New Jersey Stage
New Jersey Stage on social media


For great Jersey music and much more, tune into our radio station at AsburyMusic.com

XPoNential Music Festival 2010

By Gary Wien


(CAMDEN, NJ) -- One of the best music festivals of the summer takes place July 16-18 in Wiggins Park along the Camden Waterfront area. Known as the XPoNential Music Festival, it has been held annually in Camden by the Philadelphia radio station WXPN for several years now, ever since moving across the river from its original home. It may seem a bit odd for a Philadelphia radio station to hold a festival in New Jersey, but WXPN is far from just a Philadelphia station. In fact, you can easily hear WXPN or one of its affiliates in parts of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland making it one of the most powerful stations along the east coast.

It's also one of the best radio stations in the country.

Known for showcasing up-and-coming artists, WXPN uses this festival to bring artists that people should know about to the area. I was asked to write about the "five can't miss acts from the festival." Unfortunately (or fortunately for music fans) when I took a look at the schedule for the three days I realized that picking just five acts was going to be next to impossible. In fact, my short list has 18 artists -- or just under half of the performers -- as ones to catch! With two stages and artist set times that overlap, you're bound to always have someone good to see, but will unfortunately miss someone just as good. In the end, I decided to create a list of 6 can't miss artists featuring two artists for each day.



Friday, July 16


My first can't miss artist for Friday is Grace Potter and the Nocturnals -- in fact, they are my ultimate can't miss for the entire festival. The band is probably best known for songs like "Ah, Mary" and "Mr. Columbus" from the brilliant This Is Somewhere album. That record made my Top 10 list for 2007 and is one of my favorites of the past decade. I caught Grace Potter and her band at the Stanhope House in North Jersey that year and discovered that they are every bit as good live as they are on record. If you're looking for a great traditional rock and roll band -- don't miss them. Grace Potter and the Nocturnals are scheduled for 8:00pm on the Camden County River Stage.

My second can't miss artist for Friday is Ben Arnold, a singer-songwriter from Philadelphia who is also a favorite of the Asbury Park music scene. Ben has not only released several fine solo records, but is part of a local "supergroup" of sorts called U.S. Rails (formerly known as 4 Way Street) comprised of other Philadelphia area musicians, although Ben is the only one still in the Philly area. He's known for his "throaty" voice, which provides a tremendously unique bluesy/soul to his songs. Personally, I think he's got an amazing voice. Check him out at 7:40pm on the JerseyArts.com Marina Stage. And, right off the bat I've chosen two artists with overlapping schedules! Oh well, you can catch 20 minutes of Ben and then pop over to the other stage to catch Grace Potter.

Of course, Friday also contains performances by Alejandro Escovedo (an incredible artist from Austin that just might inspire Bruce Springsteen to make a guest appearance on stage), Free Energy (a wild band featuring a ‘70s classic rock feel, sort of like a glam band), and Big Head Todd and the Monsters (a huge band from the ‘90s that put out one of the biggest hits of the decade -- "Bittersweet").



Saturday, July 17


My first can't miss artist for Saturday is Joshua James, a singer-songwriter originally from Lincoln, Nebraska, who is on the JerseyArts.com Marina Stage at 3:00pm. His songs often feature soft-spoken vocals and poetic lyrics, but he's not afraid to rock out as well. I'd pin him somewhere between a folk artist and the roots category if I had to come up with a label. What catches my attention is the way his music doesn't stick to any particular script. I love the way he challenges himself and is both creative and adventurous with his songs.

My second can't miss artist for Saturday is The Felice Brothers who close out the Camden County River Stage at 8:50pm. Their music has been compared to Townes Van Zandt, the Avett Brothers, and even Bob Dylan and the Band. I can just imagine their guitars strumming and sweet roots crooning on stage as the sun fades into darkness. They are the type of band that summer festivals were made for. Just sit back in your chair, let the cool night air sweep over you, and get entranced by their tunes.

