Author Archives: Vickie & Peter

Jingle Rock Sip’n’Shop – Come Support Cape Ann Vendors

We are very excited to be hosting our first Sip’n’ShopSeveral Gloucester vendors will be selling their wares (come support them) like

Come enjoy some Rockin’ Holiday Music, a cocktail and fun hassle-free shopping.  Hope to see you all on Wednesday.

This could be the end of GMG – but YOU might be able to save it!

No, I’m not kidding.  On Thursday, the FCC will most likely vote to repeal Net Neutrality, the rule that prevents Internet Service Providers (ISPs) like Comcast, Verizon and AT&T from slowing down (a.k.a. throttling) or blocking websites and streaming services.  This means Comcast will be allowed to block your access to GMG for any reason they like.  And they could charge GMG a fee in order to have the block removed.  You and Joey and I will have no recourse.

But it gets worse.  If you have a small business, Comcast could also block your website and force you to pay a premium to get the block removed.  The technology exists for Comcast to block your Facebook page if they like and Facebook will have no recourse to prevent that.

As you might guess, there are those who favor repealing Net Neutrality, namely people at Comcast, AT&T and Verizon.  FCC Chairman, Ajit Pai, who proposed the repeal, is the former Associate General Council for Verizon where he handled competition matters, regulatory issues, and counseling of business units on broadband initiatives.  Perhaps now you’re getting the picture.

Ajit Pai has called Net Neutrality “a solution in search of a problem” which conveniently ignores the many times ISPs did exactly what we’re afraid of until the FCC came to our rescue.  See examples here.  Once Net Neutrality is repealed, the FCC will no longer be able to come to our rescue.

Imagine if the phone company decided to block calls to your mother in Iowa because whatever phone company she uses out there doesn’t want to pay a premium to allow calls from Massachusetts.

“That sort of thing has never happend,” you might say.  And you’d be right.  Because phone companies aren’t allowed to block calls or redirect them or add static or interfere with the sound or video quality  — all things that ISPs will be allowed to do without the Net Neutrality rules.  But wait!  Do you have VOIP from Comcast?  Or Verizon?  Or AT&T?  Better call your mom now and explain why you might not be able to call her after Thursday.

And while you’re at it, you might want to call your congressman Seth Moulton (202) 225-8020 and Senators Ed Markey 617-565-8519 and Elizabeth Warren (617) 565-3170.  Ask them to pressure the FCC not to repeal Net Neutrality.  And if that doesn’t work, perhaps congress can make Net Neutrality the law of the land.

This is serious folks.  The time to act is now.

 

 

Joey Asked, We Got Inspired: SAT NOV 25 Christmas Show that’s as much fun for Adults as it is for Kids

Bryson Lang & Santa (can you guess which one is Bryson?)

A few weeks ago, Joey called me asking if we were planning to have any shows for kids — and we got inspired.

We wanted to produce a show is as much fun for adults as it is for kids.

So… we’re bringing International star Bryson Lang‘s Cure for the Common Show to 9 Wallis (right down the road in Beverly) this Saturday at 2pm.

Comedy, Juggling, Music, Audience Participation, Lots of Fun!

And because it’s the Saturday after Thanksgiving, we invited Santa to make a magical appearance, hand out some gifts and pose on our stage with your child (or grandchild) for a perfectly lit photo op.

All for only 15 bucks! GET TICKETS HERE.

Snacks and beverages for adults and kids will be available for purchase.  All you have to do is bring the kids, relax and enjoy the show!

Do you want to see one of George Carlin’s favorite comics?

Tomorrow night (10/14) at 9 Wallis in downtown Beverly (I know it is over the bridge but it will be worth it) Vinnie Favorito back from Vegas for 2 shows ONLY.

Don’t be scared by the fact that most of the seats left for Vinnie Favorito Unfiltered – EARLY SHOW are sold. Every seat @ 9 Wallis is a good seat. But they’re going fast. You don’t want to be that guy who calls us on Saturday asking to get into a sold out show do you?   Get your TICKETS NOW

Vinnie is known for his comedy roasts of such celebs as Tom Arnold, Magic Johnson, Pat O’Brien and even Larry King, Vinnie Favorito has a unique style of comedy. Scripted material just isn’t a priority for this Boston-born comic who earned his stripes at the Improv and the Comedy Store in Los Angeles. Headlining Vegas since 2003, Vinnie has been performing in comedy clubs and on TV for more than 20 years.

If you’re looking for safe and politically correct humor, then this off the cuff funny show probably isn’t for you … but if you want some edgy and raw unfiltered comedy with bite, Vinnie just might become your new Favorito.

Boston’s Gary Marino of the World Gone Crazy Comedy Band opens the show.

WARNING: Vinnie Favorito intends to offend. If you are easily offended, go see another show. Must be 18 years or older to attend.

