All she needs is a Froggy nickname

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All she needs is a Froggy nickname

Posted on: April 20th, 2014 by tommyj

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We knew Vanessa Campagna was a top-flight singer. Now she’s proving she’s a skilled radio personality, too.

The Blackhawk High graduate spent the past two weeks co-hosting the Froggy-FM morning show.

Campagna expects to remain in that role for several more weeks, until she returns to Nashville to continue her singing and songwriting career. The website for the Beaver County-based country station lists her as if she’s a regular deejay.

"She’s doing great so far," Froggy program director David Anthony said. "I’d love to keep her, but I firmly believe someone is going to discover her."

Campagna, 21, has brought a youthfulness and social media savvy to Froggy, sounding at ease whether dishing celebrity news, pitching prize giveaways or introducing a new segment, "Random Facts," which has found instant popularity as she rattles off trivia, such as Hippopotamus milk is pink, and nowhere in the Humpty Dumpty nursery rhyme does it mention Humpty is an egg.

Campagna and Froggy have had a long relationship that includes the station playing her current single, "What’s It Gonna Take," which also has earned airplay in other markets.

Froggy folks offered Campagna a test-run as an on-air partner for its regular morning man, Boss Frog.

"We didn’t advertise it much since we didn’t really know if this would be a good fit for her," said Anthony, an Ambridge native whose Froggy on-air name is David Hopperfield.

"I didn’t want to get in the way of her progression as an artist," he said. "We think she has a good chance to be successful with her music. I think the last thing you want to do is get in the way of her dream, but we also think she can help us here in this area. She’s a well known young lady and already has the respect of many area people. It’s been a real plus and she seems to me to be a natural."

Even when she’s hunkered down in Nashville again, Froggy might rely on Campagna to provide morning show reports from Music City.

"We’re excited that we’ve been able to add her to our morning show, and who knows maybe this will become something she can do for us in the future," Anthony said.

DINNER AND A MOVIE … TOGETHER

Latitude 40 on Wednesday will introduce its Cinegrille, a new concept in movie-going where you can watch a flick while dining on lunch or dinner.

Movie-goers sit in comfy, home-theater style seats equipped with food trays. They can chow down on selections, including steaks, prepared in the kitchen of the North Fayette Township entertainment spot.

We’re talking much more than Goobers and Raisinets here.

I’ll tell you what I think after Wednesday morning’s media unveiling and ribbon-cutting ceremony. The public is invited starting at 6:30 p.m. There’ll be a Marilyn Monroe impersonator for Twitter and Instagram ops.

POINT BLANK NEWS

With 40 years experience rocking Beaver County stages, Ray Fernandez took some time off to battle health issues, and now he’s back in the spotlight with a new band, Point Blank.

"At 63-years-old when most people are retiring, I am still working my full-time job and back at my music full force," said Fernandez, head softball coach at Central Valley High, who sings and plays bass for Point Blank, which has gigs booked April 26 and May 9 at Kendrew’s Lounge in Aliquippa, May 3 at the Beaver Falls Turners and May 31 at Darlington Days.

With influences such as Tom Petty, John Mellencamp, Journey and ZZ Top, Point Blank plays a danceable brand of classic-rock, according to Fernandez, a Hopewell resident, who you may remember from local bands like Madhouse, Foxx, Brimstone, Sweetwater and for the last 12 years, Stryke3.

Point Blank’s veteran lineup also includes drummer Romano Perri from Baden, lead guitarist-vocalist Bobby Mosura from Ambridge and guitars and vocalist Tom Watkins from New Waterford, Ohio.

A FULL ROAST

The Larry Richert charity roast Friday is sold out at The Club at Shadow Lakes in Hopewell.

Wrestling’s "Living Legend," Bruno Sammartino, will present a ceremonial toast to 1020-KDKA morning man Richert, who then will get roasted by radio and TV colleagues past and present, including emcee and KDKA weekend host Rob Pratte of Monaca.

Donnie Iris and Richert’s brother-in-law, football great Dan Marino, are sending video clips poking fun at the man in the hot-seat.

Proceeds benefit the Roxsan Betters Albanese Foundation that helps financially challenged families with children who are terminally ill or face a life-threatening situation.

Coveting what they’ve done in Colorado, a group of Pittsburgh area musicians will team up Saturday for the "Legalize PA" concert at Mr. Small’s Theatre in Millvale.

Good Brother Earl, Josh Verbanets, Truth and Rites and JasiriX will perform in a benefit for NORML Foundation, a nonprofit group lobbying for the legalization of marijuana.

Tickets are $10 in advance; $15 at the door for the 18-and-older show.

Thought I’d mention this in today’s column since the calendar says it’s 4-20.

(Scott Tady is entertainment editor for The Times, and easy to reach at stady@timesonline.com)

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