Guitars & Songs in Hoboken

Just as the name implies. What a great way to spend a leisurely Wednesday evening. Sipping some drinks with a beautiful girl and listening to some fine music at The Goldhawk.


Just as the name implies

What a great way to spend a leisurely Wednesday evening. Sipping some drinks with a beautiful girl and listening to some fine music at The Goldhawk.

First up was Paul Blomstrom whose local claim to fame is the role he plays in a Police cover band. He proudly announced how he has no CD, no website and no MySpace page. His songs were filled with lush and dramatic chords with a voice that harkened back to the epics of the 70s, while still sounding fresh. The only covers in his set were a few teases from ‘2112’ and a wonderfully, near ballad-like version of ‘Long Distance Runaround’.

John Lippi is a tour de force (wait, what’s the proper use of that phrase?). Virtuosity mixed with passion served neatly over cool blues. He confessed to being quite ‘bi-polar’ when it comes to music. This much was obvious as he played. His unique, percussive style of finger picking was at times greased lightning, other times sweet molasses. Topping it all was his downright beautiful vocals. Yes, I can describe a man’s voice as beautiful, sue me! Our host for the evening Rik Mercaldi joined John for a couple of numbers.

Now it was Rik’s turn at bat with his pop-injected rock-tastic sound. It’s just catchy enough to get my foot tappin’ and just rough enough to keep me interested. A very nice balance. John Lippi joined Rik for one song as did guitarist Brian Bellew for another. When Rik asked Brian what he wanted to play, Brian replied, “Why not play something I know?” Rik: “How ’bout this one, it’s in B flat?” Brian (a little too excited): “B flat!? OK!” And off they went.

The final surprise of the night came from Jay Cobus who described his style as ‘decomposing on guitar’. He treated us to one somewhat emotional tune and one tribute to sweet desserts. The latter felt a bit like Dylan’s ‘Hurricane’ but Jay defended it by saying, “Well, we’re not in Paterson so it’s ok.”

It’s this loose feel of a night that this town needs so desperately. Just a bunch of performers gathering to trade licks, heckle, have a few drinks and jam. The social energy equal to the musical entertainment is something that has been shrinking in the Hoboken scene. I continue to hope against all odds that—as long as places like The Goldhawk are able to flourish—a turn in the tide must be coming soon.

See Also:
Photo Gallery
The Goldhawk
Rik Mercaldi
John Lippi
Jay Cobus


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