The PennyPack Music Festival get’s it going…see the full story …also see the complete listings of local bands on the Bill…

Meet up with the not new trio called Loosleaf Trio…

Meet up with the new band Confusion,

Radio  stations are hosting major concert events: Get the lowdown on:  92.5 WXTU. 93.3 Wmmr. 96.5 Fm with Wired Fest…and Q-102 has a big show coming up – tickets are few…if any are left… it will be a miracle.!

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By Jimmy Abgarian.

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April 24th saw the return of Nickelback to the Tri-state area for the first time since March of 2009. A Canadian band hell bent on putting on a gigantic spectacle of sound and lights, they did not disappoint. My Darkest Days was the first band up. Going on very early and only playing 4 songs has to be difficult for any young band trying to make an impression on a crowd that early. They have a strong following who seemed to show up early on to see them. They ended their short set with their hit song Porn star dancing.  MDD is on Chad Kroegers 604 record label. They sounded well rehearsed and appeared to have fun making the most of their short set. Next up was Seether. I don’t know where to begin here. Let’s start with the positives. Seether has great songs and a great sound, there is no disputing these facts. The problem is they seem to be lacking stage presence and had no connection to the audience at all. This is the fifth time have seen this band and I have disappointed every time in the live show. Seether’s stage set up consisted of over sized Amps and what looked like cheap Christmas lights. The exact mundane set up that they used last year. Watching this band play their hit songs and sounding great mad me angry because there was no movement at all.  I’m not exaggerating when I tell you that all of the nine songs of their set were hits. Legitimate, on the radio,hits. The problem is there was no show. NEXT

What Happened next is something that I have waited for a very long time to see. Bush fronted by Gavin Rossdale took the stage and proceeded to take the Philly crowd to school. They only played 8 songs but those 8 songs were worth the price of admission alone. They opened with Machinhead and then proceeded to blast through All My Life and The Sound of Winter off of their 2011 release Sea of Memories. Both songs are Bush caliber songs and belonged in the set. They then played Everything Zen before cranking it up full volume for a stellar version of the Beatles classic Come Together. During the song Gavin left the stage and went into the crowd to sing and dance with the fans. I was shocked that one half of a Hollywood power couple would risk life and limb to get his point across. It worked in a big way. The rest of the set was incredibly familiar with Little Things, Glycerine  and Comedown ending the set. This set showed me that my loyalty and dedication had not been wasted on a band that brought their A game and didn’t just go through the motions. It was unreal how great they sounded. Bush was the perfect set up band for what came next.

I have seen a lot of good and bad written about Nickelback over the years. I want to tell you why I love this band. Before the show they spent the day visiting Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. It makes me proud that a band of Nickelback’s stature takes the time while touring to take the time to brighten a sick kids day. These are the things most critics ignore.; Not me. I praise them for their unselfishness. Nickelback is out touring in support of their new album, Here and Now. The new record has at least 4 hits on it.  I couldn’t wait to see the Bigger and Better stage show.

They opened the show with This means war and then steamrolled through a 15 song set of some of their best songs. They spared no expense on the staging and lighting. Lot’s of huge explosions and pyro. In the middle of the set, a giant floating stage came down and the band played Bottoms up suspended above the pumped Philly crowd.

They played Rockstar and Someday after they landed and Animals on the way back.

This is how a Rock Concert is supposed to be. There was no rolling tape or prerecorded back up vocals or lip Synching. This was an hour and a half of balls out rock. Hit after hit made the night go way to fast.

This band has progressively gotten better and better over the years and I am surprised at the infinite creativity of Nickelback. The show reminded me of the Huge Rock shows of the late Eighties. They closed the night out with Figured You Out. It was a long night of Rock that was worth the money. If you were looking to immerse yourself in a couple of hours of great Rock and Roll I would highly recommend a Nickelback show.

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The Pennypack Music Festival/Wednesday Nights and the ALL NEW Saturday Summer Slam Jam!
By:  Krista Doran
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It’s that time of the year again folks!  Time to pack up the kiddies, lawn chairs and blankets and head down to Pennypack Park for the Pennypack Summer Music Festival!  We have all spent time at the park over the last several years listening to great live music, comfortably lounging in the grass with our family and friends.  It’s a wonderful experience for the whole family and we are very lucky to have these concerts available to us to enjoy every year!

