By:  Krista Doran

ajslickLike many of the people who read this feature, music has always been a big part of my life.  As a kid, I remember how exciting it was to go buy a brand new album.  I would get home, jump on my bed, tear that thing open and would study every picture, read every word from cover to cover, inside and out.  The stories about the artists and their songs simply fascinated me.  To me, getting to know a musician or band through their music is so interesting.  You get to share in their joy and their pain. Like Mick Jaggar sang, “If I could stick my pen in my heart and spill it all over the page,” musicians certainly have that unique ability to express themselves.  As a musician myself, I know that it takes a lot to write and perform from the heart and behind every musician there is always a great story.  This fact holds true for the artist I am writing about in this month’s issue, AJ Slick.

For anyone that knows AJ, you know what a humble, yet extremely talented musician this man is.  Born right here in Philly and growing up in the true rock and roll era of the 60’s and 70’s, AJ was first influenced by some of the best music ever written…by The Beatles, of course!  He heard the song “Revolution” and his desire to play guitar was born.

AJ’s great talent developed early and by the age of 14 he started playing local clubs in Philly and New Jersey with his bands Destroyer and the 5670 Band. In the mid 80’s, AJ was noticed by a couple of Philly’s major acts and had the opportunity to share the stage with Cinderella and Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers. “Tommy is such a great guitar player and a really cool dude,” AJ told me.  By the late 80’s, when AJ was just 18 years old, he went full force into his style of Texas Blues and Southern Rock and started playing at many Blues festivals all over the East Coast and down South.  While in Texas playing at the Crazy Horse Saloon Blues Festival, he got to meet Blues legend Sonny Rhodes.  Once Sonny heard AJ, he asked him to accompany him on a short tour of the East coast playing guitar for The Sonny Rhodes Band. AJ told me “I learned so much from that tour.  Sonny showed me a lot of great things.  It was definitely a pivotal point in my career.”  After that tour, AJ decided to go on touring with his own band playing the first Woodstock Festival back in the early 90’s and things just progressed from there.  AJ was really starting to get his name out there as a musician, and had some great opportunities to play with many well-known artists.  AJ told me “one of the coolest things that ever happened to me was when Rick Danko from The Band approached me and asked if we could play some songs onstage together.  That was a really incredible experience for me, one that I will always remember.”

Over the years, AJ has been inspired by some of the best music out there such as Lynyrd Skynyrd, C.C.R, The Allman Brothers, Led Zeppelin, Eddie Van Halen, Randy Rhodes, Jimi Hendrix and Yngwie Malmsteen.  When you hear AJ play, you can hear all of this influence erupt into a whole other unique style, all his own.  “I play what I want to play, not what people expect me to play.  I just feel like it comes across so much better and people really seem to enjoy it.”  Whenever AJ plays, you can believe it all comes from the heart.  He is a very intense player, whose movements are fluid, as if the guitar is part of his body.  He plays with so much feeling and it always comes across so genuine.  AJ told me, “I play every show like it’s the last time I’ll ever play and I always play with one goal and that is to play the best I can.”

Even with all that he has seen and done over the years, AJ still remains modest yet confident in his abilities as a musician.  He spoke very highly of several of the local musicians he knows and truly believes that Philly has some of the most talented musicians anywhere and I have to agree with him.  AJ’s “Northern Rock” attitude is a no holds barred, tough but fair Philly attitude, which keeps him focused on playing the music he wants to play and not become a sell-out.

Of all the great music that has influenced AJ, there is definitely one artist that has had a major effect on him, and that would be the late, great Stevie Ray Vaughan.  AJ started his SRV Tribute band, appropriately named Soul to Soul with band members Stevie K on Bass and Bill Beck on Drums.  This trio also performs AJ’s original music, and along with top notch female singer Eileen Silverman, they gig as The AJ Slick Band, performing Classic Rock covers.  You can catch AJ’s Stevie Ray Vaughan Tribute every couple of months at one of the venues in Philly that definitely supports local music, whether it be original, cover and especially Tribute band, Sweeney’s Saloon.  The next stop for AJ Slick and Soul to Soul will be at The Pennypack Park Music Festival on Wednesday 6/23, along with Joe Coyne’s Eric Clapton/Cream Tribute and Axis (Jimi Hendrix Tribute).

