Concert Series Recalls Summer Nights at Tony Mart
The rock music of the legendary Somers Point club inspires new concerts on the Ocean City Music Pier
Thirty years after the legendary Somers Point nightclub Tony Mart closed its doors, its former owners will present a series of classic rock shows at the Ocean City Music Pier.
The first show is 8 p.m. tonight (Saturday, May 26) and features a tribute to the 1970s rock horn band Chicago performed by The Sounds of Society Band.
Tickets are $20 and available at the Music Pier box office. Doors open at 7 p.m., and the nine-piece band starts at 8 p.m. Before the show, fans are invited to share their favorite Tony Mart stories and receive discounts on Tony Mart T-shirts.
For three decades from the early 1950s to the early 1980s, summer nights at Tony Mart were a rite of passage for young Ocean City residents and visitors. The giant neon sign — "Follow the arrow to Tony Mart" — was the first thing to greet drivers crossing the causeway from Ninth Street to Somers Point. And the two words "Tony Mart" elicit many fond memories for Baby Boomers who have lived 30 years since their carefree summer nights in Somers Point.
"Tony Mart’s will bring this legacy back to the Ocean City beach and Boardwalk with a series of live Saturday night rock 'n' roll concerts recalling those 'Wild Summer Nights' when so many Ocean City visitors headed to the sweaty, pulsating dance floor packed with partiers at the world famous club," said Rich Kohler, who is working with Carmen Marotta, son of Tony Mart's owner Anthony Marotta to produce the new concert series.
On June 23, the “Tony Mart Rock 'n' Roll Reunion Party” will feature hot emerging Jersey Shore rock star Billy Walton from Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes. Walton will perform with his own band. Arthur Migiliazza will open the show with New Orleans sounds of Fats Domino, Professor Longhair and other classics before joining the Billy Walton Band to perform its tribute to Jersey Shore rock artists including Bruce Springsteen and the music of “Eddie and the Cruisers,” the movie filmed in Ocean City and Tony Mart’s 30 years ago.
On August 18, “The Music That Made Tony Mart’s Famous” will showcase a sizzling series of famous songs in an exciting dance party celebration of the stars that played at Tony Mart’s, including Bill Haley and His Comets, Conway Twitty, Duane Eddy, Joey Dee and the Starlighters, Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels, Levon Helm and The Band. In addition to the biggest hits of these artists, the show includes songs from Ray Charles, Cream, Springsteen, Dylan and more of the great sounds celebrated for 38 years at Tony Mart's.
Seating for all the Saturday night shows will be general admission/open seating.
For more information, call the Ocean City Music Pier at 609-525-9248, Tony Mart Presents at 609-653-6069 or email Tonymart@aol.com.
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