The festivals all started back in the ’70’s through the imagination of Ed Kelly and Louis Farinella, and other activist citizens of NE Philadelphia.  Kelly led the grassroots effort to build the existing bandshell with the mindset “If we build it, they will come.”  The shows featured Big Band acts such as the Glenn Miller Orchestra, Tommy Dorsey and local area string bands. The concerts regularly attracted huge, appreciative crowds and were a great success for more than 20 years. But as the years passed, the original founders could no longer handle the exhaustive administrative and logistical tasks of running the festival every year. Consequently, despite the obvious need, it ceased to exist.

Luckily, in the Winter of 2000, revival efforts  began and a new group of community activists began to take things over. They put together a plan for a new Summer music series that would use the existing band shell.  By mid-Summer of 2001, the series was officially renamed the Pennypack Park Festival and the abandoned band shell was completely restored! The first year, the new festival was able to put on three small and very successful shows featuring Jazz, Latin, and Big Band music.

Today the concerts continue to be a huge success.  Every Wednesday night, another great Tribute Band is featured, along with other awesome local bands as openers.  Just a few of these amazing acts will include Steal Your Face (Grateful Dead Tribute), Romeo Delight (Van Halen Tribute), The Glimmer Twins (Rolling Stones Tribute), Diamond Dogs (Bowie Tribute) and of course, Philly’s own Mike LeCompt and AJ Slick, plus many more!  The series runs from 5/9 through to 9/15.  These concerts give local musicians the chance to play up on that big stage for the huge crowds that love the music.  This year, the Board approved a special SATURDAY concert that is going to feature the areas top cover bands!  This event called Summer Slam Jam, is going to take place on Saturday June 2, from 1:00 pm to 7:00 pm and will feature opening band Original Haze and then starting at 2:00 pm: Boss Hydro, Stems and Seeds, Dirty Electrick, Chowder and Rev!  This is sure to be a great time for the whole family to enjoy, so make your plans now to be there!

The summer concerts are something everyone looks forward to. What you may not know are the many fundraising efforts and scholarships the concerts help to support.  The Festival’s ongoing mission to promote and develop musical and other performing arts is a historic commitment to youth participation.  This is why it is so important for our local community to come enjoy and support all the summer concerts.  Yes, it is about great music but it also about making our community better and better.  The Festival consistently seeks grant funding from public and private foundations, government sources and the private sector and donations from the loyal audiences continue to be a critical source of support as the board looks to eventually increase the number of scholarships that can be awarded.  To read the entire history of the concert series, view the upcoming schedule and for more information please visit www.pennypack.org!

On behalf of, well everyone who enjoys these concerts year after year, all of us at The Out On The Town would like to thank the entire Board (Steve Hartzell, Norman Jadczak, Glenn Devitt, Jerry Lathrop, Janet Tagliavia, Lonnie Goldiner, Lisa Greco, Bob Finnegan, Harry Fritsch and Donny Smith) for all the painstaking effort that goes into such a demanding and wonderful achievement.  This series is a true commitment to community in every sense of the word. All of the concerts are free, so please support this commitment with donating all you can when those buckets come around!

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loose_leaf_trio

By: Krista Doran

Several months ago we arrived at Curran’s Bensalem for one of our gigs.  We always arrive at the venues we play early enough to have plenty of time to set up, and mingle with friends for a bit.  Curran’s has been having acoustic music there on Friday nights before the bands start, and while we were there we happened to catch the last set of a band called Looseleaf Trio.

I was already aware of Rhett Tierney who is the guitar player and lead vocalist for the band.  The Doran family has been lifelong friends with the Tierney clan, so when Rhett’s dad Brian first told me about them I made sure to take notice.  As we walked in to Curran’s, the first thing that caught my attention was the 3 part harmony ringing through the entire room.  I put down my gig bag and just sat and watched these 3 young men do their thing.  I have to admit, it takes a lot to impress me when it comes to cover bands.  I have seen so many over the years, that some just start to sound alike.  Not these guys…they have a unique sound and style all their own.  I loved it!

Looseleaf Trio formed after Rhett had been doing a lot of solo acoustic gigs and was tired of being limited to just gigging alone.  He soon called on his old friends and former band mates Andrew Napoli and Keith Boehm to join him and form a more serious group.  Soon after forming, they started playing a few gigs a week and also started performing some original material as well.  The trio has been together now for almost 2 years and have really been turning a lot of heads out there.  Their shows truly are like a breath of fresh air!

