I had a great night playing for the patrons of the bar/lounge in the Aloft Hotel in Manhattan’s Financial District. I played a mix of covers and originals. Here was the setlist. Hope to be back there again soon!
After a battle with traffic on the NJ Turnpike extension, I was able to make it to Lazlo’s Banding Together live acoustic music marathon at Espresso Joe’s in Keyport, NJ. If you haven’t done so already, please download the compilation record to donate to the Spondylitis Association of America.
For those of you who missed the performance, you can now listen to a live recording below. If the embed doesn’t appear below, click here to listen directly on Soundcloud.
Here is a nice photo captured by Lola.
And here is the setlist.
A few beautiful Saturday’s ago, Christina Alessi & the Toll Collectors performed at Stevens Institute of Technology. Check out a couple videos from the day, including our covers of “Seven Nation Army” and “Cheap Thrills.”
What a night! On Saturday, August 6th I was pleased to be part of the opening of ARTxSOUL NJ Vol. 3. Curated by Rich Lopez, there was a DJ, dancing, cocktails, and a mix of photography, paintings, and digital media by talented artists. John Grayson, Nicole, Pelle, Ken Lucas, Steven Bley, and I have taken over the walls of Sticks & Stones, just below Artisan Kitchen in Hawthorne, NJ. Our art will be hanging through Friday, September 23rd.
I was proud to have sold 12 of my photos that night! I’ve reprinted and reframed them and my wall is back to looking like it did just as the evening started:
Here are some other photos from the evening. What a fantastic event!
I remember the night I learned it all was happening.
I was riding an Uber from Hoboken back into the city. I had just played a solo acoustic show at Northern Soul. It was the day we learned of Prince’s passing. I was sharing the Uber with Jaime de Jesus, mastermind of ALEO Productions and also the man who not only booked me for the night but also ran the soundboard.
He said, “Hey man, I’m putting together a tribute for David Bowie. It’s going to be on the waterfront. We’ll have the Manhattan skyline in the background. The sun will be going down. It’s going to be extraordinary. You should be part of it.”
How couldn’t I?
“Oh… And instead of doing the thing where I have a core backing band and then swap out the singers, I’m going to open it up. I want to feature everyone… the full breadth of this music community.”
It was then that I knew this man had to be insane. Not only is he trying to put together a tribute to a brilliant and musically-challenging artist, but he’s also trying to organize the entire music community? Just thinking about getting a rehearsal scheduled made my head spin, let alone how we were going to orchestrate the changes during the performance. Each drummer will have to use the same exact setup… there’s no time to make adjustments when we would be constantly swapping!
But wow, did it happen. The community pulled together and more than 35 musicians paid tribute to the music of David Bowie in front of the most beautiful skyline there is. It was an amazing display of community, artistry, and camaraderie. I felt proud to be part of something so special.
Here is the final song of the evening, “Young Americans,” where the role of backing vocals was assigned to EVERYONE. So here we are. Everyone involved in the performance on stage at once. Enjoying the moment.
If the embed doesn’t appear above, here’s the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZH53Bl85Ikg
And here are some more pics from the night, courtesy of Capacity Images.
I’ve enjoyed a few great shows in Hoboken with the Toll Collectors this month. The first was at Finnegan’s on July 16. I actually got to open up the night with an acoustic set. Here I am with Ty Tuschen on electric guitar and Jack Breslin on bass.
Here was the setlist.
And here’s a video of our cover of “Long as I Can See the Light,” by Creedence Clearwater Revival. If you can’t see the embed below, here is the link.
On Tuesday, June 14th Ty, Ardith, and I played the Pianos Upstairs Lounge. We had a nice turnout and a great time playing for everyone. It’s such a joy to play music with such talented and down-to-earth musicians. Thank you for joining me, Ty and Ardith!
And here’s a live video of us playing my original song, Howlin’. If the embed doesn’t show below, you can watch it on YouTube here.
On May 6th, I took a seat behind the drums as part of Christina Alessi & the Toll Collectors to play three sets at Finnegan’s Pub in Hoboken. We had a lot of fun mixing up covers and originals for over three hours of music.
Here was the setlist.
We also covered a new Beyoncé song, “Daddy Lessons.” Check out the video below or on YouTube here.
Hope to be back here with the Toll Collectors again soon. This was a fun one!