Saturday's lineup is full of many interesting choices not the least is a pair of New Jersey acts that will lend you some serious indie-Jersey cred -- Nicole Atkins and Yo Lo Tengo. The former is one of the most exciting artists to come out of the Garden State in quite some time. Hailing from Neptune, Nicole Atkins has one of the best voices in the business and can pen some pretty haunting tunes. She's been on the Artist to Watch list for both WXPN and Rolling Stone magazine, so catch her here and you can say you saw her when. Meanwhile Yo Lo Tengo is a New Jersey indie rock institution. This Hoboken band has been putting out great records since the ‘80s. See why they are among the most loved unknown bands in the state.

Saturday also features notable sets by Harper Blynn (a great pop sound from the band formerly known as Pete and J), Birdie Busch (very cool singer-songwriter from Philly), and Rosanne Cash (Johnny's daughter who is a tremendous songwriter as well).



Sunday, July 18


My first can't miss artist for Sunday is Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros who hit the Camden County River Stage at 5:20pm. Their debut album, Up From Below, came in sixth in WXPN's Year In Review Top Albums countdown for 2009 with the single "Home" taking best song of the year honors. The giant 10-piece band features irresistibly catchy tunes that mix folk, psychedelica, and touches of blue grass together among a wall of sound to form something very unique.

The second can't miss artist for Sunday is Earl Greyhound who is scheduled for the JerseyArts.com Marina Stage at 7:55pm. This powerful Brooklyn-based trio literally explodes on stage. I caught them a few years ago at the Wave Gathering music festival and was very impressed with their Zeppelin-inspired hard rock. After checking out the festival's lineup, I'd have to say Earl Greyhound rocks the hardest; if that's what you're after, don't miss their set.

Other highlights on Sunday include another great Jersey artist -- Robert Randolph and the Family Band (some brilliant lap steel guitar work), These United States (a cool, quirky pop/rock band from Kentucky), and The Cowboy Junkies (the legendary band from the ‘80s best known for their wonderful cover of "Sweet Jane" by the Velvet Underground).

Regardless of whether you choose to bounce back and forth from stage to stage or choose one area to call your own, you're bound to see a great day of music each of the three days. Tickets are available for individual days ($30 for general public, $20 for WXPN Members) or through a 3-day festival pass ($65 for general public, $45 for WXPN Members). With the lineup WXPN has put together, you can't go wrong either way...




For more by this author, click here






Arijit Singh's New North American Tour Will Include Single Stop In Tri-State Region At Prudential Center on April 13
(NEWARK, NJ) -- Bright Brain Productions, the leading entertainment company based in California announced the “Arijit Singh LIVE Tour” in 12 cities all across the U.S. This is the first of its kind and largest tour done by Arijit Singh or any Indian artist. The tour beings on April 5 and travels through major U.S. cities culminating on May 5.  The tour stops at Prudential Center in Newark on Saturday, April 13 at 7:00pm.
Light of Day's Main Event To Be Broadcast Live at McLoone's Supper Club
(ASBURY PARK, NJ) -- If you couldn't get tickets for the fabled "main event" of the 2019 Light of Day Winterfest, you have another chance see the show.  For the first time in the 19-year history of the festival, the "main event", the star-studded “Bob’s Birthday Bash” on January 19th (a show that has long sold out), will be broadcast live via fiber optic cable at McLoone's Supper Club in Asbury Park.
Wharton Institute for the Performing Arts To Hold Winter Open House On January 27
(BERKELEY HEIGHTS) -- Wharton Institute for the Performing Arts (WIPA) will host a Winter Open House on Sunday, January 27 from 1:00pm to 4:00pm. The free event is open to the public and will be held at the Performing Arts School (PAS) located at 60 Locust Avenue in Berkeley Heights.
Billy Idol and Steve Stevens To Perform At Count Basie Center For The Arts
(RED BANK, NJ) -- Billy Idol and Steve Stevens, one of rock’s most iconic and enduring duos, will hit the road this March for their first ever tour performing as a duo: Turned On, Tuned In and Unplugged. The Billy Idol/Steve Stevens tour comes to The Count Basie Center for the Arts on Thursday, April 4th.
McDonald's Gospelfest To Celebrate The Life of Aretha Franklin With Return to Prudential Center
(NEWARK, NJ) -- The 37th Annual McDonald’s Gospelfest returns to the Prudential Center on Saturday, May 11 for the gospel event of the year. This year's event will honor and celebrate the life and legacy of the “Queen of Soul” Aretha Franklin with an All-Star cast. The 5:00pm to 7:00pm portion of the evening will feature a rising stars competition for all ages and cultures in categories including Soloists, Choirs, Praise Dancers, Singing Groups, Gospel Comedians, Gospel Poets and Gospel Rappers. The gospel concert, beginning at 7:00pm, will feature some of the most renowned gospel artists in music history with the goal of spreading love, peace and joy to all races, nationalities and beliefs.


