Saturday, November 20, 2010

The End To A Great Year

Finally I get the chance to sit down and type away my friends. What can I say?  I feel alive and well enjoying my family, friends and music. I've decided to write about the past two months or so where I left off on my last blog. 
Shortly after the Cha' Cha's "All Mobbed Up" summer at Coney Island this year I received a call from the one and only Marge Raymond.  Marge and I had just finished a night together with All Mobbed Up at Coney Island and that night was one of the best singing duets I have ever been a part of.  Shortly after Marge called me and asked if I would like to sing a song with her at the 18th Avenue Feast in Brooklyn, I nearly dropped the phone and proceeded to say yes, of course.  We both decided on the standard  "Stand By Me."  All my good friends attended and they said it was great. I don't quite remember too much that night, the whole evening was such a musical high for me, but I'll take their word for it. (lol)

What else, let's see... Oh yeah, I finally got to perform on the Southpaw stage in Brooklyn where Buddy Love supported the band Sorrows.  I'd seen Paul Collins there with my friend Dave. The sound and lighting was just surpeb.  Seeing Arthur Alexander and Joey Cola from Sorrows after 30 years was alot of fun for me.  Joey, myself and Frank Infante hung out back in the Mudd Club daze quite a bit.  Joey was quick to point out he was already signed w/ Sorrows by that time.  Although Joey didn't recall too much of Mudd Club or our escapades back then, that just made me think once again I should write a book or something.  Although I did as much partying back then as everyone else (probably a bit more to be honest) my memory still serves me well.  I can't seem to remember where I leave my car keys or if I paid my bills on time but thirty years ago seems like last night.

I met one Sari Schorr that night.  She fronts a band called Bertha.  Liberty Devitto played drums with her at the Southpaw gig that night and let me tell you, this chick can sing!  Totally blew me away with her Janis Joplin style and delivery.  Pitch perfect and looks great!  If you get the chance go see her, Sari is something else. Little did I know we would be running into each other again shortly thereafter.

Later that week everyone from the NYC area and the world for that matter was getting ready for the event of events, The Mudd Club Reunion. The event was held at The Delancey Lounge on the lower east side of New York City.  It was almost sureal as this was one of the best get togethers in a long time. All my co workers, friends and alike were there along with a who's who of celebrity.  Richard Boch, Anita Sarko, Joey Arias, Richard Lloyd and so many more freinds I couldn't keep up. Tish and Snooky, Animal X, The Bush Tetras, Dave Street, Michael Musto, Ann Magunson, Maxi, Marcia Resnick and Curt Weiss just to name a few. The place was packed with an ongoing wait line of over one hundred or more people. Occasionally Richard & I would go outside making sure no one who's someone was left on line for too long, just like the old days. I just wished my other co workers and friends could have attended, namely David Azarch and Colter Rule. Well maybe next time....

The International Pop Overthow then came to town the following week.  All the bands are rehearsing and brushing up for what is the pop event of the year. This would be the fourth year that Buddy Love was personally asked to play the festival by David Bash, founder & CEO of the IPO. The third year Buddy Love would be on the IPO compilation CD's distributed by Not Lame Records.  Sorrows would play the Friday night slot and Buddy Love would close the event that Sunday early evening.  So I get a call from my friend Bobby "Dee" Waxman that week, tells me he will be special guest with Sorrows at the IPO.  Bobby and Arthur were in a band together prior to Sorrows, The Poppees. A power pop sensation back in the day. I was happy for Bobby. When Bobby first decided to come back in the fold (actually he never left) he played a Freddie Katz production, "Twisted Kicks 1" at Kenny's Castaways with his band The Boyfriends.  This was the first time Bobby and I ever worked together.  Although we both grew up in Brooklyn, had the same friends and attended the same affairs we never played together all those years. I had the honor to sing a song Bobby sold to The Ramones that night, "I Need Your Love".  Imagine this was to be my first homework assignment with Mr.Waxman. That was exciting for me, Bobby's a good friend, great musician and songwriter. So I decided to make the scene that night and go see Bobby with Sorrows.  I shot some pretty good video and pictures of the evening. Enter Sari Schorr with Sorrows as she proceeds to sing her rendition of  "I'd Rather Go Blind". I became an instant fan. I proceeded to trim it and post some footage on my You Tube site. Check it out, it's actually pretty good. I also posted some Richard Lloyd video from the Mudd Club Reunion as well.

I couldn't think of a better way to end the year than Buddy Love closing out The International Pop Overthrow Festival that Sunday Night in New York City. January the band will begin rehearsals for the 2011 season with brand new songs, performances and business opportunites.  It's really been a great year for the band as we continue to play, record, perform and sell songs in the music business. I consider myself lucky to be able to do what I like to do and make money doing it.  I'm truly blessed, but that's not the half of it. At the end of the day for me it's about family and friends. I've seen many friends this past couple of months and have made many more. It's good to be alive and well.

 Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays And A Joyous New Year From Me To You! Keep Rockin'!

