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ROCK ON! This Week's Sound Bites...7/13/17

By Danny Coleman

originally published: 07/13/2017

"I felt like I was disingenuous the last time we spoke but we had made a pact within the band not to talk about it until it was a definite thing," says Styx keyboardist Lawrence Gowan as he discussed the recent release of the band's first original studio album in 14 years called, "The Mission." "We all talked about it and we thought if we gabbed about the new record that it may alter it in some way; it was a hard year keeping the cork on that bottle (laughs)!"

"The Mission" debuted in the sixth position on the Billboard charts under the "Top Rock Album" category and has landed in multiple other categories as well ranging anywhere from number 11 to number 45. "Let me tell you, that was a happy bunch on the tour bus when those numbers came out," he stated with a laugh. "We were very happy and collectively we were all like, "Oh my God we hit the charts" and it was honorably and legitimately. I've been in this band for a lot of years and this is the best time that I've ever had and that goes for the rest of the band too, we all feel that way."

A short time ago, the band had been invited to NASA to view a new moon which scientists had named, "Styx" and it was around this time that they had been formulating the new album and began pursuing it in earnest. "We had been thinking of making a NASA type record and we've kind of done that. Songs such as Tommy's (Guitarist Shaw), "Mission To Mars," they definitely have the feel we were going for. One of my favorite Tommy Shaw quotes is, "There's no  reading required in rock" and with the way these tunes are written there's a story being told for sure. When NASA invited us to view the new moon called, "Styx," we started thinking about the unmanned craft that was on it's way through outer space and the close confines inside of it and I found that it kind of paralleled my life as a musician. We think this new album is that way, people can personalize each song."

The album's title is straight and to the point and as the unit wanted, it makes a statement. "We've been on the road quite often and it's not always easy to record and write new music. We often talked about it but we actually got serious about it and made it happen. Originally we were going to call it Mission to Mars but then Todd (Drummer Sucherman) said, "We need to call it just, "The Mission" and we all agreed."

Even original Styx bassist Chuck Panozzo has jumped in on the recording, lending his talents to the track, "Hundred Million Miles from Home." "We always hold a place for Chuck," laughed Gowan. "I think he has now played on every Styx record and that's great! We always enjoy having him aboard."

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"The Mission" was released on June 16 and there is a corresponding tour that goes along with it; once again with REO Speed Wagon and good friend Don Felder. "To this point the tour has followed the script," said Gowan with satisfaction in his voice. "We toured with REO, it was one of the best summer tours to date; and Don? Our association with Don Felder has been great! We're cemented together. We actually become his Eagles for five songs, it's a lot of fun doing them and we absolutely love it and then of course Don comes out and joins us, it gives the fans a chance to see something a bit different and they seem to enjoy it as much as we do." 

One of the first singles off of the new record is, "Gone, Gone, Gone" an upbeat rocker which features Gowan on lead vocal which is a departure from the original plan. "That's just the nature of Styx. Whoever does the lead vocal fronts the band. I wound up singing it by accident (laughs), although I didn't write the song. We tried Tommy's vocal first, then Tommy and I together and then me by myself. When I was done, they all said, "You're it, that's the one" and I wound up doing the lead vocal. I don't mind, it's a nice change and lets me interact with the crowd."

The "United We Rock" summer tour comes to New Jersey in August with two stops; the first at the Borgata Hotel Casino and Spa in Atlantic City and the U.S. tour finale on August 22 in Holmdel at The PNC Bank Arts Center. Tickets for any of the Styx concerts can be found on their web site at along with more information about, "The Mission" and the band.

