All ages, doors at 7:30 p.m., $12 (advance)

The Sun National Bank Center
81 Hamilton Ave. Trenton
(609) 656-3200

Check web site for upcoming events

Tir Na Nog
1324 Hamilton Ave. Trenton
(609) 392-2554

Fri. 5 p.m. Eugene O'Neal

Tues. 9 p.m. Jerry Monk

All shows 21+

Trenton Social

449 South Broad Street Trenton

(609) 989-7777

Thurs. 8 p.m. Cinema Thursdays Presents: "Black Mirror /White Christmas"

Fri. 10 p.m. Friday night w/ Jay Kountree & Jaxx

Mon. 10 p.m. Service Industry Night w/ DJ-Jay Kountree

Triumph Brewing Company (New Hope, Pa. Location)
400 Union Square New Hope, Pa.
(215) 862-8300

Fri. 10 p.m. Juggling Suns. ($5 cover charge)

Sat. 10 p.m. Anders & Friends. ($5 cover charge)

Tues. 9 p.m. Acoustic Grateful Dead feat. members of Splintered Sunlight

Wed. 9 p.m. Closing at 4 p.m.

All shows 21+

Wildflowers Inn

2572 Pennington Rd. Pennington

Sat. 9 p.m. Live Acoustic Rock
Mon. 9 p.m. Karaoke

Danny Coleman is a veteran musician and writer from central New Jersey. He hosts a weekly radio program entitled “Rock On Radio” airing Sunday evenings at 7:000pm EST on multiple internet radio outlets where he features indie/original bands and solo artists.



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