Long Island Press

The Long Island Press

Do This: Long Island Concerts & Events November 19 – 25

Jennifer Nettles
Country music songstress Jennifer Nettles serenades NYCB Theatre at Westbury on Nov. 22!

Oh Canada! Manitoba Hal and Shawna Caspi
From the moment he plucks his ukulele and she strums her guitar, powerful and engaging melodies and warm vocals riff through the air and land in the ears of an ever-growing fanbase. Sky Room Café at Cinema Arts Centre, 423 Park Ave., Huntington. cinemaartscentre.org $15. 7:30 p.m. November 19.

Miracle on 34th Street
Possibly delusional, a white-bearded gentleman claiming to be the real Santa Claus brings about a genuine “Miracle on 34th Street,” spreading a wave of love throughout New York City, and convincing a divorced, cynical single mother, her somber daughter, and the entire state of New York that Santa Claus is no myth. Based on the classic movie by the same name and written by Meredith Willson, of The Music Man fame, this joyous, heart-warming musical is pure family entertainment and the perfect holiday treat. John W. Engeman Theater, 250 Main Street, Northport. engemantheater.com $69-$74. November 19-January 3.

Holiday Lights Spectacular at Jones Beach
This brilliantly illuminating 2.5-mile display returns for the second year after a seven-year absence. It will feature new themed displays throughout the park as well as returning favorites including the “12 Days of Christmas” and “Santa’s Beach Party.” The park will also feature an expanded Holiday Village, including a brand new ice skating rink as well as returning favorites, such as pictures with Santa, Holiday Hay Maze, cheerful holiday music and movies, and plenty of refreshments. Jones Beach State Park, 1000 Ocean Pkwy., Wantagh. jonesbeach.com $20 per car. Dusk. Opens November 20.

Claudia Schmidt
Schmidt’s performance interweaves anecdotes, original compositions and very personalized versions of the work of others, giving her audience a unique look at the world from someone who reveals what she sees with clarity, humor and a sense of wonder. Our Times Coffeehouse, 38 Old Country Rd., Garden City. ourtimescoffeehouse.org $15. 8 p.m. November 20.

Tony Bennett
For more than 60 years this American legend has been showered with appreciation by the likes of Bob Hope, Bill Clinton, Lady Gaga and countless others across the globe. This humanitarian artist with a pitch-perfect voice still evokes well-deserved astonishment and praise from audiences everywhere. NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $76.50. 8 p.m. November 20, 21.

The Producers
The live performance of this hysterical musical is not to be missed. The story follows two show-biz schemers, Max Bialystock and Leo Bloom, who concoct a ridiculous plot to make millions on Broadway by promoting a whopping failure, a musical about Hitler. Who’d want to see that clunker? But the joke’s on them. Staller Center for the Arts, Stony Brook University, 100 Nicolls Rd., Stony Brook. stallercenter.com $52. 8 p.m. November 21.

Lucy Kaplansky & Richard Shindell
Innovative, original, and spiritual, these legendary performers combine their eclectic love songs to create haunting melodies of adulterous romance and other tantalizing topics. Landmark on Main St., 232 Main St., Port Washington. landmarkonmainstreet.org $42-$67. 8 p.m. November 21.

Whitford/St. Holmes
With Aerosmith and Ted Nugnet’s record-selling fame behind them, these two joined their guitars for one epic tour. Expect incendiary guitar work and lots and lots of mind-bending shreddin! Revolution Bar & Music Hall, 140 Merrick Rd., Amityville. clubloaded.com/events $30-$75. 7:30 p.m. November 21.

Monroe Martin
He twisted his memories as an orphan into comedic brilliance that propelled his career in NYC. Now, the breakout artist is recognized in such venues as Adam Devin’s House Party to Gotham Live on Comedy Central. He’s sure to leave you laughing. Brokerage Comedy Club, 2797 Merrick Rd., Bellmore. brokerage.govs.com $17. 8 p.m. November 20, 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. November 21.

Frank Caliendo
Whether it’s his insane antics on MADTV, his sideline snipes and belly busters as Fox NFL Sunday‘s chief prognosticator, or his absolutely knee-slapping, oh-my-God-my-britches-hurt-too-much-from-side-splitting stand-up comedy, this funnyman dishes out the laughter, in over-sized portions. His impressions? Can you say: “Thank you, sir, may we have another?” Of course you will! The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $30-$75. 7:30 p.m. November 21.

The music world can barely contain itself as this rap great’s fourth solo album, Top 5 Dead or Alive, is set to drop November 20th after five years in the making. The track list reads like a who’s who of hip hop, featuring appearances by Puff Daddy, Jeezy, Pharrell, Ne-Yo, Lil Wayne, Wiz Khalifa and more. Always the entertainer, Jadakiss is sure to deliver old favorites like “Knock Yourself Out” and “We Gonna Make It” as he absolutely owns the stage! The Emporium, 9 Railroad Ave., Patchogue. theemporiumny.com $15-$50. 10 p.m. November 21.

Ronnie Spector
One of the great voices of the ’60s–known for her work with legendary music producer Phil Spector (her ex) and her group The Ronettes–she’s carved out an illustrious solo career ever since. Her pipes should be in The Smithsonian someday. Ronnie Spector’s voice and style have influenced generations of artists. She’ll be singing her classics, including “Be My Baby,” “Baby, I Love You” and “Walking in the Rain.” Suffolk Theater, 118 E Main St., Riverhead. suffolktheater.com $47.50-$65. 8 p.m. November 21.

Jackie “The Joke Man” Martling
The Joke Man’s rapid-fire jokes are legendary. Whether you know him from his 18 years at the Howard Stern Show, his 17 years as the Penthouse joke page writer or his countless TV and film appearances, chances are you’ve heard one of his sharp one-liners. If you come up with a joke that Jackie can’t guess the punchline for, you could win a tee shirt during his classic “Stump the Joke Man” finale. Will he do his version of the notorious “Aristocrats” joke? Fingers crossed. You know the name, you’ve heard him for years on the radio and elsewhere, now see the funny man in person. Uncontrollably laughter, guaranteed! YMCA Boulton Center for the Performing Arts, 37 West Main St., Bay Shore. boultoncenter.org $25-$30. 8 p.m. November 21.

Shadmehr Aghili
The “King of Persian Pop” started out as a child prodigy on piano, violin and guitar in Iran before becoming an actor and movie soundtrack composer. His 1999 album Dehati (“the villager”), was so revolutionary with its pop rhythms and rock ‘n roll sound that Iran banned it. When Iran banned the man himself, forbidding him to work as a singer, musician or to appear on TV, Aghili moved to Canada to continue his recording career. Powerful and mesmerizing, Aghili’s performance will move and inspire you. The Space at Westbury, 250 Post Ave., Westbury. thespaceatwestbury.com $40-$125. 8 p.m. November 21.

The Flying Dutchman
The world-renowned Zurich Opera House brings Richard Wagner’s timeless opera to Long Island. Based on 18th century folklore, The Flying Dutchman tells the moving story of a ghostly ship captain doomed to wander the seas forever in search of true love. Baritone Bryn Terfel shines in the company’s contemporary spin on the classic romantic ghost story of doom, gloom and stormy seas. Adelphi University’s Performing Arts Center, 1 South Ave., Garden City. aupac.adelphi.edu $20. 2 p.m. November 22.

Jennifer Nettles
This country singer/songwriter/musician was born to be onstage. Former lead singer for Sugarland, Soul Miner’s Daughter and the Jennifer Nettles Band, her solo career has taken her musicality and songwriting to new heights. Her 2009 ballad “Stay” won two Grammys. Her lastest album That Girl is a poignant, soul-searching rediscovery of herself. This will be a show to remember, as Nettles performs songs from throughout her 25-year career. With Brandy Clark and Ryan Kinder. NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $59.50. 7 p.m. November 22.

The I Love Chocolate Fest
Santa Claus, wine tasting, countless choco-creations so tantalizing they will send you to the moon, and a chance to step back in time to the Colonial era and set your imagination free!? Are you serious!? Yes!! This mouth-watering, retro-mondo extravaganza of all that is chocolate, all that is Christmas-y, and all that is blessed, comes just in time for the holiday season and is bound to leave you and your loved ones enjoying not only a chocolate high, but leaving several pounds larger! There will be more than 30 chocolate exhibitors providing too many choco-madness delights to list here, as well as gallons upon gallons of fresh vino from local vineyards, crafts, free samples, and that rare, precious opportunity to celebrate an 1863 Thanksgiving with live fiddle music, children’s games, and mind-altering demos! Costumed interpreters from the 1800s will bring this enchanting era to life! Yes, Yes, and Yes!! Old Bethpage Village Restoration, 1303 Round Swamp Rd., Old Bethpage. lovechocolatefest.com $7-$10. 10 a.m. November 22.

Machine Head
With more than 3 million records under their belt, eight albums and countless fans across the globe, these Oakland, Calif.-based metal demigods will be taking The Mountler by storm, shredding through track after track in support of their latest drop, 2014’s Bloodstone & Diamonds, and plenty more hellfire gems from their expansive career! The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $20-$40. 8 p.m. November 24.

Andrew McMahon In The Wilderness
The former singer, pianist and main songwriter for Something Corporate and Jack’s Mannequin is touring in support of his latest, last year’s self-titled release. Expect new tunes as well as old fan favorites, with outstanding performances from co-headliner New Politics and special guests The Griswolds & Lolo! The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $35-$65. 6:35 p.m. November 25.

