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ROCK ON! This Week's Sound Bites.... 2/6/14

By Danny Coleman

originally published: 02/06/2014
Welcome to my musical world! This is one man's attempt to alert you to the best in area entertainment!

"I love music documentaries," said Tom Reock as I took up residency in the front room of his Squirrel Ranch Studio in Hamilton. "I enjoy learning the where, the why and finding out the how..."

With that, he shifted gears as drummer/vocalist Joe D'angelo and guitarist Mario DiBartolo entered the room to join in on a discussion that could have very well gone on far longer than there are hours in a day. I listened to these veteran players address topics ranging from our local bar scene, to today's music and the area's talent pool but the most important part was that of their next endeavor; "Journeyman." Tom Reock and this fantastic supporting cast are ready to take those in attendance on an educational, informative and entertaining tribute to the music of guitar great Eric Clapton.

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Mercer County Community College's Kelsey Theater will once again be the setting for another music filled production spanning over two days; February 15 and 16. "We started in 2007 at the Off Broad Street Theater in Hopewell," said Reock. "Well, it goes back a little further than that. I don't remember the exact thing we were rehearsing for but somebody started playing something from The White Album, you know, by The Beatles; I challenged them to play the whole album and we did (laughs)! We decided to try doing it for an audience; we tried one show, lost lots of money but then it blossomed."

"Blossomed" it did! To date, Tom's Reock and Roll Revue has done multiple shows, reproducing some of rock's greatest classic albums on stage. Mixed with video and fact filled interludes, these shows are enjoyable, a learning experience and above all a rocking good time.

Being privy to one of these rehearsals is something that I considered a privilege. Upon arrival, Reock welcomed me into a very loose, comfortable, fun atmosphere; a true reflection of the band and their personalities. "The core band," explained Reock, "Is me, Mario, Jerry (guitarist, Steele), Mike (drummer, White) and my brother in-law (guitarist) Hal Jordan Ketofsky. I needed Joey for when we did "Quadrophenia" and then we added Bud (keyboardist, Belviso) and Lisa Bouchelle is just wonderful on backing vocals. I love this band, the musicians are all multi-instrumental and we all have diverse backgrounds. Rehearsals are great; we eat, drink and scream at each other (laughs)."

As if on cue, D'Angelo, just like on stage; backed up his band mate. "I am lucky. I play along with a lot of different artists and bands. People ask me why I put so much time in with Reock 'N' Roll; it's easy, all good players, top notch productions, always a quality overall production and always great shows. It's hard to sometimes find guys who are true pros; these guys are very serious and not a slip shod performance ever comes from any of them."

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Choosing a theme, or in this case an album, is, in the words of a chuckling Reock; "Always a good battle." The idea, or concept if you will, is to recreate a well known piece of rock 'n' roll history and "play it just like the studio album but live." "Quadrophenia was my choice," says Reock. "Joey chose (Crosby Stills Nash and Young's) Deja Vu, "Music From Big Pink" was Jerry, it was music from his childhood. "Eat A Peach" by the Allman Brothers, this is the music that we all grew up on, we've all had our choices; this show is Mario's. I wanted to feature Mario, I was never crazy about Clapton but this album of his is my favorite because it's got a little bit of everything that Eric has done; it's got reggae, blues and rock, it's true to who Clapton is."

"For me, it's what I connect with about him," explained DiBartolo. "That's what I understand, I mean Clapton was, and is a big influence on me. I enjoy researching where artists get their sources of influence or inspiration, this way I have a better understanding of them and their music. Many of Clapton's influences are actually mine as well; T-Bone Walker, Freddie King, etc. I grew up listening to these guys too; so yeah, it's why I feel connected to his style of play."

DiBartolo went on to elaborate about the show, how it relates to his generation and the cause and effect of various factors that have taken their toll on music today. "This show," he said, "This show is bigger than just us (the band). This is an educational experience, it's fifty percent music and fifty percent video and fact. I think that the show has a broad enough interest for people our age, yet if there are people who are not so interested when they walk in, they are interested when they walk away. These shows and this one too, are an educational tour of a classic album wrapped around a theatrical experience." "Things are different," he continued, "The bar scene in this area has changed. I think it started when sports bars gained popularity and people were distracted from really listening to music by televisions; in some cases many bars stopped having music. Then the drunk driving laws and smoking bans; they have all taken away from music in our area. This is why shows like this are so important..."

