The Light of Day concert series is now in its 13th year. What began as a single concert at the Stone Pony in Asbury Park, New Jersey has grown into 35 shows in twelve countries in the U.S., Canada and Europe.
This year Light of Day concerts in Asbury Park, New Jersey will take place from Thursday. January 17 through Monday, January 21, 2013.The nearly weeklong run of events are about to formally declared as Light of Day Week by the Asbury Park City Council for the second consecutive year The concerts have become a full-fledged festival.
The Asbury Park Boardwalk, usually barren with ocean winds whipping the wind chill factor to sub-zeros levels in January, will come alive over next year’s Martin Luther King Day weekend. The hotels, clubs, restaurants and shops along the Boardwalk and in Downtown Asbury Park will be bustling with visitors from nearly ten countries.
This year’s events in Asbury Park will kick off with a Rock ‘n’ Bowl night at Asbury Lanes through Monday morning’s Light of Day Brunch. In between there will be multiple events scheduled each day and evening at venues including the Stone Pony, the Wonder Bar, the Saint, the Paramount , McLoone’s Ocean Grille, the Langosta Lounge and Watermark. Music performed will include rock ‘n’ roll,
acoustic songwriters’ circles, Broadway show tunes, family music and open-mic.
Last year’s year the Paramount show was hosted by actor Vincent Pastore and radio jocks Rich Russo, Tom Cunningham, Jeff Raspe and Rick Skelly.
Blues legend David Bromberg headlined the 2012 show which also featured sets by Garland Jeffreys, Joe D'Urso & Stone Caravan, Joe Grushecky and the Houserockers, Southside Johnny and the Poor Fools, Willie Nile with Bruce Springsteen sitting in for cameo performances with Jeffreys and Nile and finally joining Grushecky and the Houserockers for an over two-hour set . The night ended with a rollicking “Twist and Shout” anchored by the E Street Band’s Max Weinberg on drums. Springsteen has now racked up surprise appearances at 9 of the first 12 years of Light of Day.
The funds raised are donated to help the fight against Parkinson's disease and related illnesses by funding research into better treatments, cures and support for patients suffering from Parkinson's disease and related illnesses.
The Asbury Park shows in 2012 raised nearly $300,000.
The 2012/13 concert series will kick off in Niagara Falls, Canada on November 9 and run through the weekend of January 17th to 21th, 2013 with our flagship shows in Asbury Park, New Jersey. There will be shows in Scotland, Wales and the UK, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Italy and the Hard Rock Café in New York’s Times Square in between.
New events and projects in 2012 included the first annual Light of Day “Run While You Can” 5K Race organized by Joan Russo and held in Toms River, New Jersey.
September of 2012 saw the release on DVD and VOD of Just Around The Corner.
The documentary tells the story of Bob Benjamin and the Light of Day Foundation.
You can order a DVD at the Light of Day Store http://www.lightofday.org/store/index or directly from Virgil Films. http://www.virgilfilmsent.com/store/product.php?pid=588,
You can pick up the DVD in store at J&R Music World on Park Row in Manhattan or via their website www.jandr.com or the DVD online from www.barnesandnoble.com and walmart.com.
You can rent or download the video from www.amazon.com, www.netflix.com and www.blockbuster.com and www.hulu.com. ,
Light of Day fields a team in the annual Parkinson's Unity Walk in New York's Central Park. Over the last five years the Light of Day team has raised $80,000 which helped the Walk raise over $3 million for Parkinson's research.
Light of Day has received press coverage in/on NBC Nightly News, CBS New York TV News, Talk Philly on CBS TV Philadelphia, the Philadelphia Inquirer, Rolling Stone, Billboard, the New York Times, Backstreets.com, NJ Star Ledger, Asbury Park Press, the Home News Tribune, the Aquarian Weekly, New Jersey Monthly Magazine and many other regional, local and trade outlets.
PD is a degenerative disorder of the central nervous system that affects between one-and-a-half million and two million Americans. The incidence of PD is often underestimated because it is not contagious and does not have to be reported by physicians. PD may appear at any age, but it is uncommon in people younger than 40, and the risk of developing it increases with age. It occurs in all parts of the world, and men are affected slightly more often than women.
Light of Day Foundation, Inc.'s mission is to fund research into possible cures, improved treatments and support for patients who suffer with Parkinson's disease (PD) and related illnesses, their families and their caregivers to help improve their quality of life.
Gifts to the Light of Foundation, Inc. are tax-deductible to the full extent of the Internal Revenue Code. The Light of Foundation, Inc. is designated by the IRS as a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization. The Light of Foundation, Inc.'s Federal ID # is 20-1560386.
