Wednesday, August 31, 2011

PHOTOS: Morgan Fairchild, Robert Carridine in Bradenton on set of TV pilot "Workers' Comp'

Morgan Fairchild awaits her scene on set at Pinnacle Business Suites, Bradenton location for the fictional Pinnacle Workers’ Compensation Insurance Company.

Not able to attend debut screening of the Bradenton-filmed TV pilot “Workers’ Comp” at today's sold-out Sarasota County Film and Entertainment Office Film Mixer?

Here are some exclusive photos taken on-set back in April by Leigh Ann Rodgers, courtesy of Dori Sperko, executive producer of "Workers Comp."

Morgan Fairchild guides local Julian Carrizales through his scene
Robert Carradine ("Revenge of the Nerds," "The Big Red One"), who plays out-of-control "Workers’ Comp" defense attorney Kevin Andrew,  chats with stunt coordinator Alan D’Atoni in front of the Sarasota Courthouse
Charley Koontz (NBC’s  "Community") gives suggestions between takes while Jennifer Lee Wiggins ("House") looks on.
"The Sopranos'" David Proval, "Falcon Crest" diva Morgan Fairchild, and "Workers’ Comp" creator/writer Castille Landon on the set preparing for the party scene.  
The pilot episode’s work comp claimant J LaRose ("Saw III" and "Saw IV") hangs with his co-worker, played by local firefighter Justin Sperko.

Realize Bradenton launches Downtown Matters blog


Realize Bradenton, the non-profit organization that attracts people to downtown through creative collaborations, has launched the nifty new blog Downtown Matters.

Executive Director Johnette Isham writes:

Its upbeat promotions and community events create “More Buzz, More People, More Prosperity” for downtown Bradenton.

The Downtown Matters blog is big, bold, and fun!  Easy to read and navigate, it contains lots of visuals, and ideas – ranging from local perspectives and history to other cities’ factoids and best practices. Guest bloggers include citizens, leaders, artists, historians, and high school and college students.

Downtown Matters explores how arts, culture, and history promote economic development and citizen dialog. Updates include Bradenton’s $6.2 Riverwalk and Art Connects postings from high school and college students who studied their city’s history and reflected on the future of the community using words, paintings, & computer graphics.  This three-year innovative project is funded by the Knight Fund of the Manatee Community Foundation.

To receive the Downtown Matters blog visit www.DowntownMattersBlog.com and click on "Email Subscription" in upper right.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

UPDATED 9/1: Bradenton-filmed Morgan Fairchild TV pilot 'Workers' Comp' to have sold-out debut screening

UPDATED 9/1: "Bradenton-shot TV pilot starring Morgan Fairchild elicits laughs at packed debut screening"

PHOTO PROVIDED BY VADAR PRODUCTIONS Morgan Fairchild, left, being filmed in a scene with Castille Landon on the Bradenton set of television show pilot “Workers’

The screening of the first television pilot ever shot in Manatee County reached capacity way in advance of its Wednesday premiere.

A fortunate 140 people will get to see the half-hour comedy “Workers’ Comp,” starring Morgan Fairchild and Robert Carradine, at the Holiday Inn by the Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport as part of a Sarasota County Film and Entertainment Office Film Mixer.

“Workers’ Comp” was shot in April, mostly at Pinnacle Plaza on Sixth Avenue in downtown Bradenton. Scenes were also filmed in Palmetto and Sarasota. I spent a wonderful day on set with Fairchild, Carradine and rest of crew.

Together with her mother, Virginia Dorris, Dori Sperko built the Bradenton-based professional services company NELCO to more than 14,000 employees in 44 states, before selling the business in 2008. During that time, Sperko oversaw more than 8,000 workers’ compensation claims, providing the idea for co-writers Castille Landon (Sperko’s daughter) and Harrison Sanborn’s series.

PAUL VIDELA/pvidela@bradenton.com 'Workers' Comp' Executive Producer Dori Sperko inside the unassuming Bradenton office complex where part of the filming for the series pilot took place.

"We are thrilled," Sperko said today from her downtown Bradenton office. "It's actually over-sold and we're trying to negotiate a way to accommodate everybody. So, although we're sad not everyone who wanted to see will be able to we are excited to hear there is so much interest." 

In addition to writing, Landon also co-stars as Fairchild’s character’s daughter.

After the screening, Sperko, Landon and Harrison will participate in an audience Q&A session.