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

This week's event listings

Backstage at Championship Bar
 931 Chambers Street Trenton
Thurs. 6 p.m. Polarity, Armory Infirmary, Vanish, To Live As Wolves, As/hes, Moral Support, Buried, We Take The Night. All ages, $12
Fri. 7 p.m. (TBA). All ages, $10
Sat. 7 p.m. Dog In A Man Suit, The Stone Eye, (TBA). All ages, $10
Sun. 4 p.m. "The Battle For The Summer Slaughter Tour 2017" feat. Arcane Way, Prosper or Perish, Era Of Discord, (TBA). All ages, $15
Bill's Olde Tavern
02694 Nottingham Way Hamilton
(609) 586-0192
Thurs. 9 p.m. Trivia
Wed. 9 p.m. Karaoke Contest (Cash prizes) 
Ages 21+ 
Blend Bar & Bistro
911 Highway 33 Hamilton 
(609) 245-8887
Tues. 8 p.m. Trivia  Jam
Wed. 7 p.m. Open Mic. Hosted by Shaun Ruymen
Bowman's Tavern
1600 River Road New Hope, PA
(215) 862-2972
Thurs. 6:30 p.m. Glenn McClelland Trio
Fri. 8 p.m. Bob Egan
Sat. 7:30 p.m. Dave Dales Trio
Sun. (12 p.m.) Brunch With Ottmar (6 p.m.) Lorenzo
Mon. 6 p.m. Andy Prescott
Tues. 6 p.m. Lovey Williams
Wed. 6 p.m. Patrick & Debra
Brickwall Tavern & Dining Room
19 E. Union Street Burlington
(609) 733-3562
Sat. (12 p.m.) Behn Gillece Jazz Duo (9 p.m.) The Battery Electric 
Sun. 5 p.m. Andrew Moorer
Candlelight Lounge 
24 Passaic Street Trenton
(609) 695-9612
 Sat. 3 p.m. Josh Lawrence. $10 (cover charge/$10 Minimum includes buffet) 
Tues. 6 p.m. "Tuesday Jazz Jam" Open Session feat. James Stewart / Tom Littwin Trios. $5 (Lite appetizers)
Chickie's & Pete's
183 US Highway 130 North Bordentown
(609) 298-9182
Tues. 8 p.m. Acoustic Music Night
Wed. 9 p.m. Quizzo Trivia 
City Streets 
510 Highway 130 South East Windsor
(609) 426-9400
Mon. 9 p.m. "Malibu Mondays" w/ DJ Brett Gash
Tues. 9 p.m. Trivia w/ Jessie and Chelsea
Wed. 6:30 p.m. "Wine Down Wednesdays" w/ Rich Genoval 
Main Street Hightstown 
(609) 241-7103
Please check web page for upcoming schedule
Dadz Bar & Grill
744 Main Street Lumberton
(609) 267-4344
Thurs. 10 p.m. "Pong Tournament"
Fri. (6 p.m.) Gypsy Duo (10 p.m.) The Forest View Movement
Sat. 10 p.m. Karaoke w/ DJ Byrd
Sun. 4 p.m. Mr Jones and Me
Tues. 9 p.m. Andrew Moorer
Wed. 9 p.m. Karaoke w/ Superstar Entertainment
Dempster's Pub
437 Pine Street Mount Holly
(609) 261-0500
Thurs. 8:30 p.m. DJ DNIAL
Fri. 9 p.m. DJ Chris
Dog & Bull Brew House
810 Bristol Pike (Rte. 13) Croydon, PA.
(215) 788-2855
Thurs. 8 p.m. Lynsay Salera
Fri. (4 p.m.) "Happy Hour Jam" feat. Joe Robinson (9 p.m.) Jake Bracey
Sat. (11 a.m.)"Saturday Brunch" feat. Jazz 180 (9 p.m.) Kevin Toft & The Alternators
Sun. (11 a.m.) "Sunday Brunch" feat. Mikey Ragz (4 p.m.) Ivory & Steel