AJ’s love for music has gone on to inspire many others that he now teaches at R & M Music Studios in Langhorne, PA.  In fact, two of his students recently won Guitar Center’s King of Blues contest.  AJ is also a great dad and he tries to spend as much time as he can with his kids which includes helping to coach their hockey teams.  AJ told me, with a smile, “My kids are my life and I love hanging out with them.”

AJ has had it tough at times, having to overcome many trials and tribulations through the years.  He was very candid during our interview and out of respect for him I did not mention everything here.  But I will say that all of these experiences have molded him into a strong-willed, unique individual who will, if nothing else, always be true to himself.  This man is worthy of our admiration.  Not just for his music, but for the person he is – husband, father, teacher, and friend.  You can get more information about AJ and where he will be playing next at www.ajslick.net or by calling 215-437-1219.  See you all at Pennypack Park on 6/23!

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See these LISTINGS on FACEBOOK and TWITTER – FIND all the listings for every day and for the entire month in a glance at www.ootweb.com and or ootonline.com SEE THESE on your LAPTOP, DESKTOP and or TOUCH TONE PHONE DAILY!These items are in each ISSUE OF THE OOT PAPER!

*SaturdayJune12th-MAGGIES>* “FIRST ANNUAL FIREFIGHTERS SURVIVORS BENEFIT” / SOUL CURISERS AND SATRUN

*DEAN CASMIRRIS’ OLD COLONIAL INN  has a new  outside TIKI BAR – Check it out…LIVE MUSIC – WELCOME MINNESOTA SAT. JUNE 12th at the outside Tiki Bar along with the Jager Girls who will be giving out all sorts of cool stuff… * Special Dates* FRIDAYS KAROKE WITH TOM SEGAR SATURDAYS DJ PAUL KIRCHER DANCE PARTY AND KARAOKE TOO! COMING JUNE 18th and July 16th Queen Helene Acoustic HAPPY HOUR ( ON JULY 24th FULL BAND)  with the QUEEN!…CASMIRRIS’ is on Fire … ya gotta check this place out!

THE HULMEVILLE INN – ON FRIDAYS AND SATURDAYS…THE BEST MICRO BREWS in the land.. >.MICRO BREW LOVERS PARADISE! CHECK IT OUT!

THE RED ZONE in BURLINGTON NJ on JUNE 11th has IMPACT along with $2 Domestic Drafts/THE NEW PLACE TO PARTY!

KAT MAN DU – TRENTON NJ / FLASH BACK FRIDAYS with DJ’s Davey Gold and Bryan Basara June 11th (Come early)

THE PENTHOUSE CLUB – UPSCALE ” Come Experince Life on Top with the area’s hottest looking girls ” and now see the best local bands on special nights. Weekends are Hot , Hot, Hot! FOR MORE: www.PhillyPentHouse.com

REALES – Saturday features Mike Goldman at 6pm on June 12th/Night DJ DANCE PARTY!

THIS WEEKEND THE RED STALLION IN WARMINSTER has TWO AWESOME BANDS…FRIDAY AND SATURDAY you can’t go wrong when you party at the STALLION – look for $1.75PBR’s and all new nights…SUMMER SLAMM MONDAYS and COUGARS ON THE PROWL THURSDAYS!