If you go to see Looseleaf Trio (which I highly recommend) you are really going to enjoy it.  They play music from several different genres.  I spoke with Rhett and he told me, “We don’t like to limit ourselves to a certain genre.  We play classic hits that everyone loves and will sing along to.”  Their shows consist of many different cover tunes ranging from Sam Cooke to Sublime, with a selection of their own originals peppered in.  In fact, even their originals are catchy and upbeat, full of deep lyricism and emotion.  It is a high energy show and not your typical mellow acoustic.

The Looseleaf trio may be just that, a trio, but their sound is as full as a regular band.  They are gigging at least 4 nights a week now.  They play steady at Curran’s Irish Inn on Friday nights and at Paddy Whacks on Welsh Road on Sundays.  They also host an open mic at Dean Casmirri’s Colonial Inn on Thursdays.  Saturdays vary and you can catch them playing somewhere in NE Philly or Bucks County.

These 3 guys are doing something right for sure, because the music is excellent and everyone that has seen them just loves what they do!  When I asked Rhett what he wanted to tell all of our readers he told me, “We would like people to know that all we wish to do other than write and perform our music, is to inspire anyone we can in any positive way possible.  Our message is that you can still produce good music and entertain people without gimmicks.”

Looseleaf Trio is:  Rhett Tierney – Guitar, harmonica and lead vocals; Andrew Napoli – Bass guitar and vocals; Keith Boehm – Percussion and vocals. You can check them out online by going to their Facebook page:  Facebook.com/looseleaftrio or on Twitter: Twitter.com/looseleaftrio.  If you are interested in booking Looseleaf Trio, please contact Brian at 267-566-0351. Below is their current schedule for May.  Go check them out!

5/10 Casmirri’s Colonial Inn, Penndel PA 9-1 am
5/16 Kenny’s, Southampton PA  8-12 am
5/17 Casmirri’s Colonial Inn, Penndel PA 9-1 am
5/18 Curran’s Bensalem PA 5-8pm
5/19  Pennsbury High School Prom
5/20 Manny Brown’s 9-1 am
5/24 Casmirri’s Colonial Inn, Penndel PA 9-1am
5/25 Currans Tacony Phila PA 8-1 am
5/27 Paddywhacks on Welsh, Phila PA 9-12 am
5/31 Casmirris Colonial Inn, Penndel PA 9-1am

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DJ54-2DJ 54 began in the nightlife scene back in 1998 down on the infamous Delaware Ave. Known as one of the Top DJs in the Philadelphia/Jersey market he has always been a large room/large event DJ. His weekly events are 6 year+ Main Room Gigs @ The Roxxy/Bamboo Bar w/ Q102 Fridays which is the biggest nightclub event in Philadelphia weekly with over 1500+ weekly and Club 27 w/ Q102’s Live Broadcast as its host on Saturdays which boasts over 1000+ people each week.  DJ 54 also spins various weeknight clubs & lounges in and outside the area. He has spun many celebrity hosted events in the tri-state area and has played along side many top artists like Flo-Rida, Jay Sean, Sean Paul, LMFAO, and more!  His high energy EDM sound will have you moving like no other!  If you like House, Electro, and Dance music, this DJ is one you will want at your event.
DJ 54 is also a 5+ year mix show DJ on Z88.9FM which is one of the top Dance FM Stations in the USA. Voted yearly as a finalist in the IDMA (International Dance Music Awards) category for best US Dance Station! His show is among other celebrity DJs on the station such as David Guetta, Paul Van Dyk, Louie Devito, and Mike Rizzo! Tune into him weekly @ 3am every Friday!
Book him early for your Nightclub, Lounge, and large scale indoor/outdoor events as his schedule fills up quickly.
Checkout DJ 54 online on Facebook under “Deejay Fiftyfour”, his artist page under “DJ 54”, and follow him on Twitter @DJ54Philly.

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Nicki Sbaffoni

May 16, 2012

Nicki_Promo_Photo_2011When asked to describe her musical life so far in 2012, Nicki Sbaffoni responds, “Busy, busy, busy. . .but loving every second and blessed by every opportunity!”  As an acoustic entertainer (or performing songwriter, depending on the night of the week), Nicki is indeed one of the busiest players in the scene.  With close to 130 performances in 2011, she is already poised to hit that same mark before September.  While Nicki attributes the bounty of gigs to an alignment of the stars, it’s easy to see why she is so busy.  She’s not afraid to try new things or push the envelope of what acoustic entertainers are expected to do, gaining respect from bar owners, staff, and fellow musicians alike.