I will be attending event for story about the show, crowd reaction, etc. I'll link to it here or find it at the home site, www.bradenton.com, starting around 1 a.m. Thursday.

The version of "Workers' Comp" being screened is “cable television content -- Rated TV-M for profanity.”

Sold out. Unable to accommodate walk-ins.

Information on the 5:30-7:30 p.m. Aug. 31 event: (941) 309-1200 ext. 104 or www.filmsarasota.com.

Official site for "Workers' Comp."


Bradenton band Have Gun, Will Travel announces nat'l tour, release date for new album

Have Gun, Will Travel from left, Scott Anderson, Matt Burke, Danny Burke and J.P. Beaubien.

This just in from Matt Burke (interviewed here), leader of Bradenton-based alt-country luminaries Have Gun, Will Travel:

Well, it's official. Our upcoming full-length album "Mergers & Acquisitions" will be released in CD, vinyl and digital formats on Suburban Home Records. The official release date is November 1st, but we'll be doing some regional record release shows in October. And just between you and me, we'll probably have some copies with us on our upcoming US tour with Micah Schnabel (of Two Cow Garage).

Here are the dates...

9/09 - Denver, CO @ Three Kings (Suburban Home Records Anniversary)
9/10 - Denver, CO @ Three Kings (Suburban Home Records Anniversary)
9/12 - Colorado Springs, CO @ The Triple Nickel
9/13 - TBA
9/14 - St Louis, MO @ The Old Rock House
9/15 - Normal, IL @ Firehouse Pizza & Pub
9/16 - Flint, MI @ Woobie's Bar
9/17 - Cincinnati, OH @ MOTR Pub
9/18 - Columbus, OH - Venue TBA
9/20 - Buffalo, NY @ DBGB
9/21 - TBA
9/22 - Kingston, NY @ The Basement
9/23 - Boston, MA @ PA's Lounge
9/24 - Providence, RI
9/25 - New York, NY
9/26 - Brooklyn, NY - Venue TBA
9/27 - Richmond, VA - Venue TBA
9/28 - Raleigh, NC @ Slim's
9/29 - Athens, GA @ Little Kings
9/30 - Kennesaw, GA @ Sidelines

TBA or "Venue TBA" indicates that the date is currently unconfirmed. If you can help out with any of these dates please get in touch.

CD Release Shows...

10/20 - Gainesville, FL @ Double Down Live with SNAKEHEALERS and HYMN FOR HER
10/21 - Tampa, FL @ Skipper's Smokehouse with SNAKEHEALERS and HYMN FOR HER
10/22 - Bradenton, FL @ Ace's Lounge with SNAKEHEALERS and HYMN FOR HER


Monday, August 29, 2011

TODAY: Ben Prestage in Bradenton at Aces Live for Damon Fowler's Sugar Shack Mondays


One-man-band Ben Prestage brings back his singular stylings -- he was superb in February, here's the footage -- to Damon Fowler's "Sugar Shack Mondays."

Prestage and the arsenal of weapons he learned to play while busking on Beale Street in Memphis not only make for great listening but interesting viewing. From his bio:
"I started playing drums with my feet as an attention grabber but soon found out that the drums played with foot pedals actually enhanced my music dramatically," Prestage said.

"Not only were people listening and buyin' discs, they were now dancing and hollerin' to boot.

"Now I am to the point where, if you close your eyes, you would think there was a professional drummer with a full-size drum-kit behind me," he continued.

Prestage recently self-released the album "One Crow Murder." It's reviewed in the current issue of Blues Revue magazine (page 45):
True, the "one man band" may be an anachronism in this day of screaming, Stevie Ray Vaughan-styled blues-rock guitars, but Ben Prestage pulls it off with talent, intelligence and a poetic ear for story telling. "One Crow Murder" is thinking man (and woman's) acoustic blues, Prestage bringing country blues into the modern era with a style that owes as much to Tom Waits as it does to Robert Johnson.

Damon Fowler's "Sugar Shack Mondays"
Showcasing the best in touring talent
8:30 p.m. Mon., Aug. 29 with special guest:
Ben Prestage
No cover

Click to watch at 8:30 p.m. today (Aug. 29) for performance and then my interview with Prestage between sets.

