Archives

All posts for the month May, 2016

The Monkees, Count Basie Theatre, Red Bank

Published May 30, 2016 by Maryanne

SAM_0226The Monkees

Two of the original Monkees, Micky Dolenz and Peter Tork teamed up for their 50th Anniversary Tour. Minus Michael, the two put on an amazing show.

My favorites included: “She,” “Daydream Believer,” “Papa Gene’s Blues,” “Stepping Stone,” “Pleasant Valley Sunday,” and “She Makes Me Laugh” (from the new album, which is fantastic!)

The three-hour show went way too fast. Throughout the performance they showed videos from their television show and also used Davy’s voice for his songs.

I’ve seen The Monkees several times, beginning in the mid-1980s when they first began their reunion tours. They are always incredible!

For more information on The Monkees, visit: http://www.monkees.com/#

SAM_0202

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an award-winning journalist and author. Her second book “Love Cats” is a fiction story set in the 1980s. The lead characters attend a Monkees concert. “Love Cats” is available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle editions: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1681020513

Cedar Grove Teen Wins Several Special Olympic Medals

Published May 29, 2016 by Maryanne

2016 special olympic skate 050Robert Stutts (Photo Courtesy of Robert and Maria Stutts)

I was honored to interview Special Olympic Skater, Robert Stutts, a few weeks back. His story is incredible and it made the front page of The Cedar Grove News: https://issuu.com/newviewmg/docs/cedar_grove_news-_may_2016/1

Enjoy the story! Robert is such an inspiration! ❤

SAM_0702Robert and I, a few years back at one of his ice skating events

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an award-winning journalist. Her latest book “Love Cats” is available on Amazon in Kindle and paperback editions: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1681020513

Rob Fusari — The Bitter End

Published May 25, 2016 by Maryanne

SAM_0145Rob Fusari and Andrea Martin

(Photo by Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta)

Last night Rob Fusari put on an electrifying performance at Paul Colby’s The Bitter End, on Bleecker Street, NYC.

The theme of the performance was The Beatles vs. David Bowie; with unique musical spins on both artists, as well as incredible originals in the mix. The show was put together in such a short time, Fusari joked that he didn’t even know the last names of the band members and introduced them simply as Matt (guitar), Mario (drums) and Dennis (bass). With four back-up singers known as The Constellations and special guest singer Andrea Martin, it was a surreal, five-star extravaganza — a true class act!

Songs included: “Heroes” (Bowie), “Under Pressure” (Bowie/Queen), “Young Americans” (Bowie), “I Want To Hold Your Hand” (Beatles), “Don’t Let Me Down” (Beatles), Fusari’s original “Don’t Let Love Down,” and Andrea Martin performing a gorgeous version of “Paparazzi” (which Fusari co-wrote and produced for Lady Gaga).

I can go on and on and on, but I’m purposely leaving out major musical high points of the evening, because if this particular show ever happens again, one should be surprised! ❤

A big shout-out to Paul Colby’s The Bitter End! The staff was incredibly attentive to patrons with fast and friendly service. (As a side-note, I had the honor of interviewing the late Paul Colby in his Montclair home over a decade ago before his passing. I have an autographed copy of his book, “Hanging Out in America’s Nightclub” in my collection. )

For more information on Rob Fusari, visit: http://robfusari.com/

For more information on Andrea Martin visit: http://rocnation.com/artists/andrea-martin-2/

For more information on The Bitter End, visit: http://www.bitterend.com/

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is the author of “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist” available on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/162903908X

Honesty = Freedom

Published May 22, 2016 by Maryanne

SAM_0082Honesty = Freedom

Earlier this month my company Pear Tree Enterprises (https://peartreeenterprises.wordpress.com/) teamed up with Be the Difference! inspirational t-shirt company.

Joy, a resident of Jersey City, began the Be the Difference movement to encourage and inspire. Joy was seeking positive people to join the movement; and I excitedly said, “Count me in!” because I am living it!

I’m proud to wear my “Honesty = Freedom” t-shirt, because it truly says so much! Obviously, when you’re honest, you don’t have to exhaust yourself with lies for whatever reason. But, even more important, being honest with yourself is extremely liberating because you know you’re doing your best to live the life you truly want.

Now that it’s t-shirt weather in NJ, I love wearing my “Follow Your Dreams” t-shirt, to keep me inspired! ❤

Are you honest with yourself?

How does honesty free you?

If you’d like to purchase this t-shirt (or any others that might inspire you!) visit: http://www.bethedifferencellc.com/

Use the discount code “peartree” to get 10% off your purchase!

Follow Be the Difference on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/btdllc

And on Twitter: https://twitter.com/btdllc

Ten percent of all proceeds go to Hayden’s Heart: http://www.haydensheart.org/

Hayden’s Heart is a non-profit organization “Keeping Hayden’s memory alive by raising CHD (Congenital Heart Defect) awareness and helping other families in their time of need.”