Friday June 11th DANCE PARTY with DJ EDDIO O at HAMMERHEADS! * Hot party…

*FRIDAY June 11th * 2nd Anniversary Party at MC STEWS in Levittown Pa / Special Night all around start early with the SEVEN BAND’s CJ & Chris@ Happy Hour

*CURRANS IRISH INNS – Chris Strakka is in Palmyra June 12/ Bensalem Pa The Great Scott Band/ Tacony on June 12th host The Urban Acheivers and Sir Rod ( A Rod Stewart Tribute show)

FRIDAY June 11 > (11-11) CHECKS into Bootleggers…and SAT 12th GOODMAN FISKE

*FRIDAY June 11 SCREAM will be over at ROOSEVELTS * hot Band!

SATURDAY June 12 PITCH hit the stage at the ROAD HOUSE / No Cover!

THE BALL PARK GENTLEMENS CLUB…You’ll get on base and score with some of best looking gals around! Weekend Drink Specials and you can watch all sports!

TONY’s PLACE ( IVYLAND PA ) FRIDAY & SATURDAYS…LIVE ACOUSTIC MUSIC – BEST OUTDOOR PATIO & BAR and BEST TOMATO PIES on EARTH !

*FRIDAY June 11 > METAL MANIA hits the stage at WHISKEy TANGO -Look for a specail DIO TRIBUTE SHOW also…on the 12th/ The ROCKETS hit the stage.

FRIDAY June 11  > Jaminson and Saturday night THE INTERNS on stage at FINNIGANS WAKE!

*FRIDAY June 11 > THINK PINK FLYOD hits the stage over at SWEENEYS on Saturday night a Metallica Tribute with Disposable Heroes

FRIDAY AND SATURDAY this weekend  plan a stop over to TATTLE TAILS a real Gentlemens Club.  SEE IT ALL NOW  www.clubtattletales.com  Oh yeah!

*Saturday June 11th > OLDIES LOVERS  BROADWAY THEATER in Pitman NJ *The Platters, Coasters, Marvelettes and Larry Chance the Earls 7:30 pm Showtime -this show was booked by CREATIVE ENTERTAINMENT / Mike Dano from Cherry Hill NJ

FRIDAY June 11th > CUZ checks into DAVE AND BUSTERS and then on SATRUDAY NIGHT June 12th THE EXEPTIONS are on the DECK

FRIDAY June 11th > RED ZONE is red hot with IMPACT

FRIDAY June 11th > PARX CASINO in Bensalem has DONT CALL ME FRANCIS in the house

FRIDAY June 11th > Mc Noodles in NE PHILA will host a special Dance party with DJ JOEY EL’

FRIDAY June 11th> Keenans In N Wildwood NJ – Host the MARQuee Trio in Angry Jacks! ON SATURDAY JUNE 12thLook for the Ruben Brown Motorcylce Run

FRIDAY June 11th> PADDY WHACKS on South Street host OUT OF SYNK

SATURDAY June 12th PROCOL HARUM in Concert at the TROPICANA HOTEL & CASINO in A

FRIDAY June 11th Mike Magee is at HARRIGANS in WARMINSTER PA on FRIDAY June 12th STAGE 5 will be feature

Double Visions is your spot up in HORSHAM PA…after work on FRIDAYS is where everyone meets. SATURDAYS look of 7 MIller Lites for $7 What a deal!

SATURDAY – June 12th CAZZ’s  Sports Bar will have a very special Live act on stage…(TBA)/ FRIDAYS look for the BIGGEST KARAOKE NIGHT with PAUL KIRCHER Where you are the STAR at the BAR!

THE STADIUMS – Saturday June 12th > 5 Points/Levittown Pa., has Scattered Marbles/ Andalusia> Evryman Jack/ Street Road> REV Visit any STADIUM LOCATION on the WEEKENDS…SUNDAYS WIN  > FREE PHILLIES TICKETS!  EVERY SUNDAY all season long!

FRIDAY JUNE 11th DJ CHARLIE ROBINSON has a dance party going on over at CASPERS!