Watch live streaming video from sugarshackmonday at livestream.com
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Friday, August 26, 2011

Old Main Pub celebrates 20th anniversary with weekend-long party

Sharla "Shar" Gregrich (front; black shirt) parties with patrons at Old Main Pub.

An iconic downtown Bradenton drinking destination frequented by students, professionals, factory workers, retirees and everyone in between, the Old Main Pub celebrates its 20th anniversary this weekend.

The kick-off "Back to the '80s" party starts at 9 p.m. Saturday Aug. 27 and the official celebration begins at noon Sunday, Aug. 28 and continues until close Monday, Aug. 29, with an obligatory break between 2:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. There will be prizes, games and 20 percent off total bar tab.

Chief bartender Sharla "Shar" Gregrich, who has served me countless cocktails, especially during my 2004-06 Bradenton run, sent this message that does a great job of summing up the oldest pub on Old Main Street's rich legacy.

Thanks to the nearby courthouse we have been one of the first stops to share the best and worst of times: marriage, divorce, court cases won, court cases lost, etc.  When we did the remodel we found layers of wallpaper reflecting the trends through the decades and many patrons can recall the shag carpet on the walls of the 1960s and early '70s (when the pub was under its previous ownership).  We've come a long way since then.   We now have two new spacious bathrooms, three new dart boards, two pool tables, a bowling game and 10 televisions equipped with Dish Network.  We have over 100 different vodkas and 15 beers on tap.   We are looking forward to working in conjunction with the Downtown Development on enhancing  and preserving the facade of one of Bradenton's most charming and oldest landmarks.  

313 Old Main St., Bradenton
(941) 748-7795

Thursday, August 25, 2011

UPDATED 9/21: Lucinda Williams headed to St. Pete; Watch her first music video ever

UPDATED 9/21: Just spent 45 minutes on the phone with Lucinda Williams, who was chilling at her home in Los Angeles.

We talked about her song inspired by Amy Winehouse, her contribution to new Hank Williams Sr. tribute album, the time Bob Dylan kissed her and much more.

Look for lengthy feature to advance her Jannus show  — and yes she fondly recalls playing there a decade ago (see below).

Like when interviewing Kris Kristofferson in May, I was in total fan mode. Lucinda knew it and couldn't have been sweeter.

Lucinda Williams 2011 publicity photo courtesy of All Eyes Media.

Alt-country queen Lucinda Williams has a date at Jannus Live in downtown St. Petersburg on Oct. 19.

The temperature will have finally dropped by then and I'm looking forward to a wonderful evening under the stars with one of my all-time favorite singer/songwriters.

My first Williams concert experience was at Jannus Landing about a decade ago. Special night. I wrote a blurb about it for St. Petersburg Times when it looked like the venue was going under a couple years ago:
Lucinda Williams Oct. 30, 2001
Around the height of her popularity, Williams turned in a spellbinding performance on a cool, gorgeous evening, cranking out heartfelt songs from her epic Car Wheels on a Gravel Road and its followup, Essence. The fans were as rapt as a group in church.

Hard to believe, but I recently received a publicity release that reads: "'Copenhagen' - Lucinda's first ever music video." Here it is, a most poignant song set to moving, cartoon imagery, off her excellent new album "Blessed."




Click for ticket info.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Mos Def and Talib Kwali headed to Straz in Tampa


Expert emcees Mos Def and Talib Kweli released the landmark hip-hop album “Mos Def & Talib Kweli are Black Star” on Aug. 26, 1998, to critical acclaim. More than a dozen years later, the reunited Black Star pair is hitting the road performing that iconic debut album live in full, as well as their individual hits.

Mos Def is probably best known in the rap world as a solo artist for late 1990s/early 200 hits “Body Rock,” “Definition” and “Oh No.” He’s also famous for movie roles in “The Italian Job,” “Cadillac Records” and appearances on the TV series “Dexter.”

Kweli hit No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot Rap Singles chart in 2000 with “Move Something” and then just missed the top spot the following year with “Get By.”

Details: 7:30 p.m. Oct. 2, Carol Morsani Hall at Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N. MacInnes Place, Tampa. Tickets start at $36.50 and go sale a noon Aug. 26. Information: (800) 955-1045 or www.strazcenter.org.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

UPDATED 8/23 with Video:Q&A: Guitar great Junior Watson talks blues and more before his apperance at Damon Fowler's Sugar Shack Monday

UPDATED 8/23:

Junior Watson performance




My interview with Watson and his good pal, noted producer/guitarist Scott Cable.