Long Island’s own legendary saviors and purveyors of rock (via Louisiana), The Mighty Zebra will be shredding through nearly 40 years of hard rock and metal fueled by the superhuman guitar virtuosity of the beloved Randy Jackson. Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts, 71 East Main St., Patchogue. patchoguetheatre.org $10-$75. 8 p.m. November 25.

Funk Filharmonik
Groovy harmonies, melodious piano and guitars, a rhythm section to die for and a horn section that simply flat-out rocks, these funksters will get the audience a-movin’ and a-bumpin’ and a-shakin’ long into the night and forever sear the memory of a truly uplifting, kick-ass, hell-yeah celebration into your neuro-synapses! Wow! Not to be missed! Madison Theatre at Molloy College, 1000 Hempstead Ave., Rockville Centre. madisontheatreny.org $30-$40. 8 p.m. November 25.

Laughs For Eddie Dunn
Laughs For Eddie Dunn: Share smiles, laughs and love while helping Eddie and his family beat cancer at The Brokerage Comedy Club in Bellmore on Dec. 6!

Laughs For Eddie Dunn
Eddie Dunn has a big heart. He loves his family and friends, loves playing pool, and loves making people smile. After his father passed away a few years ago, Eddie stepped up to the plate for his family, taking on not only his dad’s responsibilities looking over the well-being of his mother, three sisters and two grandchildren, but continuing to share love and joy to those in desperate need, donning his father’s colorful costume, hat and face paint as a clown alongside his mother, spreading laughter to children and the elderly alike. This must-attend fundraising event is furtherance of that tradition, as comedians take to the mic and tell jokes, now, in Eddie’s honor. Eddie and his family need your help. At 40 years old, Eddie has recently been diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer, and this sinister disease has spread to his blood and bones. Eddie’s not a quitter, and will never give up the fight, or hope. Come down and share a laugh or three with this special, much loved man. Join Eddie, his family, and friends, in this extraordinary expression of life, love and laughs. Help fight this insidious disease, and help spread some light in the process. If you can’t make it, read more about Eddie, his plight, visit and contribute to Eddie Dunn’s Go Fund Me account: https://www.gofundme.com/Eddie-Dunn-s-story. Eddie, his family, and all his friends Thank You from the bottom of their hearts. The Brokerage, 2797 Merrick Rd., Bellmore. govs.com For tickets, call 516-798-2989 or 516-655-1424. $25 Donation. Doors open at 6 p.m. Showtime: 7:30 p.m. December 6.

Compiled by Timothy Bolger, Spencer Rumsey, Desiree D’orio & Zachary B. Tirana III

No Syrian Refugee ‘Tent City’ Coming To Long Island, Insists Local Aid Group

Syrian refugee children in a Lebanese school classroom. (Photo credit: Russell Watkins/ UK Department for International Development)

By Rashed Mian and Christopher Twarowski

A Catholic nonprofit that helps war refugees, sex trafficking victims, and the oppressed resettle on Long Island says there are currently no plans to bring Syrian refugees to the region.

Not only are there no plans to bring Syrian refugees to LI, but there are currently zero applications for resettlement in Nassau and Suffolk counties, says Umberto Mignardi, a spokesperson for the nonprofit Catholic Charities, a ministry of the Diocese of Rockville Centre that provides basic care to immigrants, the poor, and other destitute individuals.

His emphatic response comes amid growing trepidation among local residents, fueled by emails warning friends about a supposed “tent city” being constructed in Amityville to aid those fleeing the war-torn country, Mignardi tells the Press.

Since the coordinated terror attacks in Paris that killed 129 and injured more than 300 people across the City of Lights last Friday, Catholic Charities, a national agency, has been flooded with phone calls from residents and elected officials concerned about Syrian refugees coming to Long Island.

Europe has been besieged by an unprecedented number of refugees and migrants attempting to escape conflicts in Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq, with hundreds of thousands applying for asylum or embarking on perilous and often fatal treks across land and sea to various countries’ borders, resulting in a humanitarian crisis of epic proportions. The Obama administration announced earlier this year that it would welcome up to 10,000 Syrian refugees into the United States, a tiny fraction of the more than 12 million displaced and estimated 4 million refugees who’ve fled the four-year civil war and related atrocities there committed by the self-declared Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), including mass killings, executions, beheadings, bombings, torture, abductions, mutilations, massacres, crucifixions, slavery and systemic rape. A June 2015 report by the United Nations’ refugee agency, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, puts the number of people displaced by war and persecution worldwide at nearly 60 million—the most since World War II.

Half of those displaced are children.

In the wake of Friday’s attacks, more than two dozen governors across the country and countless lawmakers have come out publicly against the White House’s plan to resettle Syrian refugees. One of the most vocal opponents has been Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford), who penned separate letters to President Obama and House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin) Tuesday expressing “serious concerns” about how federal officials plan to vet these refugees before they settle here.

Others outspoken opponents include Republican presidential hopefuls New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie—who told conservative radio show host Hugh Hewitt on Monday that he wouldn’t even admit “orphans under 5″—and Donald Trump, who warned on Twitter Tuesday that “refugees from Syria are now pouring into our great country. Who knows who they are—some could be ISIS. Is our president insane?”

(For the record, King told MSNBC he’d allow young orphans into the country, reports CNN.)

Christie’s counterpart in New York, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, blasted Republicans as playing politics amid the presidential campaign season.

“This is an election season, so the silly season has started and the governors can say, ‘I will refuse to let the refugees in,’” Cuomo said Tuesday. “How? How? Where does it say in the state constitution you can refuse a person placed by the federal government? What are you going to [do?] Have your militia fight the federal government at the borders of your state? It’s a pure political statement.”

“We have to protect Americans and not lose our soul as America in the process. Right?” he added. “The day America says, ‘Close the gates, build the wall,’ then I say take down the Statue of Liberty because you’ve gone to a different place.”

On suburban Long Island, which consistently ranks among the top of “Most Segregated” lists in the country and where affordable housing for its own residents has remained a charged issue for decades—with even the hint of such a project drawing fervent reactions—the prospect of Syrian refugees in Nassau and Suffolk has incited fierce, impassioned rhetoric, with many taking to social media to vent.

“Save the puppies!!! Send the refugees home,” spewed a man on News 12 Long Island’s Facebook page beneath a story about more than 100 puppies recently arriving at Port Washington’s North Shore Animal League for adoption.

“Soooo how long before the Syrian ‘refugees’ can move into wyndanch rising complex?” snickers another beneath a breaking news piece about Russia’s disclosure it was a terrorist act that brought down a passenger plane over Egypt last month, killing 224 people—Wyandanch Rising being the Town of Babylon’s long-awaited $500 million public/private redevelopment and revitalization project for the primarily minority hamlet.

In the wake of the Paris attacks, it’s been Catholic Charities that’s had to field calls—and debunk hysterics—about the rumored refugee encampment in Amityville.

“We’ve been getting calls all day about a ‘tent city’ going up in Amityville,” says Mignardi, adding: “I keep telling people we have zero applicants in Nassau and Suffolk county.”

Catholic Charities’ two offices on LI—Amityville and Hicksville—received about 100 phone calls Monday and Tuesday from people worried about refugees, he says. Some have been from lawmakers and elected officials who themselves inquired about the tent city rumors; others ask about the agency’s security protocols.

Catholic Charities’ mission is to provide clients with essential care, not scrutinize their background, explains Mignardi, adding that the responsibility to screen refugees falls on the federal government.

“We’re not the State Department,” he continues, “we don’t interview them.”

Although there are no applications for Syrian refugees to come to LI, Catholic Charities has been told by the feds that, if refugees are resettled here in the future, it can expect no more than 15 families.

Mignardi says the refugee resettlement process is rigorous, echoing sentiments from various relief agencies assisting refugees. Anyone coming to the United States would go through several layers of security, including more than a dozen background checks.

“You have to have interviews at the embassy of your origin,” he explains. “You have to have a family here sponsor you who ultimately is responsible for you, so that you’re not coming here and you’re homeless…it’s a difficult thing to establish.”

The entire process could take anywhere from 18 to 24 months, he continues.

Syrian refugee children in a Lebanese school classroom. (Photo credit: Russell Watkins/ UK Department for International Development)
Syrian refugee children in a Lebanese school classroom. (Photo credit: Russell Watkins/ UK Department for International Development)

If the federal government does decide to place any refugees on Long Island, the mostly likely scenario is that they wouldn’t get here until 2017, adds Mignardi. According to the U.S. State Department’s Refugee Processing Center, there have been 36 Afghanis, Iraqis and Pakistanis who’ve resettled on Long Island since 2010. Zero Syrians.

But the backlash against refugees—Syrians, especially—has erupted on both sides of the Atlantic since the Paris attacks, fueled by reports that one of the gunmen was carrying a Syrian passport and entered Greece within a deluge of other refugees. In recent days, the authenticity of the passport has been scrutinized, and Agence France-Presse reports it may have belonged to a deceased Syrian soldier.

Though U.S. and European lawmakers have been raising objections to refugee resettlement plans for months out of concern that ISIS could use the humanitarian crisis as a cover to infiltrate and carry out an attack, it’s reached a fevered pitch in the aftermath of the bloodbath in France.