Saturday's 8 p.m. show is already sold out, however tickets for the 2 p.m. Sunday afternoon show are still available at a cost of $25 and can be obtained by contacting the Kelsey Theater Box Office at 609-570-3333, on line at or by visiting the theater at it's 1200 Old Trenton Rd. location of the MCCC West Windsor Campus.

As for Reock's next endeavor? "Geez, I don't know, I want to get through this (laughing). I think in the future I'd like to teach people, educate them about unheard of artists, the non household names..." and as his voice trailed off, a seemingly satisfied smile came to his face. If there is anyone who can continue to do just that, educate about music, it's definitely Tom Reock and this group of talented musicians.

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Another great activity in the area this weekend is once again taking place at The Sun National Bank in Trenton. "The Battle of Trenton" Indoor Auto Racing takes place on both Friday and Saturday evenings. Not since the old state Fairgrounds gave way to businesses and housing more than thirty years ago has Trenton hosted auto racing. Ticket prices range from $30 to $5 upper level kids seats but they do increase by $2 the day of the events; so order early!

Friday Patriot's Crossing in Titusville sees Sensei Juan and the Black Belts taking to the stage for a 7 p.m. show. Check out this great new band at an old familiar haunt as this establishment used to be Faherty's Pub. Under new management in an old spot, they're trying to give our local (and not so local) musicians a new venue to showcase their talents. Check out Sensei Juan and tell him that I said hello!

Saturday features many choices for your listening pleasure. First, the Mark Giovi Band is at Blend Bar and Bistro on Rte. 33 in Hamilton. Mark has worked with some of the biggest names in the music business and has recently returned to our area ready to rock and dazzle with his incredible vocal ability.

The Rag Time Relics are at Halo Pub on Rte.33/Nottingham Way in Hamilton for your listening pleasure. These veteran musicians are perfect for this "sweet" setting and are fun for all ages.

John Patrick Bastiani with Margaret Lewis will be entertaining dinner and post dinner patrons at The Revere Ristorante on River Road in West Trenton at 8 p.m. Fine dining gives way to fine music as this duo performs an array of rock and radio friendly tunes.

Or.... Mike Lenyo and The Trentones will be at The Stcky Wicket on South Broad Street in Hamilton. Lenyo is one of the finest at his craft and no matter who may be making up The Trentones on this particular evening, is sure to be of high caliber as well. Check them out as they perform classic rock standards and rock the "Wicket" to the rafters.

This space welcomes any suggestions and/or comments. Please send them to:

That's it for this week! Please continue to support live and original music and until next week....ROCK ON!


Alchemist & Barrister

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28 Witherspoon Street Princeton
(609) 924-5555

Sun. 9 p.m. Tucker & Patty

Wed. 10 p.m. Open mic. night Hosted by Eric Puliti

All shows 21+


911 Rte. 33 Hamilton

(609) 245-8887

Fri. 9 p.m. Jamie Alexis

Sat. 9 p.m. Mark Giovi Band

Tues. 9 p.m. Karaoke

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

Sat. 3 p.m.-7:30 p.m. Bob Devos Quartet. (No cover-$10 minimum)

Centro Bar And Grille

2360 Rte. 33 Robbinsville

(609) 208-9300

Thurs. 9:30 p.m. Jimmy K & Steve

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

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

The Backstage at Championship Bar
931 Chambers St. Trenton

(609) 394-7437

Thurs. 5 p.m. The Bunny The Bear, Jose Garzon, Making-Out With Medusa, Artists and Believers, STFU, Orpheus Sets Fire, Dreams Of Demise. All ages, $10/$12

Fri. 7 p.m. Capsaicin, God Sex Weapons, ReKindle, Active Sun, Pickaxe. All ages, $10

Sat. 5 p.m. Tristan Wikler, Khalid Quesada, Skyywalkers, Christine Rubcich, Talk Radio, The Goats, Eric Goldhahn. All ages, $10

Sun. 10 p.m. Dreadpool Parker, Lurch Lightning, A Mankind Complex, GSBS, Frozen Smoke. Ages 21+, $5

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

Fri. 9 p.m. The Amber Lamps

Sun. 4 p.m. Irish Sessions w/ Billy O'Neal

Tues. 8:30 p.m. Open Mic. Night hosted by Shaun Ruymen

Halo Pub

4617 Nottingham Way Hamilton Square

(609) 586-1811

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Sat. 7 p.m. Ragtime Relics

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

Thurs. "Beat The Clock" College Night DJ Dance Party

Fri. 8 p.m. Start Making Sense (Talking Heads Tribute) w/ Hmfo Band. Doors at 6 p.m., $15

Sat. 8 p.m. Tim Reynolds & TR3' w/ Leoce. Doors at 6 p.m., $35

Sun. 3 p.m. Ladies 2000

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

Wed. 6 p.m. Wino Wednesday and The Big Cigar Chill sponsored by Holts Cigar.

