Vichy Water – Author's Blog Just another WordPress weblog

September 26, 2012

Asbury Angels Induction Ceremony: Asbury Park NJ Sunday 9/23. A New Film: ‘Just Around the Corner: The Story of Bob Benjamin’ screened at Bruce Springsteen Symposium at Monmouth University.September 26, 2012

Asbury Park

Asbury Park




My blog. My blog. My kingdom to find more time like the old days (2 years ago) when I blogged once a week or so. Life is beautiful and accelerating beyond comprehension. Sometimes I think that my writing and music journalistic pursuits are leading me to a non-snow covered mountaintop in Tibet where I’ll be able to see forever but  it has to be a clear day. It’s a clear day right now in central Jersey.  So I’ll get there and get back to my blog, my love, and my forest through trees and a babbling brook of streams of consciousness; in time. Meantime, I went to this most amazing ceremony in Asbury Park this past Sunday honoring the Asbury Angels, those who have passed on but have given their molecular energies and spirit to the phenomenon of Asbury Park music. Here’s some of what I took away. But also at the end of this Asbury Angels piece is a very unique review of a new film, ‘Just Around the Corner: The Story of Bob Benjamin.’ Why unique review? It’s just one word. “Riveting.”






Asbury Park

Jackie Pappas from Asbury Park Chamber of Commerce with introduction to ceremony. not a cloud in the sky


Asbury Park

part of the crowding of the boardwalk for the ceremony.



Twenty minutes before the Asbury Angels ceremony. Shooting down Asbury Avenue for the 78th time this year; that’s an approximation but probably close. I’ve developed a love affair to remember with Asbury Park and find myself there three or four times a week; hey, I’m a music, art, environmental and evolving cerebral journalist and Asbury has morphed into a renaissance/ re-birth. I’ve been saying for some time now in my writings that part of this dynamic is the celestial descending of particulates of molecular energy from the living and past musical history of this town; I’m saying that the world knows about Springsteen, Southside Johnny, Vini Lopez, and the vast array of current performers whose roots came from Asbury.





Asbury Park

Asbury Angels Founder Tony Pallagrosi introducing inductees/bios.


Asbury Park



Yes, for me this energy  is absolutely palpable. Last summer I remember walking down Cookman Avenue and looking across the street at several houses. One had a pastel green back porch; a young teenage boy was playing a guitar and gyrating. I was certain he was pretending /dreaming ‘Springsteen.’  I thought to myself; it’s the sprinkled particle energy of the living legends. I also thought while heading down Asbury Avenue, adhering to the speed limit, passed an Italian restaurant and beautiful red brick church, that I was heading to an emotional poignant ceremony honoring particulate energy of Asbury music history of those who have passed on.




Asbury Park

cutting the ribbon. hugely moving ceremony to unveil Angels.


Asbury Park

the plaque unveiled honoring Clarence Clemons





Iconic Tony Pallagrosi, so deeply involved in the musical and philanthropic composition of Asbury Park founded the Asbury Angels.  “The mission of the Asbury Angels is to honor and memorialize the lives and history of members of the Asbury Park musical community, including but not limited to, musicians, tech support persons, DJs, journalists, club owners, record company personnel, managers and promoters.”




Asbury Park

Tara-Jean Vitale(editor, producer at NJ Discover) interviewing Tony Pallagrosi


Asbury Park

writer Calvin with Kevin John Allen(Lonely Teardrops Band) & Marc Ribler (& Friends ROCK tuesday nights at McCloones Boardwalk)


NJ Discover’s team, Tara-Jean Vitale (editor, producer) and I quickly slammed car doors in front of the Stone Pony, and joined the hundreds assembling on the boardwalk for the induction of the 2012 class (first one) of the Asbury Angels. Jackie Pappas from the Asbury Park Chamber of Commerce introduced Tony Pallagrosi who read brief biographies of the inductees. Families and friends applauded each reading; the ocean glistened in the background; the sky was perfectly blue and the weather Gods cooperated. The night before, Pallagrossi hinted, Springsteen’s concert at Met Life stadium was rain delayed until 10:30pm.







Asbury Park

writer Calvin with Kevin John Allen, Carl Tinker West (Bruce Springsteen’s 1st manager) Vini Lopez(with leg up) and Carrie Potter Devening (author of a amazing book “For Music’s Sake Asbury Park’s Upstage Club & Green Mermaid Cafe: The Untold Stories”) after a very poignant Asbury Angels Induction Ceremony on the boardwalk at Asbury on sunday. this day was powerful stuff




I listened to every word of each bio. These were legends and icons that did so much for Asbury music. I kept thinking in the midst of the throngs consuming the whole width of the boardwalk, that someday these Angels would’ve contributed to making Asbury Park one of the world’s music destinations. I want to think everyone thought like me. After all, look at the depth, range and impact of these Angels. Its two days later as I write this. I’m still intestinally queasy. I was so moved being there.

