Onward and Upward…


I seemed to have blinked and …BAM … Summer is over.  And what a whirlwind it was.  Unfortunately I don’t always have the chance to update this blog as often as I would like and so here is a wrap up of the summer and some thoughts on what is coming up this fall and winter.  For me the past several months have been a real blur. moving from one event to the other and back again.  While the Summer JazzFest had its opening weekend the first week of July with the great Les Paul Trio I was down in Atlantic City all week opening up a new club venue at Resorts Casino.  I had the onerous job of Music Director, conductor and entertainment coordinator for this new club which was billed as a new night club with Music, Comedy and Fun.  As the Philadelphia Inquirer said “…Club Piscopo feels like a Rat Pack-era Las Vegas joint with an opulently snazzy decor and drop-ins by Piscopo’s comic pals, such as SNL‘s Father Guido Sarducci.”   So the club ran all summer, it was great fun and I was fortunate to be able to bring down some great talent including one of my favorite singers out there today, Champian Fulton.  We even taped a Television special for SHOWTIME so look for Joe Piscopo (and yours truly) on your small screens sometime next Spring!

Skipping back and forth from AC to Red Bank some side trips up north and into Canada for other shows I ended up missing several of the JazzFest evenings although I heard great things about them all.  Nicki Parrott, Lou Pallo and John Colianni, keeping up the Les Paul tradition, tore up the opening weekend and played each night to a sold out house.  All the other artists on the whole 6 week series performed beautifully. RALPH BOWEN from Rutgers Univ, CHARENEE WADE and her trio, WALLACE ROONEY, the MINGUS DYNASTY and BRUCE WILLIAMS helped to make this a most memorable season for us.  I dont know how we can top that next year, but we will try!

Also, we did manage to inaugurate the first Summer Jazz Camp for Teens this August as part of our Jazz Arts Academy.  For one week about 25 young talented students participated in all-day classes workshops and ensemble sessions learning all about jazz improvisation and performance.  Many of you may have seen our  students give a showcase performance on our last week of Summer JazzFest.  They performed brilliantly and I am so very proud of them. As many of our other projects and events this will no doubt become an annual course perhaps expanding next year to more than one week.


JAZZ ARTS ACADEMY classes begin soon!

The first week of October starts our fall semester of the Jazz Arts Academy.  This is a year round comprehensive training program providing real world experience to aspiring teen jazz musicians.  Now beginning our 2nd full year we are confident that the program will continue and positively affect the lives of many of this area’s youth. Thanks to the folks over at the Count Basie Theatre we are proud to be a part of their own Performing arts academy program.  If you know of any teens who play any instrument and have an interest in jazz please let them know about this great program.  It is designed to compliment and enhance any in-school programs that are available and to go much further in depth in terms of experience and progress on their instrument.  CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO about the Jazz Arts Academy.  Needs based tuition assistance is available for any interested students who may not be able to afford it.



Here is an interesting item:  This year Boscov’s department store has generously partnered with selected non-profit organizations including Jazz Arts Project Inc. to present a special GALA PREVIEW of their beautiful new store at the Monmouth Mall.  The event takes place on WEDNESDAY OCT.  5th – 10 am to 9:30 pm.  It is a ticketed event ( Only $5 ) and includes entertainment, refreshments, special store bonuses and discounts available only that day at the store… AND our own Jazz Academy Students will be performing at 7:00 pm right on the main floor of the store.  Tickets must be purchased in advance.

    CLICK HERE FOR THE BOSCOV’S EVENT INFO  Proceeds from ticket sales benefit our Academy Education Fund and Tuition Assistance Programs.




The line up for this year is already selected and it is promising to be a wonderful show!  Tickets will be available at the Count Basie Theatre box Office.  Get them early we expect a sell out as usual.

Meanwhile don’t forget to sign up or update your contact info on our mailing list so we can keep you informed of our events.

Hope to see you soon

Forever Onward and Upward!

Joe Muccioli (Mooche)


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