Rasta Pasta Pizzeria will sell their Fresh Made Pizza, Meatball Subs & Canoli during this show!

It’s a little outrageous, but we thought we’d try it anyhow

It all started when Gloucester’s Joe Langhan (a founder of the Food Network) invited me to taste his pastrami.  Having grown up in the pastrami capital of the world (NY), I was skeptical.  But I went down to see Joe’s Beantown Pastrami operation at the Boston Public Market and had a sandwich.  Instantly, I was transported!  I hadn’t tasted pastrami like this since — not the last time but — 2 times ago when I went to NYC — a few years at least.

Right then, Joe and I agreed to try a Beantown Pastrami pop-up during a blues concert at our new venue, 9 Wallis, right down the road in Beverly.  The first one in early August was a huge success.  Joe ran out of food.  So we tried it again 2 weeks later.  Another hit.

Having been so popular in the evening, Joe wanted to try it for lunch (pastrami’s favorite meal) every Friday … but with a twist.

“What if you have a comedy show so people can Laugh Over Lunch (#LOL)?” he suggested.

Vickie and I LOVED the idea and together with Joe, we coined the phrase Pastromedy (Comedy + Pastrami = Pastromedy), which debuts this Friday from Noon – 2pm.

This week’s PASTROMEDY features Chris D, winner of the wildly successful Next Big Catch – North Shore Comedy Contest at 9 Wallis in July and is hosted by Gary Marino founder of the World Gone Crazy Comedy Band and owner of Harmon-Marino LIVE, which produces the comedy shows at 9 Wallis.

Joe expanded his Beantown Pastrami menu for 9 Wallis to include corned beef sandwich plates (including Reuben and Rachel) as well as turkey.  All plates are served with Cape Cod Potato Chips and whole Maitland Mountain Farm pickles are available at for an extra charge.

Comedy is free.

Sooooo….have a fun lunch — and maybe start your weekend early by treating yourself to the best pastrami in New England, right down the road in Beverly.  Don’t worry about the calories ’cause you’ll laugh your ass off!

Phil Ochs Song Night @ Old Sloop Sunday 9/17 to benefit Family Promise North Shore

A wonderful concert for a very important cause.  GET TICKETS HERE:

Phil Ochs Song Night on Sunday, September 17 is a fundraiser for Family Promise North Shore Boston, an interfaith hospitality network that provides shelter, meals, job support and case management for homeless families. The First Congregational Church is a Family Promise host church.  The concert will feature performs Greg Greenway and Pat Wictor of Brother Sun, along with Reggie Harris and Tom Prasada-Rao.  The concert will be hosted by Sonny Ochs, Phil’s sister.

The Cape Ann Community Band Annual Summer Concert – Tonight at 7pm

The Cape Ann Community Band under the direction of David Benjamin, plays their annual summer concert, on Sunday, August 20, 2017, at 7pm at the at the Antonio Gentile Bandstand, Stage Fort Park, Hough Avenue, Gloucester MA. The concert theme is “music for a Summer Evening”. The program features a wide range of band favorites including selections from Phantom of the Opera, Blue Tango, John Williams selections, marches and more. Local soloist Dana Cohen (trombone) will also be featured. The concert is sponsored by Bank Gloucester. The band is comprised of Cape Ann musicians, young and old, who come together for six weeks of rehearsal; culminating in this concert.

This will be the seventh of eight concerts held at the bandstand this summer. This year is the thirty-first anniversary season of these free concerts in the park.  Large audiences continue to attend and listen in this picturesque setting overlooking Gloucester’s outer harbor.

The concert is free to the public. Parking is free and the venue and rest rooms are wheelchair-accessible. Bring a blanket or chair and perhaps picnic dinner.  For further information please visit DavidLBenjamin.com or call 978-281-0543

It’s time to laugh

Feel like you’re drowning in negative buzz?  Maybe it’s time to laugh. You’ll laugh alright on Saturday night, right down the road in Beverly at 9 Wallis when Loretta LaRoche takes you back to Brooklyn and back in time to the humor of growing up with her Italian family in her hysterical show Love, Laughter, and Lasagna.

You can even eat some lasagna prepared by Beverly’s favorite deli Gloria Food Store before the show to get you in the mood.

You may remember Loretta from her PBS specials (see video below) or inspirational programs at North Shore Music Theatre a few years ago — and those programs were funny. Trust me: Love Laughter and Lasagna is even funnier!  Come on down; you’ll feel better!

Gloucester’s Joe Langhan (Food Network founder) brings his world-class pastrami to Beverly tomorrow night

Many of you know Joe Langhan from his work producing the Souls of the Sea videos.  What you may not know is that he’s a founder of the Food Network and created its signature show Emeril Live.  A couple of years ago, Joe brought world-class NY pastrami to Boston (see Globe article).  Tomorrow (FRI 8/11) he’s bringing his famous Beantown Pastrami right down the road to Beverly for a pop-up at our Beverly Blues Series.