Wed. 8 p.m. Ricky and Jenny Leigh
Freddies Tavern
12 Railroad Avenue Ewing
(609) 882-0978
Fri. 8 p.m. The Zone Acoustic
Sat. 8 p.m. Ernie White
Tues. 7 p.m. Open Mic. Hosted by Joe Vadala
Grover's Mill Coffee House
Princeton-Hightstown Road Princeton Junction
(609) 716-8771
Thurs. 7 p.m. Open Mic. Hosted by Anker
Halo Pub (Fete)
5 Hulfish Street Princeton
(609) 921-1710
Sat. 6 p.m. John & Maggs
Havana New Hope
105 S. Main Street New Hope, PA. 
(215) 862-9897
Thurs. 8 p.m. Lets Ride
Fri. (8:30 p.m.) "Welcome Back To The Seventies" w/ The Midnight Rock Show. Doors at 6 p.m., $15 (11 p.m.) DJ Dance Party
Sat. (8:30 p.m.) The Loop (12 a.m.) DJ Dance Party
Mon. 9 p.m. Karaoke
Wed. 8 p.m. "Local Original Music Series" Hosted by Pat Foran 
Hopewell Valley Bistro & Inn
15 East Broad Street Hopewell
(609) 466-9889
Fri. 8 p.m. Open Mic. Night
Hopewell Valley Vineyards
46 Yard Avenue Pennington
(609) 737-4465
Thurs. 6 p.m. Mark Macmanus
Fri. 6 p.m. Jim Matlack
Sat. (Closed for a private event)
Sun. 2 p.m."Jazzy Sundays" feat. Ambiance The Duo
Iron Plow Vineyards
26750 Mount Pleasant Road Columbus
(732) 306-9111
Fri. 6 p.m. Don The Medicine Man 
Sat. 1 p.m. Gypsy Mother
Sun. 2 p.m. Audio Pilot
Ivy Tavern 
3108 S. Broad Street, Hamilton
(609) 888-1435
Fri. 9 p.m. Blues In Disguise
Sat. 9 p.m. Smoked Ice
All shows 21+
John & Peter's 
96 S. Main Street New Hope, Pa.
(215) 862-5981
Thurs. 9 p.m. The Bloodshots
Fri. 9 p.m. The Adventure Soundtrack
Sat. (3 p.m.) Eagle Road (9 p.m.) "New Hope Takeover IV" Hosted by Brian Erick feat. The Paper Jets, Casino Sundae, Alright Junior, Disposable, Finding Feebas
Sun. (3 p.m.) Behind The Grandstand (9 p.m.) Trio Of Madness
Tues. 9 p.m. Lisa Bouchelle
Mon. 9 p.m. Open Mic.
Wed. 9 p.m. The Invitational
All shows 21+
Killarney's Publick House
1644 Whitehorse-Mercerville Road Hamilton
(609) 586-1166
Thurs. 5 p.m. 
Fri. 9 p.m. Out Of The Red
Sat. 10 p.m. DJ Jimmy G
Laurita Winery
85 Archertown Road New Egypt
(609) 752-0200
Thurs. 7 p.m. "Laurita Idol" Junior Idol Tryouts
Fri. 6:30 p.m. "The British Invasion Years"
Sat. "Red, White & Blue and Food Trucks Too" feat. (11 a.m.) Shore Syde Band (2:30 p.m.) The Suspects (6 p.m.) The Surge
Sun. "Red, White & Blue and Food Trucks Too" feat. (11 a.m.) Take 5 Band (1:30 p.m.) Pennington Station (5 p.m.) Ballyhaunis
Wed. 6:30 p.m. "Girls Night Out"
Levitt Amp Trenton Summer Concert Series
Mill Hill Park (Corner of Front & South Broad Streets)
Thurs. 5 p.m. Jeff Bradshaw
Mamma Rosa's 
572 Klockner Road Hamilton 
(609) 588-5454
Thurs. 6 p.m. Open Mic. Hosted by Richard Schneider 

