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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

Our experience of 9/11 has changed; today it is seen as part of a journey and not an isolated event. On Wednesday, Sept. 10, President Barack Obama spoke to the nation saying the battle against terrorism is ongoing. 

 

That awareness that we had gone through the experience of the fall of the Twin Towers and had rebounded, but the danger is not over, and the battle is still to be won was repeated by Senator Carl Marcellino at the Day of Commemoration at the Oyster Bay 9/11 Memorial Garden on the Western Waterfront on Thursday evening.

“Visitation is up 300 percent,” said Harriet Gerard Clark, Raynham Hall Museum director.

“Two-thirds of them come because of reading the book by Brian Kilmeade, George Washington’s Secret Six: The Spy Ring That Saved The American Revolution, and seeing the series ‘Turn’ on A&E,” added Tom Valentine, docent, who keeps the list of visitors. Soon the series will include the story of Robert Townsend of Oyster Bay who was known as Culper, Jr. when he was a spy for George Washington.

Alex Sutherland, director of education, nailed his definition. “He was the most important spy for George Washington because he had the perfect cover. He was pretending to be a Loyalist and writing for a Loyalist newspaper and befriending British officers at his coffee shop in downtown New York while secretly collecting information.


Sports

Hard work paid off for local athletes Christine Grippo of Locust Valley, Kelly Pickard of Oyster Bay, Bernadette Winnubst of Locust Valley, Steven Quigley of Bayville, Catherine Soler of Oyster Bay, Maria Elinger of Oyster Bay, and Armand D’Amato of Oyster Bay Cove, each of whom won awards in a field of some of the best triathletes from all of Long Island and beyond in the 27th annual Runner’s Edge - Town of Oyster Bay Triathlon, held in and around Oyster Bay’s Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Park on Saturday morning, Aug. 23.

Grippo earned top honors in the women’s 30-34 age group with a time of 1 hour, 17 minutes, 36 seconds. Pickard (1:17:39) scored first among the women in the 35-39 age group. Winnubst scored in 1:38:48 to earn third place honors in the Masters Athena Weight Division. Quigley earned the second place award in the Masters Clydesdale Weight Division in 1:23:23. Soler (1:29:12) scored 5th among the women in the 20-24 age group. Ehlinger (1:39:23) was the 4th place award winner in the women’s 55-59 age group. D’Amato (1:42:44) earned top honors in the 70-74 age group.

Ice Dreams, an Olympic Ice Show starring 2014 Olympic Bronze Medalist Jason Brown and aspiring local skaters, is coming to Twin Rinks Ice Center at Eisenhower Park in East Meadow on Sept. 20.

Isabella Skvarla, 13, Julia Tauter, 12, and Chiara Vlacich, 12, all of Oyster Bay, Julia Forte, 12, of Locust Valley and Riley Stein, 11, of Bayville will be skating in the world class show to celebrate the opening of the best figure skating facility Long Island has ever seen.


Calendar

Art In A Meadow

Saturday, Sept. 13

Bayville Oktoberfest

Saturday, Sept. 13 - Sunday, Sept. 14

Hurricane Preparedness

Tuesday, Sept. 16



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