Light of Day - the concerts and the organization - grew from a birthday party and fund-raiser held in 1998 at the Downtown Cafe in Red Bank to celebrate the 40th birthday of artist manager and music industry veteran Bob Benjamin. Benjamin was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in 1996.
|Bob Benjamin||Joe Grushecky||Gary Schiavone||Brian Ansell|
|Tony Pallagrossi||Dawne Allynne||Cheryl Streich||Mark Harrison|
|Joe D'Urso||Rob Dye||Ronald Streich|
|Jean Mikle||Michael DeGeorge||Eiran Wolfman|
* click on name for email
In 2000, Benjamin and Tony Pallagrosi of Concerts East, Inc. organized the first official Light of Day concert, which took place at the legendary Stone Pony in Asbury Park on Nov. 3 - Benjamin's birthday. Headlining were Joe Grushecky and the Houserockers, the Pittsburgh-based band managed by Benjamin. The show featured an appearance by Bruce Springsteen, who joined the Houserockers for a late-night set that ended well after 2 a.m.
In 2001 and 2002, the show moved to the now-demolished Tradewinds in Sea Bright, and returned to the Stone Pony in 2003, becoming a two-day event. It was a three-day event in 2004. Dozens of artists, including Gary U.S. Bonds, Garland Jeffreys, John Eddie, La Bamba and the Hubcaps, Marah, Soozie Tyrell, Highway 9, Boccigalupe and the Badboys, Dan Bern, Willie Nile, Pete Yorn, Robert Earl Keen, Southside Johnny and Jesse Malin have performed at Light of Day. In 2003, actor Michael J. Fox, who also suffers from Parkinson's Disease, joined Grushecky, Springsteen and Benjamin on stage for a performance of the show's theme song.
The shows, named after a Springsteen song that is the title of a movie starring Fox and Joan Jett, have raised funds for the ongoing fights against Parkinson's disease, PSP, ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease) and related diseases.
A CD featuring covers of Springsteen songs by various artists was released in 2003 on Benjamin's own Schoolhouse Records label. The CD and a European version, also released in 2003, have sold over 30,000 units worldwide and raised an additional $150,000 for Parkinson's research and for the Kristen Ann Carr
Fund. All told, the Light of Day ventures have raised over $1.5 million dollars since 1998.
In 2005, the Light of Day series expanded significantly, featuring one show at the Stone Pony and two shows at a new venue, the Starland Ballroom in Sayreville, NJ. That year also saw Light of Day produce its first show outside of New Jersey with a show at the House of Blues on the famed Sunset Strip in Los Angeles. The inaugural West Coast show featured appearances by Lucinda Williams, Jakob Dylan, Dave Alvin and Peter Himmleman. The first international event was also held in Rome in December 2005.
In 2006, all three Light of Day shows, including an opening night acoustic "Writers in the Raw" event, were held at Starland Ballroom. Light of Day was moved to early December in 2006 for the first time, to give founder Bob Benjamin more time to recover from DBS surgery for Parkinson's. The international shows
grew into a second show in Rome and inaugural dates in London and Barcelona.
Light of Day 8 featured two days of concerts at Starland Ballroom on Nov. 1 and 2, 2007, followed by a week of shows in Europe and two performances in Canada. The first night featured an acoustic format while the second night hosted rock performances by artists including Grushecky and the Houserockers, Gary U.S. Bonds and Joe D'Urso and Stone Caravan.
In 2008, Light of Day 9 began with a rare intimate acoustic performance by multiplatinum Grammy-winning artist John Rzeznik (Goo Goo Dolls) at Asbury Park's Paramount Theater. John's stirring set was preceded by rocking sets from D'Urso, Willie Nile, Jesse Malin and Joe Grushecky. There were also acoustic sets throughout the night. That was followed by a marathon concert at the Stone Pony with over 20 performers during the day/night show.
Light of Day’s 10th Anniversary was celebrated with shows in Asbury Park in January 2010. The Martin Luther King Day Weekend long bash at the Stone Pony opened on Friday night, January 15th. Performers at the Pony included Boccigalupe and The Boys, JoBonanno and the Godsons of Soul, River City Extension and the Tangiers Blues Band (featuring Danny Clinch). On Saturday January 16th, the party moved three blocks north and across the street to the Paramount Theatre on the Boardwalk. Ed Kowalczyk, the lead singer for Live, performed a rare solo acoustic set. Other performers on bill included Joe D'Urso, Willie Nile, Jesse Malin and Joe Grushecky. Bruce Springsteen once again was unannounced but in -house. He joined in with Nile and Malin before ending the marathon by sitting in with Grushecky and his band for a one-hour- plus spot.
Sunday’s shows turned down the energy level a notch with three consecutive songwriters’ circles at three boardwalk cafes. Participating songwriters included
John Eddie, Joe D’Urso and Dawne Allynne.
Held in January 2011, Light of Day 11 followed the same format as the previous year but with shows added at the Wonder Bar and the Stone Pony. The Saturday night show featured many of the same performers, and Alejandro Escovedo, an Austin, Texas- based roots rock legend, was the special guest on the Paramount bill. Perennial unannounced guest Bruce Springsteen reprised guest spots with Malin and Nile and also joined Escovedo for an acoustic duet. Grushecky and the Houserockers closed the night, and Springsteen joined them for a lengthy set that ended with all the night's perfomers, plus the whole Paramount audience, joining in a sing-a-long of Springsteen's "Thunder Road."
There were shows added at the Wonder Bar and the Stone Pony, which was the venue for Light of Day’s first country rock night.
See you on the Boardwalk January 17 to 21, 2013!