Watch live streaming video from sugarshackmonday at livestream.com


Damon Fowler Group with special guests Junior Watson, Doug Demming and Scott Cable.


Watch live streaming video from sugarshackmonday at livestream.com



Junior Watson performing May, 2011. Photo by Bobbi Goodman

This week's super special edition of Damon Fowler's Sugar Shack Mondays at Aces Live in Bradenton features West Coast guitar master Junior Watson.

The Orange County resident has played with everybody from Big Mama Thornton and Jimmy Rogers to Charlie Musselwhite and Kim Wilson. Watson also spent a decade each with the Mighty Flyers and then Canned Heat before embarking on a solo career.

Watson will be singing and playing myriad guitar styles Monday with backing from the rhythm section of local standout/national touring act Doug Demming and the Jewel Tones. Blind Pig recording artist Damon Fowler will also be present. So, yeah, expect a monster evening of music: This is a don't-you-dare-miss-it event for blues enthusiast.

Watson arrived in the Bradenton area around noon today and I just got off the phone with him. Here's the Q&A with the the 60-year-old guitar hero.

Tatangelo: You seem to have an encyclopedic knowledge of the blues, jazz, swing and jump. What prompted you to start learning these many styles of roots music?

Watson: What made me wanna seek it out at first was playing with  Rod Piazza (The Mighty Flyers). We were only doing Little Walter stuff and I thought how am I going to solo over these shuffles? Then found (jazz greats) Tiny Grimes and Bill Jennings and that opened up a whole other ball of worms. It was a lot of cramming real quick and buying old records.


You always look like you’re having a good time when you play, especially when you’ll do something like put the guitar under your leg to play a lick. How important is it to have a sense of humor on stage?

My mom, a singer, said it best, "Most people hear with their eyes." And it really is true. When you’re having a good time it's infectious to the audience. I have so much joy in me when I play and I just want to share it.

You’ve played and recorded with the best blues harp players in the businesses from Charlie Musselwhite and Rod Piazza to Kim Wilson. What do you think it is about your style makes you such a great fit for a harmonica player?

The difference between the average blues guitar player and me is I learned to rhythm before lead. I learned the chord first. That really teaches you how to compliment others and solo.

You’ve played with legends such as Big Mama Thornton and Jimmy Rogers. Have you ever been star struck?

Absolutely. Almost every time. Especially as a kid. When I recorded with Jimmy Roger it was the most relaxed. Sessions used to be scary for me. You're trying to do your best but in most studios there's not much atmosphere. But with Jimmy Rogers he was drinking and telling stories. He was so calm it put everybody at ease. By the end of the session he had a pretty good buzz and said you’re playing “Slick Chick” and we did and he said, "That’s great. Better than the original."

What was it like working with R&B great Nappy Brown and our mutual friend, producer Scott Cable, on Brown’s excellent, final 2007 album “Long Time Coming?” 

It was fantastic just being there watching him. Nappy Brown was the one of the greatest singers ever.

You spent a decade each with the Mighty Flyers and Canned Heat. At what point did you feel comfortable stepping out and being a frontman?

Oh s--t. I did it out of necessity to get gigs. And I was tired of working with harmonica players (laughs). I think I've heard every lick they play.


You’ve only put out two solo albums: 1994’s “Long Overdue” and 2002’s “If I Had a Genie.” Both were well received. Do you have plans for a new release in near future?

I have 28 songs recorded and several are originals. I plan on getting the first one out pretty quick (on a label). The second two after that I'm putting out myself. Dick Dale has this great thing on YouTube where he goes, "F--k a record company. My record company is the trunk of my car. Come see me after the gig."

On your website, the bio reads “Junior Watson has reached cult status.” Are you comfortable with that term?

That’s the way the real blues always has been: an underground situation. One of the reasons I like the blues is because it's not mainstream, it's not on the radio. You had to go out of your way to find it.

You’ve already played with some of the best in the biz. If you could jam with one player that you've never performed with before, who would it be?

God, that’s tough. That might be the toughest question I've ever been asked. I like to work with all of them! It's always a pleasure working with new guys because you always learn something.

See you at Aces Live Monday or watch online. Both options free!