SATURDAY June 12th BRICK checks into the PIKE’S PUB

LA CASA Di LUCIA – Friday June 11th  TONY MALANDO AND JENNIFER  Saturday June 12th  TONY RAD on stage

Friday June 11th  COASTLINE with My 106/1 FM’s Frank Cerami Live on air

*Friday & Saturdays the Real Party is  over at  >  CHICKIE’S and PETE’S…*OOT Pick/ South Philly with DJ TONY BRUNO

*FRIDAYS NEW > TOP DOG – CHERRY HILL FRAT HOUSE FRIDAYS COMING/ COLLEGE NIGHT
*SATURDAYS TOG DOG – EACH WEEK  THE NIGHT of XS

*FRIDAYS TAYLORS> WILLIAMSTOWN DJ CARM/ DANCE PARTY

BIG HEADS – (ANY LOCATION) –  the weekends something big is always going – WHY? It’s part of their name! THE WEEKENDS RULE at BH’s

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By Mike Vagnoni

headHad the chance to meet up with Jimmie Lee the Bad Boy of Country Rock. We had a luncheon and meeting him was kind of cool,  He’s one heck of a talent and gifted music writer. His been writing songs all of his life. He has the passion to be doing what he’s doing – and you will be finding out more and about this new country artist as he is set to be going on Tour sometime at the end of the summer.

OOT – How long have you been writing songs?
Jimmie Lee – “Been writing since 1991 and have about 150 plus songs to date. I have been blessed with this gift. I can write the music first and lay in some lyrics or I can come up with the lyrics and then marry the music to the words.  It’s just a process that happens. You might work on something for days and days…and then there are  times  where  the song and melody just pop right out of you . You know in the lyrics Dept. I have a co -writer by the name of Chirs Baile who also helps inspire me with some great lyrics. He is a very gifted person also and I am so glad  that we work together he also serves as head of security on all of our shows.”
OOT – Your  new CD is very Impressive and your song LET’s GO is the title track -where did you cut this project at?
Jimmie Lee – “It was a Labor Day weekend  a couple of years ago, and I happen to meet up with David Ivory who is one of the  top record producers on the east coast. I told him how I was a music writer and performer and that I wanted him to hear my music and see what could be done. He says to me, look I don’t take on new artists but let me hear some of your stuff and take it from there. So I made sure he did  get my package and did keep on calling him and then he gets back to me and says” Your so into this, I’m going to take you on. Well he did and the rest is history now and we have a very impressive CD –  The CD was mastered by Peter Humphreys.” I have to say shouts out to my music director Joe Lam he does a super job with the band and our live arrangements”
OOT You did hit the road and where are some of the places you took your tour to?
Jimmie Lee” We toured in Las Vegas and played to a sold our concert in front of 17,000 people also have played the House of Blues and the Hard Rock Cafes. We even did a show over at Prospectors.  Right now we are working on a big tour at the end of the summer and there are talks going on that we might be opening up for ZZ TOP at the HOUSE OF BLUES in AC. We should know more about this very soon.”
OOT– You just completed a video shoot over at Whiskey Tango – how did this go over?
Jimmie Lee – “We contacted George Manney and did a video shoot of Let’s Go last week. This went  over real well  and we can’t wait to get this out and up on TV and up online for all to see…George is an award winning music video producer and we are so glad to see him work on our project. This is going to be a real good presentation of our song Let’s Go.”
OOT – What makes your live shows so unique?
Jimmie Lee – “:We are so powerful up on stage we can ignite any audience – we are the new breed of Country rock and this is such an exciting time to be in the music business. When you come to one of our concerts – you’ll be standing and dancing all thru the show. I am telling you right from the beginning of the show to the end…you will love what we do since it is all about the music and the songs, we also have the lights and the sirens going off..it’s just so electrifying and exciting.”
OOT – Thanks for taking the time to chat with me Jimmie, and we wish nothing but the best for you  – the  new bad boy of  county rock.

