Archive for March, 2018

Breslau Bombers Invade the 50 Yard Line – Saturday March 31

March 31, 2018



The Bombers 4-set gig, starts 9 PM at the 50 Yard Line, in Babylon NY.  I interviewed co-guitarist, Jim Ahl about the band:


The Breslau Bombers Band


Please note before the interview gets underway, I’m Mike the author of the “Under the Radar” blog, and a member of the Breslau Bombers as well.

UTR (Under the Radar): Jim, tell the blog readers about the Breslau Bombers:

Jim: The generic description of the band would be a classic rock band. But we are a little more than that. While we do all covers, we like to make songs our own with different arrangements and vocal mixes. We also tend to pick some slightly more obscure songs, but they are always fun and stuff most people know. We always get good feedback on our song selections.

UTR: How in the world did you come up with the name Breslau Bombers?

Jim: The origins of the band were as a duo of myself on acoustic guitar and vocals, and Dan Gribbins on bass. We did all acoustic stuff, Grateful Dead, Beatles, and some folk/rock stuff. Dan nicknamed us the Jim Collection. We did this for a few years just for fun, playing occasionally at parties and such. Then we met up with Mike Virtuoso, another guitarist/vocalist. We quickly expanded our repertoire and played a gig for a private party and were well received. That was all it took, soon after that we added electric guitars and decided we needed a drummer.

A quick ad on Craigslist found us Frankie “Tomatoes” Ruiss. The first time we played together was at my house in Lindenhurst. Mikey V. also lived in Lindenhurst at the time. During that first jam, Frankie brought up the fact that Lindenhurst was originally called Breslau. At our next practice at Frank’s house, he had a sign calling us the Breslau Bombers. The name stuck, and the rest is history. About a year later Mikey V. moved away, and we found Matt Colorafi on keyboards and vocals, and more recently added Mike Borkan on guitar and vocals. We think this is a really good mix for us, and we are having a blast playing together.

UTR: The Breslau Bombers are a rock cover band. Give the readers some examples of the type of artists, bands and music you cover?

Jim: In addition to the classic Stones, Beatles, Credence, Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Doors and Dead stuff, we also do more obscure songs by the Hollies, Boxtops, Faces, Guess Who, Del Shannon, Lovin’ Spoonful, Marvin Gaye, The McCoys plus a lot more. We even dabble into some stuff that is clearly not classic rock, like Johnny Cash and Tom Jones. I don’t like to pigeon hole us into a specific genre, but it is mostly classic rock, usually with a twist. We also like to do interesting segues, like The Boxtop’s “The Letter”, into Del Shannon’s “Runaway”. That one is a crowd favorite.

UTR: What’s been your biggest challenge as a band? Have you been able to overcome that challenge, and if so, how?

Jim: Our biggest challenge is time. With 5 members in the band, all with busy lives, it is difficult schedule time for practice. We tried setting a specific night each week as rehearsal day, but we still have to scramble at times to get together. I am not sure we will ever overcome this problem, but we just keep pushing on as best we can. We do make recordings of all of our practices to use when practicing on our own, and that has been a big help, but it really doesn’t work for new songs we are trying to learn. You need the whole band there together to get the arrangements right.

UTR: What’s the band’s goals and/or plans for the future?

Jim: Our most immediate goal is to expand our repertoire. Right now we have close to 50 songs we do at our gigs, but if you want to have a good following you need to mix it up. No one wants to see a band that plays the same stuff at every performance. We have a list of some new songs we want to add, so we will be busy learning them. Our long term plans are to continuing gigging no less than once a month. Personally I would love to do an acoustic set somewhere down the line as well.

UTR: If someone wants to stay in touch with the band, or hear some material, or learn more about the group what are the best ways?

Jim: People who want follow us, or just learn more about us, should go to our website: breslaubombers.com. From there you can get info about the band, and see our calendar for upcoming shows. There are also links to our FaceBook page, and our YouTube page where there are many videos where you can hear and see us play.

UTR: Any Last words?

Jim: If you like old time rock and roll, please come and see us, and then you too can GET BOMBED!!!

Editor’s Note: We’re not advocating anyone getting inebriated during our gigs, and certainly not drinking and driving! However, please do support the bars and clubs and the bartenders. We do say “Get Bombed” in the sense and spirit of becoming a fan of our band! Sort of like becoming a dead-head or joining the KISS “Army”.

