The Blue Moon Coffee House Report

December 10, 2012


Cheryl Gardner took to the  microphone and cheerfully welcomed the nearly five dozen music fans who filled the ancient hall of this architectural treasure on Webster street in Rockland last Saturday evening. With a warm smile, a kind heart , a keen wit and a delightful demeanor  she gives the Blue Moon faithful a run down of the evenings event. Cheryl is an excellent ambassador for The Blue Moon Coffee House. Her wholesome hospitality and gracious greetings makes you feel right at home whether it’s your your first visit or if you are season ticket holder.  Fair trade coffee, home baked treats, donated door prizes and a fifty fifty raffle are all in stark contrast  to your typical evening of music here in Rockvegas.  Not that I don’t enjoy the chest thumping, thunderous pound of hard rock and roll with  a cold beer and a hot pizza or the scantly clad, tattooed cougars on the dance floor that one might find at other local music venues, it is just that this is a very refreshing alternative. The mighty Jo Henly band took to the insturment packed  stage at 7:30 sharp.  Jo Henly had just released their fourth album and returned to their friend Mark Gardner’s Blue Moon Coffee House  to kick off the new release.The Jo Henly Band is a group of of four guys with a vast amount of talent. In fact, from my front row vantage point I witnesses some of the best live music I had ever had the pleasure to see. I could name off some of the fantastic original songs like Clintons Ditch or Love Songs and Alcohol or even a cover of Wagon Wheel, but you probably wouldn’t know them.  Jo Henly poured it all out on the floor of the Channing Church leaving young and old stomping, clapping and cheering.

“Open Mic” brought a wonderful piano solo from The Chickens band member Becky “Tic Tac”Haletky.  A self described closet piano player tickled the ivory’s  for a short time stringing together three great Christmas Classics to the delight of the fans. Next up was Mark Gardner and the Chickens with special guest star Mark’s niece MacKenzie Patterson, who sang a beautiful rendition of “Look at Miss Ohio” behind  David Haletky’s magic Mando and Mark Gardner’s six string. The teen singer has a soothing sweet sound that defied the laws of youth. With her strong, deep and almost haunting voice and perfect timing her performance was flawless, drawing the loudest and longest applauds of the evening. Karen Haffner, then took to the stage and sang Acapella a  colorful and vivid folk song of a tragic Christmas . After a brief intermission Jo Henly returned to the stage again and unfolded five more songs of incredible guitar picking, precision  percussion, bass snapping and fine folk strumming. Lead man Andy Campolieto: is an able story teller, a serious singer/ songwriter  and an excellent front man for the band.  All tolled we had an amazing evening of fun, fellowship entertainment, chances and refreshments all for ten dollars each.


Andy Campolieto: vocals & acoustic guitar
Ben Lee: electric & acoustic guitars, dobro, banjo, vocals
Mike Dingley: drums & piano


The Blue Moon Coffee house, Making Rockland a great place to stomp .