Outpost in the Burbs: Willie Nile, Allison Moorer, Joe D’Urso and Joe Rapolla

Published October 19, 2014 by Maryanne

willie nileWillie Nile

Thanks to Outpost in the Burbs for second row comp tickets to a very special songwriters evening at Outpost in the Burbs featuring Willie Nile, Allison Moorer, Joe D’Urso and Joe Rapolla — all outstanding talents!

I’ve always loved Outpost in the Burbs, as I used to cover shows there when I worked as a journalist for Montclair Times. So six years later, I felt very nostalgic walking in again with my husband to see a show. Special guest Anthony D’Amato was already playing as we got there a little late. We were thrilled it was him, as we saw him earlier in the summer perform with The Smithereens and he is a great guitarist and song writer.

Here’s a song from Anthony D’Amato:


Next up were Willie Nile, Allison Moorer, Joe D’Uros and Joe Rapolla. The artists went around about four times, each singing a song and playing acoustic, though Willie Nile played piano as well. He was my favorite of the four and really brought the house down with  “One Guitar.”

Then at the end, D’Amato was brought back to the stage and everyone performed a few songs together by The Beatles and The Band.

It was a wonderful evening for my husband and I — truly an unexpected treat as I wasn’t familiar with any of the artists except for D’Amato and Nile (who I saw perform back when I was a teenager).

Here’s a taste of all the artists that performed:

Allison Moorer:


Joe D’Urso:


Joe Rapolla:


Willie Nile:


Indian Summer in New Jersey

Published October 14, 2014 by Maryanne

SAM_6213Enjoying some bullet proof coffee at Cave Paleo

It was the most gorgeous Indian Summer day in New Jersey today, so my husband and I enjoyed it to the max!

First we had lunch at Cave Paleo in Avon-by-the-Sea. We had coconut pumpkin soup and flank-steak “burritos” (lettuce as the “burrito.”)

Then we spent two hours on the beach; I had a good book and the time just flew by.

And finally hit a record store.

Life is good!

SAM_6225Spring Lake Beach

SAM_6230The Record Store in Howell, New Jersey

SAM_6229Halloween Hello Kitty

Paterson Youths Look for Better Lives in Free Teens Program

Published October 9, 2014 by Maryanne

SAM_6203Free Teens Members (photo by Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta)

On Monday afternoon I had such a fantastic time covering the Free Teens kick off event. I met some very impressive teens as well as councilwoman Ruby Cotton and children’s author Felicia Capers. And I was invited to speak as well, which was an honor.

Here is the article on NorthJersey.com: http://www.northjersey.com/news/paterson-youths-look-for-better-lives-in-free-teens-program-1.1106158

“Guest List” Book Signing at Randy Now’s Man Cave in Bordentown

Published October 5, 2014 by Maryanne

SAM_6195Stu Deutsch, Maryanne Mistretta and Randy Now

(Posing for photograph for newspaper photographer, Deirdre Ryan!)

Today was absolutely incredible for me.

I was signing copies of my book “On the Guest  List: Adventures of a Music Journalist” alongside of Stu Deutsch, original Plasmatics drummer!

Now, go back to 1980. I had first met Stu Deutsch at a record store in Wayne called Looney Tunes. Stu was signing autographs with The Plasmatics. I was a fan and only 17 and Stu was cool enough to put me on the guest list to see the show that night. Back then they didn’t have “all ages” shows like they do today. Plus the fact that I was bullied in school, having a super cool rock star like Stu put me on the guest list meant the world to me! Who would have ever thought one day we’d be signing autographs together?!

It was so great conversing with fellow Plasmatics fans. I met the coolest people today! I loved seeing all the Plasmatics shirts people wore, and all the old vinyl they brought for Stu to sign. It was also cool that a woman got my book just because she’s collects books that authors sign! And gorgeous NJ weather too!

Thanks so much to Randy Now of Man Cave for having me at this extraordinary event! It was the experience of a lifetime. I’m ecstatic!

If you want to purchase “Guest List” (which has a few Plasmatics stories) please go to Next Century Store: http://www.nextcenturystore.com/non-fiction/other/on-the-guest-list-adventures-of-a-music-journalist.html

SAM_6142Stu Deutsch and Maryanne Mistretta

SAM_6176Signing autographs

SAM_6154With my husband!

Reiki Healing

Published October 2, 2014 by Maryanne


I often struggle if I should share negative things because I don’t like to come across as bitching, when life is truly amazing. Though many follow my blog for inspiration, and it sometimes seems that running my own show is effortless, in many ways it is. It’s been a blessing to be self employed and running Pear Tree (www.peartreeenterprises.com) since 2008: managing entertainers and natural health practitioners; editing books; public speaking and writing. All the stuff I love.

On a down note, two days ago, I was completely stressed out when a former client failed to show up at a gig I booked her and the facility called me first thing in the morning.

I’ve always taken pride in my work to have things run smoothly and it’s frustrating when clients don’t cooperate, not to mention embarrassing because I once represented her.

I apologized to the facility, from the bottom of my heart and am so humbled and grateful that the director took my side, knowing the screw up wasn’t my fault. She even booked me to present one of my own lectures at a later date!

However, instead of looking at the incident as a positive, the negative portion of the incident set the tone for the day and I ended up sick and stressed for two days following with a headache, shoulder pain and feeling absolutely drained.

So, this morning I decide to take some “me time” and head out to my favorite health food store, Dean’s Natural Food Market (http://www.deansnaturalfoodmarket.com/) as they were having a Health Fair.