McGuinn's Place
1781 Brunswick Avenue Lawrence
(609) 392-0599
Fri. 9 p.m. "Make Rap Great Again" 
Tues. 9 p.m. Karaoke
Ages 21+
McStews Irish Sports Pub
5316 New Falls Road Levittown, PA
(215) 949-9570
Thurs. 10:30 p.m."Beer Pong" w/ DJ RV & MC Slim
Fri. 10 p.m. "Frisky Fridays" feat. DJ Favs. Ages 21+
Tues. 7 p.m. Quizzo hosted by Mike
Millhill Basement
300 S. Broad Street Trenton
(609) 989-1600
Tues. 10 p.m. "Local Artist" Hip Hop, Experimental EDM and Bass Music Showcase 
New Hope Winery
6123 Lower York Road New Hope, PA
(215) 794-2331
Check web site for upcoming events
Nook's PourHouse
2043 Route 130 South Florence
(609) 447-0927
Tues. 8 p.m. Trivia Tuesday w/ Quizoholics
Nottingham Tavern
9 Mercer Street Hamilton Square
(609) 587-6623
Thurs. 7 p.m. Jerry Monk
Ages 21+
Palermo's Of Hamilton
310 Klockner Road Hamilton
(609) 838-7979
Thurs. 9 p.m. Karaoke
All shows 21 +
PANJ Radio
Bridge Street Lambertville
(609) 460-4673
Sun. 7 p.m. "Rock On Radio" feat. Tam Justin of Garden State Line
Patriot's Crossing
1339 River Rd. Titusville
(609) 737-2780
Fri. 8 p.m. (TBA)
Sat. 8 p.m. Blues In Disguise
Pete's Steak House
523 Whitehorse Avenue Hamilton
(609) 585-8008
Fri. 9:30 p.m. The Suspects
Sat. 9:30 p.m. No Way Out
Randy Now's Man Cave
134 Farnsworth Avenue Bordentown
(609) 424-3766
Thurs. 8 p.m. "Free Live Concert" feat. Hastings 3000 / Black Widows
Sat. 8 p.m. "Special Drum Clinic and Lecture" w/ Rich Scanella. All ages, FREE Event 
Salt Creek Grille
1 Rockingham Row Princeton
(609) 419-4200
Fri. 8 p.m. Joseph Preziosi
Sat. 8 p.m. Scott Gurney
Small World Coffee
14 Witherspoon Street Princeton 
Sat. 8:30 p.m. Darla Rich Trio
1867 Sanctuary 
101 Scotch Road Ewing
(609) 392-6409
Sat. 8 p.m. Trenton Makes. $20
Tara's Tavern 
1 Cookstown-New Egypt Road, Wrightstown
(609) 286-2300
Fri. 10 p.m. Fourty Four Fridays
Sat. 10 p.m. Karaoke w/ Big Daddy G
Tavern On The Lake
101 Main Street Hightstown
(609) 426-9345
Fri. 9 p.m. Extreme Measures
Sat. 9 p.m. Smoke & Mirrors
Wed. 8 p.m. Karaoke Night 
Temperance House 
5 South State Street Newtown, PA
(215) 944-8050
Thurs. 7 p.m. Open Mic Blues Session w/ Steve Guyger
Fri. 7 p.m. John and Bud
Sat. 7 p.m. Brianna Nelson (The Voice)
Wed. 7 p.m. Live Jazz w/ John Sheridan and BCCC
Terhune Orchards
330 Cold Soil Road Princeton
(609) 924-2310
Fri. 5 p.m. "Sips and Sounds Summer Music Series" w/ Jerry Steele
The Cool Cricket
216 Burlington Street Fieldsboro
(609) 291-9110
Fri. 9 p.m. Karaoke
Sat. 9 p.m. ArHouse
The HOB Tavern
146 Second Street Bordentown
(609) 291-7020
Fri. 9 p.m. DJ Entertainment
Sat. 9 p.m. Karaoke
Tues. 9 p.m. Open Mic. Night
Wed. 8 p.m. John & Maggs
The Ivy Inn
248 Nassau Street Princeton
(609) 921-8555
Thurs. 10 p.m. Karaoke w/ DJ Rockin' Ron
Fri. 10 p.m. The Dueling Piano Dudes
Sat. 10 p.m. DJ Darius
Tues. 8 p.m. Quizzo w/ Bob E Luv
Wed. 10 p.m. "Wednesday Wheel Night Spin To Win Karaoke" w/ DJ Rockn Ron
The Pines Tavern
6217 North Radcliffe Street Bristol, PA
(215) 788-1659
 Sat. 9 p.m. Gypsy Joe Alvarez & the Soul Prophets
Sun. 3 p.m. Open Mic. Hosted by Bill Monach Jr.
The Raven 
385 West Bridge Street New Hope, PA
(215) 862-2081
Thurs. 5 p.m. Russell Eiffert. 
Fri. (9 p.m.) Michael Ferreri (10 p.m.) DJ Dance Party
Sat. (9 p.m.) Russell Eiffert (10 p.m.) DJ Dance Party
Mon. 9:30 p.m. "Lipstick Monday" Drag Show
Wed. 6 p.m. Bob Egan
The Record Collector
358 Farnsworth Avenue Bordentown
(609) 324-0880
Check web site for upcoming events
The Roost 
181 Rte. 539 Cream Ridge
(609) 208-0050 
Fri. 9 p.m. Audio Pilot Trio
Sat. 9 p.m. Victor On Guitar
The Sticky Wicket 
2465 South Broad Street Hamilton
(609) 439-0007
Thurs. 9 p.m. "Throwback Thursday" w/ DJ Chillio
Fri. 9 p.m. Unleashed
Sat. 9 p.m. Einstein Bridge
Tues. 7 p.m. Karaoke
The Sun National Bank Center 
81 Hamilton Ave. Trenton
(609) 656-3200
Check website for upcoming events
Tir Na Nog 
1324 Hamilton Avenue Trenton
(609) 392-2554
Sat.  9 p.m. Rick Winow
Sun. 3 p.m. "Irish Sessions" Hosted by Diarmuid MacSuibhne
Wed. 9 p.m. Paul Weise
All shows  21+
Trenton Buzz
702 Pine Street Trenton
(609) 392-6000
Fri. 8 p.m. Live Band & Open Mic. 
Trenton Social
449 South Broad Street Trenton
(609) 989-7777
Thurs. 8 p.m. "Audio History of Funk and Soul" w/ Professor DJ Tangency
Mon. 9 p.m. Monday Night Karaoke w/ Benny P
Tues. 7 p.m. Open Mic. Night w/ Benny
Triumph Brewing Company (New Hope, Pa. Location)
400 Union Square New Hope, Pa.
(215) 862-8300
Fri. 10 p.m. Flux Capacitor $5 (cover charge)
Sat. 10 p.m. Kwame Binea Shakedown $5(cover charge)
Sun. 7 p.m. Open Stage Night (Sign ups at 6:30 p.m.)
Tues. Paleface
All shows 21+ 
Triumph Brewing Company (Princeton, NJ Location)
138 Nassau Street Princeton
(609) 924-7855
Fri. 10 p.m. Challenge Accepted
Sat. 10 p.m. Matt Romagna / Jerry Feiss
All shows 21+
Wildflowers Inn
2572 Pennington Road Pennington
(609) 773-2392
Sat. 9 p.m. Acoustic Rock
Mon. 9 p.m. "Moonshine Mondays" Trivia
Tues. 9 p.m. Ed Wilson
Ages 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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