King, chairman of the Homeland Security Subcommittee on Counterintelligence and Terrorism, wrote to Obama Tuesday, requesting he “immediately halt the resettlement of Syrian refugees into the United States.”

“I have serious concerns with recent statements you and officials in your Administration have made regarding security vetting for the Syrian refugee population,” he warned, asserting that until a “top to bottom” review of the current vetting process is complete, the White House must suspend acceptance of refugees.

In his letter to Ryan, King threw his support behind the speaker’s plan to establish a task force to address “security threats inherent within this refugee population.”

“While I do not support current resettlement efforts for Syrian refugees in the U.S., I do want to voice my support for overseas activities to provide humanitarian aid for these migrants,” King told his fellow Republican.

The United States, a country founded by immigrant colonists, has a long history of accepting refugees—taking in nearly 70,000 annually, according to the U.S. Office of Refuge Resettlement, with more than 4,000 resettling in New York State. Since the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, the United States has resettled 784,000 refugees, according to the independent nonprofit Migration Policy Institute.

The organization found that only three of those refugees—less than half a percent—“have been arrested for planning terrorist activities—and it is worth noting two were not planning an attack in the United States and the plans of the third were barely credible.”

MPI stresses that the resettlement process is so arduous, it’s unlikely a terrorist would hide among refugees to enter the United States.

“The most common arguments against resettling more Syrian refugees, made by some Republican presidential candidates and members of Congress, is that the resettlement program could be a path for infiltration into the United States by ISIS or other terrorists,” states MPI. “But the refugee resettlement program is the least likely avenue for a terrorist to choose. Refugees who are selected for resettlement to the United States go through a painstaking, many-layered review before they are accepted. The FBI, Department of Homeland Security, State Department, and national intelligence agencies independently check refugees’ biometric data against security databases. The whole process typically takes 18 to 24 months, with high hurdles for security clearance.”

In France, President Francois Hollande on Wednesday pledged to welcome in 30,000 Syrian refugees, just days after the country was attacked.

“France will remain a country of freedom,” he said, as French authorities continued to hunt Wednesday for the alleged mastermind and other accomplices—with a raid in northern France that killed fugitive ISIS commando Abdelhamid Abaaoud.

New York-based International Rescue Committee, a humanitarian group tasked with resettling refugees, was forceful in its rebuke of governors who want to close their states’ borders to refugees.

“Refugees are the most security vetted population who come to the United States,” the agency said in a statement Tuesday. “Security screenings are rigorous and involve the Department of Homeland Security, the FBI and the Department of Defense.”

“Banning Syrian refugees will not make America safer; it will make refugees more desperate. Syrian refugees are fleeing violence—including by ISIS—and are seeking safety for themselves and for their families,” continues the statement. “We deplore the insinuation in the recent banning orders against Syrian refugees that either they are terrorists, or that it is impossible to separate them from those seeking to come here to commit terrorism.”

That plea was reiterated by United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres, who, standing Tuesday among the thousands of daily refugees entering Presevo, Serbia, deemed it “absolute nonsense” to blame them for terror attacks, stressing they were instead its “first victims.”

“It is not the refugee outflows that cause terrorism. It is terrorism, tyranny and war that create refugees,” he stressed.

(Featured Photo Credit: Russell Watkins/ UK Department for International Development)

‘Into the Badlands’: Martial Arts Drama with No Punch

By Chuck Cannini

Following Sunday night’s zombie apocalypse as depicted by the latest episode of The Walking Dead, AMC presented badass martial arts mayhem with its season premiere of Into the Badlands.

A lot of strange words with no context were tossed around–Clippers, barons, and the Colts–but swift sidestepping, bone snapping, and karate whooshing distracted the brain and glued the eyes to the screen.

At least for a little while.

Wearing “cool guy” sunglasses and riding a motorcycle in a blood-red trench coat, Sunny (Daniel Wu) hits the trail to brighten nomadic and hostile gangs’ days by snapping their wrists and impaling them with rusted skewers or wielding his ever shiny katana.

Evidently, once upon a time, Sunny was one of the aforementioned Clippers, assassins who “just show up, kill people, and leave.” But beneath all his ink, which records each of his many kills (404 and counting), Sunny is supposedly just a nice guy who made a bad career move. Now he’s about to rewrite his job description, as we shall soon see.


So, for the sake of argument, let us join Sunny and go into the Badlands, this post-apocalyptic world with vast meadows of roses. Early on, after effortlessly wiping out about a dozen dudes without breaking a sweat, Sunny rescues M.K. (Aramis Knight), a teenager he finds trapped in a chest. It turns out that M.K. can unlock a mysterious power of ass-kicking whenever he bleeds, making you ponder the consequences if he ever accidentally nicks himself. And so, on top of motorcycle-riding assassins armed with Japanese Samurai swords, we also have magical teenagers.

The Badlands are also occupied by the sickly Baron Quinn (Marton Csokas, The Lord of the Rings), his eighth wife-to-be (Sarah Bolger), his jealous wife (Orla Brady), Sunny’s pregnant lover (Madelein Mantock), and primitive boys training to become cold, heartless Clippers–and follow in Sunny’s footsteps. Figuring out their names was less concerning than trying to understand why all this cliché drama littered the background of a show loosely based on “Journey to the West,” a 16th century Chinese novel.

It all was so odd yet so familiar…

Apparently, there was something about Sunny’s martial arts skills that piqued the interest of the Baron–who decided to put it to “good” use–and will supposedly keep us enthralled in the journey ahead.

But after Sunny brings M.K. back with him inside the high-walled doors of The Fort, where Baron Quinn runs his adolescent training camp, the drama within turns silly and mundane, and the more obvious it becomes that Into the Badlands is nothing more than an excuse to watch Daniel Wu flex his well-oiled muscles.

And then it hit me. After tons of dull dialogue, the closing shots flashed on-screen with the song, “Lead Me Home,” by Jamie N Commons. The tune turned a knob in my brain, opened a door, and flooded out memories dating back to February 2013.

“Lead Me Home” also concluded an episode of The Walking Dead (“Clear”, season three), when the protagonist Rick Grimes parted ways with an unhinged underling, Morgan Jones, for the second time in the series.

This is another post-apocalyptic world. Humans coping with everyday drama are simply trying to live their lives in an environment that won’t let them. It’s the same formula with a new skin. Even AMC’s promotional commercials of Sunny’s martial arts abilities had shot-by-shot similarities to Walking Dead’s Michonne, Daryl and Morgan’s katana slicing, kicking, and stick wielding against the oncoming zombies. The cable network labeled its Sunday double-bill, “Twice The Fight.”

Was AMC trying to make another Walking Dead out of Into the Badlands? Sure, there were no zombies lumbering through the Badlands’ rose meadows, and the characters were a lot more settled in, but paralleling the two shows explained all the out-of-place drama.

Each commercial break started with these words, “Coming up on Into the Badlands,” leaving viewers hanging with a suspenseful action scene, as though AMC knew the risk that many (myself included) might change the channel if their curiosity weren’t aroused. Almost 20 million viewers tuned in for The Walking Dead’s season six premiere in October, so it’s no surprise that AMC hopes to draw those numbers with the five remaining episodes of its new series before the show enters the real badlands of low ratings.

And that might prove the match for a prized martial arts champion like Sunny no matter how many necks he snaps.

(Photo credit: AMC)

Fans Don Costumes for Long Island ‘Doctor Who’ Convention (Photos)

Long Island Doctor Who Convention

By Joe Nuzzo

The Long Island Doctor Who convention was held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Hauppauge this past weekend. The convention moved to the Hyatt after it outgrew its former home at the Clarion Hotel in Ronkonkoma.

Fans from 45 different states and countries as far as Australia came to Long Island to celebrate their fandom and meet celebrities from the BBC television series. The convention sold out all of its convention rate rooms at the Hyatt and three overflow hotels nearby.

“Hotel cons are something we really enjoy,” Andre Tessier, the LI Who media manager told the Press. “A lot of coming to an event like this is socializing. As the panels wind down at night fans can get together at the bar, share a few drinks, and catch up.”

The success of LI Who outlines the need for a dedicated hotel and convention center here on Long Island, organizers said. Although the new home for this convention, like Doctor Who’s time travel machine the TARDIS, is “bigger on the inside,” the convention still needed the use of an outdoor heated tent for some events.

LI Doctor Who Convention
Long Island Doctor Who Convention (Photo credit: Joe Nuzzo)

“Had I run this convention in 49-and-a-half other states in the union (including upstate NY) I’d have a perfect place to do it” show runner Ken Deep told the Press, “on Long Island which is a major tourist destination, the one thing we don’t have is a proper convention center.”

Over the past year, Long Island has hosted several other notable sci-fi conventions: The LI Geek convention, which was held at MacArthur Airport, and Eternal Con, which was held at The Cradle of Aviation Museum.

“Although these are wonderful places for the atmosphere,” Deep said, “they are not designed for conventions.”

When asked if Deep felt that Long Island misses out on conventions due to a lack of a proper space, he told the Press: “I have no doubt, because I’ve had a lot of challenges trying to make this happen.”

LI Doctor Who Convention
LI Doctor Who Convention (Photo credit: Joe Nuzzo)

Despite these challenges, the LI Who convention was filled with happy fans dressed up in colorful costumes. Celebrities were busy posing for pictures and signing autographs. Vendors were busy selling merchandise and panels ran passed midnight on Saturday.