All shows 21+

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

Fri. 10 p.m. The Ernie White Band

Sat. 10 p.m. Blind Lemmon Pie
All shows 21+

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

Mon. Open Mic.

Wed. The Invitational (Featuring John & Peter's House Band)
All shows 21+

JoJo's Tavern

2677 Nottingham Way Hamilton

(609) 586-2678

Sat. 10 p.m. Kindred Spirit

Wed. 10 p.m. Karaoke

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

Thurs. 9 p.m. Karaoke

Sat. 9:30 p.m. Deep Release

Tues. Trivia Night

All shows 21+

Patriot's Crossing

1339 River Rd. Titusville

(609) 737-2780

Fri. 7 p.m. Sensei Juan and the Black Belts

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

Fri. 9:30 p.m. Radio Fiction

Sat. 9:30 p.m. Polish Nannies

The Revere Ristorante

802 River Rd. West Trenton

(609) 882-6365

Sat. 8 p.m. John Patrick w/ Margaret lewis

RHO Waterfront

50 Riverview Plaza Trenton

(609) 393-7300

Thurs. 9 p.m. College Night w/ DJ Jeff Scott

Fri. (5 p.m.) The Polish Nannies (8 p.m.) The Verdict (10 p.m.) DJ Jimmie Palumbo. $10 (cover charge includes buffet, bands and DJs)

Sat. 9 p.m. "Ladies Night" w/ DJ Steve Hype

All Shows 21+

Spigola Ristorante

3817 Crosswicks Hamilton Square Rd. Hamilton

Fri. 8:30 p.m. Hutch Ford w/ Kathy Robinson

Sat. 8:30 p.m. Meg Hanson w/ Billy Hill

Star Subs Café

621 Rte. 130 Buckley Plaza Hamilton

(609) 333-1230

Wed. 7 p.m. Acoustic Open Mic. Night hosted by Bri LoBue

Tavern On The Lake
101 Main St. Hightstown
(609) 426-9345

Fri. (8 p.m.) Sarcasm Comedy Night (9 p.m.) ArHouse

Sat. 9 p.m. The Grey Test

Wed. 8 p.m. Karaoke Night

The Cool Cricket

216 4th St. Fieldsboro

(609) 291-9110

Thurs. 8 p.m. Kinky Bingo

Fri. 9 p.m. Karaoke

Sat. 9 p.m. Sick Intent

The Sticky Wicket
2465 South Broad St. Hamilton
(609) 439-0007

Fri. 9 p.m. Alright Alright

Sat. 9:30 p.m. Mike Lenyo & The Trentones

All shows 21+

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

Fri. 7:30pm "The Battle of Trenton" Indoor Auto Racing. Doors at 6:30 p.m., $30, $25, $20, $5

Sat. 7 p.m. "The Battle of Trenton" Indoor Auto Racing. Doors at 6 p.m., $30, $25, $20, $5

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

Fri. 9 p.m. Galaway Guild feat. Joe Magee & Gary Gormley

Sat. 9 p.m. Seamus Kelleher

Tues. 9 p.m. Open Mic. w/ Taylor Reed

Wed. 9 p.m. Paul Weiss

All shows 21+

Trenton Social

449 South Broad Street Trenton

(609) 989-7777

Thurs. 7 p.m. Social Thursdays w/ DJ Tangency

Fri. 7 p.m. Social First Fridays

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

Tues. 9 p.m. LiveMusic/Open Mic.

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

Thurs. 10 p.m. Scott Barkan Trio

Fri. 10 p.m. 3 Stories High. $5 (coverage)

Sat. 10 p.m. Mike Miz Trio. $5 (cover charge)

Sun. 7 p.m. Open Jam Night. Hosted by Up The Chain
All shows 21+

Villa Romanza

429 Rte. 156 Hamilton

(609) 585-1717

Fri. 8 p.m. DJ Ron

Sat. 10 p.m. DJ Iron Mike

Wildflowers Inn

2572 Pennington Rd. Pennington

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

All shows 21+

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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