Damon Fowler's Sugar Shack Mondays
Showcasing the best in touring talent
8:30 p.m. Mon., August 22 with very special guest:
Junior Watson
No cover

Click to watch the performances, as well as my between sets interview with Watson, his collaborator/pal Scott Cable and Fowler.
8:30 p.m. Monday, August 22


Watch live streaming video from sugarshackmonday at livestream.com
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Monday, August 15, 2011

Exclusive Interview: ‘Hell’ of a shocker for Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich

Jamie Gregorich/Fox.com
The biggest shock of the season on “Hell’s Kitchen” rocked Manatee County and viewers across the country Monday.

Bradenton resident and fan favorite Jamie Gregorich was eliminated.

“My mom was crying because I was crying on TV,” Jamie told the Herald from her parent’s home in West Bradenton shortly after the episode aired. “I was on the verge of tears, but more than that I had a headache because I knew it was coming.”

In a startling move, chef/host Gordon Ramsay decided that the two contestants up for elimination, Carrie and Elise, should stay and called out Jamie, a 25-year-old sous chef at Longboat Key eatery Euphemia Haye.

"It's not a good feeling. It hurts ... deep," she said in a teary confessional.
Colin Wilson, manager at Euphemia Haye, learned Jamie had been eliminated when the Herald called the resturant.

“It’s been so exciting having her be a part of the show,” he said. It has been a big boost for the restaurant and just an exciting time for everyone involved. Lots of people have been coming in asking about Jamie. Everything having to do with Jamie and the show has been positive.”

One of Jamie’s main mentors, Euphemia Haye Chef du cuisine Mark Keckstein texted: “Jamie showed a great deal of integrity and passion for our art and made us all better professionals.”

Raymond Arpke, Euphemia Haye’s owner and executive chef, called Jamie shortly before the Herald spoke with her. The winner of the show receives a $250,000 salary as head chef of the prestigious BLT Steak in New York City.

“I know my chef Mark is proud of me and Chef Ray called from Wisconsin to say he’s super proud and that I should have gone further,” Jamie said — then laughed. “But Chef Ray also said also glad that I’m still at restaurant and loves me.”

Facebook and Twitter were teeming with sympathetic messages about Jmaie within minutes of the on-air moment.

Even Jamie’s rival Elise reached out.

“It shouldn't have been you!” she wrote on the on the wall of Jamie’s personal Facebook page.
Another fellow Red Team member and remaining contestant responded to the Herald directly.

“Saddest day in the house,” Jennifer Normant messaged. “Lost a great friend and huge competitor.”
Jamie had about a half-hour to soak up all the feedback pouring in nationwide before talking to the Herald.

“It gives me goose-bumps to know I made such an impact in the time I was on the show and to know I have a true friend in Jennifer,” Jamie said. “It’s also nice to see the other contestants as shocked as my family was. They know I’m a good chef.”

Jamie added, “I’m still in shock now even though I’ve known for three months that it happened.”

Jamie Gregorich/Fox.com.
The episode started out good with Jamie's Red Team winning the sexy dessert challenge. The team was rewarded with an overnight trip to Las Vegas, complete with a five-bedroom villa, butler service and a visit from Playboy bunny/Hugh Hefner ex Holly Madison. She announced that they all had won a three day/two night return trip with a guest. It's the best reward for a challenge yet.

Dinner service was themed "Date Night" and at the end Ramsay said he would divorce all of them if he could. The Blue Team had problems with tattoed Tommy and his inability to cook seafood, but other than that they were able to finish service.

The Red Team had several problems with dinner service. The worst of which was probably "the hair in the garnish" incident. Jamie was preparing the garnishes and Ramsay called her out because there was a "disgusting, greasy black hair" on the plate. "Is that your hair?" he asked Jamie. After a bit of argument she fessed up and said "I guess it must be mine."

She seemed upset by the incident because she then had trouble on the zuchini side dishes and Ramsay made her taste a burned one she had made. After that though she sucked it up and finished getting the dishes out.

She wasn't the only Red Team member to have a bad night. Both Carrie and Elise got kicked out of the kitchen. Carrie for trying to serve burnt, greasy fish and Elise for her general bad additude, overcooking the oysters and serving vegetarian capellini with lobster. (Does anyone else think it's strange that they serve a large plate of pasta for an appetizer?)

The Blue Team won dinner service and the Red Team was asked to nominate two team members to go up for elimination. After several arguments, the disruptive duo of Carrie and Elise were voted in.

