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Best of 2016

Published December 29, 2016 by Maryanne

monkees-good-times

For so many people, putting “Best” and “2016” together is definitely an oxymoron, and in my world it’s no different. Personally, it was a bad year with many losses and tears. It all began with the death of David Bowie (https://maryannemistretta.wordpress.com/2016/01/11/rest-in-peace-to-the-prettiest-star-david-bowie/) Then my favorite cat of all time had to be put to sleep, at the age of 19 (https://maryannemistretta.wordpress.com/2016/04/30/rest-in-peace-derick-mommys-little-heart-6-24-96-to-4-29-16/). And finally, we said good-bye to my beloved father-in-law who passed at the age of 94 a few months ago (http://obits.nj.com/obituaries/starledger/obituary.aspx?page=lifestory&pid=181972211).

It was just one of those years where the “hits” just kept on coming and there’s not enough hours in the day for me to write about all of them.

Since I really don’t like to focus on negativity, let’s just say, THANK GOD for music; it’s what makes the world go ’round, and a salvation to many. Like every other year, 2016 was no worse in the music department. There were so many live performances my husband and I attended this year, including a few of his own with Rob Fusari and Pharoah. And my “Learn + Listen” series which made the cover of the Caldwell News: http://www.mypaperonline.com/library-patrons-learn-and-listen-about-famous-musicians.html

Lucky me, I also was blessed to write about many performances for various publications.

Whether it was outdoor concerts, or indoor venues, there was not one bad show in the lot. It’s always so hard to pick a “favorite” but as every music fan knows, there are those songs and moments that keep popping into your head, days, even weeks, after the show is over. To any musician who is reading, whether you’re mentioned here or not, if I approached you after a show, I sincerely loved your act.

That said, in my humble opinion, I’d like to present what I felt was the best on my radar this year. ENJOY!

BEST SONG/VIDEO – ROB FUSARI “Let Love Down” 

TOP THREE LIVE PERFORMANCES

1 – ROB FUSARI – The Bitter End, NYC, May 24, 2016

(“Your Trap” featuring Andrea Martin, Matt, Mario, Dennis, and The Constellations)

2 – SOUND + VISION: THE MUSIC OF DAVID BOWIE (Musical Direction: RICHARD BARONE) – Outpost in the Burbs, Montclair, NJ, Friday, Dec. 16, 2016

(“Fame” featuring Richard Barone, Jeffrey Gaines, Burnt Sugar Arkestra, Nick Celeste. In other outstanding performances: Wesley Stace and Elvis Perkins)   

3 – PUNKY MEADOWS + FALLEN ANGEL BAND – B.B. Kings, NYC,  June 14, 2016

(“The Tower” featuring Punky Meadows, Danny Anniello, Chandler Mogel, Bob Pantella, Charlie Calv, Randy Gregg. Felix Robinson also performed on bass in this show)

 BEST ALBUM – THE MONKEES “GOOD TIMES” 

“She Makes Me Laugh” from The Monkees “Good Times” 

BEST VINYL – JACK WHITE “You Are the Sunshine of My Life”

How cool to hear this on a record player! 

BEST MUSIC MOVIE – “LET ME DOWN HARD” 

Starring Keith Roth, DJ 95.9 The Rat “Electric Ballroom,” performs with Frankenstein 3000 and David Johansen; songwriter for Punky Meadows and so much more! 

BEST MUSIC BOOK – CARMINE APPICE “STICK IT!” 

Stick_it_book_01Honest; and in a strange way, endearing! Loved it!

And, again, because some things have to be said more than once, in my own little world, quite a few super cool things happened to ease the pain of the sadness, like going to see so much live music, being around amazing people, being able to write for a living — and public speaking (which includes music and health programs!) Not to mention, my incredible husband who is my rock through all the hardships and triumphs. All in all, there were two stand-outs that made this year incredible.

First I got a new kitty, Nicholas Gray; my husband and I adore our new snuggle bun! How can you not?

