Top 20 NJ Arts Events of the Week: Dave Matthews Band, Jon Stewart, ‘Sinatra Idol,’ more

Dave Matthews Band NJ


The Dave Matthews Band (from left, Rashawn Ross, Carter Beauford, Matthews, Stefan Lessard, Tim Reynolds and Jeff Coffin) will perform in Camden, June 15-16, and Holmdel, July 18. Keyboardist Buddy Strong is not pictured.

A guide to notable arts events taking place around the state through June 19.


Having just released a new album, Come Tomorrow, The Dave Matthews Band will perform at the BB&T Pavilion in Camden, June 15-16 at 8 p.m. (They’ll also return to New Jersey later in the summer, for a show at the PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel, July 18 at 8 p.m.) With violinist Boyd Tinsley no longer in the group, some of the songs will undoubtedly sound very different: The lineup now includes Matthews on vocals and guitar, Stefan Lessard on bass, Carter Beauford on drums, Tim Reynolds on guitar, Rashawn Ross on trumpet, Jeff Coffin on saxophone and Buddy Strong on keyboards.

• Bruce Springsteen will appear as a “special guest” at a June 18 concert by Portugal. The Man and the Tangiers Blues Band at Asbury Lanes, which recently reopened under new management and after having undergone an extensive renovation. He will presumably play only or primarily with the Tangiers Blues Band, whose harmonica player, Danny Clinch, is also a well known rock photographer who has done many shoots for Springsteen. Free tickets were distributed to lottery winners; there was no general on-sale.

Philadelphia alternative-rock station Radio 104.5 will present an “11th Birthday Celebration” for itself, June 17 at 1 p.m. at the BB&T Pavilion in Camden, with Thirty Seconds to Mars, Portugal. The Man, Walk the Moon, CHVRCHES, MisterWives, The Neighbourhood, Saint Slumber, Joywave, The Aces, slenderbodies and L.I.F.T.


• Bruce Hornsby and the Noisemakers will perform at BergenPAC in Englewood, June 18 at 7:30 p.m., and the Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown, July 16 at 7:30 p.m. The veteran singer-songwriter (and omnipresent collaborator) has released six albums with the Noisemakers since 2000. The last, 2016’s Rehab Reunion, featured him on vocals and dulcimer, along with John “J.T.” Thomas on organ, J.V. Collier on bass, Sonny Emory on drums and percussion, Gibb Droll on guitar, and Ross Holmes on fiddle and mandolin. (For a chance to win two tickets to the BergenPAC show, send an email to by midnight June 14 with the word “Hornsby” in the subject line.)

• Harry Connick Jr., recently seen in “The Sting” at the Paper Mill Playhouse in Millburn, will return to New Jersey for “New Orleans Tricentennial Celebration” shows at the Mayo Performing Arts Center in Millburn, June 18-19 at 8 p.m.

• Richie Furay — co-founder of the pioneering country-rock band Poco as well as a Rock and Roll Hall of Famer as a member of Buffalo Springfield — and his band will play the 1971 Poco concert album DeLIVErin’ in its entirety as part of their shows at the South Orange Performing Arts Center, June 13 at 7:30 p.m., and The Record Collector in Bordentown, June 14 at 8 p.m.


For the second year in a row, the Long Beach Island Foundation of Arts and Sciences‘ performance space in Loveladies will host a music series. It begins June 14 at 8 p.m., with singer-songwriter Lucy Kaplansky plus opening act John Magill. The band The Weeklings will follow, with Beatles covers and Beatles-inspired originals, on June 21. And James Maddock, with opening act Matt O’Ree & Eryn Shewell, will close out the series on June 28.

E Street Band drummer Max Weinberg and the Beatles-inspired band The Weeklings will present an all-request Max Weinberg’s Jukebox show — audience members choose the material from a long list of Beatles and Springsteen songs, and other rock and pop classics — at the Stone Pony in Asbury Park, June 16, with doors opening at 7 p.m.

I’ll be one of the judges at the 12th annual “Sinatra Idol” contest at Sinatra Park in Hoboken, June 14 at 6:30 p.m. Other judges will include singer Christina Fontanelli, Hoboken mayor Ravi S. Bhalla, Hoboken Historical Museum director Bob Foster, writer and editor Jack Silbert and restaurateur Joyce Flinn. Contestants vying for the title of Best Sinatra-style Singer will include James Beckham, John Busalschi, Peter Cannella, Paul Capello, Joe Cracco, Gabriel Díaz,
Frank Gamrus, Dylan Kaplan, Dan Lauzon, Barry Oliver Lawton, David Martinez, Jerry Padula, Humphrey Uddoh and Stanley Volk. In the event of rain, the contest will move to the DeBaun Auditorium.