Jimmie Lee – ” Thank You Mike”
So that ended our talk and I just highlighted some of the points that I feel would get you interested into
finding out more about this soon to be country star. He is the bad boy of Country rock and the is the new breed of country music.   Jimmie Lee is a must see – check him out online and be sure to get out and see him in concert when you can. To find out more go to: www.jimmieleesongs.com
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Yuengling Beer has a great promo going on now.TEXT to WIN a CUSTOM Orange County CHOPPER YUENGLING MOTORCYCLE by TEXTING > CYCLE1 to 83361

Just TEXT …you don’t have to purchase a thing. You must be 21 to enter your TEXT….as of MAY 1 thur to 7/31 Yuengling will donate a portion of their beer sales durning the OCC promotion..the donated funds will be going to the INTREPID FALLEN HEORES FUND.

*Finalists will winn a TRIP to OCC HEADQUARTERS for a Chance to win a CUSTOM OCC BIKE!   See all the details in the latest OOT!

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By L.Ramage’

l_72dca8f0acd74efba9da8c6a38df04b1Mike Vagnoni and I talk often about one the best era’s in music which was in my opinion was the 80’s into the early 90’s.  This was my generation as I was in my early 20’s when the disco era was winding down.  I was freshly divorced and hitting the club circuit and well life took on a new meaning as there was this exciting vibe in the mid to late 80’s.  Women dressed very well,  I’m gonna go with “slutty”!  There was no better way to describe our attire. We all looked like street walkers. I was no exception. The shorter and more skin tight the mini skirt, and the higher your “F-Me” boots stiletto heel was and preferably with a chrome pointy heel the better and hotter you felt! For the guys? The tighter the jeans, preferably black stretch jeans or ripped and torn stone washed the more your chances at scoring were (they called those jeans Nut huggers by the way). If you had the money, you bought your clubbing and band attire at “Warrior” custom clothes store in the Northeast.  Back then? Going out was an event. And? The best part was you had someplace to go almost every night of the week!  From the Telford Inn, To the Galaxy in New Jersey to Gahooleys  to our beloved Empire Rock room on the Boulevard.
After the Empire was closed down, the rockers or metal heads some may call us had no where to go. Fortunately that era had Lori Gallagher (RIP) and that lady went to the owners of the then club “Cherrys” at the entrance ramp of Bristol Pike and Woodhaven Roads.  She talked the owners Jimmy and Teddy into allowing her to revamp the club and they did into this penitentiary style decoration and atmosphere complete with hand painted cinder block walls, barbed wire fencing and prison cat walks in the suspended ceilings. Thus the club “Cellblock” was born around 1990. It reminded me of something you’d go through in an amusement park.  Hoppy Riddle was always the sound man and Ronnie Hammil on lights and Tracy was the light girl/spotter. Lori first booked the club until the end of 1991 and I went in till the fire destroyed the house in June of 1995.  The first National I booked was Dee Snider’s “Widowmaker” in early 1992.  Hoppy and I figure we  worked with 46 National Acts when all was said and done.  I tried to figure out how many local original bands I worked with from Thursday to Saturday nights and it had to be in the hundreds.  Some of the top bands we nurtured along the way were: “Naughty Jane, Mr. Bones, MetalWolf, Roughhouse, American Pie. Dollhaus Puppets, Das Rhein, CreekRoad, The Jury, Teachers Pet, Dezire, Taken”  and just so many  label ready, as far as I was concerned .  On our good nights we would see about 400 or so come in the door,.  Towards the end though, those numbers were dwindling rapidly.  I often wondered what happened to everyone and those bands. I still have all their CD’s and press kits.
That’s the thing, back then the bands really made an effort and worked hard at promoting themselves. You don’t see much of that anymore.  I was interning at a Kloss Recording Studios for a while and so many bands were spending the money and time to get a polished CD made to get shows and maybe make a few bucks. Back then? You couldn’t leave the “Cellblock” without having your car really plastered with so many band fliers trying to get you out to a show. They’d send you a post card too to remind you! Some even picked up this lost art of using the phone!  Now with the Internet? Everyone just does an email blast and hey download our latest song if you feel like it. They got lazy these bands.  When I was working a National? I used to drive Teddy’s BMW and he’d jump out and plaster every telephone pole or Store window we could get away with with posters about the shows…and it must have worked! They came in droves! I totally believe in advertising!  I would advertised every  big show in the “Inquirer” and”Out on the Town” (that’s how my column started way back then BTW)  as well as “The Aquarian” Advertising has gone way with the Internet, sadly and I think when people don’t see or hold something in their hand to remind them of an event or something they forget about all the things that are saturated on the Internet.
We had a reunion some years back, one night at the Pirates Den and the next night at the Whiskey Tango, it was the only way I could get so many of the bands a chance to play. Well as time goes on and it’s amazing that these guys still stay in touch and so we have about 6-7 bands that want to get back together for one night of going down Memory Lane. On Sunday June 6  from about 5- midnight  at the Whiskey Tango; we are going to get together again with these actual musicians that graced the Cellblocks Stage: “Surrender Dorothy, KRANK (yes with Frank) Instinct, Chain Saw Jane, Shock Tank Kittens and members of Savage Attraction.  There will be some give aways, CD’s etc.  and I’m working on a guitar to Raffle. It will be just a nice time to get people together that used to come out to the club and everyone is welcome!

