The Wag is among the musical acts taking to the sidewalks and storefronts of Red Bank’s business district as the annual Street Life series returns on Saturday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)
It represents a shuffle mix that ranges from Americana to ethnic, from Sweet Adeline harmonies to a friendly bit of harmonic dissonance. And when the homegrown phenomenon known as Red Bank StreetLife returns to the borough’s sidewalks and storefronts for a new season of summer evenings starting Saturday, it will also represent a literal shuffle, as self-guided musicphiles stroll or roll at their pleasure in search of locally sourced, Jersey-fresh sights and sounds.
Going on between the hours of 6 and 9 pm, and continuing its weather-permitting open-air variety show every Saturday, Street Life makes its 2015 bow courtesy of Red Bank Rivercenter, the downtown promotion agency that’s found itself in the talent-scout business for some 15 seasons, auditioning eager-to-perform acts and coordinating a busy schedule of outdoor encounters that span Broad Street to Bridge Avenue. It’s entirely possible that you may just (literally) stumble across The Next Big Thing.
The roster for June 6 is highlighted by Middletown-based power popsters the Wag at the Monmouth Street courtyard of the Dublin House. The acoustic duo known as Peas & Carrots (Lisa Withers and Billy Harkowsky) bring their mixed-veggies blend of oldies, classic rockers and originals to the 89 Broad Street branch of Morgan Stanley, while Ocean Grove Americana strummers the May Darlings hold down the fort out front of Alex and Ani at 12 Broad Street.
Meanwhile, across town at the Galleria, veteran Red Bank rocker Zeke Moffit and his band bring their brand of “rockin’ smoke swing” to the rear parking area (between Bridge and Shrewsbury avenues, with access from West Front Street). And picking up from last year, there’s a visual art component to the 2015 Street Life slate, beginning with a Saturday display of paintings by Lizzi Schippert at the 32 Broad Street branch of Chase Bank.
Street Life continues every Saturday (with possible extra sessions during Sidewalk Sale weekend) through the end of August. Check in regularly to RiverCenter’s website or Facebook page for weekly schedules and additional updates.