Crosstown Country All-Stars


CD Release Party!
Saturday, October 22, 2011
Posted by Miss Bly

I ain't talking about the release of my cousin Clarence Don from the big house. I mean the release of the best country music EP this side of the Hackensack River. There are songs about love, longing, loss, and the Deptford Mall. Speaking of shopping, the Crosstown County All-Stars are also helping you get a start on the Christmas shopping season with the newest, latest and greatest country T-shirt ever. It is the blackest black, just like Rodrigo's beard and soft just like KC's twin cities. I got my eye on the ladies version on a black tank top. Match it with a pair of cut off Wranglers and cowboy boots and you're ready for church. They got sizes from "honey, come on and eat something before you blow away in a stiff breeze" to "maybe you should have a diet Mountain Dew with that double cheeseburger." I asked Ace if they had sizes for babies, but alas, no. Cause, you gotta get them critters started early in their love of fine country music.
Where ya been, sweetie pie?
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Posted by Miss Bly

Well, now I know I've been neglecting my duties reporting on the whereabouts of the hardest working country band in Hudson County. But, of course, there is a story behind that. You see, since right about March I found myself in Cairo. Not Cairo, Georgia (home of the fighting Syrupmakers of Cairo High School). No, I found myself in Egypt, covering the Arab Spring uprising in Tahir Square for Country World News. That was where I found this kick ass recipe for Moroccan chicken. Then I was off to Syria to interview protesters in the northwest city of Hama, made some new friends in Sana'a in Yemen,  But I skipped town when things got a bit too close for comfort in Tripoli. I don't know where that Gaddafi fellow is hiding, but I sure hope he finally gets hold of some conditioner in whatever corner of hell he finds himself.

So, that's my story and I'm sticking to it, for now.

I finally caught up with the Crosstown Country All Stars at a place called Hungus Fest, out in the boondocks of New Jersey. There was some hooting and hollaring and carrying on like I haven't seen since my cousin Betty May's wedding to the town taxidermist, although there were fewer dead squirrels. This fella who calls himself Hungus, brews some of the finest beer this side of the Passaic River. Why, I was so taken by the evening that I was inspired to write a poem. I like to call it, "An Ode to Hungus":


There once was a man they called Hungus

At his place, we all caused a ruckus

We savored the beer he brewed

And gobbled down a ton of food

Those who came after dark were luckless
Looking for fun with the Crosstown Country All Stars
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Posted by Miss Bly

It was the day after St. Patrick's day—a day when everybody is Irish, even Rodrigo—but several dedicated country music fans shook off their hangovers to enjoy an evening of musical entertainment at O'Connell's. Ace's strat was back and KC was looking mighty fine. Crosstown Country All Stars shows are so consistently entertaining, that I'm staring to sound like a broken record, which was the only kind of record we had at the Bly double wide. I still think that Walk the Line has 23 choruses.

There was one song of the night that touched Tampa in a special place. No, not that special place, get your mind out of the gutter. This is a country band for decent, respectable folks. Anywho, Tampa has been looking for love in all the wrong places as well. It has been like a decade-long game of "Where's Waldo." He's looked far and wide, at truck stops across this fine land of ours from the Weedpatch Highway Truck Stop in Bakersfield to the Deep Rock Truck Stop in Beloit, WI.  And when that didn't work so well and he was starting to think the neked ladies on the wheel flaps were as good as he was going to get, he started in on the honkey tonks and  watering holes. He even joined a book club in Hickman, NE because thought he might find a sensitive, educated woman over a discussion of Eat, Pray, Love. But alas, my dear friends, love is elusive as affordable health care. What I always say whenever I lose something, like my favorite beer can cozy that says "It's 5 o'clock somewhere,"  you gotta do is look in the last place you saw it, which in Tampa's case was the Whispering Pines bungalows in Spooner, WI. Then she woke up and asked "Well, you said you're a country singer, so when are you gonna play me some Tim McGraw songs."

By the way, if any of ya'll were wondering, KC doesn't have to look for love, it just finds her, no matter how many times she hides.
Darling, I would like an order of country-fried entertainment with a side of biscuits
Thursday, March 3, 2011
Posted by Miss Bly

On Friday at O'Connell's in Jersey City, the Crosstown Country All-Stars delivered a full order of hearty, stick-to-your ribs, country musicb, served with sausage gravy. There were songs about love going right, love going wrong, and the things you use in between, I'm thinking about trucks, drinking, smoking, and firearms. There were a few new song, one about a creepy guy, which unfortunately KC and I know all too much about.

Astute country music fans might notice that Ace is sporting a different guitar. I cornered him by the bar and demanded to know what happened to that old Strat and he told me a tale sad enough to be a country song.

Ace had a gig entertaining folks at an Indian casino in central Minnesota. It was a challenging job to sing above the dinging slot machines, but Ace felt he was up for the job. During his break, looking to make enough for bus fare to the Twin Cities he joined a poker game and started winning so big that the piles of chips reached to his sideburns. But, as often happens, his luck changed and he was down to his $5. He looked at his cards, looked at the skinny fella with bad skin across the table, then looked to the case by his side. He knew he had a good hand, but the question is how good is the other fella's hand? Ace put the case on the table, turned over the cards, and waited. The fella turned over one card, then another, then a third and a sinking feeling filled Ace's belly. The Strat was gone.

Ace climbed on a bus headed for Minneapolis. Feeling forlorned in the Twin Cities, Ace dragged this feet along the streets, until he came across a pawn shop window and saw framed in blinking neon, his trusty Strat. The lovely lady at the counter says that the skinny fella brought in the guitar just a few hours ago; she thought he was looking to score. Ace told his story to the sweet young thing with blue eyes the size of moon pies and brown curls as shiny as pearls. She was touched by his tale of country woe and agreed to give Ace the guitar in trade for a song.
Footprints in the snow lead to the Crosstown Country All Stars
Thursday, January 27, 2011
Posted by Miss Bly

With all the snow we've been getting, these boots are made not just for walking, but also to climb over snowbanks taller than my little cousin Maggie May. Yes, my friend, we find ourselves in a hazy shade of winter. However, it was nice and warm inside O'Connell's on Friday, January 21, as the Crosstown Country All Stars sang songs about the open road, love lost and found (including a mighty fine cow named Elsie), and alcohol, tobacco, and firearms.

Tampa brought along his brother Dave and his friends Anthony Pocetti and Michael G. Ronstadt to sing a few songs to entertain the folks between sets. Michael brought this overgrown fiddle that he calls it a cello, but around here we don't like all those foreign names. But I do say, he really knows how to play that fat fiddle. The trio played some of their original tunes as well the bluegrass favorite Wagon Wheel.

Just as the evening was starting to wind down, the empties were collected and everybody was looking for somebody who has all of their teeth to go home with, the fine and honorable mayor of Jersey City, Mr. Jerramiah T. Healy, stopped by O'Connells to sing Folsom Prison Blues with the CCAS fellas. It's not just any old town where the mayor will step up on the stage to sing Johnny Cash. You see, Jersey City actually is a country town. I know, you don't believe me, you say, "how can any city with a Trump Tower be a country town" but I have proof stronger than Uncle Milo's moonshine. First, many Jersey City-ians can't afford a car, although in the country it is more often the case that they can't afford to keep the car running, so it becomes lawn art. Also, people in JC are rather fond of used clothing (although they call it "vintage") and drinking beer out of cans. Finally, Jersey City folks just love country music!