DSC_0137Nicholas Gray

And, thanks to Ashley Valentin-Patino, I became a professional wedding officiant, and will be marrying many more people in 2017! Speaking of “bests” Ashley’s wedding to Mitchell was not only the best of 2016, but aside from my own, I’d say the best wedding of all time!

May 2017 will bring more love, music, and happiness to the world! Grim Reaper — be gone with you!

sam_1357Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta and Ashley Valentin-Patino

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is the author of “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist, available on Amazon in paperback only: https://www.amazon.com/Guest-List-Adventures-Music-Journalist/dp/162903908X

To contact Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta, write her at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

“Let Me Down Hard” Premieres at Garden State Film Festival 2016

Published April 3, 2016 by Maryanne

Let Me Down Hard“Let Me Down Hard”

Last night my husband and I attended the premiere of “Let Me Down Hard” at the Garden State Film Festival” in Atlantic City in support of Keith Roth, who played the lead of Jack Ainsley.

Keith Roth is a musician who has played with many artists including Ramones, NY Dolls, and Generation X, to name a few and also known for his radio show, “The Electric Ballroom” on WRAT 95.9-FM (http://wrat.com/keith-roth/) which is where I first met Keith when I co-hosted his show, twice, to promote my books. Roth is a deejay on Sirius too (“Hair Nation” and “Ozzy’s Boneyard”).

And unlike his role of Jack Ainsley, Keith is one of the nicest guys you’d ever want to meet.

Anyway, I LOVED this movie!

“Let Me Down Hard” was filmed in Asbury Park over the course of six years. Those from the area will definitely recognize Asbury Park and the bars in the area, Stone Pony, Wonder Bar and the Brighton Bar (in Long Branch).

“Let Me Down Hard” is the fictitious story of Jack Ainsley who had a hit record way back when, but then got overshadowed when the grunge scene emerged around 1991. Jack spent the next 15 years trying to make a comeback, and even returns to his family in suburban New Jersey. Jack hopes to make another hit, but fails miserably as he begs, borrows, and steals in order to survive, while still living in a sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll fantasy land.

Jack’s much more responsible sister Carrie (Stephanie Silk) is making ends meet as a single mom who is taking care of her young daughter and aging mother who seems to have Alzheimer’s Disease and continues to get progressively worse.

Like all drug addicts, Jack is oblivious to how much he is hurting his family as he’s caught up in a whirlwind of lies and money issues and promising Carrie he’ll change — and that he’ll be back on top again. Problem is, Jack seems to believe his own lies and has enablers — friends who still believed in him and called him a “rock star” unknowing just how down and out he was, as Jack was still behaving as if he was on top — spending hundreds of dollars buying everyone rounds in bars.

Meanwhile, Carrie struggles as to whether she should give her brother second, third, fourth, etc. chances; after all, he is family, as she notes to her young daughter — or should she go with tough love?

All the actors were phenomenal and extremely convincing. The sound track is off-the-hook, featuring Keith Roth’s band Frankenstein 3000 and other New Jersey artists.

New Jersey rock photographer Mark Weiss (http://www.markweiss.com/gallery.html) had a cameo in the movie and was also in attendance at the premiere.

For more information on “Let Me Down Hard” as well as credits visit: http://www.letmedownhard.com/

SAM_9847Maryanne Mistretta and Keith Roth

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is the author of the music fiction book “Love Cats” which takes place in the 1980s. “Love Cats” is available in Kindle and paperback editions on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1681020513

Her first book is “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist” available on Amazon in paperback only: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/162903908X

Guest Hosting WRAT’s Electric Ballroom with Keith Roth

Published November 10, 2015 by Maryanne

SAM_8643With Keith Roth, September 2015

THIS Sunday, November 15, 8 p.m. New Jersey friends and family can listen! I’m co-hosting The Electric Ballroom, WRAT 95.9 FM with Keith Roth!

