BP oil disaster inspires July 2 benefit concert featuring Jumpin' Johnny Sansone and live auction in Somers Point
UPDATE: JULY 2 - JUMPIN' JOHNNY SANSONE SPEAKS TO AC WEEKLY ON BP OIL DISASTER
West Orange, N.J. native and New Orleans harmonica and accordion player Jumpin’ Johnny Sansone will be back in his home state for two special and very timely appearances on the subsequent Fridays of July 2 and July 9.
Originally slated to appear at the 18th annual Concerts on the Beach series in Somers Point on July 9 with the Hawkins Road All-Star Band, Sansone, a staple on the New Orleans music scene and one of the Voice of the Wetlands All-Stars, is going to be appearing at Sandi Pointe (formerly Mac’s) in Somers Point on July 2 at 9:30pm, following the free beach concert featuring the Bob Campanell Band and Danny Eyer. (What a night of music in Somers Point!)
Originally the beach concert after party, dubbed “Tony Mart’s After the Beach Rock ‘n Roll R&B Dance Party,” was going to be your typically fantastic Somers Point rock ‘n’ roll event presented by Tony Mart's. But now, months after the BP oil disaster, the party has a purpose and a tinge of sadness to it.
“There is an obvious and poignant urgency to the message of environmental protection that Johnny Sansone brings to his two Somers Point appearances ... during his upcoming ‘mini tour’ of the Northeast,” says Carmen Marotta, one of the organizers of both events.
“This message is clear: Those of us enjoying our beautiful early summer here at the Jersey Shore need to be more aware of the staggering devastation and awesome impact caused to the people of the Gulf coast. Once again, as it was after Katrina, the word from our friends down there is tragic. In personal conversations, they say it is ‘much worse than you’re hearing there' [and that] 'the people are suffering terrible losses.’”
On July 2, along with performing songs from his critically acclaimed blues-rock albums, and accompanied by local guitar wizard Eyer, Sansone will be answering questions about the state of the Gulf region following the April "environmental catastrophe,” as New Orleans music legend Dr. John puts it (see more below), and providing information about the aftermath of the BP oil catastrophe and contact information to help those suffering in the aftermath.
Additionally, Sansone will explain the efforts by his fellow Voice of the Wetlands musicians to help “Save the Wetlands,” a project that Sansone, along with other New Orleans musicians such as Tab Benoit, Dr. John and George Porter, has been working on prior to even the devastation of Katrina.
Atlantic City resident and long-time Dr. John friend Sandy Warren is in charge of the auction part of the July 2 event at Sandi Pointe.
“We have some great stuff to be auctioned off,” says Warren, who has been in contact with Dr. John about donating auction items even though he is on tour in the United Kingdom.
“People are going to be very surprised and interested in what we will be auctioning off.”
Warren says that Dr. John’s involvement in the July 2 event, aside from assisting with securing auction items, will be very apparent that night.
“He [may be] in London, but his heart and soul will be with us Friday night,” says Warren, who adds that money isn’t the only thing organizers of the event want to raise.
“We’re going to raise awareness as much as money,” says Warren. “The national media hasn’t told us how much the people are suffering. I’ve had conversations with Mac [Dr. John] where we don’t talk about anything personal, but just how people are suffering down there and the bull that BP is putting out.
“Then you get off the phone and cry for a while,” adds Warren, “but then you get up off your ass and do something about it. It’s great that Sansone will be there to tell people first hand the depth of the suffering down there. [And] to bring the message up here. Again, it’s not just money, it’s the whole thing.”
Additionally, Sansone will be available to sign CDs, answer questions and provide information about the aftermath of the BP oil disaster during the intermission break of his scheduled free July 9 performance on the Somers Point beach.
For more information see johnnysansone.com, voiceofthewetlands.org, tonymarto.com or somerspointbeachconcerts.com.
If you want to send a donation, visit wwoz.org, gulfaid.org or voiceofthewetlands.org.
Atlantic County locals Carmen Marotta (as well as his wife Nancy) and Sandy Warren are putting a lot of effort into organizing the July 2 event at Sandi Pointe to raise funds and awareness regarding the aftermath of the BP oil disaster in the Gulf region of the United States. Both Marotta and Warren faxed over a copy of the recently issued “The Doctor’s Orders From Dr. John, Re: Gulf Catastrophe,” to the Atlantic City Weekly office. It reads in full:
Doctor’s Orders From Dr. John Re: Gulf Catastrophe
Greetings on the freakin’ [65th] day of the worst economic and environmental catastrophe in the history of our planet. I’m talkin’ at you from Great Britain, yeah, that’s right, home of BP. Ya all know what that stands for — BIGGEST POLLUTER.
Here’s what you can do to help in the recovery effort:
• Don’t call this an oil spill. A spill is something you do on the carpet and wipe it up. This horrific damage to our people and planet can never be wiped clean.
• Stay informed: Read, listen, observe, question … You can’t educate others if you’re not informed.
• Speak the truth about this preventable tragedy to everybody you talk to everywhere you go everyday. Don’t assume people know how serious and long-lasting this calamity is and how it affects all of us and generations yet to come.
• Keep the pressure on our government. Write, e-mail, phone, and visit lawmakers at every level. Don’t let up.
• Be an example and set the bar high for your own conduct. Practice what you preach. Treat Mother Earth, her creatures, and her people with kindness and respect.
• Donate your own time and money. Inform others where to donate so their money will go to where it’s needed [and] not into the pocket of some executive. If you didn’t make it to the Gulf Aid Concert in New Orleans, you still can donate.
There, you got it — DOCTOR’S ORDERS, from me, Dr. John, in peace and love.
What are your thoughts on the two-month old BP oil disaster? Share your comments below.
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That cajun/creole/zydeco sound that originated in southern Louisiana has a cheerful quality to it that lift spirits and makes people want to get up and dance. Such will still be the case when Johnny Sansone — a New Orleans fixture and one of the Voice of the Wetlands All-stars — appears on back-to-back Friday nights (July 2 and 9) as part of the Somers Point Beach Concert Series.