December JSJBF Youth Open Mic Night

12-3-2021 – By, Michael Murphy

December’s installment of our Youth Open Mic proved to be much better than last month’s particularly due to some newcomers to the event, brought by returning talent Bella Miller.  Thank you to Bella for that.

First to take the stage was singer-songwriter Justin Coughlin who acoustically covered a classic, Operator by Jim Croce with nice crescendo between verses and choruses. Then he did Radiohead’s Fake Plastic Trees brilliantly soulful. At just 21 years old he is a rising talent who will play live at The Chubby Pickle on Feb. 19, if you want to absorb his super artistry.

Next, regular attendee Melissa La Rochelle covered two worth noting: Make A Move by the band Lawrence, wherein she exposed her higher upper register singing it passionately. For the holiday season she also covered Johnny Orlando’s new release How Can It Be Christmas with deeply affecting tone, more than is usual for that song.

Returning duo, the Sparano sisters, reprised for us Astor Piazolla’s Libertango very up tempo. Then Annabel performed two solos, notably her melodic, mournful original love song Crystal Ego. I have probably said before, these two are amazing keyboardists.

Then, newcomer Jordan Pal covered three. Notables were Nobody Say Nothing, Just Hush by obscure band Beach Slang. Also, in keeping with the Christmas season he covered the Goo Goo Dolls’ You Ain’t Getting Nothin’ with the appropriate angst and dedicated to friend Nate.

That above mentioned friend was Nate Weathers who was also a newcomer and rendered on keyboard Secrets by One Republic, displaying fine piano skills, then Ed Sheeran’s  Lego House. On that he was accompanied by friend Nick on guitar and made it his own with a quicker tempo.

Another super talented singer-songwriter, Bella Miller, gave us two nice originals, Winter Flowers and Melanie on guitar. The latter has a beautiful intro in a soft mellow tone which suddenly morphs into an intense verse, hook and conclusion. To me it is somewhat reminiscent of an Alanis Morrissette ballad.

Our next Youth Open Mic is scheduled for Jan 7, 2021 at the Woman’s Club of Red Bank where any musical youth will find a friendly, supportive and fun forum in which to perform and is coordinated and run by board member Joseph V. Riggio.

Signup sheet is available 6:30 pm.

Music starts 7 pm.

$5 donation to perform or attend.

Under 21 to perform, all ages may enjoy.

Performers not limited to Jazz and Blues.

Full backline provided, musicians bring instruments and pedals.

For further info contact Joseph V. Riggio @ 732-670-2157.

Facebook: Jersey-Shore-Jazz-and-Blues-Foundation-Youth-Open-Mic

Instagram: @jsjbf_youth_open_mic