Juniper Park Civic Association was proud to have sponsored the 2006 Juniper Park Concert Series this summer. The series was co-sponsored by Commerce Bank and the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation.
First up was Blues Night with the Shadetree Mechanics on August 1st. This concert took place while the city was in the midst of a terrible heat wave, but those who came out that night found music at Juniper to be the perfect respite from the sticky weather. The band enjoyed playing, the crowd enjoyed listening, and singer Mike Rochelle was the lucky winner of that night’s Commerce Bank $50 Debit Card Raffle. The Shadetree Mechanics have been stirring up the music scene and making a name for themselves in the New York metropolitan area playing such venues as B.B. King's Blues Club, Manny's Car Wash, and the South Street Seaport.
Our next performance was Rock ‘n’ Roll Night on August 8th, featuring Pete Daniels Nostalgia. Nostalgia is a local group that has been together for 20 years, and performs songs from the 1950s and 60s. They have played at the Maspeth Street Fair as well as various other popular events in the area and beyond. Their harmonious repertoire of the oldies evoked wonderful memories of a time gone by. They had us singing, dancing and clapping along to the old classics.
Italian Night took place August 22nd and was the best-attended concert in the history of Juniper Park, with an estimated 1,500 spectators in the audience. Comedian Marcantonio opened the show and the band, Caleps, was the featured performer. Four brothers started Caleps in the late 1960s. They have performed live at various events including concerts for former mayor, Rudy Giuliani, and former president, Ronald Reagan. Middle Village also welcomed JPCA friend, Councilman Tony Avella, and his wife, Judith, to the festivities. (Councilman Avella is Chair of the City Council’s Italian-American Caucus.) Special thanks to Tony DiPiazza and Federazione Italo-Americana of Brooklyn & Queens who arranged for these great performers to appear.
After being rained out on August 29th, the last show in the 2006 Juniper Park Concert Series, Swing Night, was postponed to September 14th just as we went to press with the Juniper Berry. The J. Walter Hawkes Quartet was scheduled to perform. Originally from Pascagoula, Mississippi, J. Walter Hawkes has been playing ukulele and trombone in NYC since 1995. He has played and/or recorded with such luminaries as Slide Hampton, Jon Hendricks, Bob Hope, The Temptations, Beth Orton, Macy Gray, Norah Jones, Madeleine Peyroux, Ray Charles and Lavay Smith, as well as playing and arranging for NYC's longstanding, jump-jazz-lounge sextet, Jet Set Six. His trio and quartet can be seen regularly at The Ear Inn and Detour in Manhattan, Cafe Steinhof in Brooklyn and the LIC Bar in Queens, amongst others.
Thank you to our performers, co-sponsors and attendees. JPCA is looking forward to hosting a more extensive concert series next year.