Have a story or idea for Under the Radar, or want to get your band noticed? Please contact me at the email below.




 



Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Advice and Information About the Long Island Live Music Business

March 30, 2018



Today’s blog is not about an under-the-radar musician or band from Long Island; but hopefully it will be of interest to the readers:


Long Island Music Scene


This post will concentrate on helping musicians and bands from Long Island who like my band, find it a challenge to get notoriety and gig dates at local venues.

I stumbled upon this great site by using a search engine to learn about the world of booking agents and promoters. I searched because a friend of mine who works for a large, well-known venue, suggested that he could contact their go-to promoter on my band’s behalf.

The website I found is an excellent resource and it’s filled with help, advice, and comprehensive information about the live music business. The website has a blog, artist and crew resource sections, books by Andy Reynolds (the person who owns the fills the website with content).

Here is the link to the website: http://livemusicbusiness.com/

If any Long Island musicians have some advice or experiences with getting local gigs, I’d appreciate hearing from you; and with your permission, I’d like to blog about your tips and give you full credit.

Have a story or idea for Under the Radar, or want to get your band noticed? Please contact me at the email below.




 



Tags: , , , , , , , ,

1980′s Long Island Sensation Rocks Broadway

March 29, 2018



From Island Park to New York City’s Broadway, here’s the story of Tony Bruno and his successful and varied career:


Tony Bruno from Long Island


Over the last 10 years, Tony’s worked with some of the world’s most well-known musical artists, including Rihanna, Enrique Iglesias, K’naan, Karmin, Delta Goodrem, and many others. Tony has been responsible for all facets of live shows, awards show performances, and TV shows.

Bruno’s television production credits include America’s Got Talent, X-Factor, the AMAs, Top Of The Pops, the MTV Music Awards, TRL, Wetten Das, and too many others to list.

Additionally, Tony’s written and produced songs for top artists including Mandy Moore, Donna Summer, INXS, Colin Hay, and Enrique Iglesias. His song “Daylight in Your Eyes” for German artists No Angels was the second best-selling German single of all time. Tony has worked on writing songs with the world’s top songwriters including Shelly Peiken, Lindy Robbins, Kara DioGuardi, and Ty Lacy.

In the recording studio, Tony has shown off his incredible guitar abilities to many hit records with top producers like Ted Templeman (think Van Halen), Bob Rock, and Desmond Child.

In the Broadway show Rocktopia, the live concert experience that combines the worlds of classical music and classic rock, Tony Bruno will be on stage shredding as the lead guitarist for this show.


An excellent article was written last week by Iris Wiener, and was posted online at the liherald.com

Please check it out, it’s about Tony Bruno, and the old days of Long Island Rock, and how he’s heading to Broadway as the lead guitarist in “Rocktopia”.

Here’s the link: http://www.liherald.com/stories/80s-sensation-rocks-broadway,101403

Have a story or idea for Under the Radar, or want to get your band noticed? Please contact me at the email below.




 



Long Island music scene, Long Island bands, Long Island clubs, Long Island guitarists, Long Island Guitars, Long Island Rock, Nassau County Music, Suffolk County Music, Long Island Music

Getting The Urge

March 28, 2018



Not familiar with “The Urge”?   Neither was I and that’s a shame:


Long island rock band the urge

I had never heard of the Urge until very recently. It’s great bands just like them, who were the impetus of starting a blog about Long Island musicians who are under the radar and don’t get enough recognition.

I interviewed Michael Leccese, lead guitarist for the band. Mike is someone who spends a lot of time and energy promoting his band, and additionally, the Long Island Music scene.

If you find yourself having the urge to see “The Urge” after reading this interview, they will be playing at the Seabreeze in Babylon Saturday, March 31st.

UTR (Under the Radar): Mike, tell the blog readers about the Urge?

Mike: The Urge originally consisted of two main guys, Bob O’Neal and Ed Sisali, two fantastic singers. Bob on Rhythm guitar, Ed playing very tasty backing lines on bass , and sometimes guitar. These two have been playing on Long Island for nearly 50 years!!! They were always a duo, playing lots of folk rock.

Somewhere along the early 90′s . I met Bob through the transporting back and forth of daughters, who were elementary school mates. In the early 90′s, I did DJ work, and asked Bob to assist on a gig with his truck… At the gig we played a few acoustic numbers at the party. Next thing we know a guy asks if he could bring his drums and play with us… Next Bob invites us to play some gigs with him and Ed. Turned out to be a pretty cool sound.

