Top 10 NJ Arts Events of the Week: Gov’t Mule, Gary U.S. Bonds, Sondheim’s ‘Assassins,’ more

by JAY LUSTIG
gov't mule preview nj

DAVID SIMCHOCK

GOV’T MULE

Here is a roundup of arts events taking place around the state, through July 27.

MUSIC

Coinciding with the 50th anniversary, this year, of Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon album, Gov’t Mule will play Pink Floyd songs and more on its Dark Side of the Mule Tour, which comes to the Hard Rock Live at Etess Arena at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, July 22 at 7 p.m., as well as the PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel, Aug. 19 at 7 p.m..

Drummer Jason Bonham will open the shows with his “Led Zeppelin Evening” set, featuring the music of his late father John Bonham’s band.

Gov’t Mule previously presented “Dark Side of the Mule” shows in 2008 and 2014, performing songs from various Pink Floyd albums (not just Dark Side of the Moon). On this tour, they will perform a set of their own songs, then a set of Pink Floyd covers.

The PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel offers a great triple bill for fans of ’80s pop, July 26 at 7 p.m., with Boy George & Culture Club (“Do You Really Want to Hurt Me?,” “Karma Chameleon,” “Miss Me Blind”) headlining and Howard Jones (“No One Is to Blame,” “Things Can Only Get Better”) and Berlin (“Take My Breath Away”) opening.

GARY U.S. BONDS

• Gary U.S. Bonds, who had infectious rock ‘n’ roll hits both in the early ’60s (“New Orleans,” “Quarter to Three”) and as a Bruce Springsteen-supported comeback artist in the early ’80s (“This Little Girl,” “Jolé Blon”), will headline free shows with his band the Roadhouse Rockers July 26 at 7 p.m., with Big Chief Monk Boudreaux and Johnny Sansone opening, at Kennedy Plaza on the Boardwalk in Atlantic City; and July 28, with the Rev. Billy C. Wirtz opening, at the Somers Point Beach Concerts series.

The band Amani will salute the late Harry Belafonte — who died in April at the age of 96 — by playing songs from his hit 1959 live double album, Belafonte at Carnegie Hall, July 27 at the Jazz on the Back Deck series at the Morris Museum in Morris Township.

THEATER

Joyce DeWitt, best known for co-starring in the sitcom “Three’s Company” in the ’70s and ’80s, will star in “Remember Me?” at the Hunterdon Hills Playhouse in Hampton from July 25 to Aug. 12. Written by Sam Bobrick, “Remember Me?” is a romantic comedy about a middle-aged married couple, Mary and Brian, whose relationship is thrown into disarray when Mary’s college boyfriend re-enters their life.

The Music Mountain Theatre in Lambertville debuted a production of Steven Sondheim’s “Assassins” last week and will continue presenting it July 21-23 and 28-30. Characters in this daringly unconventional work include notorious presidential assassins and would-be assassins from throughout United States history including John Wilkes Booth, Lee Harvey Oswald, Squeaky Fromme, Sara Jane Moore and John Hinckley Jr.

Richard Kind, left, and James Pickens Jr.

Richard Kind (known for his work in television series such as “Mad About You,” “Spin City” and “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” and Tony-nominated for “The Big Knife” in 2013) and James Pickens Jr. (whose TV credits include “Grey’s Anatomy,” “The X-Files,” “Roseanne” and ‘The Conners”) — will co-star in “A Tailor Near Me” at New Jersey Repertory Company in Long Branch from July 27 to Aug. 27. This is a new play, by actor and writer Michael Tucker, that is described in this way on the NJ Rep website: “A man goes to a tailor to have his suit pants let out because he’s gained some weight since he last wore them. The tailor convinces him that what he really needs is a new suit, which leads to a negotiation, which leads to the making of a bespoke suit, which leads to alterations in both of their lives.”

FAMILY

“Jurassic Quest,” a touring exhibition featuring more than 100 life-sized, animatronic dinosaurs as well as interactive, dinosaur-related activities, comes to the New Jersey Convention and Expo Center in Edison, July 21-23.

FILM

Director Daniel Fetherston will participate in a question-and-answer session after a screening of “We Were Famous, You Don’t Remember: The Embarrassment” (see trailer below), July 27 at 7:30 p.m at The Clairidge in Montclair. This movie is a documentary about the rock band The Embarrassment, which was part of the Lawrence, Kansas, music scene in the late ’70s and early ’80s and had some success, but never became well known nationally.

ROBIN FOX

COMEDY

An annual competition since the late ’90s, Ladies of Laughter will bring its Funny & Fabulous Tour to the South Orange Performing Arts Center, July 27 at 7:30 p.m., with a lineup that includes 2012 winner Robin Fox, Maureen Langan, Marcela Onyango and host Liz Glazer.

REVIEWS

“NJ & Me: Imperfect Together”at Drawing Rooms, Jersey City. Works by Alan Ostroski, Anne Percoco, Anne Trauben, Dorie Dahlberg, Doug Madill, Eileen Ferara, Edward Fausty, James Pustorino, Jean-Paul Picard, Jessica Rohrer, John T. Meehan III, Kevin McCaffrey, Lauren H. Adams, Sue Ellen Leys, Tim Daly, Tim Heins. (Through July 29)

“Shipwrecked! An Entertainment – The Amazing Adventures of Louis de Rougemont (as Told by Himself),” outdoor show presented by Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey at Saint Elizabeth University in Morristown. (Through July 30)

“Satellites” at Premiere Stages series at Kean University, Union. (Through July 30)

“Each One Teach One: Preserving Legacy in Perpetuity” at Morris Museum, Morris Township. (Through Aug. 27)

“Claybash 2023” at Hunterdon Art Museum, Clinton. (Through Sept. 3)

“Where There’s Smoke” by Lance Weiler at ArtYard, Frenchtown. (Through Oct. 1)

“Spiral Q: The Parade” at Grounds for Sculpture, Hamilton. (Through Jan. 7)

“Local Voices: Memories, Stories and Portraits” at Grounds for Sculpture, Hamilton. (Through Jan. 7)

“George Inness: Visionary Landscapes” at Montclair Art Museum. (Through June 30)

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