“When someone travels 24 hours and halfway around the world to be at your convention,” Deep said, “you want to give them a great experience. No pressure!”

From the looks of the happy faces on convention attendees it seems that Deep succeeded.

LI Who 4 is scheduled for Nov. 11 to Nov. 13, 2016 at the Hyatt Regency in Hauppauge. Tickets for LI Who 4 go on sale Monday Nov. 23.

LI Doctor Who Convention
LI Doctor Who Convention (Photo credit: Joe Nuzzo)

Hillary Clinton’s Mixed Record on Wall Street Belies Her Tough ‘Cut it Out’ Talk

Hillary Clinton, the presumptive Democratic nominee in the 2016 race for the White House, was the first woman US Senator in New York History.

By Jeff Gerth ProPublica

This story was co-published with The Daily Beast.

During the Democratic debate last month, Hillary Clinton assured viewers she would be a president at least as tough on Wall Street as her main opponent for the nomination, Sen. Bernie Sanders. She cited her history as “a progressive who likes to gets things done.” Sanders and others, she added, might be “missing the forest for the trees” by aiming at big banks alone and not the more risky shadow banking system.

Clinton also proudly recalled that while serving as U.S. senator from New York she warned bankers early in the financial crisis about their dangerous practices.

“I went to Wall Street in December of 2007 — before the big crash that we had,” Clinton said. “I basically said, ‘Cut it out! Quit foreclosing on homes! Quit engaging in these kinds of speculative behaviors.’ ”

An examination of her remarks to Wall Street in December 2007 and Clinton’s actions as a senator — a period when she had the best opportunity to translate her words into deeds — presents a more mixed picture of her record on the banking industry.

Clinton steered a middle ground in a 28-minute address to business executives gathered at an office of the Nasdaq stock exchange in New York’s Times Square on Dec. 5, 2007. In the event, she presented a detailed analysis of the burgeoning dangers in the housing market and its threat to the economy. (ProPublica obtained a video of the speech, which hasn’t previously been posted.)

Clinton gave a shout-out to her “wonderful donors” in the audience, and asked the bankers to voluntarily suspend foreclosures and freeze interest rates on adjustable subprime mortgages. She praised Wall Street for its role in creating the nation’s wealth, then added that “too many American families are not sharing” in that prosperity.

She said the brewing economic troubles weren’t mainly the fault of banks, “not by a long shot,” but added they needed to shoulder responsibility for their role. While there was plenty of blame to go around for the spate of reckless lending, and while Wall Street may not have created the foreclosure crisis, it “certainly had a hand in making it worse” and “needs to help us solve it.”

Finally, Clinton said, if the banks didn’t take the voluntary steps she proposed, “I will consider legislation to address the problem.”

The lenders did not adopt Clinton’s proposals. During 2007 and 2008, when the housing market collapsed and while she was also running for president, the Democrats controlled the Senate. Of the 140 bills Clinton introduced during that period, five were related to housing finance or foreclosures, according to congressional records. Only one of those five secured any co-sponsors. No Senate committee took action on any of them and they died without any further discussion.

When a broad housing bill finally became law in 2008, Clinton was not among the more than dozen senators credited by party leaders as playing a key role.

Clinton also introduced a bill in 2008 to curb compensation of corporate executives. It too died without any co-sponsors.

In dealing with Wall Street, Clinton faced the same challenge as any lawmaker representing New York, where the financial industry includes not only constituents but campaign donors. Wall Street executives were the largest donors to both her 2006 Senate re-election bid and her 2008 presidential race; employees of just eight banking firms gave $2.67 million to those campaigns, according to data compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics, a non-profit research group.

Clinton in 2007 publicly decried a tax break for hedge-fund and private-equity executives — and continues to do so in her current campaign. But she didn’t sign on as a supporter of a Senate bill that would have curbed the break.

As a senator, Clinton also had a brush with the shadow-banking world that she now describes as a continuing threat to the financial system. When AIG, the giant insurance company and poster child for lightly regulated finance, began to implode in September 2008, Clinton reached out to Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, who was involved in talks to rescue the firm with government funds. Her little-noticed overture came on behalf of some wealthy investors who stood to lose millions and had hired two longtime associates of the Clintons to represent them.

Brian Fallon, a spokesman for the Clinton campaign, declined to comment for this story. The Clinton campaign has issued a fact sheet detailing her record with Wall Street as a senator.

‘Doesn’t Run Amok’

In Iowa last month, Clinton underscored the difference between fiery speeches and results when she told Democrats, “It’s not enough to just rail against Republicans or the billionaires.”

During the debate she had called for stronger regulatory oversight of the financial system and addressed the theme of income inequality that has powered the campaign of Sanders, who identifies himself a democratic socialist. “It’s our job to rein in the excesses of capitalism so it doesn’t run amok and doesn’t cause the kind of inequities that we’re seeing in our economic system,” she said.

Clinton’s campaign referenced her Senate record in the fact sheet issued a few days before the debate titled, “Wall Street Should Work for Main Street.” It cited one bill — the executive compensation legislation that died. It also mentioned four press releases or speeches from 2007 and 2008 — including a March 15, 2007, talk in which she proposed a series of housing initiatives and her call later that year for higher taxes on hedge fund executives.

Clinton had already hit the tax break in her new campaign. In April, during her first official appearance as a presidential candidate, she told students in a classroom for auto technology at an Iowa community college: “There’s something wrong when hedge fund managers pay lower taxes than the nurses or the truckers that I saw on I-80 as I was driving here.”

Her aides then told reporters she was referring to the so-called carried-interest loophole, which taxes compensation earned by private equity partners and hedge fund managers at a lower rate than ordinary earned income.

What they didn’t say was that Clinton never signed onto the bipartisan June 2007 bill that would have curbed the break. Her rival for the nomination, then-Sen. Barack Obama, became a co-sponsor on July 12. The next day Clinton gave a campaign speech criticizing the tax provision. Yet she still didn’t put her name to the legislation, according to records.

During Clinton’s first presidential campaign, her official campaign website gave short shrift to financial or housing matters. In April 2008, the section of the website called “Hillary on the Issues” listed 14 topics; none involved housing, mortgages or Wall Street.

The bills she introduced dealt with some of the issues she raised in her speeches — including one aimed at making it easier for homeowners facing foreclosure to get their loans modified — but none of them advanced, records show. The only co-sponsor who joined any of them was fellow New York Sen. Charles Schumer, who signed onto a bill that would have helped veterans refinance their mortgages. That bill also died in committee without any action taken.

Meanwhile the Senate moved forward on other bills with wider support. They eventually led to a sweeping housing and mortgage law signed by President Bush in July 2008. That legislation was voted on three times in the Senate in 2008, in addition to a few procedural votes related to the bill. Clinton missed votes in February and April, when she was running for president, but also missed votes in late June, after she had dropped out of the contest. On July 26, when the bill passed, Clinton was there to vote in support.

The bill’s main sponsor, Sen. Christopher Dodd, a Connecticut Democrat, summarized the bill’s journey and, in a floor speech, praised 13 other Senators for their help. Clinton’s name wasn’t among them.

‘Closed Door Meetings’

At the debate last month, Clinton said her campaign plan for Wall Street oversight was tougher than the one proposed by Sanders, in part because it would go beyond making sure banks aren’t too big to fail. “We also have to worry about some of the other players — AIG, a big insurance company; Lehman Brothers, an investment bank. There’s this whole area called shadow banking. That’s where the experts tell me the next potential problem could come from,” she said.

Clinton didn’t need an expert to tell her about AIG.

On Sept. 18, 2008, as the government grappled with collapsing markets, Clinton took to the Senate floor. “After years of laissez-faire policies for the middle class, the Bush administration has acted on behalf of Wall Street, with the largest and most significant Federal interventions in the history of our modern financial system,” she said. “The largest banks in the world could have closed-door meetings with the White House and the Federal Reserve and Treasury Department to discuss their bailout options, but millions of homeowners with mortgages worth more than their homes, or who are facing default and foreclosure, don’t have the same opportunity.”

A day before that speech, Clinton had quietly reached out to Paulson, Bush’s Treasury secretary, on behalf of some wealthy investors in AIG. The giant insurer had made bad bets on the mortgage market, couldn’t pay its debts and faced imminent collapse. Shareholders were poised to lose billions if the company went bankrupt or was taken over by the government.

A review of Paulson’s calendars shows that he and Clinton talked on Sept. 17 and 20. In his book about the financial crisis, Paulson mentions just the first conversation, saying that Clinton called on behalf of Mickey Kantor, a lawyer, who represented a group interested in staving off AIG’s imminent collapse. The group’s investment banker, according to news accounts at the time, was Roger Altman. Kantor and Altman are long-time friends of Hillary Clinton and served as senior officials in her husband’s administration. Altman headed a secret energy task force for Clinton when she was in the Senate.

In Paulson’s account of his conversation with Clinton, Kantor represented a group of Middle East investors who were considering a bid for the insurer.

Paulson quoted Clinton as saying the investors hoped to save the government from having to “do anything,” but Paulson said he told her any private solution would have to guarantee AIG’s billions of dollars in liabilities, a huge, if not impossible, hurdle.