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By:  Krista Doran

dcmf_3205So, I’m food shopping last week when my cell phone rings and on the other line is someone introducing himself as Francis Orsini.  I thought to myself, “Hmmm… should I call him Francis?” I mean, I knew who it was but his band’s name is Don’t Call Me Francis. I certainly did not want to be rude, and say “Hello Francis!”, so I pretended I didn’t hear him and said, “I’m sorry, who is this?” The voice on the other end said, “Krista, its Frank Orsini!”  I am very happy to say that this week’s In the Spotlight segment features a local party band that has been bringing the good times everywhere they go for close to 20 years now – the Don’t Call Me Francis Band!

I have to admit, I thought I was going to be interviewing a somewhat egotistical “ladies man” but that could not be further from the truth.  Frank was an extremely down to earth, personable gentleman, who wears his heart on his sleeve and talked more about the members of the band than himself.  He had such wonderful things to say about every single person in the band and I was really surprised to find out what huge talent backed him on stage.  For anyone that has ever seen Don’t Call Me Francis live, you know what kind of powerful sound they have, but their musical backgrounds are even more impressive.  Several members of the band have played with major acts such as KC and the Sunshine Band, Alicia Keys, Prince and Blood Sweat and Tears, just to name a few.  Frank was particularly fond of how his percussionist and female lead singer Mary Harris has contributed to the band.  “Mary is such an extraordinary singer with a beautiful voice.  Having her on stage is a blessing for us.”  Frank was also very excited about his drummer, who simply goes by the name “M&M” and he told me that “playing with these musicians is like a reward for all the adversity I have had to deal with in the past. They are all professional, SMOKIN’ players and every one of them has mastered their skill.”

With an exceptional horn and vocally powered sound, the Don’t Call Me Francis band has been one of the top-rated Party Rock/Dance Bands in the tri-state area since 1991, and there is definitely a reason for that.  Frank grew up loving rock and roll and because he plays the trumpet, he was also exposed to a lot of Jazz and R & B.  His experience as a music lover has certainly influenced what the band plays onstage and they will do anything from Rock to Disco and everything in between.  “What we play is extremely diversified.  Our shows are high energy and intense with crowds of people chanting and singing right along with us.  People come to our shows expecting to hear fun, danceable music and that is exactly what we give them.  We make people get up out of their seats and dance!”

Don’t Call Me Francis is also the ultimate in wedding bands.  From Sinatra and all the standards to Beyonce and The Black-Eyed Peas, if it’s good party music, they play it.  There are perhaps a handful of acts in this area that can come close to what this band can do onstage.  The level of musicianship, the seriousness of how they studied music and how they perform is unmatched.  As Frank put it, “we strive for an old-school mentality of playing that is professional and hands-down, will give people a time they will never forget.”