• Juliana Areias, a Perth, Australia-based singer-songwriter who draws from traditional bossa nova rhythms, will perform original songs as well as bossa nova and samba classics at the Bickford Theatre at the Morris Museum in Morris Township, June 15 at 8 p.m. She will be backed by a quintet featuring guitarist Wesley Amorim, saxophonist and flutist Jorge Continentino, bassist Itaiguara Brandão, pianist Oriente Lopez and drummer Samuel Martinelle. (For a chance to win two tickets, send an email to by midnight June 13 with the word “Areias” in the subject line.)


This year’s Princeton Festival will include a production of Puccini’s “Madama Butterly” at the McCarter Theatre Center, June 16 at 7:30 p.m. and June 24 and July 1 at 3 p.m. Richard Tang Yuk will conduct, and the cast will include Yulia Lysenko as Cio-Cio-san (Madama Butterfly), Matthew White as Pinkerton, Janara Kellerman as Suzuki and Paul La Rosa as Sharpless.


A new theater company, Thinkery & Verse, will present a four-actor version of Shakespeare’s “Much Ado About Nothing” at Assembly Hall at St. John the Evangelist Episcopal Church in New Brunswick, June 14-17, 20-23 and 28-30 and July 5-7 at 8 p.m. According to its web site, Thinkery & Verse “seeks to perform classically inspired, politically aware plays that challenge us to be empowered, globally-oriented citizens with a keen awareness of the high stakes of modern life. While our primary mission is to create new plays, one of our key creative methods is to perform our plays in repertory with classic works, thereby challenging our writers and actors to achieve new heights of creativity and aesthetics.”



• The sardonic Dennis Miller — whose rather unique career includes associations with everything from “Saturday Night Live” to “Monday Night Football” and “The O’Reilly Factor” — has strong political opinions. But he says he won’t emphasize that when he performs at the Wellmont Theater in Montclair, June 16 at 8 p.m. (The show was postponed from Jan. 20.) “Politics has become so fractious that most of the show will be non-political,” he told The Bergen Record/ (For a chance to win two tickets, send an email to by midnight June 14 with the word “Miller” in the subject line.)

As he has done for the last several years, Earthquake will headline a Father’s Day Comedy Show at Prudential Hall at NJPAC in Newark. The show takes place June 17 at 7 p.m., and also features Lil Duval, Karlous Miller, Chico Bean, DC Young Fly and DeRay Davis.


Jersey New Moves! — taking place at the Victoria Theater at NJPAC, June 15 at 8 p.m. — will feature works by five up-and-coming New Jersey choreographers, mentored by established choreographers: Joe Monteleone and Nijawwon Matthews (both mentored by Nai-Ni Chen of Nai-Ni Chen Dance), Barkha Patel and Daniel Padierna (both mentored by Randy James of 10 Hairy Legs) and Stephanie Nerbak (mentored by Carolyn Dorfman of Carolyn Dorfman Dance).



The Paramount Theatre in Asbury Park will screen the classic 1987 movie “The Princess Bride” — June 16 at 7:30 p.m., with a question-and-answer session with Cary Elwes (who plays the heroic Westley) following.

In conjunction with the Newark Museum‘s current exhibition “The Rockies & the Alps: Bierstadt, Calame, and the Romance of the Mountains, film historian Max Alvarez and Tricia Bloom, the museum’s curator of American art, will give a presentation and discussion on “The Magic of Mountains on Film,” June 16 at 2 p.m.


The Wellmont Theater will host The Strange Xchange, the latest in its series of pop-up flea markets co-curated by The Aquarian Weekly and Weird NJ, June 16 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The event will feature vendors, music, food trucks, astrologers, psychics, face painters, clowns, side show performers, and a special appearance by the mentalist, The Amazing Kreskin. NOTE: My brother Mike’s company Brainiac Records will be selling vinyl records, and I’ll be hanging out at his table from noon to 2:30 p.m., so come by and say hello!

Art All Night Trenton, a free event taking place from 3 p.m. June 16 to 3 p.m. June 17 at Roebling Wire Works, will feature an abundance of art displays, music, food, films, children’s activities and more.

Jon Stewart Red Bank


Longtime Monmouth County resident Jon Stewart will participate in an interview and question-and-answer session at the Count Basie Center for the Arts in Red Bank, June 17 at 8 p.m. The former “Daily Show” host lives in Red Bank and owns a farm in Middletown. The venue is currently undergoing a $26 million expansion, and proceeds will benefit its capital campaign project. WQXR (105.9 FM, New York) news anchor Kerry Nolan will serve as moderator.

Beardfest, a festival featuring music, art, health- and arts-oriented workshops, camping and more, will take place at the Paradise Lakes Campground in Hammonton, June 14-16. Musical attractions will include Medeski, Martin & MonoNeon, Marco Benevento, Moon Hooch, Ghost Note, Nate Wood, Splintered Sunlight and Swift Technique.

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