But in an interview with ProPublica, Kantor said Paulson didn’t have it quite right in the book. Kantor said he was working on behalf of “major shareholders” in AIG, not Middle East investors. The shareholders he represented owned about 30 percent of AIG’s shares — one of them was Eli Broad, a Los Angeles billionaire, philanthropist and friend of the Clintons. Kantor said he couldn’t remember whether he had sought Clinton’s help but said it was possible given their 40-year friendship. Kantor said he hoped to persuade Treasury his clients could raise enough money to “put the ship in order” but by the time Paulson and Clinton talked the Federal Reserve had concluded a private rescue, at a cost of at least $75 billion, was not feasible.

With its stock in free fall, there was no private solution to AIG. The Treasury and the Fed feared that if AIG defaulted, the ripples might bring down the international banking system.

By Sept. 22, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York was completing a rescue package that gave the government almost 80 percent of the company in return for a loan of $85 billion. As a result, private shareholders, including Kantor’s clients, lost most of the value of their stock holdings. The U.S. eventually earned a profit of almost $23 billion on its investment.

Paulson declined to comment, Altman did not return a phone call and a spokesperson for Broad and his foundation didn’t respond to emails or phone calls.

More Bailouts

The most important action Clinton took related to the financial crisis may have been her vote in favor of the $700 billion bank stabilization plan, essentially a bailout of Wall Street. After a short but tumultuous debate the Senate approved the Bush administration’s plan, known as TARP, on Oct. 1, 2008. Nine Democratic senators, 15 Republicans and one independent (Sanders) voted no.

Clinton told the Senate during the debate:

“For two years, I and others have called for action as wave after wave of defaults and foreclosures crashed against communities and the broader economy.” She called for an end to the “culture of recklessness in our financial markets endorsed by an ideology of indifference in Washington.”

The next day Clinton spoke to a New York City radio host and expanded on her support for TARP.

“I think that the banks of New York and our other financial institutions are probably the biggest winners in this,” she said, “which is one of the reasons why, at the end, despite my serious questions about it, I supported it.”

Related stories: For more coverage of politics and lobbying, read ProPublica’s previous reporting on how Congress explains its absences, the insurance lobby’s pivot to Democrats and an FDA fix that may cure the drug industry more than the patients.

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9 Questions With Jason Lubrano, Singer in Long Island Punk Band Iron Chic

Iron Chic
Jason Lubrano, lead singer of Iron Chic.

By Nicholas Semelak

Musician, lead vocalist and aspiring artist, Jason Lubrano has more than 20 years of involvement in Long Island’s music scene and now this punk rock veteran leads the up-and-coming band Iron Chic. Upon returning from the band’s first Australian tour, Lubrano discussed his involvement and progression of the local music scene, Iron Chic, his side projects and his new endeavors with his artwork.

Long Island Press: Regarding Long Island and its music scene, you’ve been involved for quite some time now and in different projects. The Devil Himself, Small Arms Dealer and now Iron Chic. Has the scene changed since you’ve been involved? What was it like when you first became involved?

Jason Lubrano: In some ways it has and in some ways it hasn’t. There definitely an ebb and flow to things as time goes on with periods where interest and participation are really high and times when it seems like it’s completely dead. I’m sure there’s plenty going on that I’m not even aware of. When I first got involved I was around 15 or 16 and it was a lot of backyard shows, youth council shows at Cedar Beach and VFW halls. The landscape has changed a bit for us, having the opportunity to play bigger venues and being able to tour but I would imagine for a band starting out now it’s fairly similar.

LIP: Obviously there was a big transition for everyone in music due to the “digital revolution.” Did you find this to impact the scene?

JL: I’m no expert but if it did I’d say it probably helped in the sense of people being exposed to music more easily and giving bands more of a level playing field when it comes to getting their music out there.

LIP: Are there any memorable moments of growing up with the Long Island music scene?

JL: The first Long Island punk show I went to was The Warped Weeble-Wobbles at a church in Manhasset. The first show I ever played was in a backyard and I saw Fugazi at the PWAC. I don’t don’t like to use the word blessed but for lack of a better word I feel blessed to have been able to grow up when I did and be a part of punk on Long Island at that time.

LIP: You recently embarked on a tour in Australia. Was this your first time over there? How was the turnout and any culture shock?

JL: This was our first time there, yes. For the most part turnouts were great. There’s always a weird show here or there, which are usually still a lot of fun. We played the Weekender and I Love Life fests with some great bands and some really great crowds. There’s was actually very little culture shock to me aside from the weird animals. Australia felt more like America than it felt like the UK, which I found a little surprising.

LIP: I believe you tour in Europe pretty constantly and get good turnouts for shows there. Does the label help out with that or something else?

JL: Some of the best shows we have ever played have been in Europe. Our friend, Jan, who runs Yo-Yo records in Germany, brings us over, books the shows, drives and tour manages for us.

LIP: If I’m not mistaken, you write the lyrics for Iron Chic, but also get to do some artwork as well. Has Iron Chic allowed you to do more with your art?

JL: I do. The band has definitely given me a platform to share my art and given me an opportunity to do artwork for other bands. I just recently started selling prints and t-shirts of my own designs so hopefully it will help me sell some of those too. righteousindignationli.com

LIP: Do you have any other side projects going on? I’ve seen Go White Bronco and it is really quality material. Anything planned with them?

JL: Gordon [Lafler, Iron Chic’s drummer], Dumps [A.K.A. Mike Bruno, the band’s bassist] and myself have another band called Wax Phantom, which is kind of on again/off again and currently in a state of hibernation. Go White Bronco recorded a few songs pretty recently but it’s unsure what the eventual fate of that will be. For the time being most of my focus is on Iron Chic.

LIP: How was Iron Chic formed?

JL: Phil started playing drums for Small Arms Dealer towards the end of that band. We kind of sensed that things were coming to a close so we got to talking and decided to try and start something new with the intention of trying to eventually become a full time band. We rounded up a few people and things started to fall into place from there. We’ve had a few line up changes since then for various reasons and we’re still not quite a full time band but we’re still working on making that happen.

LIP: Future releases for Iron Chic? Is there anything you guys are trying to do specifically with the band? Why do you think Iron Chic has been so successful?

JL: We are currently working on writing a new full-length record with plans to have it out by spring. Our only real goal, aside from having fun, is to try and make Iron Chic a full-time thing, which we’ve been slowly and steadily working towards. And each tour and record that we release brings us a little closer to that goal. Whatever success we’ve had I’d guess is probably a result of just trying to be as honest as we can. People seem to be able to relate to the way we communicate our experiences and as long as they keep wanting to sing along I’ll be happy.

Review: ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ Tour Uplifts Huntington’s Paramount

Beauty, they say, is in the eye of the beholder—and the same can be said for most forms of art.

Walk into any museum and you’ll inevitably see someone staring at a piece of work quizzically, and ask: “That’s art?” A Broadway show may have left you unimpressed, or, perhaps, a song on the radio was so irritating that you lamented the so-called good ol’ days of music—which could’ve been the ’50s, ’60s, ’70s, or even the ’90s, it depends who you ask.

Dance is no exception, since there’s so many factors at play, potentially giving you sensory overload. Your eyes and ears compete with the music blaring from the speakers and the incredibly athletic dancers on stage. You may love the Cha Cha but aren’t impressed with contemporary dances. You may have an affinity for a particular song but the featured dance doesn’t do it for you, or vice versa. But sometimes, a performance is so good, so mesmerizing, so absolutely shout-out-loud get-up-outta-your-seat superstar outstanding, that all senses bleed into one, blossoming into a singular explosion of sight, sound and touch—yes, you actually feel it with your entire being. It speaks to your heart, whispers to your inner essence, reverberates within the very depths of your soul.

That’s when you know you’ve witnessed something truly special, something truly extraordinary.

Fox’s hit reality TV show So You Think You Can Dance, which has earned 14 Emmy wins and more than 53 nominations in various categories, exploded to life last weekend in Huntington as the top 10 contestants from Season 12 took the stage at The Paramount.

And that feeling—that all-encompassing wave of emotion that only engulfs you at the cusp of witnessing something truly remarkable, magnificent, extraordinary—was omnipresent.

From the fun-fueled solo dances to couple routines and group dances, the 10 dancers from SYTYCD‘s impressive cast did not disappoint. The tour’s Long Island stop had an added buzz, because it was a homecoming for Megan “Megz” Alfonso, who hails from Coram. Throughout the evening, fans screamed “Go Megz!”—which the popular dancer acknowledged by smiling at her adoring fans as she glided poetically across the stage.

The excitement was palpable all evening, as dance fans of all ages—from children and teens to middle-aged adults—enthusiastically cheered for their favorites. Unlike SYTYCD on Fox, this was no competition. It was pure fun, and in some ways, the dancers appeared more comfortable on stage without the pressure of getting booted off the show. They smirked when appropriate and let out triumphant screams to punctuate dynamic moves. And if you think the contestants are impressive on television, it’s an entirely different experience witnessing them live.

The night got off to a strong start with a sprinkling of dramatic group and couple dances interspersed with solo routines. Team Street’s Eddie, also known as “Neptune,” energized the crowd with a powerful solo dance, in which he glided from one end of the stage to the other, all the while gyrating his body like someone was hanging from the rafters controlling his extremities like a puppet.

Megz’s solo didn’t come until after the intermission. The Paramount erupted into cheers as her pre-recorded introduction reported what everyone in the building already knew: She was from “Long Island, New York.”

Team Street may have had people moving in their seats, but Team Stage refused to be upstaged.