From Keith Roth: Electric Ballroom ,11-15-15, This Sunday, 8:00 PM Eastern,Co-Host,Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta,She returns to the Ballroom, with the Release of Her Book (Love Cats),will discuss The Book,as well as Her upcoming Books,The 80’s and More,Also Giveaway’s of The New Rolling Stones,From The Vaults ,Tokyo 1990, CD/DVD!!! we came up with a Great Playlist that Includes The Clash,The Monkees,Lou Reed,David Bowie, Lou Christie,Joey Ramone,Tom Jones,The Smiths,NY Dolls,T-Rex,The Sweet,Rolling Stones,Alice Cooper, Ramones,Tommy James,New Dictators NYC,Love & Rockets,Pretenders,Bauhaus,The Cure,The Damned, Rocket From The Tombs,Lords Of The New Church and More!!! Come On Now ,What A Show,What A Show!!!!! NJ/NY WRAT 95.9 FM, wrat.com click on listen live!

“Love Cats” is available on Amazon in paperback or kindle versions: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1681020513

My first book “On the Guest List” is also on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/162903908X

Co-Hosting the “Electric Ballroom (WRAT 95-9) with Keith Roth

Published September 29, 2015 by Maryanne

SAM_8643At WRAT with Keith Roth

I was so honored to be back at The Rat “WRAT” as co-host to Keith Roth’s “Electric Ballroom” in Belmar, New Jersey. Taping was today and the show will air in November.

I was on the show last year, co-hosting to promote my first book, “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist” and had a blast!

Today I was promoting my second book “Love Cats.” We also talked about upcoming books I’m in the process of writing. And of course, lots of music stories!

So, a great big shout out to Keith Roth! Thanks so much Keith!

Here are some of his links:

www.facebook.com/frankenstein3000
www.frankenstein3000.com

www.mainmanrecords.com

To purchase “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist” visit Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/162903908X

To purchase “Love Cats” visit: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1681020513

“On the Radio: Adventures of a Guest Co-Host”

Published July 21, 2014 by Maryanne

SAM_5333Going over the bridge!

A few weeks ago, I was a guest co-host on Keith Roth’s “Electric Ballroom” radio show on 95.9 WRAT, which airs down the Jersey Shore. The show aired last night at 8 p.m. so my husband Dennis and I took a ride down the shore to listen — making it truly authentic. We parked the PT Cruiser in front of the beach and listened to the two hour broadcast! Keith Roth was an awesome host! I had a blast hearing the show. My husband Dennis was so proud!

SAM_5335Catching some salty air before the show aired!

SAM_5341Tuned in!

SAM_5217Me with Keith Roth, on July 9, when we first recorded the show!

Here’s the awesome set list of songs we played!

“I’m Gonna Make You Mine” – Lou Christie

“Trash” – New York Dolls

“Safe European Home” – The Clash

“I’m Bored” – Iggy Pop

“Hey Little Girl” – Dead Boys

“She’s the One” – The Ramones

“1-2-3”- The Professionals

“Jezebel” – Joan Jett

“So Alive” – The Ramones

“Rip Her to Shreds” – Blondie

“Gene Jeanie” – David Bowie

“Evil Boy” – Stiv Bators

“Bohemian Love Pad” – David Johansen

“Steppin’ Stone” – Monkees

“Out of Control” – Wayne County

“Crystal Blue Persuasion” – Tommy James

“Suicide” – D-Generation

“Monkey Suit” – Plasmatics

“Ain’t Gonna Eat Out My Heart Anymore” – Angel

“My Fairy King” – Queen

Then Keith ended the show with “Lazing on a Sunday Afternoon” by Queen — which was a stellar choice!

To purchase your copy of “Guest List” visit: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/162903908X

Guest on WRAT, 95.9, Belmar, New Jersey!

Published July 9, 2014 by Maryanne

SAM_5217Me with Keith Roth, host of Electric Ballroom

I was super thrilled to co-host Keith Roth’s radio show today (the show will air July 20) promoting my book, “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist.”

We recorded about 40 minutes air time talking about music and fun stories. It’s always great fun chatting with someone you have the same musical tastes as. I got to pick out all the songs, but I’ll keep that as a surprise and share the set list afterwards!

Here are some of Keith’s links:

www.facebook.com/frankenstein3000
www.frankenstein3000.com

www.mainmanrecords.com

And to purchase “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist” visit Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/162903908X