You can catch Don’t Call Me Francis playing all over the area including 5 of the local PJ Whelihan locations and plenty of clubs at the Jersey Shore this summer such as The Trump Plaza Beach Bar in Atlantic City, Martell’s Tiki Bar in Point Pleasant and Flip Flopz Beach Bar in North Wildwood.  You can check their schedule at www.francisband.com to see where they are will be appearing and plan your next night out.  You can be certain that with this band playing, it will be the time of your life!  To book the band for your wedding, party, event or club, call 856-986-6749.  The party continues….

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(Afternoon):  Elaina Maries 3464 E Thompson Street  ( Saturday from 2 to 6pm) Team Penny Pack Patrol Beef N Beer to rasie money for the 20th Annual Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure of Breast Cancer Walk.  Tickets are $30 adult and $15 Children  ALL AGES SHOW with :  RELEASE, GREAT SCOTT BAND and STEMS AND SEEDS.PRIZES FOOD and just a great way to have fun and help a great cause all in one afternoon.

Afternoon: SAT May 1st MAGGIES WATER FRONT CAFE  CEREBAL PALSY BENEFIT with LECOMPT, SERCRET SERVICE and SATRUN $30 DONATION

INCLUDES DRAFT BEER AND FOOD!  THIS IS a great cause…we ask all of our OOT FRIENDS AND FANS to come out to MAGGIES FOR THIS ONE! SEE THE BIG TENT!

(NIGHT)

Here goes: SAT. MAY1st BENEFIT at the ASHTON PUB with the CASSIDY GIRLS to BENEFIT THE FALLEN HEROES FUND of PHILA..BE THERE and DONATE. ALL P

ROCEEDS will go to this fund. $5 Cover will be donated…..see the CASSIDY GIRLS behind the bar as the CELEBRITY BARTENDERS at the ASHTON PUB.

(NIGHT)

SAT. MAY 1st JT’s PHILA HOUSE to host a big show…WITH THE RECORDING STARS FROM THE late 60’s THE NAZZ featuring Stewkey…along with THE SOUL SURVIVORS and the AMERICAN DREAM and also many other celebrities..this night will be filmed… SEE THE NEW ISSUE FOR MORE DETAILS and get on over to JT’s PHILA HOUSE. This event is sponsored by BUDWEISER, THE FOUR POINTS SHEARTON HOTEL NE, and *Out ON The Town Entertainment Guide …we have been donating much space to help out this show..

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By:  Krista Doran

sinnersaints_promoWhen I am not writing for the OOT, playing music, going to see a live band or having fun in some other way related to music, I actually go to work.  I am an outside sales rep so I spend a lot of time traveling to customer sites in my car. This gives me a chance to listen to music on the radio and sad to say, there really isn’t much new music out there that inspires me.  I thank God that 93.3 WMMR, 94 WYSP and 104.5 WRFF still play some great music because the other stations playing poppy, top 40 or Rap don’t exist in my world.  In my opinion much of today’s music has no soul, no groove…it all sounds the same and this is why my car is full of CDs.  I have been searching for music I can listen to that gets me fired up and makes me want to sing out loud with my windows down and I found it from a band right here in Philly.  That band is Sinners Saints.

I first heard of Sinners Saints from my friend Lori Stidham of the Whiskey Tango. She told me, “Krista, you have to see this band.”  I took her advice because Lori knows her stuff.  From the moment I walked into the bar and heard them playing, I felt that old familiar energy start to stir up inside of me again.  Could it be…new music that is raw, ballsy and really, really good?  YES!!  My faith had been restored and contrary to what so many people are saying, there ARE bands out there that still play good, hard rock and roll in Philly!