Perhaps the most moving dance came after intermission. The collection of dancers performed a moving tribute to the protesters who took part in the March 7, 1965 march from Selma to Montgomery, or as it’s known now: “Bloody Sunday.” Both teams danced to “Glory,” the song recorded by Common and John Legend for last year’s Emmy nominated film Selma, with the Edmund Pettus Bridge, named after a Confederate general, serving as the backdrop.

The crowd was swayed into silence. Despite the generational gap, the dancers somehow managed to channel the sheer anger, outrage, despair, and utter heartbreak flooding the bodies of the civil rights marchers on that bloodstained day in March 1965. Maybe they were channeling the passion of demonstrators who have taken to the streets amid today’s social unrest in America. Or maybe the stories of that fateful day were hard to let go.

There were other memorable moments. But it was Megz, a Team Street contestant, who gave the doting crowed a moment they’ll never forget.

Paired with partner Edson Juarez from Team Stage, Megz, known for her powerful hip-hop dances, performed a captivating contemporary routine that demonstrated both vulnerability and strength, as the pair dazzled the audience with their cadence. The heart-stopping performance proved that labels can be crushed, as a dancer known for her power and swag soared to new heights.

She owned the stage.

The So You Think You Can Dance Tour embodies one of those rare transcendental moments in life, when the human spirit becomes inextricably intertwined with form, beauty, grace, passion, and fury, somehow tethered to mortality yet somehow unleashed across all eternity, crystallizing emotion, and at once, setting it free.

Can’t wait till next season, or the next tour.

Photo credit: So You Think You Can Dance/Fox)

Enjoying the Republicans’ Latest Game Show: Their Fourth Debate in Milwaukee

By Chuck Cannini

Live from the Milwaukee Theater, it’s the fourth GOP presidential debate!

Tuesday night’s prime-time show featured a big cast of characters, even though a few wannabes from the previous episode had been dropped in this ongoing political comedy series (or tragedy, depending on your point of view) due to their low ratings.

On hand for the main event in Wisconsin were Donald Trump, Ben Carson, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, Jeb Bush—it’s okay, catch your breath—Carly Fiorina, John Kasich and Rand Paul. Each of them was individually “WHOOED!” like a celebrity rock star as they were introduced. They were the top draw at 9 p.m. on the Fox Business Network, which sponsored the program with the Wall Street Journal, both with ties to Rupert Murdoch’s media empire. At 7 p.m. the “happy hour” debate had Chris Christie, Bobby Jindal, Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum. But who except the hardcore conservative would want to put in four hours watching all this in one night? Get a life, people!

The debate rules were simple: 90-second answers. If a candidate talked for too long, they were supposed to shut up (but totally didn’t) at the sound of a bing-bing.

“It sounds like a game show, but it’s not,” joked moderator Neil Cavuto, Fox Business Network managing editor, who failed as both a comedian and a persuader.

Two minutes prior, inspirational music had played to dramatic retellings in what may as well have been a “Previously in Wisconsin” clip. In 1859, we learned that the so-called “black president” Abe Lincoln (a Republican, no less) had campaigned in Milwaukee. In 1912, a few blocks away from this debate venue, Teddy Roosevelt (then a Progressive Party candidate, no longer a Republican) had given a 90-minute speech with a bullet lodged in his chest after he’d just been shot outside his hotel by an unemployed saloon keeper. And, of course, no conservatively biased video is complete without a cameo from their true Lord and Savior, Ronald Regan, who praised the Badger State’s Brew City for all its worth.

In short, Neil Cavuto got it wrong. American presidential campaigns have always been a game, whether it’s TR capitalizing on a shooting for sympathy, Reagan sucking up to Milwaukee, or the Fox Business Network using those stories to choke up nostalgic patriots. America loves drama – especially evocative legends of bravery and heroism, even if they all were just an act – and in less than three minutes of this Republican debate, the storyboard was set and the pieces were moving.

Two hours of 90-second-plus monologues wooed viewers with conservative wet dreams. Good America vs. Evil: like illegal immigration, Obamacare, and Putin. Bonus claps were earned if someone badmouthed Hilary Clinton or strategically brownnosed America’s military the night before Veterans Day.

“I know that the world is a safer place when the United States is the strongest military power in the world,” said Marco Rubio.

“We have to make our military bigger, better, stronger than ever before so that nobody messes with us,” echoed Donald Trump.

“We have the strongest military on the face of the planet, and everyone knows it,” copied Carly Fiorina.

They said a whole lot of nothing and something at the same time, and that something was whatever earned them brownie points. After all, who doesn’t love being praised?

The remaining highlights were when the candidates disputed each other, their outraged voices blended together, the commentators attempted (and failed) to control the outburst, and mostly notably, the crowd whooped and booed.

Fox Business Network decided who would attend the debate based on four recent polls, which I’m guessing asked, “Which candidates will get us the highest ratings?”

The debate averaged 13.5 million viewers, which was 13.5 million viewers too many, as far as I’m concerned, but the most audience this cable network reportedly has ever gotten.

But let’s be honest. Following the November 2016 presidential elections in November 2015 indicates a lack of true entertainment in one’s life. Find something else to watch on TV, people.

The Democratic debate will be held this Saturday, Nov. 14, in Des Moines, Iowa. But The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 also opens in theaters this weekend. The fifth GOP debate will be Tuesday, Dec. 15, in Las Vegas. You know, where there are casinos. They’re a better bet if you actually want to win something.

What Long Island’s Current Drought Means for the Future of our Fresh Water Supply

By Rich Murdocco

Water, water everywhere, but not a drop to drink. It is a problem more befit an ancient mariner marooned on a desert island in the middle of a salty sea than a modern Long Islander living in the suburbs, but if our prolonged moderate drought persists, this could be the reality here.

Should policymakers be concerned?

Customarily the Island’s seasons have always been wet, whether it’s the cold November rains, the driving snows of January, or the April showers. As a result, our sole source aquifer under the ground has found plenty of replenishment from the sky. In the past, rain and snowfall have not only kept pace with our ever-growing thirst for fresh water, but precipitation levels actually surpassed the demand.

But past averages are not in synch with current trends.

“The numbers spell out a drought for the calendar year,” says Michael Leona, a professional freelance meteorologist based on LI. “MacArthur Airport is 7.79 inches below normal since January 1. This, combined with other factors like soil moisture content, puts Long Island in a moderate drought according to the Drought Monitor.”

Established in 1999, the U.S. Drought Monitor puts out a weekly map of drought conditions in the country with information obtained by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the National Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska, which oversees it. According to Leona, only “a sliver” of the East End is not put in the current moderate drought category.

Based on research conducted by the Earth Science Educational Resource Center (ESERC) at Stony Brook University, the Island should receive on average around 44 inches of “relatively abundant” rainfall per year. This total is divided to roughly 3 to 4 inches per month, with around 50 percent of the total rainfall returning to the atmosphere through evaporation.

By the year’s end, the ESERC says that the aquifer—the only source of LI’s drinking water—should receive an estimated 1,126 million gallons of water from precipitation, a process known as recharging.

Under normal conditions, Long Island’s freshwater supply has been plentiful. The main threat to our drinking water has always been the overall quality, not the quantity. The impacts of development on the aquifer system are well documented.

Usage and recharge varies by county. In Nassau, 330 million gallons per day (MGD) is recharged into the system, while consumption places a burden of 180 million gallons a day on the system, of which 140 MGD is never returned to the natural cycle thanks to outfall pipes that carry the treated effluent away to the ocean or the Sound. With 90 percent of Nassau using sewers, the largest water consumer is the county’s robust wastewater network. Essentially, when an area has sewers, the fresh water flushed down the toilet is completely lost, throwing off the Island’s natural recharge/consumption balance. With cesspools, wastewater is absorbed into the ground.

In Suffolk, the water figures are monumental in scale compared to those in Nassau – recharge is 990 MGD, while consumption is around 210 MGD, and 95 MGD of that amount is completely lost to the system thanks to the presence of sewers and other natural processes. Unlike Nassau, which loses around 55 percent of its consumed water, Suffolk loses only 10 percent. This loss is due in part to Suffolk’s lack of sewers, but it’s also because Suffolk’s population is relatively the same size of Nassau but is dispersed over a larger area.

These totals are important, because they reflect the balance of LI’s freshwater system—its regional water use and recharge trends—under “normal” conditions. Our current water supply is abundant, but we can’t assume it always will be as plentiful.

Thanks to the expansion of our sewer networks, and the unpredictable nature of our weather, Long Island may become particularly vulnerable to future drought conditions. The challenge our planners face is not only protecting the quality of the drinking water, but the quantity as well.

Given what we know now about climate change, the future of the Island’s water supply should be a top concern of policymakers and agencies responsible for monitoring consumption of this precious resource.

Now is the time to do some smart planning instead of waiting for another rainy day.

As precipitation patterns shift, the assumption that our aquifer will recover from its annual losses no longer holds true. We must assess what is putting unnecessary strains on the supply now and how more water can be saved in the years ahead.

Long Island’s commercial and residential water hogs have been singled out in recent weeks by the news media. According to the Suffolk Water Authority, National Grid’s Northport power plant sits at the top of the list. By using an average of 95 million gallons per year, the aging facility has the dubious distinction as the region’s biggest commercial user of fresh water.

At least the power plant uses the water for the common good. The Island’s largest private residential user of fresh water is the Southampton estate of billionaire David Koch, which topped the list at 20.7 million gallons in 2014. For perspective, the Suffolk County Water Authority says the average rate of consumption per household is 160,000 gallons.