Scott Wolfson and Other Heroes At Riverside Rhythm & Rhyme
This coming Sunday, January 20, Scott Wolfson and his band will be serving up their unique blend of Americana at the Riverside Rhythm & Rhyme series at Investors Bank Theater in Succasunna, New Jersey. The band – Scott Wolfson and Other Heroes – formed in Jersey City in 2011, and, even though the members have migrated in various directions since then, they still consider themselves to be a Jersey City band.
"He Totally Wowed Us!" John Oates LIVE! at SOPAC
It’s brisk for an evening walk on South Orange Ave. in South Orange, NJ, this Friday, Jan. 4, 2019 evening, but it’s a good road to follow as it leads us directly to the South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC) for a special performance by singer, songwriter, and guitarist John Oates and his backup group, The Good Road Band.
“Tons of Fun!” The Glenn Miller Orchestra LIVE! at the Grunin Center
Although Friday, December 21, 2018 is the shortest day of the year, the audience of big band music lovers here at Toms River, NJ’s Grunin Center for the Arts is hoping for a long evening of classic swing and holiday tunes performed by the incomparable Glenn Miller Orchestra!
Mike Davis and The New Wonders
Mike Davis traces his love for the trumpet back to a Disney movie. He grew up in a musical family, with both his parents playing strings in the Seattle Symphony. But Davis wanted an instrument of his own. Then, at age 9, he saw “The Aristocats,” the animated film about a bunch of French felines — including a group of jazz-playing alley cats.
Ana Gasteyer's "Holiday Tipple" LIVE! at the Grunin Center
The Grunin Center stage in Toms River, NJ is set this Saturday, December 15, 2018 with drums, a grand piano, a guitar, an acoustic bass, and various microphones for vocals. A stool and several microphone stands are bedazzled with colorful garlands of shiny red, gold, and green, and wrapped gifts are strewn on stage among the instruments. Projected white snowflakes adorn the walls, and Christmas music plays as patrons enter the theater to put everyone in the mood for tonight’s holiday show — Ana Gastayer’s Holiday Tipple!










Event calendar
Friday, Jan 18, 2019


MUSIC

John Forster at the Minstrel @ Morristown Unitarian Fellowship, Morristown - 7:30pm

David Massengill - Folk Concert @ Christ Congregation Church, Princeton - 8:00pm

SAL "THE VOICE" VALENTINETTI @ Mainstage @ Union County Performing Arts Center (UCPAC), Rahway - 8:00pm

The Elvis Birthday Bash @ Count Basie Center For The Arts, Red Bank - 7:30pm


THEATRE

"Apple Season" by E.M. Lewis @ New Jersey Repertory Company, Long Branch - 8:00pm

Annie Jr. @ The Oakes Center, Summit - 7:30pm

Some Girl(s) @ Studio Playhouse Upper Montclair, Upper Montclair - 8:00pm







COMEDY

Big Apple Comedy Club @ The Newton Theatre, Newton - 8:00pm


MISC

The Jason Bishop Show to Benefit CASA @ Pfleeger Concert Hall, Rowan University, Glassboro - 7:00pm

View all events
























New Jersey Stage © 2019 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.