Rest in Peace Alan Young, 96

Published May 21, 2016 by Maryanne

alan-young-mr-ed-05202016Alan Young and Mr. Ed

Such sad news today to read from CNN that actor Alan Young, 96, died of natural causes: http://www.cnn.com/2016/05/20/entertainment/alan-young-obit/index.html

Alan Young was best known for his role of Wilbur on the Mr. Ed show which ran in the 1960s. I recently discovered the show and enjoyed watching it almost every morning on Antenna TV.

Rest in peace, Alan Young, you were beloved! ❤

Here is the very first episode where Wilbur meets Mr. Ed:

Alan Young’s book “Mister Ed and Me and More!” can be purchased on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Mister-Ed-More-Alan-Young/dp/0979740401

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is the author of Love Cats available on Amazon in Kindle and paperback versions: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1681020513

Five-Star Review of ‘Love Cats’ on ‘Reader’s Favorite’

Published May 16, 2016 by Maryanne

Love Cats front and back coverLove Cats (back and front cover)

I am ecstatic to accidentally have come across a five-star rating and book review of my second book “Love Cats” on the “Reader’s Favorite” website, written by Janelle Fila: https://readersfavorite.com/book-review/love-cats

Love Cats is available in paperback or via Kindle from Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1681020513

Here is Janelle Fila’s five star review (Thank-you Janelle! <3) 

Love Cats by Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is a sizzling romance set in the 1980s that is part historical fiction and part hot and steamy romance. Janey Peyton is a goth chick who also happens to be filthy rich. Alone and lonely, Janey meets Beck Stewart at a trendy night club. The two hit it off and seem to be moving in the right direction. Except for a love of cats, the two have a lot in common (Beck has a cat he loves but Janey is not fond of felines). Until Beck starts spending too much time at work and Janey’s jealousy gets the better of her. She decides to take revenge on Beck and teach him a lesson. Will she ruin the one good thing she has going in her life? How much will Beck take before he gives up on Janey forever?

The best thing about this story is the 1980s setting. The author does a fantastic job of creating a very realistic setting and never deviates from it. Readers who love all things ’80s will love this story. Likewise, readers who are cat fans will also get a big kick out of this story as well. It was fantastically written, especially the two characters. I loved the differences between Janey and Beck, but I also loved when they came together. They had a chemistry that seemed very authentic and I was rooting for them the entire story.

Book Review – “Stick It!” by Carmine Appice

Published May 15, 2016 by Maryanne

Stick_it_book_01

NOTE: Contains spoilers!

Last week I went to Carmine Appice’s book reading/signing at Barnes & Noble, Springfield, New Jersey. One week later, I am a better person for it. Seriously. This was more than a rock ‘n’ roll memoir, it was a religious experience.

Carmine Appice is refreshingly honest, down-to-earth and funny as hell. With assistance from Ian Gittins, the book is beautifully written … as if you are right there talking with a friend.

From the get-go, your adrenaline starts pumping because Carmine knew right away he wanted to be a drummer and he never missed a beat getting to where he was supposed to be in his career — effortlessly. He was in so many different bands with so many prominent musicians during a 50-year work span: Vanilla Fudge, Cactus, Jeff Beck, Rod Stewart, Ted Nugent, Ozzy Osbourne … to name a few.

With life’s ups and downs, whether it was a band not working out, or a romantic interest going sour, or health issues, Carmine never stayed “down” too long. He was a survivor, a “roll with the punches” kinda guy. There was always an opportunity for him; and he always worked hard. Most impressive, he lived a rock ‘n’ roll life, but never really got into drugs.

Not that Carmine was a saint. Oh, no, there are plenty of groupie stories … weird, wild, and disturbing. Sex seems to have been his biggest vice. And love. Or what he thought was love; he married five times!

When reviewing a book, one is not supposed to reveal the ending, but #1, at the beginning of this blog I did write a disclaimer that this review contains spoilers. And #2, I can not contain my enthusiasm about how happy this book ended! Always a sucker for true romance, I cried tears of joy, at the end when Carmine fell madly in love with Leslie Gold (http://www.theradiochick.com/). Leslie herself even wrote a few pages about how they met and the challenges of their relationship. She is just as down-to-earth and honest as Carmine was throughout the book.

As anyone in a healthy relationship knows, love is not about having a “yes” man, but having someone who challenges you intellectually and emotionally, to get to a higher level. This is what Carmine found in Leslie. This is exactly what Carmine needed. In the final pages it’s where Carmine changed the most — for the best.

Carmine admitted to sleeping with 4500 women in his lifetime, but his Leslie was the lady that mattered most — his 4501. ❤

With all Carmine’s fame and riches, it’s the last pages that are truly the most prosperous — the last pages are like the pot of gold at the end of his life’s beautiful rainbow. During his final reflections, he looks back on the ups and downs of his career; he speaks of his remorse and shame for mistreating some groupies; he talks of his deep love for his children; and of course his love for Leslie.

If there’s ever a “feel good” rock ‘n’ roll story, this is it!

For more information on Carmine Appice and/or to purchase “Stick It!” please visit: http://www.carmineappice.net/

SAM_0028Maryanne Mistretta meeting Carmine Appice, Springfield, NJ

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an award winning journalist and two-time author. Her book “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist” can be purchased on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/162903908X