We play a wide selection of 60′s and 70′s rock… NO DISCO.. We have been through several drummers.. Right now, Rick Wolanski is our drummer, and we love him… So, it’s been Bob, Ed and myself since ’94 as The Urge…24 years!! Rick joined 10 years ago.

UTR: Give us some examples of the type of artists, bands and music you cover:

Mike: Specifically… Dead, Doors, Southern Rock, Birds, CSN, Bob Dylan, …lots of hippie rock….and we like extended jams sometimes too.. We have plenty of songs that are very danceable.. But we are NOT a dance band… I think the newest song we do is White Wedding… Don’t let those groups fool you.. We know how to excite a crowd.. (Mike laughs at this point)

UTR: Would you say you guys are “under the radar” on Long Island, or have I been under a rock and should have known about your band?

Mike: We are way under the radar. We have much to offer, in terms of raw, rocking sincerity. I have sent requests to some of the bigger clubs, promising a great turnout. Our fans will flock to 89 or KJ’s to see us.. But sadly we didn’t get the time of day from these places, so under the radar we stay… Happy little hermits….

UTR: I learned about “The Urge” when my band was getting ready to play the Sea Breeze Cafe in Babylon. I was amazed to find that your band has a huge following – especially when you play that venue. Tell the readers why so many people come out to see your band at the Sea Breeze.

Mike: The Urge and The Sea Breeze have been together for 17 years… Twice, three times a month.. Sometimes 5 or 6 weeks straight… It’s our home.. Our fans adore us, which makes me question their sanity.. (lets out a hardy laugh).

We run a 36 fixture light show there, and there’s a spontaneous, ‘what next from these guys’ kind of mentality. We are so comfortable and well known at The Sea Breeze… Mini celebs. (laughs again). Yet we are virtual strangers to the rest of the music community. And I say, without reservation, their loss… One of our lifelong fans calls The Urge, ‘Babylon’s best kept secret’.

UTR: What is the band’s goals and/or plans for the future (yikes, sounds like a question you’d ask your child as they prepare for college).

Mike: Retirement…lol.. Just kidding.. I just hope we have a gig next week. (Mike starts to laugh).

UTR: If someone wants to stay in touch with the band or learn more about “The Urge” what are the best ways?

Mike: We’d really appreciate if they find would us under “Friends of the Urge” on Facebook and like us. Here are the best ways to contact us:

  • “Friends of the Urge” on facebook (here’s the link, please like them) Facebook page
  • “Friends_of_the_urge” on instagram
  • Michael Leccese on facebook
  • Frigginurge@yahoo.com on email
  • Mike’s cell 631 991 1414..just leave a message. Maybe, I’ll call ;-)



    Thanks Mike, and keep rockin’!

    Have a story or idea for Under the Radar, or want to get your band noticed? Please contact me at the email below.



     



    Tags: , , , , , , , ,

  • Iron Chic – Cut From the Same Cloth as Green Day and Blink 182

    March 27, 2018



    If you are into the music of Green Day and Blink 182, then you will want to check out Long Island’s own version of this genre – Iron Chic:

    Iron Chic - From Long Island, featured in Under the Radar


    Iron Chic formed in 2008 and the band consists of Phil Douglas, Jason Lubrano, Gordon Lafler, Mike Bruno, and Jesse Litwa.

    The band’s released three albums to date, and their latest, from October 2017, is titled You Can’t Stay Here. Their three full-length albums have received positive reviews on various internet websites.

    Here’s the listing of the band’s albums and the companies that released them:

  • 2010: Not Like This (Dead Broke Rekerds)
  • 2013: The Constant One (Bridge Nine Records)
  • 2017: You Can’t Stay Here (SideOneDummy Records)

    To support sales of their latest album, Iron Chic will be touring Europe with 21 concerts. Their first show will be in the UK at The Haunt in Brighton on Tuesday April 17th.

    Visit the bands website at http://www.ironchic.net/ and listen to them on their Bandcamp page, where you will find eight releases: https://ironchic.bandcamp.com/

    Have a story or idea for Under the Radar, or want to get your band noticed? Please contact me at the email below.



     



    Tags: , , , , , , , ,