Monday, September 27, 2010

A September To Remember

Wow, what a roller coaster ride the month of September turned out to be for Buddy Love. September has shaped up to be one of our best months yet. But as one strives to be the best they can, there must come a time in every rock and roll band's existence when you must step up to the plate, get better as a unit or come to the realization that things will more than likely remain the same. The call to greatness started for the band with the collaboration of Buddy Love and Tommy Byrnes (Billy Joel) in the studio for the production of our new single “Crying Town”, followed up with Buddy Love supporting “Wang Chung” on Long Island. This certainly pushed the envelope for us and tested our skills as a legitimate unit and profitable franchise. But as it turned out for Buddy Love this was just another test in our slow climb to perfection. After collaborating with Tommy on “Crying Town” we realized the bar had been raised and markers set regardless if we wanted it that way or not. We weren’t sure what to expect or how to proceed. Then we received the call, it was confirmed Buddy Love would be supporting one of the most successful pop bands in the world. The road was clear and our sights were set high.  Wang Chung, here we come...
Buddy Love was superb, held their own and gave Wang Chung a run for their money. Not that Rock and Roll is some sort of competitive sport, but if you want to keep up with the big boys you better damn well hold your own. We did and I’m both happy and relieved about that.  
Then came the band’s second hurdle of the month, acceptance and renewal. You know being the doorman at both Mudd Club and Max’s Kansas City in the late 70's/early 80’s by today’s standards makes you kind of a big deal. I didn’t ask for it. It just happened that way. There are interviews and video chats you’re involved with while the people listening or reading the articles are trying to capture the moment, your moment in words and stories. Editors of publications trying to find that one twist to a story no one else is aware of or a particular memory you may have of some celebrity or another that no one has ever heard before.  I’m sure when the Mudd Club reunion takes place this October @ The Delancey in New York City with all the original personnel manning their respected posts, the paparazzi will be running a muck once again. Hence rock and roll history is made for the generations. It’s just like when Buddy Love played Max’s the first few times in the 80’s, we didn’t realize the bands and clubs at that time were to be part of rock and roll history.  We all were just going through the motions unaware of anything more than wanting to play music. We were just kids, full of piss and vinegar, but now that I've performed at both Max’s Reunions, once in 2008 with what was to become ”All Mobbed Up” (thanks Peter Crowley) then again in 2010 with “Buddy Love”, it begins to dawn on me why I'm here, because I was there, renewal. My dear friend Nancy Cataldi would always say to me "Joey, either you were there or you weren't". Simple enough,right?  When Buddy Love was asked to play The Max’s Kansas City Reunion 2010, I must admit I wasn’t sure if the band would be a good fit. Max’s was the breeding ground for some of the best artists, punk & glam bands in the world. Buddy Love was actually post punk and not quite Nu Wave. We were stuck somewhere in the middle. What I learned about music from hanging out on the New York City Underground Scene was that you needed conviction in anything you do. When Buddy Love played New York City back in the 80’s, we had no conviction. We had alot of drive and determination, but no conviction. Today I feel that we have it well within our sites and then some. We performed at Otto’s to what was one of our best performances to date. With video clips posted on “Punk Cast”,reviews positive and upbeat, radio stations and magazines asking for the release date of the new album, there seems to be no limit as to what we can do these days. 
Then came the icing on the cake for me. One of New York City’s most respected and accomplished singer-songwriters from the early formative years of New York City Rock and Roll, Jon Montgomery invites the band to be part of his concert and film production to be held at Kenny’s Castaways, a weekend long event. Jon has been producing and writing plays and songs for his Off Broadway success stories for years. “The Roots of New York City Rock” as the event was called turned out to be an unbelievable shot in the arm for the band. Playing on the same stage with the likes of The Shirts,The Brats, Street Punk, Lisa Burns, Sturgis Nikides and so many other talented acts, we now felt as if we were part of the New York City music scene, finally. Remember the original band, Buddy Love was only together for a brief seven months or so before the record "Sheila" broke. I then left because of inside pressure and to persue other avenues. Ever since the band got back together in early 2007, some 27 years later I have this feeling as if I'm trying to make up for lost time, unfinished business if you will. I would speak with Doug trying to explain how I saw our place on the New York City music scene. I would often say when it's right, you'll know it. Our fans felt betrayed and angry when we broke up after the success of "Shelia" and they quickly abandoned us as they often do. Today it feels as if all has been forgiven, it feels almost right again. I think we're now on the way to regaining the respect from New York City and our fans once again. It feels good to be back home. 
This November 14th, Buddy Love will play "The International Pop Overthrow" Festival, our third consecutive appearance since we regrouped in 2007. We go back in the recording studio soon to work on our new songs that just seem to get better and better as time marches on. There's alot to be thankful for these days. It sure feels good to be back home again. Yeah, this has been a September to remember. Keep Rockin' 

Monday, September 6, 2010

Welcome To My Blog

Hi everybody and welcome to the launch of my very own blogspot. As most of you already know I am the lead vocalist & frontman for Buddy Love, All Mobbed Up and Other Various Acts around the New York City area. I like keeping busy with music so I'm constantly writing, recording, rehearsing or performing. As it turns out this is a pretty good month for my band Buddy Love. We have been asked to share the stage with Wang Chung on Friday, September 10th @ The Vibe Lounge in Rockville Centre, L.I. & the band is pretty excited about that. Wang Chung is a band from the 80's that we came up with so it's a bit nostalgic for us. The following Sunday Night on September 12th, Buddy Love will be playing The Max's Kansas City Reunion In New York City. This weekend long music festival will be lots of fun for me personally. Not only did Buddy Love grace the Max's stage several times but I also worked there shortly after I left The Mudd Club. Then on September 24th, Buddy Love will be part of a weekend long Concert and Film Documentary being filmed and hosted at Kenny's Castaways in NYC.  "The Roots Of Rock" concert and film was put together by veteran rocker and friend Jon Montgomery. Bands that will be on hand for this event we have known and played with over the years. Street Punk, The Brats, The Shirts, Lisa Burns, Michael Zuko and many other fantastic artists. That's about it for now. Thanks for subscribing to my blog and keep rockin'!