To counteract the environmental threat to our drinking supply posed by the high levels of nitrogen already in our water, Nassau and Suffolk partnered in 2013 to create the Commission for Aquifer Protection. It’s a step in the right direction, but so far no substantive policy solutions have been put forth that have made more than a ripple in curbing nitrogen contamination.

Meanwhile, Suffolk is aggressively pursuing funding for sewer upgrades from both state and federal sources. If the county’s past record is any indication, it will get secure additional financing for upcoming projects in the next decade.

A notable recent success was Suffolk’s placement of new sewers in Wyandanch. Soon it hopes to expand the sewer system in the Carll’s River Watershed in Babylon. Having sewers replace antiquated cess pools and septic tanks would directly benefit coastal areas as well as developments in western Suffolk with more than two dwellings per acre.

But there’s a downside. Years of analysis of Nassau’s water consumption patterns by the U.S. Geological Survey have shown that the county’s aquifer levels are significantly lower because of the sheer quantity of water that its sewers displace in this highly dense suburb.

Suffolk’s current leadership seems adept at finding new sources of funding to expand their capital ambitions in the eventual amount of millions of dollars but Nassau officials can barely get out of their own way. While Suffolk has essentially one unified water authority that covers the vast majority of users, Nassau, just like the multiple villages within each township, has multiple small water providers. This lack of cohesion, a distinctly Long Island problem, will hamper the implementation of any policies to combat a prolonged drought because the solution will have to be regional in scope.

The longer the drought lasts, the greater the urgency will be to curb water use. But a far-reaching concern will be the impact that less precipitation will have on the aquifer system’s viability. Under current conditions, the South Shore near the Queens border and both the North and South Forks are already at risk for increased intrusion of salt water, which refers to ocean water contaminating the freshwater supply underground. Pumping more fresh water from the aquifer would lower the water tables further and make the problem worse.

So far, our drought pales in comparison to the severe water shortage facing California and Idaho, but it would be irresponsible if we did not begin to prepare our region for the possibility of a prolonged period of scarcity.

“Anytime precipitation totals are below normal is a cause for concern,” Leona says. “We have a great farming industry, from apple orchards to wineries, that relies heavily on changeable weather conditions. It should be a concern, especially since it’s been long term.”

The forecast for the rest of this year shouldn’t make us complacent, because the winter outlook prepared by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shows that temperatures and precipitation will be only slightly above normal for December to February.

“This is an indication that the drought will persist through the winter months,” explains Leona.

Based on past droughts, LI could face a hot time next summer, if the current drought continues. In 1995, abnormally dry conditions helped fuel the Sunrise Fires that burned 5,500 acres of Pine Barrens and damaged a dozen homes. That blaze was tamed by 2,200 firefighters who assembled along Sunrise Highway to contain the flames.

Fire is a natural factor in the Pine Barrens ecosystem but the drought exacerbated it. The brittle underbrush spread the conflagration faster over a larger swath of forest than might have been happened in a normal year. A moderate drought in 2012 helped to spark a wildfire in Brookhaven that burned 700 acres of Pine Barrens—and you can still see the charred remains along the Long Island Rail Road tracks.

“Long Island’s semi-subtropical climate can create ‘feast or famine’ conditions at times, so droughts tend to just become a part of local history,” Leona says.

“Long Island gets humid summers, and mild winters, relatively speaking…especially compared to the harsh winters of the Northern Plains,” explains Leona. “Rainfall in the region is consistent all year…We don’t get a rainy season.”

Leona says that on average the Island gets more rain during the summer compared to other months but the seasonal difference is not as significant as in other climates and locales.

“Being an island,” he notes, “we’re susceptible to the nearby climate, plus whatever the ocean waters give us.”

This unique cocktail of factors can contribute to wild weather patterns, which paired with increased sewering activity in Suffolk, will impact our sole source aquifer in ways we may not yet fully understand.

Here’s hoping that these present periods of rainless weather don’t become Long Island’s new normal, potentially threatening the aquifers, which are currently expected to hold enough water to last a few centuries. But complacency is not a policy. Our policymakers, politicians and people should act now, long before our wells run dry.

Rich Murdocco writes about Long Island’s land use and real estate development issues. He received his Master’s in Public Policy at Stony Brook University, where he studied regional planning under Dr. Lee Koppelman, Long Island’s veteran master planner. Murdocco is a regular contributor to the Long Island Press. More of his views can be found on www.TheFoggiestIdea.org or follow him on Twitter @TheFoggiestIdea.

Do This: Long Island Concerts & Events November 12 – 18

Endangered Feces / Help Save The LeGradys
Punk rock warlords Endangered Feces join other seminal hellraisers rocking out at the Help Save The LeGradys Benefit Show at Amityville Music Hall Nov. 15!

[Photo: Punk rock warlords / serial defecators Endangered Feces join other seminal hellraisers rocking out at the Help Save The LeGradys Benefit Show at Amityville Music Hall Nov. 15!]

Robert Earl Keen
“The road goes on forever,” this Texan guitarist sings. “And the party never ends!” finishes thousands of fans, accumulated during his booming ’90s era explosion. That road has been traveled for more than 30 years, its wake filled with countless albums, sold-out theaters, and with no end in sight for the road, or the party. The Space at Westbury, 250 Post Ave., Westbury. thespaceatwestbury.com $25-$35. 8 p.m. November 12.

Skinny Puppy
The Vancouver-born band welds together electro and rock, the combustible combination better known as electro-industrial, to exploit the horrors of chemical warfare and animal testing. Opening the show is Youth Code. The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $25-$50. 8 p.m. November 12.

Eli Young Band
This Texan brotherhood’s country music offering propelled them to a Grammy nomination and an award from the Academy of Country Music for the song of the year. Fun hits such as “Crazy Girl,” “Even If It Breaks Your Heart” and “Drunk Last Night” have been played across 10,000 towns, leaving fans yee-hawing and hollering into the night. Warming up the crowd is Blackjack Billy and Lanco. NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $29.50. 8 p.m. November 12.

Cole Swindel
From Nashville to stardom, this talented country singer wins crowds—old and new—with each new stage he steps onto. Selling himself on his gateway drug song “Chillin’ It,” audiences can see the start of a promising career. With opening act Adam Sanders. The Emporium, 9 Railroad Ave., Patchogue. theemporiumny.com 8 p.m. November 12.

Long Island Gay & Lesbian Film Festival
This film extravaganza is a showcase for the year’s most outstanding, LGBT-themed, feature-length and short, narrative and documentary movies. This year’s event includes 15 features, two shorts programs, live performances, filmmaker Q&As and complimentary, catered receptions. Cinema Arts Centre, 423 Park Ave. Huntington. liglff.org Prices vary. Times vary. November 12-16.

Gold Coast International Film Festival
Films to be screened include the work of Great Neck native, director/producer RJ Cutler, whose latest documentary, Listen To Me Marlon, examines the life of icon Marlon Brando. Also on the docket is We Are Twisted F****** Sister, the never-before-told story of the first 10 grueling years leading up to Twisted Sister’s legendary career. Also among the lineup is Mind/Game: The Unquiet Journey of Chamique Holdsclaw. Various theaters. goldcoastfilmfestival.org Various times through November 15.

Christie Brinkley
This supermodel and author will speak about and sign Timeless Beauty: Over 100 Tips, Secrets, and Shortcuts to Looking Great. Her first book in more than 30 years, Brinkley shares the secrets she’s learned on what to eat, how to apply makeup like a pro, and what to wear to look like a knockout. Take it from her, she has the face and the body of a 30-year-old, and this bona-fide Long Island bombshell just turned 60! That blows us away! Wow! Book Revue. 313 New York Avenue, Huntington. bookrevue.com Price of book. 7 p.m. November 13.

Carlos Mencia
Best known from Comedy Central’s Mind of Mencia (2005-2008), the comedian recently returned to his stand-up roots, indiscriminately discriminating all races and ethnicities, without fear or favor. Getting the laugh riot started is Francisco Duran. The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $24.50- $44.50. 8 p.m. November 13.

The Tenors
Eight years of memories were transformed into eight heartfelt tunes in the band’s latest album, Under One Sky. Powerful pieces such as “My Father’s Son” guarantees an emotional, tear-jerking experience from this multi-platform JUNO-Award winning group. NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $29.50. 8 p.m. November 13.

Adam Ferrara
The stand-up comedian and actor who Entertainment Weekly dubbed “Hilarious” currently hosts the critically acclaimed BBC sensation, Top Gear US, airing on the History Channel. He has also co-starred alongside Kevin James in the hit movie Paul Blart: Mall Cop and in Definitely Maybe with Ryan Reynolds and Isla Fisher. The Brokerage Comedy Club, 2797 Merrick Rd., Bellmore. brokerage.govs.com $25. 8 p.m. November 13.

Chris Barron
The lead singer of the band Spin Doctors is hitting the road solo. Chris plays nifty chords on an old Gibson along his masterfully crafted songs that are poignant yet wistful and funny, all the while singing in a manner that’s sweet and somewhat different from what you would expect if you only knew his hits, “Little Miss Can’t Be Wrong” and “Two Princes.” Also playing will be Marshall Crenshaw. Swing the Teapot, 6 Verbena Ave., Floral Park. swingtheteapot.squarespace.com $30. 9 p.m. November 13.