At elimination, Chef Ramsay asked each chef to expalin why they deserved to be there. They each pleaded their case and Ramsay said "both of you" and they both started walking towards him. "Both of you ... back in line!" They were shocked. We were shocked.

"Jamie, you're out of here."

Ramsay told the rest of the contestants that Jamie was in over her head and instead of getting better each week, she got worse.

"Walking out of there without a chef's jacket was one of the hardest things I've ever had to do," Jamie said.

Well don't worry Jamie, Bradenton is still proud of you.

The winner of the reality cooking show will get a $250,000 salary as head chef of the prestigious BLT Steak in New York City.

"Hell's Kitchen" airs 8 p.m. Mondays on Fox.

--post by Jana Morreale, features/day editor, and Wade Tatangelo, features writer/columnist

Carrie, Jamie and Amanda prepare for a dinner service. Fox publicity photo.

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich wows Wolfgang Puck on 'Hell's Kitchen' "

Buzz Worthy: "Jamie Gregorich up for elimination in Hell's Kitchen"

Buzz Worthy: "Jamie Gregorich continues to play it cool on 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "Ill communication in Hell's Kitchen; Gregorich safe again"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton's Jamie Gregorich takes home trophy on tonight's 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "What will the wrathful Ramsay do to Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich tonight on 'Hell's Kitchen'?"

Buzz Worthy:"Jamie Gregorich survives another night in 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Bradenton Herald front page story that ran Sunday, July 24: "‘Hell’s Kitchen’ contestant talks about surviving debut show, returning to Euphemia Haye,"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich still standing the heat in 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich on 'Hell's Kitchen' part 2 of the season premiere"

Buzz Worthy: "Jamie Gregorich survives first night on 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich on 'Hell's Kitchen' season debut"

Bradenton Herald: "Bradenton chef heats up ‘Hell’s Kitchen’"

WATCH previous episodes of "Hell's Kitchen."

Jamie Gregorich page on Fox.com.


Thursday, August 11, 2011

Q&A: Guitar great Dan Toler of Allman Brothers Band fame

Dan Toler  honoring his brother on June 25, 2011. By Wade Tatangelo

Dan Toler is on the cover of the Bradenton Herald's Weekend section today. Here's the interview I did with the guitar great who has been a member of the Allman Brothers Band, Gregg Allman Band and Dickey Betts' Great Southern Group, just to name a few.

Toler is battling ALS, aka Lou Gehrig's Disease.

Please see him perform -- with many star guests -- at the benefit for him Saturday at Aces Live in Bradenton.

When I watched you at the private memorial for your brother at Mossman Barn you appeared in pain much of day. But as soon as you sat down and started playing guitar -- as beautifully as when I first heard you with Betts & Great Southern about a decade ago – your face beamed with joy. What happens when you step on stage?

Toler: Being able to play for people is something I take great pride in and I try to think of it as being the last time I will ever play therefore pouring my heart out all over the stage and trying to get inside each persons heart to let them know I understand them and love them and without them music would not be the thrill it is and the emotion it expresses. Also I could feel the presence of my brother David all around me. It was an interesting night and when I sat down all the pain left and I felt great joy to "turn it up and let it eat."

What do you have to say to others suffering from ALS?

This is all knew to me and scary at the same time. I do not know how long I have and actually none of us do but I would say my chances are slim. Right now I still have good use of my arms and hands and hopefully will have for a few years if lucky. To anyone else having this disease, May God bless you and continue to bless you and trust in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and put all this in His hands as H has control anyway and He has the ultimate plan for us all.

How does it feel to see the outpouring of support the community has shown in organizing this benefit, which already looks to be filled to capacity?

I am so blessed to have the friends I have and to have the family I have and everyone has shown so much love and caring it is so beautiful. I have tried all my life to never burn bridges and I am so grateful to all of you family, friends and fans that care about me I am so blown away and God bless each and every one of you, thank you. This will be a "killer" show I promise.

How does it feel to know that Tony Tyler considers you a hero, brother and a great honor to be in your band?

He is a good guy and he cares about people and I love him like he was my own son. I`m proud of his musical abilities and I have hi hopes for my lil' l brother to make it in this wacky business we call the music business. I too am proud to share the stage with Tony.

What would else you like to add?