As each name was read, a plaque on a boardwalk bench was unveiled with the bio of the Angel.  Huge scissors were summoned to cut the yellow ribbon to share the memorial for the ages. It was Asbury Park’s walk of fame.  The 2012 Asbury Angels are: Arthur Willard Pryor, Bobby Alfano, Larry ‘Bozo’ Blasco, Bill Chinnock, Clarence Clemons, Danny Federici, John Luraschi, Joe Arthur Major, Arthur Morris, Tom and Margaret Potter, and Moe Septee.  When the ceremony was over, I watched people hugging and shaking hands, photographers capturing plaques, old friends seeing one another after decades, smiles and bittersweet  teary eyes; a panoply of emotions.  I did my joyous deep inhalation/exhalation. “Hey Mah, look where I am,” and thought ten thousand people should’ve been here to experience this. (Or more)

You can find the biographies and information on the Asbury Angels here:







Asbury Park






On a Thursday(first day of 4) night, two weeks ago I attended, ‘Glory Days, A Bruce Springsteen Symposium’ at Monmouth University. It was an academic, musical and geographical adventure into the world of Bruce Springsteen. On that first night in Wilson Hall at Monmouth University there were two special events as part of the symposium; a ‘Songwriters by the Sea’ concert with gifted singers, Joe Rapolla and Joe D’Urso; in a room of indescribable ambiance so their acoustical  music lifted me a few thousand miles away. That’s what this ‘Songwriters by the Sea’ series does to me every time. The concert was preceded by a special screening of the new film, ‘Just Around the Corner: The Story of Bob Benjamin.’  Sometimes I’m less of a reviewer or journalist but a conduit of feeling emotions and expressing my environment when doing so. Thus an observation about the viewing audience and me: it was about as silent and intense absorbing/viewing a film as I’ve ever seen. A human interest and story of courage. So my only one word  review so to speak, “riveting.”  Probably means if you follow my one word lead; pick up a copy at Amazon and other places.




Asbury Park

Pix: Bob Benjamin, Joe D’Urso, Joe Amodei at Q/A. at the screening at Monmouth University
























Asbury Park















July 15, 2012

Matecumbe Key and Global Warming. I STILL Hate the NCAA (Penn State Horror). Simple Gifts: Family, Jersey Shore Music, Universe Spiritual Connections, No Calorie No Salt Salad Dressing. Asbury Park. July 15, 2012










Global Warming

me in hurricane earl at the jersey shore




It’s my blog and I can say anything. I’m alerting the media (you all) that I’m in one of those moods, anything goes; my streams of consciousness are alive and well; so fasten your seat belts, it’s going to be a bumpy blog but it’s by careful absurd design.







Global Warming

one of my heroes. Jim Valvano






Suddenly its summer and I remember what Vince Lombardi said: what’s important in life; your family, your religion and the Green Bay Packers. Another hero, Jim Valvano substituted Rutgers for the Green Bay Packers; he coached freshman basketball at Rutgers when he was in his early twenties. I miss Jim Valvano; his energy, humor and quest for excellence.







Global Warming

key largo movie poster. the movie saved my life

Global Warming

dream house matecumbe key



I love the word absurd. And I wonder who wrote the book of love and why the American Olympic Team is wearing uniforms made in China. There’s an old sewing group near me. A few dozen people; they’d love to make uniforms and for nothing and they’re retired. Even my 102 year old friend Emily Cook (she liked President Herbert Hoover) would help with the knitting of uniforms.









Global Warming

bogart and bacall in a scene from key largo. words can’t express the impact on my life




At President Obama’s inauguration, on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, they played two songs; one of them was Simple Gifts which I’ve been listening to regularly for decades; both the instrumental(Aaron Copland) and song by Judy Collins. I was pleased when I heard the song played at the inaugural; was I this great visionary with music and relevancy? Simple gifts is also part of the title of this blog because when you reach that graying autumnal stage in life, you realize that life is not forever yet there are things so simple yet unappreciated that you wish you had.





Global Warming

global warming is doing this.





But first, carry me back to Matecumbe Key in the Florida Keys. Truth is; I just love the sound of Matecumbe Key. It haunts and pulls me soulfully to get there one day and for no particular reason other than to walk into a general store to ask the proprietor if I’m really in Matecumbe Key. Maybe buy bottled water made out of plant base and not BPA. My Matecumbe days began in 1973 when I saw the movie Key Largo with Bogart and Bacall for the first time. Much too involved to explain now, but that movie rescued and set me on a different life’s path.