Long Island Dr. Who Convention
Fans of BBC’s cult classic television series Dr. Who won’t want to miss the third-annual LI Who Con. Expect celebrity meet-and-greets, merchandise and plenty of cosplay. Remember, as the good doctor would say, there’s always something to look at if you open your eyes. Hyatt Regency Long Island, 1717 Motor Pkwy., Hauppauge. longislanddoctorwho.com $19-$95. November 13-15.

Handmade Craft & Vendor Fair 
Paintings, knickknacks, handmade creations of all shapes and sizes will be on full display at this mega-extravaganza of all things unique and extraordinary! Veterans Of Foreign Wars Post 516, 635 Main St., Farmingdale. fdale.net/VFW Free. 12-4:30 p.m. November 14.

Amy Goldman
The author will speak about and sign copies of her new book Heirloom Harvest: Modern Daguerreotypes Of Historic Garden Treasures. The book celebrates antique vegetables and fruit grown in a modern garden by capturing them with a unique photographic technique. Featuring more than 175 extraordinary photographs—the result of a 15-year collaboration between Goldman, a celebrated plant conservationist and heirloom gardener, and Jerry Spagnoli, one of the world’s foremost daguerreotypists—this is a celebration of life, love, and vegetables! Marders Garden Shop, 120 Snake Hollow Rd., Bridgehampton. marders.com 2 p.m. November 14.

Vision of Disorder
For more than a decade these Long Islanders have wreaked chaos through a fearsome and innovative blend of hardcore and metal. Their latest album, The Cursed Remain Cursed, dropped in 2012. Razed to the Ground release show. Supporting acts include Murphy’s Law, Zire’s War and Demon Racer. Revolution Bar & Music Hall, 140 Merrick Rd., Amityville. clubloaded.com/events $20, $22 DOS. 7 p.m. November 14.

Billy Meets The Boss
Two tributes on one stage! Wade Preston leads the official Broadway show band for Movin’ Out, the rockin’ performance based on Billy Joel’s iconic songs. Double the awesomeness with Tramps Like Us, voted the number-one Springsteen Tribute Band in the World by Music and Musicians. These two tributes are guaranteed to equal one night of pure rock n’ roll bliss. NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $39.50. 8 p.m. November 14.

Sinatra Sings Sinatra
Frank Sinatra, Jr. pays homage to his famous father with this unique multimedia performance, sharing recollections of his life, on and off stage, as he performs along with an orchestra. Enjoy video footage of life at home with Ol’ Blue Eyes and the whole Sinatra family. He did it their way. Tilles Center for the Performing Arts, LIU Post, 720 Northern Blvd., Brookville. tillescenter.org $53-$128. 8 p.m. November 14.

Victor Calderone
This Brooklyn native has been a fixture of the New York club scene for more than 20 years. With his risk-taking sets, Calderone abolished all the typical DJ expectations and garnered an international fanbase. He’s remixed hits by Madonna, Sting, Beyonce and Whitney Houston, to name just a few. You won’t want to miss this gifted musician as he scratches up the ones and twos. The Emporium, 9 Railroad Ave., Patchogue. theemporiumny.com Ladies $15, guys $20. 10 p.m. November 14.

Help Save The LeGradys Benefit Show
This is the most important local gig of the year, for a number of reasons, most important being that it could help save the lives of a family in desperate need. The LeGradys—Zoe, Paul, and their two children—are all suffering serious and potentially life-threatening health effects from the insidious and crippling wrath of massive toxic mold exposure. They have mounting medical bills, have had to abandon their home, and are faced with deteriorating health, as they struggle to find a cure and simply get through the next day. They need immediate and significant help and support. So, the punk community Zoe and Paul have been a part of for their entire lives have come together to rally around them, in the hopes to use music and the bonds of rock and roll to raise awareness and much-needed funds. This show features some of the best and most infamous punk bands that ever picked up a shitty guitar, screeched out a few verses through a microphone plugged into an insanely feedbacking bass amp, or hurled rolls of toilet paper at equally rabid big-hearted fans. Among the absolutely amazing, kick-ass bands playing (in some cases reuniting specifically to play this gig): The Devotchkas, The Loiterers, The Clap, Space Robot Scientists, Confuzed, Donald Dick, Endangered Feces & Jones Crusher. Only 225 tickets were available, and the show is most likely completely Sold Out, but that only makes this blurb and listing that much more important. It doesn’t matter if you can actually witness this mega-gig in-person, at all! The show is just one of the vehicles the family and community have launched to harness, amplify and transform sheer fury into something crazy positive! The LeGradys have also set up a GO FUND ME account. If you believe in the healing power of punk rock and the undying hope that exists among such a community of friends, fellow music lovers, and complete, utterly glorious chaotic dissonance, then Visit Their Go Fund Me, and donate Whatever You Can! Every Single Cent Counts! “We are in a state of absolute desperation,” writes Zoe on the family’s Go Fund Me account. “We have many years of nonstop toxic mold exposure that has lead to severe Biotoxin illness and we, my whole family, including my 2 young children on the Autism Spectrum and my furbabies are completely toxic and fungal.” Punk rock fans or not, let’s band together, galvanize music for a greater cause, and HELP SAVE THE LEGRADYS!! Amityville Music Hall, 198 Broadway, Amityville. amityvillemusichall.com $20. 2 p.m. November 15. VISIT THE HELP SAVE THE LEGRADYS GO FUND ME ACCOUNT AND DONATE HERE

The Laurie Berkner Band
Laurie didn’t set out to create a whole new genre of music, but that’s what her “kindie rock” is: less bubble-gummy and more folksy rock that doesn’t get too dumbed down for kids. She’s got nine award-winning albums under her belt and was the first recording artist ever to perform in music videos on Nick Jr. People Magazine appropriately dubbed her “The Queen Of Children’s Music.” Grab the kiddies and the adults, and check out Laurie, Susie, Brady and Bobby as they put on a show for all ages. NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $39.50. 3 p.m. November 15.

Arlo Guthrie
The folk singer Arlo Guthrie celebrates the 50th anniversary of the little littering infraction against the law that inspired the iconic song, “Alice’s Restaurant Massacre,” with a rare performance and multimedia presentation. The tune has become a Thanksgiving holiday anthem to families across the globe, and it all originates from Guthrie’s experience in Massachusetts on Thanksgiving in 1965. Guthrie will perform his most prominent work in its entirety on the Patchogue Theatre stage as well as selections from every full-length studio album he’s released since his debut album in 1967. Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts, 71 East Main St., Patchogue. patchoguetheatre.org $55-$125. 7 p.m. November 15.

Allen Stone
Stone’s unique sound and powerful socially-conscious lyrics shine on his latest drop, Radius. Combining R&B, soul, folk, rock and pop, Stone truly keeps it real with entirely live instrumentation. Describing Radius, he said, “I tried to create something that’s the complete antithesis of what you’d expect from pop music.” It worked and you’ll love it! Opening the show is Bernhoft. The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $20-$49.50. 8 p.m. November 15.

The Noise Presents: Parkway Drive – IRE Tour 2015
This powerhouse event might literally bring down the house. Parkway Drive’s ferocious intensity has kept them at the forefront of heavy metal for the past decade. Once you hear “Vice Grip,” the first single of their new album, IRE, it comes as no surprise. Throw in “Miss May I,” “Thy Art Is Murder” and “In Heart’s Wake” and now this show brings the best that the deathcore and metalcore scenes have to offer. Don’t miss this night of heavenly headbanging! The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $20-$40. 8 p.m. November 16.

Jewish Noir
Hear from the editor and a panel of authors of Jewish Noir: Contemporary Tales of Crime and Other Dark Deeds, a unique new collection of stories by Jewish and non-Jewish writers, including Reed Farrel Coleman, Melanie Dante, Rabbi Adam Fisher, Kenneth Wishnia, Steve Wishnia, and S.A. Solomon. The stories explore such issues as the Holocaust and its long-term effects on subsequent generations, anti-Semitism in the 20th century, and the dark side of the Diaspora. Sachem Public Library, 150 Holbrook Rd., Holbrook. Free. 7 p.m. November 17.

The Robert Cray Band
Singer, guitarist and songwriter, Robert Cray has taken his sound through his 40-year career and molded it into the quintessential blues rock blend that won him five Grammys and induction into the Blues Hall of Fame. Influenced by the gospel songs of his boyhood, as well as soul, R&B, Jimi Hendrix-style rock and bouncy Beatles pop, the Robert Cray Band will have you on your feet with “Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark,” “Smoking Gun” and “Acting This Way.” 4 Nights of 40 Years Live, his latest album, showcases his best with clips of concerts from the ’80s to today. Opening the show is Shemekia Copeland. The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $25-$65. 8 p.m. November 17.

Chase Rice
Ready, set, let’s roll with Chase Rice as his special brand of country ignites the stage and soothes your soul. Not your grandmama’s country singer, Rice blends elements of hip hop, rock, pop and electronic music to bring a refreshingly new dynamic to the classic genre. “Gonna Wanna Tonight” is his second Top 5 country radio hit after “Ready Set Roll” went platinum. This rockin’ show definitely won’t disappoint! Supporting acts include The Cadillac Three and Jordan Davis. The Emporium, 9 Railroad Ave., Patchogue. theemporiumny.com $40. 8 p.m. November 18.

—Compiled by Desiree D’iorio, Chuck Cannini, Timothy Bolger & Zachary B. Tirana III