Never lose sight of the Lord Jesus Christ. Follow your heart and your dreams, be good to each other. Love your neighbor and be good to him and keep your head on straight as there are too many crazy things happening in todays world. Know that us guys on stage at any show concert or backyard love playing to anyone who will listen. God Bless.

Click for info on Dan Toler Benefit Aug. 13 at Aces Live in Bradenton.

"Dangerous" Dan Toler rocking "Whipping Post" 
while member of Allman Brothers Band in 1980

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Orlando Calling: Greatest Florida music fest ever?

Jack White (far left) and his rock band The Raconteurs. Publicity photo.

Is Orlando Calling the greatest, most eclectic, big name, Sunshine State music fest ever?

Top alt-country, hip-hop, blues, modern and classic rock acts....

My vote is yes.

Here's the lineup playing the Florida Citrus Bowl Stadium Nov. 12-13:

Sat. Nov. 12

The Killers
Pixies
The Avett Brothers
The Roots
The Raconteurs
Gogol Bordello
O.A.R.
Iron and Wine
Pete Yorn
Gavin DeGraw
Jenny and Johnny
Drive By Truckers
Civil Twilight
Lucero
Dr. Dog
Justin Townes Earle
Felice Brothers
Ben Sollee
Renee & The Translators

Sun. Nov. 13

Bob Seger &The Silver Bullet Band
Kid Rock
Doobie Brothers
Dwight Yoakam
Buddy Guy
Warren Haynes Band
Chris Isaak
Brandi Carlile
Robert Randolph & The Family Band
Michelle Branch
The Flatlanders
Los Lonely Boys
Blues Traveler
Justin Townes Earle
The David Mayfield Parade
The Supervillains


Tickets are on sale at http://www.orlandocalling.com or by calling Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000.

Purchased before Sept. 1:
Single Day Tickets
$80 – Stage One Field Access and Reserved Seating options
$165 – VIP

2-Day Weekend Tickets:
$145 – Stage One Field Access and Reserved Seating options
$285 -- VIP

The Raconteurs cover the Sonny Bono-penned Cher/Nancy Sinatra hit 
"Bang, Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)"

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich wows Wolfgang Puck on 'Hell's Kitchen'

TIFFANY TOMPKINS-CONDIE /ttompkins@bradenton.com Bradenton resident and “Hell’s Kitchen” contestant Jamie Gregorich holds her signature dish, lollipop lamb chops, at Euphemia Haye.

Jamie Gregorich did her hometown proud again tonight on "Hell's Kitchen."

Monday on the reality cooking competition the 25-year-old Bradenton resident Jamie Gregorich earned the nickname "Hercules" for carrying two big bags of ice like they were pair of tomatoes.

The sous chef at Longboat Key eatery Euphemia Haye also came close Monday to being kicked off thanks to the evil Elise, who nominated Jamie for elimination.


In the confessional, the Manatee County native was close to tears.

"I just can't deal with her anymore," Jamie said of Elise.

During the elimination, the show's sadistic celebrity chef/host Gordon Ramsay asked Jamie why she thought she should stay.

"Chef, I have a lot of fight in me," she answered.

Ramsay sent Krupa home.

But in a surprising twist, the unpredictable host said, "We're not done yet."

And the show ended.

Tonight's episode started with Ramsay asking each team — women are Red; boys are Blue with help from Natalie — to choose a leader.

Our class of 2004 Manatee High School graduate and Manatee Technical Institute alumni/instructor remained pretty quiet during the process while Carrie and Elise fought for the umpteenth time.

Level-headed Jennifer, my second fave to Jamie, prevailed as the leader.

The Blue Team nominated large-and-in-charge Will.

Chef Ramsay gathered the teams and asked each leader who was the weakest leader.

Jennifer smartly chose Carrie.

Will went with heavily  tattooed Tommy.

In typical "Hell's Kitchen" twist fashion, the weaklings were to lead their respective teams during the programs challenge of creating five American comfort food classics.

Believe it or not, Elise had a problem with Carrie’s game plan.

Jaw-dropping silence ensued, though, when in walked Wolfgang Puck to judge the dishes.
Jamie Gregorich/Fox.com.

Up first?

Jamie!

Her burger versus Tommy's.

“To me it's a little overdone but good flavor," Puck said to Jamie. "It’s not bad.”

Jamie confessional: “That's probably one of the best compliments I ever gotten.”

Tommy's burger couldn't compete with the one rooted in the rich burger tradition of Bradenton.

Jamie wins!