If you know us, you’ll know that we love pulling what may seem like disparate people together for an unusually fun night (e.g., book signings with music, music with stand-up comedy, comedy with dinner, etc.)

It’s hard to predict just how much fun tomorrow’s show will be as we bring together Blues Hall of Famer, Joe Moss from Chicago and the last prophet of the funky Texas blues The Willie J. Laws Band for an exceptional night of music hosted by WZLX Music Director Carter Alan (who will sign his new book The Decibel Diaries at the show).

Add Beantown Pastrami’s world-class, hand-carved, NYC style sandwiches and … well … you just never know what can happen at the most intimate, elegant listening room on Boston’s North Shore. Get tickets here (cheaper on-line!)

The Rockport Legion Band

The Rockport Legion Band will perform our fifth free concert of our 84th consecutive summer concert series at the Back Beach Bandstand, Beach St, Rockport, MA.

7:00, Sunday, August 13th, 2017.

Popcorn is available.  Children are welcome.  Folding chairs and blankets are good. 

Jim Davison, conductor

 

The Star Spangled Banner, Francis Scott Key

Semper Fidelis, John Phillip Sousa

Toccata for Band, Frank Erickson

Polar Express, Alan Silvestri

Procession of Nobles, Nicholas Rimsky-Korsakov

Stardust, Hoagy Carmichael, trumpet solo Jason Howard

Someone to Watch Over Me, George Gershwin,tenor sax solo Stephen Niemi

The Boys From Wexford, Robert Joyce

TD’s Boogie Woogie, Tommy Dorsey, Paula Burns trombone

Bolero, Maurice Ravel

The Blues Brothers Review, arr. Jay Bocook

Armed Forces Salute, arr. Bob Lowden

Raiders March, John Williams

Fiddler On the Roof, Jerry Bock

God Bless America, Irving Berlin

 

 

THE ROCKPORT LEGION BAND

Flute: Jeannine Lynch, Jen Fuller, Kathy Claypool, Jenny Baylor, Meg Wallace

Oboe:  Bob Heineman

Clarinet: Steve Neimi, Debbie Walter, Tasha Marshall, Mindy Picardo

Alto Saxophone: William Altman, Matt Charest

Trumpet: Jason Howard, Jerry Silveira, Hilary Anderson, Joel Swan, Bob Cannon

Alto Horn / French Horn: John Bassett, Ken Laurence

Trombone: Paula Burns, Roger McPherson, Jim Koerth

Euphonium / Baritone: Connie Villanti, Steve Cooney

Tuba: Al Bernard

Percussion: Ron Alpert, Ben Fuller

 

emailed by John Bassett, 978 546 6273

“Salute to Broadway” concert ~ Sunday, August 6, 2017, at 7pm

American Classics presents a cabaret style “Salute to Broadway” concert on Sunday, August 6, 2017, at 7pm at the Antonio Gentile Bandstand, Stage Fort Park, Hough Avenue, Gloucester MA.

American Classics founders Benjamin Sears and Bradford Conner are joined by Cynthia Mork for a cabaret of songs from the Great American Songbook featuring beloved standards and some surprises, too! Critics have called American Classics concerts “pure delight” (Boston Phoenix) and hailed the as “people you want to hear” (Boston Globe).

The concert is free to the public. Parking is free and the venue and rest rooms are wheelchair-accessible. Bring a blanket or chair and perhaps picnic dinner. The rain date is Wednesday, August 9. For further information please visit DavidLBenjamin.com or call 978-281-0543

Gloucester’s very own Rock Star joins his TV Star Friend in an intimate concert this Friday

If you’ve seen Grammy-nominated guitar god Jon Butcher over the past few years, you’ll probably have a Jimi Hendrix riff in your head by the time you finish reading this sentence. But…you may not know Jon Butcher the award-winning singer/songwriter, whose acclaimed new CD 2 Roads East would be in the Soul Music bin if record stores still existed.

This Friday, Jon welcomes his longtime friend/collaborator Chris Pierce (who wrote the #1 soul/blues/R&B hit “We Can Always Come Back to This” for the #1 TV show “This Is Us“) to join him in an intimate concert of music — from the soul and for the soul — right down the road in Beverly at the newest, most intimate, elegant listening room north of Boston.

Watch the video for a taste of what you’ll experience Friday night:

Jon’s last show at 9 Wallis sold out. So did the last show we presented there. Please don’t be one of those people calling us at the last minute begging for a seat that just doesn’t exist. Get your tickets now–right HERE.