Global Warming

Global Warming. all the posters in all the world won’t make a diffference. goodbye miami and new orleans




Strangely, in the past few weeks, I’ve been pulled by different parties to begin writing a memoir. When I do that, I’ll talk about the life saving qualities of that tech noir movie I saw in the summer of 73. In the movie, you hear mentioned several times about characters going to Matecumbe Key. I want my Maypo and Matecumbe Key and to walk barefoot on white sand. Maybe I could find a hammock between two aging palms and swing aimlessly for a few hours. I don’t drink much but perhaps a Jagermeister in a gentle breeze swinging on the hammock. The azure seas surround me in Matecumbe; I realize the good fortune of being in one of the most laid back places on our good earth; the Florida Keys.





Global Warming

jerry sandusky: penn state let this very bad man do very bad things for the money that football brings. shame on ncaa for doing nothing.

Global Warming

hey ncaa. the refs fixed this game. shame on ncaa





Actually, back around 1997 or thereabouts, I packed up my troubles spontaneously and went down to the Florida Keys for the first time. This whole adventure was simply gifted for me to put my bare toes on the dock in Key Largo where Bogart and Bacall stood in the movie Key Largo and absorb their energy. Strange as it may sound that’s exactly what I did and the only reason behind my long trip from New Jersey. I am quirky and haunted by universal energies which I don’t understand. I loved Islamorada and Key Largo and resolved to return to spend time in Matecumbe Key. But I worry.



Global Warming

still backstage at john eddie concert at stone pony in asbury park





I worry about global warming. Hundreds of scientists now have found evidence that global warming is really accelerating; sea levels are rising, as are greenhouse gases and the melting of glaciers. I think all the string and relativity theory in the world won’t be able to help us and therefore precious Matecumbe Key will sink into the sea and become a warped speed memory.



Global Warming

backstage watching southside johnny at stone pony



Global warming is causing some of our wild weather and the last 12 months have been the hottest ever on mother earth. I lucked out this past winter because I’m smart like Fredo(Michael’s brother) and I bet on a warm winter and no snow; I didn’t buy a snow blower (my source of snow removal, my prodigal son moved out a year ago) and it never snowed an inch. Hooray for global warming. Perhaps one day here in Western Monmouth county, I’ll have beach front property. I’ll make a fortune when it’s time to sell; of course the window of ocean rising will last a few weeks. But there’s always a buyer.





Global Warming

at wonder bar asbury park with mario casella (slim chance and the gamblers)






The trend towards a rapidly warming planet is accelerating. Last year was the second smallest area of ice (polar) on record. Glaciers continue to shrink. Greenland’s glaciers are melting 30 times faster than 10 years ago. By the year 2050, sea level will rise another 12 inches and goodbye Miami and New Orleans and my dream of a hammock swing on Matecumbe Key. And this was the first time ever that these scientific studies officially said global warming is due to man.



Global Warming

. with my dear friend 102 year old emily cook who could’ve knit some uniforms for our olymmpic team

Global Warming

john eddie with ralph notaro at stone pony asbury park


Optimism or denial; Have we reached the tipping point yet where we can slow or reverse the global warming trend? Maybe not this year or next but the scales will tip, the Yankees will win another World Series and maybe they’ll find that cigarettes are actually good for you.

Back in March 2011, I watched a basketball game between Rutgers and St. Johns at the Big East tournament in Madison Square Garden. I’ve blogged for the past year on and off about the game being obviously fixed by the referees so St. John’s could win. I’ve been watching basketball for five decades and you know when referees fail to call six egregious fouls and then walk off the court with almost two seconds left in the game; more than enough time for Rutgers to make a three point shot.





Global Warming

linda chorney at stone pony singing 19th nervous breakdown. she rocked.

Global Warming

hanging with marta and andra at stone pony after marc ribler & friends tribute to rolling stones.



I said it then and now: the NCAA hierarchy is archaic, perhaps even evil and seemingly interested more in keeping their high paying jobs. The system sucks. I hate them for not eliminating or punishing those referees. So now we have the Penn State  scandal with their football program that is a huge scar on our national image and conscience and won’t go away until way after Matecumbe Key sinks into the ocean. Imagine the highest levels of the Penn State University administration, athletic director and coach Paterno all covering up the abuse and rape of young boys by Jerry Sandusky for many years; all to protect the image and money making ability of Penn State football. So let’s see what the NCAA does. What should be done is banishing their football program for many years and keeping them out of bowl play for a long time. It’s called crime and punishment and justice. But let’s see what corruption and money will ultimately do to the evil NCAA decision making process. Hah!  And I’m off now to Monmouth Racetrack. I feel wise and insightful.



Global Warming

asbury park spontaneous boardwalk. the community drummers. pure magic people.



