New Jersey Stage
New Jersey Stage on social media


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

Works in Progress - October 2008

By Gary Wien


(OCTOBER 8, 2008 -- ASBURY PARK, NJ) -- Rick Barry's "Works in Progress" series has been a favorite of mine since it first launched several months ago, but I think recent shows have taken the series to a new level. This latest show continued that trend. The lineup included Keith Monacchio (formerly of The Commons), Justin Hillman, Glen Burtnick, Brett Mosely, Tommy Strazza, Kelly Carvin, and, of course, Rick Barry.

The idea between "Works in Progress" is a unique one. Instead of the traditional singer-songwriter nights, artists are supposed to perform songs which were created just for the show ? generally written in the days before the show, sometimes written on the day of the show, and a few songs have reportedly even been written on the way to the show or in the back room while warming up.

This was the first time "Works in Progress" actually reminded me of the old "Writers in the Raw" shows back in the days of Harry's Roadhouse. Not only was the lineup absolutely filled with great musicians, but the club was packed with at least twice as many people as in previous shows of the series and included tons of musicians who simply came to hang out and support the scene. That's what used to happen during WITR as well. It helped bring about the same kind of atmosphere and spirit that made me fall in love with those WITR shows and made it a must see date on my calendar each month.

Some of the artists found in the crowd included Mimi Cross, Joshua Van Ness, Frankie and Kelly McGrath (of Maybe Pete), Anthony Fiumano, Joe Harvard, Ken Shane, and Lindsey Miller.

Keith Monacchio kicked off the night with a strong set that included his coffeehouse song, which I think is one of the best tunes he's ever written. It was very cool to see Glen Burtnick as part of the show ? especially now since he's moved to the area. His daughters were on hand as well and performed backup singing duties on one tune. Glen performed some of his newly written songs as well as one or two written along with his usual songwriting partner Bob Burger. Seeing Glen perform so many new songs in one set reminded me of a show he performed once while I was in college. I remember coming back home for a holiday and catching Glen at a Caf? Bene show billed as "a night of all new Glen Burtnick music." It was great seeing something like that again.

Rick Barry was? well, Rick Barry. The man could write brilliant new songs in his sleep. I still think this series is one of the best things to happen to Rick and his career. While he floats back and forth between band gigs and solo shows, between writing new songs and revisiting his regular songs in new versions ? this show FORCES him to keep writing. And, it's led to many great new songs including the series theme song, which is a wonderful take of Rick's life, the efforts of his musician friends, and the redevelopment of Asbury Park.

Justin Miller was a nice surprise and something else that reminded me of Writers in the Raw. From Massachusetts (I believe), Miller was an artist Rick Barry met on the road. This reminded me of the artists Gordon Brown met during his days on the road ? songwriters that were wonderful but rarely household names. Miller had a strong set and even managed to have a Jersey connection through summering in Cape May while growing up. It was nice to see Rick branching out and bringing in an artist whose name wouldn't be familiar to regular music fans in the area.

Bret Mosely and Tommy Strazza have both become regulars to Asbury Park in recent years and each showed that their songwriting abilities continue to shine. Kelly Carvin closed things out with a nice set, but it was really getting late for a work night so I didn't get to see it all. The Works in Progress shows usually end a half hour or more earlier than they did tonight and I think they may have put one too many artists on the bill. Nevertheless, it was a tremendous night of music and Rick Barry deserves a lot of credit for maintaining this series and the quality of musicians he brings to the stage each time out. "Works in Progress" is not only a treat for the music fan, but provides a wonderful glimpse into the songwriting process as a whole.



For more by this author, click here




More Articles You Might Like

P!NK Announces 2019 Spring Dates, Tour To End At Madison Square Garden
P!NK Announces 2019 Spring Dates, Tour To End At Madison Square Garden
Shawn Mendes To Perform At Prudential Center
Shawn Mendes To Perform At Prudential Center
New Kids On The Block To Perform In Newark With Salt-N-Pepa, Tiffany, Debbie Gibson, and Naughty by Nature
New Kids On The Block To Perform In Newark With Salt-N-Pepa, Tiffany, Debbie Gibson, and Naughty by Nature
Whitney Houston Exhibit Opens at The GRAMMY Museum Experience Prudential Center
Whitney Houston Exhibit Opens at The GRAMMY Museum Experience Prudential Center
NJPAC To Present "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix" In Concert with the NJSO
NJPAC To Present "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix" In Concert with the NJSO
Iron Maiden Announces 2 Local Dates
Iron Maiden Announces 2 Local Dates






Event calendar
Sunday, May 19, 2019


MUSIC

Believe: A Fundraiser Benefit for Marilyn's Place @ House of Independents, Asbury Park - 4:00pm

Tash Sultana @ The Stone Pony Summer Stage, Asbury Park - 6:00pm

Will Martin Sings Dean Martin @ Avenel Performing Arts Center, Avenel - 3:00pm

MICHAEL BOLTON @ Bergen Performing Arts Center (bergenPAC), Englewood - 7:00pm

Band Together for Veterans @ Bar Anticipation, Lake Como - 1:00pm

ART OF THE DOUBLE CONCERTO - NEW JERSEY SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA @ State Theatre New Jersey, New Brunswick - 3:00pm

Carmina Burana New Jersey Youth Symphony 40th Anniversary Concert @ New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC), Newark - 3:00pm

Derek Bermel's Mango Suite @ Richardson Auditorium in Alexander Hall, Princeton - 4:00pm

Laurie Berkner, Solo @ South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC), South Orange - 3:00pm

Grace Morrison at Riverside!! @ Riverside Rhythm & Rhyme, Succasunna - 4:00pm

The Bronx Wanderers @ Jay & Linda Grunin Center For The Arts At Ocean County College, Toms River - 5:00pm and 8:00pm







THEATRE

Frost/Nixon @ Pax Amicus Castle Theatre, Budd Lake - 2:00pm

Surfing My DNA @ New Jersey Repertory Company, Long Branch - 2:00pm

Camelot @ Algonquin Arts Theatre, Manasquan - 3:00pm

She Loves Me! @ The Summit Playhouse, Summit - 2:00pm

Morir Sonyando @ Passage Theatre Company, Trenton - 3:00pm

Rapunzel @ Studio Playhouse Upper Montclair, Upper Montclair - 1:30pm and 3:30pm

MET Encore: Dialogues des Carmelites @ Pollak Theatre @ Monmouth University, West Long Branch - 1:00pm


DANCE

Roxey Ballet Presents Cinderella @ The College Of New Jersey’s Kendall Main Stage Theater, Ewing - 2:00pm

Kick Dance Studios presents I LOVE the 90s @ Count Basie Center For The Arts, Red Bank - 1:00pm


KIDS

THE SLEEPING BEAUTY @ Brook Arts Center, Bound Brook - 2:00pm

Double Dare Live @ Mayo Performing Arts Center (MPAC), Morristown - 1:00pm and 7:00pm


SPIRITUAL

Transform Your Thoughts & Heal Yourself Spiritually @ 10 Colonial Court, Hainesport, NJ 08036, Hainesport - 1:30pm

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.