Beatles Tribute band, 4Ever Fab – This Sunday at Stage Fort Park

Beatles Tribute band, 4Ever Fab, appears in concert on Sunday, July 23,2017, at 7pm at the Antonio Gentile Bandstand, Stage Fort Park, Hough Avenue, Gloucester MA. This outstanding band returns to the bandstand with a terrific and genuine Beatles sound. This show features spot-on renditions of your classic Beatles favorite.

This concert is sponsored by Cape Ann Savings Bank, who will provide free ice cream treats to the audience. The concert is free to the public. Parking is free and the venue and rest rooms are wheelchair-accessible. Bring a blanket or chair and perhaps a picnic dinner. The rain date is Wednesday, July 26. For further information please visit DavidLBenjamin.com or call 978-281-0543

The Greatest Natural Spectacle on Earth was in Rockport Last Night

I’ve lived in Gloucester since the early 1980s (except 1995-1998, when I lived in CA and NYC) and Vickie has lived here since 1998 … and guess what, neither of us had ever been to the Rockport Bonfire?  Why?  Oh, lots of reasons; but none of them is reasonable — not after what we witnessed last night!

Kevin St. Peter, who chairs the Rockport Firemen’s Association, asked us to be judges in the Rockport Firemen’s Parade and we accepted. Having produced and promoted hundreds of shows & events, Vickie and I keenly appreciate just how much work it takes to pull off an event of this magnitude and, honestly, it was a true pleasure not having to deal with all the details. Kevin did that. And he dealt with all the crazy-last-minute emergencies that always pop during any large-scale event. Plus he took great care to make sure all the judges got where we were supposed to go and knew what they were supposed to do — because we had no idea.

More importantly, we had absolutely no idea what we’ve been missing all these decades.  The breathtaking power and splendor of Rockport’s giant bonfire tore its way into our psyches; seized every ounce of our attention. What struck me at first was how hot it was — those of us in front had to move back as the flames engulfed the outhouse atop the mountain of fiery palates.  Turning around I noticed the crowd of several thousand people all stood transfixed — and very quiet.  So quiet, in fact, that the blaze was the loudest sound you could hear — and it wasn’t nearly as loud as the band at the bandstand had been a few minutes earlier.

Then I realized just how bright it was. That’s when I took the picture, above. Notice how well everyone is lit — and it’s pitch black outside. No streetlights. Just the bonfire. It’s brighter than Times Square. (See Nicole’s awesome photo of the bonfire itself here.)

Fire has a magical power to captivate us in a way nothing else can. I certainly hope this Rockport tradition lives on forever. Thanks to Kevin St. Peter for throwing a giant party for thousands of people featuring one of the greatest natural spectacles our Earth has to offer — and making it feel as though everything is running perfectly smoothly!

First Antonio Gentile Bandstand Concert for 2017 – The Continentals

Antonio Gentile Bandstand
2017 Summer Concert
July 9 @ 7pm

The Continentals (Pop-Rock Show band) sponsored by Gloucester Rotary Club

All concerts begin at 7:00pm. Parking is free, restrooms are handicap accessible and the audience is encouraged to bring a chair and a picnic lunch (carry in – carry out). Rain dates are the following Wednesday evening at 7:00pm. Location: Stage Fort Park, Hough Avenue, Gloucester, MA

For concert information please contact David Benjamin, Tel. 978-281-0543,
Email: David@DavidLBenjamin.com or visit www.DavidLBenjamin.com,

AN INVITATION TO PLAYERS TO PERFORM!

AN INVITATION TO PLAYERS TO PERFORM!

The Cape Ann Community Band Presents:

“Music for a Summer Evening”

 

Sunday, August 20, 2017, at the Antonio Gentile Bandstand

Stage Fort Park, Gloucester, 7pm, (Rain date Wednesday, August 23, 7pm)

Sponsored by Bank Gloucester 

David Benjamin, Director of the Cape Ann Community Band invites local musicians to participate in an exciting program of concert band music. The band will rehearse for six weeks beginning on Monday, July 10, at 7pm at the Gloucester American Legion Hall, 8 Washington St., Gloucester.

The program will include concert band music classic and contemporary; in many styles. Players are asked to commit to at least four of our six rehearsals, including the final two rehearsals on August 7 and 14. The program is geared toward young and more experienced players. Families are encouraged to participate as well as former school band classmates. The music represents varying levels of ability; there’s something for everyone. Players will need their own instruments and music stand. Percussion equipment and some stands are provided.

Once again the band is proudly sponsored by Bank Gloucester. Patrick Thorpe, bank president, says “We love this group. They represent the whole of our Cape Ann Community and they always play a terrific program. We’re glad to help.”

Director Benjamin echoes Thorpe’s excitement. “We’ve always had a lot of fun preparing our concerts. It’s a supportive mood at our rehearsals. Everyone is learning and enjoying the company of fellow musicians.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For information please contact David Benjamin at 978-281-0543 or by email at David@DavidLBenjamin.com

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