Now to Simple Gifts and serious thought; as I’ve aged, matured and looked through looking glasses and ponds of water (often I ponder why water is transparent), I’ve reached heightened awareness how wonderful it could be to have a family and people around you that genuinely care; people whom you share genes with. Down with mendacity and Big Daddy. Yes having a real family with siblings and cousins is a simple gift and I wish upon a star and before I head to the happy hunting ground that there was a family structure in my life. Sometimes I smell under my arms like Flounder did in the movie Animal House just before walking into Delta fraternity house to a rush party. Is it me or Memorex? And I just decided, I’ve said enough. Go read my future memoir to fully understand the depth of my family sadness. Could I make a comedy out of it all? Another Divine Comedy?  I wonder.


Global Warming

marc ribler and friends at mc cloones asbury park

Global Warming

marc ribler and friends at stone pony. 50 licks. 50th anniversary of rolling stones.


But Jersey Shore music is another simple gift that I’ve embraced and realized. Asbury Park is a magical place of music, ocean, memories and culture. Often I can spend several days and nights a week exploring the boards of walking Asbury Park, sampling its plethora of food and music. Tuesday nights at McCloone’s for Marc Ribler and Friends in concert; we’re talking three or four hours of amazing music. I sit in the back and look out at the ocean and nearby Asbury Convention Hall, bathed in surreal lights and memories of Springsteen and I physically pinch myself. “Look Mah, where I am!”

Last Wednesday night, I was at the iconic Stone Pony for dozens of singers and Marc Ribler for a retrospective of the Rolling Stones. A week before, I was backstage  at the Stone Pony for John Eddie and Southside  Johnny and the Asbury Jukes thanks to my friend and Grammy nominee Linda Chorney. Last night I was in Belmar watching accomplished singer Danny White and soon in Long Branch with Gary US Bonds in concert. Tomorrow night I’m in Brick at River Rock for one of my favorite bands, Slim Chance and the Gamblers. When they sing Harbor Heart, I melt into the real Jersey Shore. It’s a never ending story of atoms, molecules, gravitational pulls and music unlike most spots on this globally warming earth; Jersey music is a simple gift that I’m forever grateful for. Thanks to my son Neil for lighting my fire.


Global Warming

southside johnny at stone pony with marc ribler. tribute to rolling stones.




Being connected to the Universe is another simple gift that I am forever grateful for. When I meditate each day, I make sure the universe is thanked for the simple gifts of connection. These connections are elaborate and much too complex to even being to contemplate here and now. Yesterday, these abilities were recognized and I’ve been invited by higher ups to explore this simple gift. I’ll keep you posted.





Global Warming

singer danny white mentoring a young band in belmar (jersey shore)





And finally the simple gift of a tasty salad dressing with no calories or salt. Mostly a dream since I subsist on mainly vegetables and some poultry.  When recently exploring a boutique supermarket and near the bin of mostly green bananas, I found a dressing that was real low in calories and salt. I don’t understand. I expect hidden ingredients of carcinogenic flavoring devices to hide out until some  research arm at the turn of the next century says the ingredients are bad for you; but so far so good. Being a flexitarian (no red meat) I need excess lettuce and some chicken. So hooray for better living through chemistry and this Marie person’s dressing. I’ll keep you posted to see if I’ve lost several inches of height. I know New Jersey is going to lose several hundred feet of shore line once global warming closes in. I just realized the simple gift of Asbury Park and its music will have to move miles inland one day. And what will become of me and my small family?






PLEASE CHECK OUT THE WEBSITE OF ARLAN FEILES AND HIS NEW  CD. “Weeds Kill the Wild Flowers” Arlan is a wondrous singer and lyricist. I keep listening and drifting all over my life and his words.            


Global Warming

Global Warming


NOW HERE THIS:   a bit of an advertisement.  BUT there’s a very unusual upbeat funny precious 2 minute video involving 102 year old Emily Cook who talks about the life briefly and then invites me back to her room. Not to be missed especially the last 23 seconds.   PLEASE  check it out and share it.

emily cook video she’s 102 years old.


HooplaHa Videos and Article LINKS  Global Warming

Feinstein: Female Pilot:

Judy Feinstein pilot:



Ida Gonzalez: A Mother’s Journey to Light:


Common Sense Approach to Common Sense:



Meryl Streep and Me:

A Real College Pep Band Video (yes 85 seconds):

rutgers pep band video

Also a very worthwhile cause to read up on:

Butterfly Circle of Friends.




Facebook:  Cal Schwartz

Twitter:  Earthood



book trailer. hey its 65 seconds long

Vichy Water Book Trailer:    Global Warming

Vichy Water book trailer 65 seconds long




If on Facebook check out this NJ Discover site:


OR   www.njdiscover.comGlobal Warming



Global Warming












LINKS TO VIDEOS.  Please Watch.

1.   ZOMBIE WALK   October 22, 2011

Zombie Walk Asbury Park



Nov 11, 2011   Veterans Day at NJ Vietnam War Memorial


Nov 19, 2011













Powered by WordPress

Wordpress SEO Plugin by SEOPressor