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing a few members of Sinners Saints at my home studio.  Rhythm Guitarist Joe O’Hara, Drummer Dave Kenneth and Bass Player Chris McKeever came walking in, cans of PBR in hand and right then and there I knew this was going to be a fun night!  Here in front of me sat 3 very confident, yet humble musicians.  We talked about many things and one comment that impressed me was what Dave said to me when I asked them about what they thought of their shows, “we only have 45 minutes to an hour to get everyone’s attention when we play.  Even if there are only 10 people in a room, it doesn’t matter to us.  We play with passion and the music is always rocking – every time.”  There is never a show where they are playing for only 10 people of course and these guys really believe in what they do and they know it rocks.  It was designed to!  In fact, Sinners Saints have already appeared at some major events and venues including when they played at The Spectrum for a 94 WYSP event back in November.  Just last week they performed at the Lehigh Music Conference, and coming up on May 28th they’ll be at the TD Arts Center in NJ playing at a Cancer benefit along with Me Talk Pretty, who was voted best new band by MTV.  Sinners Saints will also be one of the bands featured at Ride For Dime – a huge event that will be held at McStew’s Irish Bar in Levittown on June 26th which honors fallen heroes and gives back to local charities.

Sinners Saints is now a top-rated Philly original band and their music is reaching further out than just the local area.  One of their biggest challenges has been trying to grow their fan base on their own, but they are doing all the right things and it is working.  They have been playing venues anywhere between New York and Maryland and they are really starting to expand their fan base.  Their bass player, Chris McKeever told me “people are constantly coming up to us at our shows saying they heard about us from a friend who said they had to come see us and that they loved every minute of it.”  Word of mouth is this bands best advertisement.

I have to say, it was so refreshing to talk to musicians that really and truly enjoyed every second of what they are doing out there.  Joe, Chris and Dave all had the same belief and dedication to their music and one thing I was really excited to discuss with them was the EP they just released a few months back, which is titled “Bad Habits”.  Dave told me “Recording our EP Bad Habits was a great experience especially since we had the opportunity to work with producer David Ivory.”  If any of you are not familiar with that name, you’ll be happy to know David has produced Philly acts such as Patty Labelle, Halestorm, The Roots and Silvertide.  Obviously, David knows talent when he hears it.  In the case of Sinners Saints all he had to do was listen to them one time before he knew he wanted to produce them.  The EP is superb and needless to say, I keep one in my car now for those days when I really need to hear some good music.

If you like hard-rocking, attention-grabbing music that is refreshingly different, you really need to go to see Sinners Saints.  Their CD, “Bad Habits” is now available for sale on iTunes, Amazon.com and of course at their shows. They are writing more music and do plan to release a new CD sometime in the near future.   Although the CD sounds awesome, Joe told me “We sound so much better live.  It’s the energy that we create by running around, jumping off sh*t and getting the audience very fired up.”  They are now also mixing in a few covers with their originals because they know that people also like to hear some songs that are a bit familiar to them.  They are smart enough to know that everyone is craving good rock and roll and believe me when I tell you this: Sinners Saints is delivering it.

You can visit the Sinners Saints website at www.myspace.com/sinnerssaintsmusic right now to hear songs like“Whiskey Train,” (my favorite song to listen to while driving!), and “Dirty Sexy” which is an extremely catchy, sultry, hard-rocking song that literally made me bang my head the moment it started.  Their music is reminiscent of the heart pounding music you would hear from bands like Motley Crue and Guns & Roses, which are definitely bands that have inspired these extremely talented musicians.

Sinners Saints is:  Vocals, Don Michael, Lead Guitar- Chris “Bones” Morganelli, Rhythm Guitar- Joe O’Hara, Drums – David Kenneth and Bass – Chris McKeever.  Their next show is coming up this weekend – a double shot at the Cherrywood in Clemonton, NJ, Friday and Saturday night, April 23 and 24.  If you too are craving some really good, hard rock and roll, go check them out and be sure to let them know you heard about them through The Out On The Town!

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