LAURA CRISCI BEATS THE BLUES @BROOKDALE

Singer, songwriter and Brookdale Community College alumna Laura Crisci performs with her formidable “Whoever Shows Up Band” at a special Beat the Winter Blues event Saturday evening at BCC’s Lincroft campus. (Photo by Debra L. Rothenberg) 

On her latest self-released album All Is WellLaura Crisci joins a bevy of veteran Shore area musicians for a set of songs about desire, regret, redemption and trust, maintaining an Americana vibe that’s punctuated every so often by a twanging rocker or even the odd sea chantey.

Saturday night,  this “Prodigal Daughter” – who reconnected to her Monmouth County roots after a successful few years in Nashville – returns to the greater Red Bank green as the homecoming headliner of a special “Beat the Winter Blues: Meet, Mingle & Music” event on the Lincroft campus of Brookdale Community College.

Presented by Plymouth Rock Assurance, Brookdale Alumni Association and BCC radio station 90.5 The Night, the concert is billed as “a social networking event for alumni and friends” — that’s social networking in the old-school sense of meeting, talking, laughing, sharing — and it’s preceded at 7 pm by a lobby reception that features complimentary light fare plus wine/beer cash bar.

Crisci, who appeared last year at Red Bank’s now-defunct NovelTeas as part of a Musicians on a Mission fundraiser, will take the Performing Arts Center stage at 8 pm, accompanied by a “Whoever Shows Up” All Star Band that’s slated to include former Springsteen drummer Vini Lopez (back in action following a close-call car accident on the way back from a Virginia benefit show), John Eddie guitarist PK Lavengood (appearing with Eddie at the Stone Pony on February 11), multi-instrumentalist Gary Oleyar (Loggins & Messina, Kenny Chesney, Bob Seger) Bon Jovi keyboardist Arne Wendt and, well, whoever else shows up.

As Tim Zeiss of the Alumni Association states, “This will be a multi-faceted performance combining music, story-telling, and theater, themed to boardwalk carnival-like scenes that reflect Laura’s life journey and her Asbury Park and Jersey Shore roots” — a description that should pique the interest (this is an artist who after all has been photographed playing a guitar while riding a unicycle), even if those titular Winter Blues fail to materialize in this unexpectedly mild season.

General admission tickets for Saturday’s show ($20, $16 for members of the BCC Alumni Association, $12 for students with valid ID) can be reserved in advance online here; if supplies last, tickets will be available at the door for $25 for the general public, $20 for members of the Alumni Association (must show membership card), and $15 for Brookdale students with a valid ID.

As a bonus, anyone who purchases a ticket will be able to download Crisci’s brand new, not-on-any-album bluegrass ramble “My Valentine” free of charge. Check the singer’s website to purchase All Is Well as a download, as a hard-copy CD, or “A La Carte” by track.