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Steven Baggs

By Gary Wien


As the snow kept falling during the blizzard, which hit the tri-state area in February, Steven Baggs took to the stage at the Wonderbar in Asbury Park. An artist from New York City who was debuting his newly formed band, Baggs was playing in area for the first time and a little unsure of the reception he was going to get.

He really shouldn't have been worried...

Sometimes an artist's music hits you with the very first chord - pulling you in, instantly hooking you with the sound. That's how it was for me the first time I heard Steven Baggs and I knew the crowd was going to feel the same way. By the end of his set, everyone was wondering who Steven was an where he came from.
Steven Baggs didn't exactly come out of nowhere. He was with the lead singer of a band called "Five Foot Zero" for five years before going solo. The band appeared to be heading places, but in the end just wasn't the right fit for him.

"Things just weren't going the way I wanted in terms of my life and the band and the road we decided to take," explained Steven Baggs. "It's kind of hard when you're the person giving 200% and the rest of the band is only giving like 10% of their time and energy and effort. So, I said that if I'm giving 200%, I might as well give 200% to myself. As selfish as that sounds, at least I'll know I'm pushing as hard as I can for something nobody in the band was pushing for."

Baggs said that there were some people pushing him towards the decision, but, in the end, the decision to go solo was all his own.

"As hurtful and as crappy as it looked to the rest of the members, it had to happen. I'm a lot more confident with the music that I'm playing today and I'm a lot happier with the music. I feel like it shows a little when I'm on stage."

He also knows that there's more pressure in going out and performing under his own name rather than under a band's name.

"In all fairness, anything that happens on stage - good or bad - it's coming back to me now."

Five Foot Zero was basically the only band Baggs was ever in. He got his first guitar for his 14th birthday and taught himself how to play. He says he's been singing his whole life, but things really started to develop once he got to high school. It was also around that time that Brooklyn (Baggs' hometown) suddenly became known as a thriving music scene.

The situation right now is probably at its peak with the spotlight on Brooklyn and websites like myspace.com target=new>web link that connect fans with artists. Baggs thinks the pairing of technology along with the hip label is taking things to a new level.

"It's like being a small town celebrity," said Baggs. "People just get to know who you are. They may hear something about you and then bump into you on Myspace or something. Aside from Williamsburg being a big element in the growth of music right now, I feel like the Internet and technology push musicians and artists on to a whole different page.

"Growing up in New York where everyone is very music saavy and everyone's always looking for the new artist or new buzz, I feel like right now is a great time to be a musician. It's just a great time to have fun with music. Genres are changing by the day and new sounds are being brought out by the bands."

Steven will bring his uptempo, hook-driven rock/pop to the area for three shows in May. On May 20th he takes part in the Wave Gathering Festival in Asbury Park. He'll be doing a set at Red Fusion that night; back to Arlene's Grocery in the city on May 25th; then on Memorial Day Weekend, Baggs will return to Asbury Park for a show at the Saint on Sunday May 28th.



For more by this author, click here






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.
Idle Wave To Hold Record Release Party At Asbury Park Brewery
(ASBURY PARK, NJ) -- Pop-punks Idle Wave will celebrate the release of their self-titled EP on Saturday, December 1st at Asbury Park Brewery.  The record release show also includes performances by Skyeline, Roderick, and Pollyanna.


"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
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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
























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