A few new things she’s working on include a collaboration with acoustic kindred spirit Alia (www.aliamusic.com), and local funny man Harry Baker at the new Ortlieb’s Lounge (3rd & Poplar in the Northern Liberties).  A combination of musical requests, comedy, and sing-a-longs, their weekly gig, titled “Two Songbirds and an Idiot”, makes Sunday Brunch a blast.  “I had no idea if I would be able to comfortably play off of Harry’s comedy, his huge personality,” says Nicki about the experiment.  “I’ve surprised myself at how easy it actually is and how much fun we’re all having!  I’ve even said a few funny things all by myself!”

Another new venture, Nicki is loving “Acoustic Tuesdays” at the Twisted Tail (509 S. 2nd St. Philadelphia).  While known for the upstairs Juke Joint and amazing blues sessions, the Twisted Tail is giving the acoustic night a try, and Nicki is the perfect player for the job.  She’s currently the main act from 6:30 to 9:30 every Tuesday, performing requests from all genres (mostly rock and blues to fit the theme of the venue) as well as her own originals.  Once the night evolves into more of a songwriter night, Nicki is excited to serve as host.  She is a staple of the open mic circuit and admits that while solo shows are great and pay the bills, there’s incredible value in showcases. “There’s such a great community of players in this area, so much talent.  Not all of us can carry a 3 or 4 hour gig.  Their songs need a stage too!”

Additional projects for the summer include acoustic duo shows with Scott Allan Knost from Wichita, Kansas (www.scottallanknost.com) and full band original shows.  Acclaimed three piece, the Blak Sheep, are backing up Nicki in the studio, and she’s completely geeked to play with them in support of her upcoming CD, “Falling all the time”.  Also a member of Conquer Entertainment Philly, Nicki will be sharing all the original magic at venues like World Café Live and the Grape Room very soon.

Nicki performs 3 to 6 times a week year round at venues all over Philadelphia and down the shore.  She is scheduled for every summer Saturday at Harry’s Ocean Bar at the Montreal Inn in Cape May, as well as shows at Dogtooth Bar & Grill (Wildwood), Woody’s Place (N. Wildwood), and the Dead Dog Saloon (Sea Isle City).  Locally, she performs at Tony’s Place (Ivyland), Ashburner Inn, Curran’s Irish Inn, the Jughandle Inn, Flat Rock Saloon (Manayunk), and many more.  Download her APP for Android or iPhone for instant access to schedule, original songs, video links, and more!  Nicki’s official website, www.acousticnicki.com, has all of this information, as well as links to her social networking sites, and booking details.  See you at a show!

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Meet  Jessica Fanelli From Hammerheads jessie3

Jessica is a resident of Rhawnhurst and works doing shifts on Wednesday and Sundays and on call for other days over at Hammerheads in NE Phila.  She stands in at 5’1” and has black hair and blue eyes.  When she is behind the bar she goes crazy and makes all of our friends and fans have so much fun. When it comes to the personality edge she is at the top of the list…” I really like making people happy and I just love seeing them have a good time” she says. She said that being a bartender is just an amazing job and  is the best way to meet so many different kinds of people each week.
Jessica goes to school in the daytime and is taking classes at Bucks County Community College.
Birth sign: Virgo
Hobbies: She likes to go the gym and work out daily also likes to go tanning and shopping.
Favorite Radio Station : Wired 96.5 FM
Favorite TV Programs: Bad Girl Club and Mob Wives
Favorite Drink: Vodka water & lemon
Favorite Drink to Serve: The Fanelli Special ( Pineapple upside down Cake)
ON SPORTS: All the Phila sports teams. Likes to go to tailgate  parties. Enjoys going out to see the Phillies play.
Summer places: Loves to go the Jersey Shore – Favorite towns are Wildwood NJ and also likes Atlantic City.
This week stop on over to Hammerheads and meet up with Jessica and mention to her that you did see her in the latest OOT Guide.

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May is National Burger Month:

OOT pick for the best burgers to be found…and the winner is The Stadiums Bar & Grille ( All area locations ( 7 to pick)  Find out more in the new OOT guide tonight online @ www.ootonline.com

* They have 19 burgers to try and they offer the highest quality of beef / Black Angus – Certified…find out more and see the report!  Congratulations to the Stadium Bar and Grille – OOT ‘s  Pick for the Best Burgers!

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