I was watching the Today show and a new musician said she was using some different instruments and she said a saxophone and trombone, said Virginia DeBerry, co-founder of the New Brunswick Jazz Project. These are not different instruments these are real instruments.
Everybodys used to being in a studio where everythings generated electronically. The only thing that people see on stage are guitars, drums and keyboards. Horns are almost foreign in contemporary music.
Not in New Brunswick, thanks to the Jazz Project. Its a fourth-anniversary celebration for the group this week, which has made Hub City, once again, a hot bed for jazz.
But it didnt come easy for founders DeBerry, James Lenihan and Michael Tublin in the spring of 2010. They were told it couldnt be done, especially with the summer months looming.
Because Rutgers closes, everybody assumed everybody else left town, DeBerry said. What, everybody doesnt have a job? We decided absolutely we could do it through the summer.
The format was and is having national acts along with local lights at venues in New Brunswick and the surrounding area. The fans are jazzheads from back in the day, the crew who used to see the New Brunswick Jazz Collective in the 80s, and jazz students from Rutgers Mason Gross School of the Arts and surrounding universities.
Part of the appeal is the talent that comes through will regularly appear at major venues like Madison Square Garden, or youll see them on TV. Lee Hogans, who plays with his quartet Saturday, April 12 at the Makeda Ethiopian Restaurant in New Brunswick in the Jazz Projects fourth anniversary party, is seen on HBOs Boardwalk Empire and he tours with Jay-Z. Actress Suzzanne Douglas, star of the TV show The Parent Hood and the movie How Stella Got Her Groove Back, is set to sing jazz Wednesday, April 16 at the Hyatt Regency New Brunswick.
Also this week, the Vincent Troyani Band is at Tumultys Pub in New Brunswick on Tuesday, April 15 and the Bob DeVos Quartet is at Makeda on Thursday, April 17.
These musicians play all over the world, DeBerry said.
No bathing allowed
Deal Casino, not to be confused with the Deal Casino Bathing Club in Deal, is the name of a newish band from Sparta who are rocking regional stages.
They have a briskly atmospheric sound with robust guitars, big rhythms and bluesy underpinning. In their poppier moments, they sound like a gritty version of the Killers. The bands latest EP, The Runaways, was recorded at the Lakehouse Recording Studios in Asbury Parki and produced by Shore musician Jon Leidersdorff.
We say that Deal Casino Joe Parella, vocals/guitar; Joe Cowell, guitar; Jon Rodney, bass and Mike Linardi, drums is newish because they used to be known as Something About January.
Now, its something about Deal Casino.
Check them out Saturday, April 12 at the Stone Pony in Asbury Park. Its the Myas Warrior Jam benefitting the Mya Lin Terry Foundation for pediatric cancer foundation. Theyre also in the city Monday, April 14 at the Wonder Bars Happy Mondays night and Saturday, April 19 at the Banana Stand in New Brunswick.
Contact the band for details on the Banana Stand show in New Brunswick. Its a basement show and technically illegal, so the venues do not announce show details.
Myas Warrior Jam benefitting the Mya Lin Terry Foundation for pediatric cancer foundation with Deal Casino, Strong Soul, Gngr, This New Day and Keith Egan, 6 to 11 p.m. Saturday, April 12, Stone Pony, Ocean Avenue, Asbury Park. $25
(includes food and dessert).
Happy Mondays with Deal Casino, Creeptones and the Places Youve Been, 8 p.m. Monday, April 14, Wonder Bar, 1213 Ocean Ave., Asbury Park. Free. www.wonderbarasbury
Chris Jordan: 732-643-4060; cjordan@ njpressmedia.com