Speaking with like-minded people and shopping in a positive store almost immediately put my mind at ease. I was in incredibly high spirits.

Then a life-changing event happened. I met Beth Wishbow.

Beth Wishbow is a Reiki Master Teacher and Therapist in the traditions of Usui and Karuna Reiki, medical intuitive, Qigong practitioner and ordained minister.

I had some tension in my shoulder area, which she relieved, but even more of a blessing was her compassionate method of how to handle stress and negative people — with LOVE!

As an aside, lately I have been operating more from a loving standpoint than ever. Because sometimes a certain key phrase will strike you and make a big change in your life. A few months ago I heard the phrase “To belittle is to be little” and have been using it ever since. Because of that phrase I don’t insult people anymore. Now no matter what someone says to me, I will not insult him/her back. I just let them have their say and be done with them. (And you know how nasty people can be with their verbal vomit!)

ANYWAY … in Beth’s wisdom, she taught that you take the loving standpoint a step further by not even taking the negativity with you and continuing to operate from a place of love. That makes even more sense, because then stress doesn’t harm you.

Each morning, since 1996, I’ve been starting my day at my altar in a state of prayer. But now I will take it a step further and go into that euphoric state prior to each part of the day: before checking emails, before logging on to Face Book, before phoning clients, etc.

If every moment of the day could be about love, love, love — it makes perfect sense that the poison in your body will dissipate and the healing will begin!

When I’m stressed, I miss my late grandmother terribly. But I am so blessed to have married a man who reminds me so much of her and loves me unconditionally like she did. Just like there is no one like my husband, there is no one like my grandmother. Beth reminded me that in the spirit world, your loved ones are always with you. I suppose with some practice I can continue to channel my grandmother’s love.

Moving forward, I want to continue my life in a state of love, whether I’m feeling it or not, until it gets to be a great habit!

Beth spent a lot of time with me and it was a wonder that people weren’t lined up to meet with her — because they should have been. What she gave me was a lifetime’s worth of wisdom. Thank you, Beth for making me see the world from a more loving place. 

I will definitely contact Beth again for another session. Check out her website at: http://insightholistichealth.com/

Book Signing Party at Bric a Brac, Livingston, NJ

Published September 28, 2014 by Maryanne

SAM_6125Outside of Bric a Brac

I was honored to do a book signing at Bric a Brac vintage store today, thanks so much to Vivienne Cesaro, and Nick Terregino along with his mother, Angela, his aunt, Rita Racaniello.

It was great meeting more new people and selling copies of my book, “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist.” (Available on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/162903908X

For more information on Bric a Brac, visit their Face Book page at: https://www.facebook.com/Vintage1962

SAM_6112Author of “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist”

SAM_6119Vivienne Cesare and Me

SAM_6120Some of the cool stuff!


Lou Christie at Italian Festival, East Windsor, NJ – 9-27-14

Published September 28, 2014 by Maryanne


Lou Christie

SAM_6109Lightning Lou!

It was a most gorgeous summer night and for, I think the fifth time, my husband Dennis and I ventured out to see Lou Christie. But this show was extra special because it was more than an oldies tribute show with several acts — this time Lou was the major act. So we got to see him perform some songs we never heard him do live before like “Love is a Many Splendid Thing” and “Theme from a Summer Place.” It was really special. Plus, my husband and I were able to score a seat near the front. When Lou sang, “Never My Love,” Dennis and I got up to slow dance and had a moment — it felt like Lou was singing especially to us.

SAM_6081Me and Dennis enjoying the show!

Other songs included: “The Heart of Saturday Night,” “I’m Gonna Make You Mine” (my favorite), “Beyond the Blue Horizon,” “The Gypsy Cried,” “Two Faces Have I,” “Rhapsody in the Rain,” “Lightning Strikes,” and quite a few more.

The sound was a little off, but since I knew all the songs, it didn’t matter much. I just love the guy, he’s so fun and animated. And if anyone knows the name of the bass player — please come forward. He was from New Jersey and off the hook amazing!

Since this was a longer show, Lou introduced the band and all the members had their spot light to do their thing. That’s always a great part of any show, and again, how I favored the bassist! If the stage wasn’t so high we could have gotten better pictures, but I’m sure someone has.

Now, the coolest thing — after the Lou Christie show earlier this summer at PNC Bank Arts Center, I met a fantastic friend named Louise on a Lou Christie Face Book community page. Louise and I kept in touch over the summer and were looking forward to this show and meeting each other in person. Well, we did! She told me what she’d be wearing and I was able to spot her before the show! She told me she gave Lou a bottle of Italian wine and he acknowledged her from the stage! How cools is that?

SAM_6110Me and fellow Lou fan and very good friend, Louise!

After the show, we all got to meet Lou Christie! I’m always dumbstruck if I meet a famous musician and it’s not in a professional setting (like when I used to work as a music journalist). I never know what to say. It was just so cute watching all the women swoon over Lou. They were all asking Dennis to take pictures with their cameras. And of course since it wasn’t Dennis’s camera he didn’t know how to use it. At one point, Lou said to Dennis, “Take the fucking picture” and we all laughed.

When I finally got up to Lou, I jokingly said, ‘Are you grouchy tonight?'”

He said, “No, do you want me to be grouchy?”

I said, “No!” and laughed so hard.

I just love people that anything they say comes out funny. Lou is great that way! He also held my hand as I spoke with him, as if I was family. Lou truly cares about his fans, which always makes his shows a great time! God bless to a fellow Italian!

SAM_6101Meeting a music idol!

SAM_6108Louise and Lou!