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Editorial: Oyster Bay Be Prepared To Rock!

There has been a change of venue for the reunion of the Oyster Bay High School classes of the late ’60s and early ’70s. It is being billed as the Battle of the Bands and was to take place at the OBHS PAC auditorium but now will take place at the Italian-American Club on Oct. 6 from 1 to 4 p.m.

Maria Santangelo emailed us the information and explained how this idea got started. She wrote:

It all started with Jeff Wasserman... On a sunny spring day in 2011, a former Oyster Bay High School student and professional singer and clarinetist, Kim (Shea) Chamberlain, class of ‘72, was perusing Facebook. Hmm. Let’s check in and see what Jeff Wasserman is up to. Jeff, a fellow musical classmate, appeared to be quite busy and successful as the founding member of Jeffery and the Free Radikals, recording and concertizing throughout Norway, Europe and beyond. Kim clicked on a recent YouTube performance and was amazed. She then recalled how several Oyster Bay alums, had gone on to become professional working musicians, recording artists, and performers.

One simple Facebook post led to another and then led to a fireball of responses from Oyster Bay graduates. The post was, “Remember the Battle of the Bands? Maybe we could have another ‘Battle’ featuring the former musical talent of Oyster Bay High School from the late ‘60s and early ‘70s.”

That was all it took to get responses from Oyster Bay musicians from across the country and the globe. From Randy Langione, master guitarist and teacher to John Berenzy, who is listed in the book Who’s Who of Rock‘n’ Roll, to John Bruschini, who has performed in many of the city’s popular clubs and performance spaces, to Nancy Sirianni, who has performed at major festivals: Woodstock ‘99, and Mountain Stage New Song Festival, to name a few, to David Scadin of The Blu Mojo Band, a Rocking six piece blues band with over two decades of playing power, to many more, these former members of Indigo, Manic Depression, and other legendary bands from The Battle of the Bands, decided to come together to carry on the musical tradition that had started four decades ago.

Working tirelessly, behind the scenes, former Oyster Bay students, Maria Santangelo, Scott Becker, Terry Beccarino-Haney, Sandy Sach, Ellen Fleury, and her husband, Matt Harris (musical sound man), Danae Flood and many more, have been planning this event for almost two years. The weekend will include a “Battle of the Bands” Concert on Saturday, Oct. 6 from 1-4 p.m. at the Italian American Club and an open mic on Friday night, Oct. 5, at the Homestead.

Highlights will include performances by coloratura soprano, Joan Petrella, traditional jazz by Kim (Shea) Chamberlain, the original music of world-renowned Jeff Wasserman, a folk-tinged set by Todd Evans and Craig Beilharz, blues, rock and more. Be prepared for a high energy jam at the end of the concert and an open mike at the Homestead on Friday, Oct. 5.

Performers/Groups At OBHS Battle Of The Bands

Oct. 6, Italian American Club From 1 To 4 p.m.

1. Bright Moments Jazz Duo- Kim (Shea) Chamberlain (vocals and clarinet) with husband, David Chamberlain (guitar) Years of attendance: 1968-1971.

2. John Berenzy (guitar) Jazz, Blues, Originals. (1971)

3. John Bruschini (guitar) Jazz (Graduated 1971)

4. Manic Depression-Randy Langione (guitar) (1968) Playing with Louie Mayhew (1968) and may be joining John Berenzy

5.  Blu Mojo Band David Scadin (1971) (guitar) (7 piece band)

• Instrumentation and names of band members Rick Jacobs (vocals) Ron Beccarino(drums) Jeff Leoni (keys) Dave Sacrestano (guitar) John Giordino (bass) Dave Scadin (guitar)

6. Todd Evans and Craig Beilharz (1972)

7. Jeff Wasserman- guitarist, vocalist, songwriter (1972) His band is called Jeffery and the Free Radikals, but they are from Norway... so, he is playing solo and with Nancy Sirianni.

8. Joan Petrella Broadway and show tune vocalist (1973)

9. Nancy Sirianni -vocalists and guitarist (1974).

10. Ron Beccarino (drums) backing up many of the above-mentioned bands.

What a great lineup of performers. Just think, they all got their start at OBHS. What a wonderful kudo to all the teachers who helped those students get their start in music.

It all goes to show that Oyster Bay is truly a wonderful place to live, play and go to school.

— DFK

News

Last week was one of Oyster Bay’s biggest, most anticipated summer events, the Italian American Society’s St. Rocco’s Festival. Returning to its usually spot in Fireman’s Field on Shore Avenue, the festival was filled with amusement rides, live music, and great food and company.

“We come every year to St. Rocco’s with friends,” said Laura Regan of East Norwich. “The rides and awesome food make it a lot of fun.”

One of Oyster Bay’s newest summer traditions is Dancing in the Street, which takes place every Friday in July at the gazebo in town. Sponsored by the Oyster Bay Main Street Association, half of Audrey Avenue is closed off and a DJ is called in for a great night of community dancing from 7-9 p.m.

“This is a great tradition and a beautiful town,” said visitor Michaela Lachance from Cooperstown, NY. “Everyone is having a wonderful time.”


Sports

Oakcliff’s intensive training program provided a high level of competition last weekend at the U.S. Women’s Match Racing Championship in Oyster Bay.

This year, the teams selected for the event were highly ranked through the United States, and several of the competitors are past and current Oakcliff trainees, including Elizabeth Shaw, Kathryn Shiber, Madeline Gill, and Danielle Gallo.

A total of 11 members of St. Dominic Track Team (grades 1-8) recently medaled at the Nassau-Suffolk CYO Championship Finals at Mitchel Field. In the finals, the athletes competed against the finalists from all three regions, representing more than 2,500 athletes from 23 other parishes.

In addition to the student athletes’ success, the track coaches were honored as well. St. Dominic CYO Track coaches Phil Schade (grades 1-3), Julie and Mike Keffer (grades 4-6) and Rich Cameron (grades 7-8) were selected by peer coaches in their region for the NSCYO Team Sportsmanship Award. The Saint Dominic CYO track program, in its second year, has already proven to be a force to be reckoned with and the young runners are among the best on Long Island.


Calendar

OB Band Concerts

Wednesday, July 23

Music Under The Stars

Friday, July 25

Annual Chicken BBQ

Saturday, July 26



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com