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Steel Pier Sinners

By Gary Wien


Rock and roll has had its share of poets, but most of the time bands will admit that its their lyrics that need the most work. In true punk style, the Steel Pier Sinners kind of started out backwards. Instead of being good musicians that learned how to write better songs, they were a pair of poets that learned to become better musicians.

The Sinners, who are based in Asbury Park, consist of Trina Scordo and Meagan Brothers on guitar and vocals and Stony T on drums. They recently added Dave Pol on bass.

Since forming in the beginning of 2003, the band has played shows throughout the tri-state area and are about to play their first gigs in the midwest. They can regularly be found banging away at clubs like CBGBs in New York City or the Brighton Bar in Long Branch. They blend their poetic lyrics on top of Hank Williams inspired country music mixed with Clash influenced punk. The end result is songs filled with introspective lyrics and biting guitars - kind of like a garage rock band that flirts with going alt-country but keeps one foot over on the punk rock side.

"When we first started playing I used to dread the question when people would ask what do you sound like," said Trina Scordo. "I would fumble. I didn't know what to say."

Fans of bands from the Jam to the Rolling Stones fill their audience. "It's not like we sound like any of those bands," adds Meagan Brothers. "It's that vein of rock and roll."

This summer will be key for the Sinners as they travel around the country in search of building and finding their audience. They have a couple of shows scheduled for Chicago at the end of May including a Memorial Day concert for VVAW?(Vietnam Veterans Against The War). ?They'll be heading down to West Virginia in June before playing their biggest concert to date - a spot at the Capital Pride Festival in Washington DC on June 13th.

The Capital Pride Festival will find the Sinners on stage staring out at hundreds of thousands of people in front of the Capitol in Washington, DC. It's part of a whole market of fans that, until recently, the band didn't even know was out there.

"There's this misconception that all gay people just love dance music," explained Brothers. "That's really not true. We've got a lot of gay fans who love rock and roll music and are really glad to see us because it doesn't have to do with being gay or straight. We're just a rock and roll band."

The band is comprised of one gay member, one bi-sexual, one straight and one that they're not sure of yet. Their musical "outing" occured in Trenton and may have helped the band in more ways than they know. They invited people from the publication "Out In Jersey" to a show at the Conduit Club. The editors loved the band so much that they decided to do a feature on the Sinners in their April issue.

"That's when we started thinking that maybe there is some crossover," said Scordo. "For a long time, I didn't even think of gay venues or anything because I didn't think they listened to garage rock. And that was because I couldn't find any queer people that liked it."

While the band doesn't want to be labeled a gay band, they do realize how amazing the times are for gay musicians right now. "Only recently has that not been a stumbling block," explained Brothers. ?"As recently as ten years ago you had people like KD?Lang and Melissa Etheridge and so forth coming out and not having it hurt their careers. This is really such a recent development that it's kind of uncharted territory. We're like walking on the moon."

The Sinners will be releasing their second full-length CD in April. As with many indie bands, it has been a tough road to get radio airplay. For bands with a sound that's hard to categorize like the Sinners, it becomes that much more difficult. ?Thankfully, they have begun getting airplay on college and Internet stations like WRSU (Rutgers University) and Altrok.com. And when people hear their music for the first time, they're not thinking about what the band's sexual preference is - they're just hearing the music.

"I think the cool thing about rock and roll is that it can kind of break all of that down," said Scordo. "If the music is good then people are there because of the music and that's how it should be. ?It shouldn't be a judgement or based on how somebody looks or what somebody's sexual orientation is. It should be do the songs stand up. If the songs stand up, we're doing our job. For me, that's what matters."

You can catch Steel Pier Sinners at CB's Lounge in NYC on April 17th and at Paradise in Asbury Park on April 29th.



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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
Drummer, leader, and composer Terri Lyne Carrington made history as the first woman to win a Grammy for Best Instrumental Jazz for her album “Money Jungle: Provocative in Blue.” Now, she brings her interpretation of Duke Ellington’s “Money Jungle” to the TD James Moody Jazz Festival at NJPAC on November 11, 2018, as part of a program called “Jazz Vinyl Revisited.” Producer Susan Wallner talks to Carrington about her connections to the jazz greats Clark Terry and Max Roach; her newest project, the Berklee Institute of Jazz and Gender Justice; and why she thinks drummers make natural leaders.
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

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