Paving the way for a Red Team victory.

And a cruise down Sunset Strip to catch a performance by gifted Kira Soltanovich at the Laugh Factory.

"I get to be a pretty girl today," gushed Jamie before Red Team's big night out in Hollywood

Ramsay joke and cut to shot of Jamie dressed up and beaming.

Meanwhile, the Blue Team cleaned and prepped both kitchens and was told to make the dorms spotless before Ramsay barked “piss off.”

Red Team returned to nifty gift baskets of cookware

Jonathan acted like big baby over stiff neck before time for all-important dinner service for specials guests of the U.S. Coast Guard.

“We have really solid cooks on our team with the exception of Carrie,” Jamie said during a confessional.

Carrie then burned some garlic, ruined an appetizer and got ripped by Ramsay.

“Carrie was struggling so I tried to help where I could,” Jamies said in another confessional. “That’s what you have to do with weaker people.”

Ramsay then blasted the Blue Team for bad pasta while Jonathan whines.

Ramsay takes Jonathan in a closet: "Have you given up?" And then the chef reminded Jonathan and viewers about past winner who overcame busted arm.

“Everything is working in harmony, it feels like a symphony,” Jamie said into the camera.

Elise then did wonders with a wellington, burped and Jamie cracked up.

Has the Bradenton hero made up with the big mouth who turned on her last episode?

Probably not.

"Red Team close to finishing their best service." the narrator said.

Elise: “I think we won tonight.”

Jamie: “Don’t jinx us.”

Red Team wins!

Blue Team chooses Natalie and Jonathan to be eliminated.

Ramsay sends super-complainer Jonathan home.

“Elise is on mission to get Carrie kicked off,” Jamie said during a preview clip.

Elise received much praise tonight from Ramsay. Jamie received approval. Our Bradenton ambassador needs to take charge to win the prize she seems capable of attaining.

The winner of the reality cooking show will get a $250,000 salary as head chef of the prestigious BLT Steak in New York City.

"Hell's Kitchen" airs 8 p.m. Mondays and Tuesday on Fox.



Carrie, Jamie and Amanda prepare for a dinner service. Fox publicity photo.
Buzz Worthy: "Jamie Gregorich up for elimination in Hell's Kitchen"

Buzz Worthy: "Jamie Gregorich continues to play it cool on 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "Ill communication in Hell's Kitchen; Gregorich safe again"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton's Jamie Gregorich takes home trophy on tonight's 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "What will the wrathful Ramsay do to Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich tonight on 'Hell's Kitchen'?"

Buzz Worthy:"Jamie Gregorich survives another night in 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Bradenton Herald front page story that ran Sunday, July 24: "‘Hell’s Kitchen’ contestant talks about surviving debut show, returning to Euphemia Haye,"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich still standing the heat in 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich on 'Hell's Kitchen' part 2 of the season premiere"

Buzz Worthy: "Jamie Gregorich survives first night on 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich on 'Hell's Kitchen' season debut"

Bradenton Herald: "Bradenton chef heats up ‘Hell’s Kitchen’"

WATCH previous episodes of "Hell's Kitchen."

Jamie Gregorich page on Fox.com.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Jamie Gregorich up for elimination in Hell's Kitchen

Jamie Gregorich/Fox publicity.
Lesson learned from watching "Hell's Kitchen" Monday? Don't drink and cook.

The reality cooking show which features 25-year-old Bradenton chef Jamie "Hercules" Gregorich, was full of wine and beer guzzling and left one hung-over contestant without a chef's jacket.

Our hometown gal, a sous chef at Longboat Key eatery Euphemia Haye, survived the night ... we think. More on that later.

The episode started right after elimination with Krupa getting loaded on several bottles of wine while the rest of the chefs looked on. Needless to say, Krupa woke up with a very bad hangover.

To make matters worse for her, the competition featured dishes made with different types of beer. The chefs had to taste the beer, then prepare a dish. Some looked like they were enjoying the competition a little too much.

Krupa had apparently killed some brain cells because she couldn't remember the what was in her dish or names of her teammates.

Jamie was not happy. "If we're going to win any challenge, each individual person has to be 100 percent and Krupa is running at 50 percent."

Each team was told to rank the dishes from 1 to 5. Jamie's dish was the topped ranked for the Red Team. While tattooed Tommy was No. 1 for the Blue Team. With the competition tied, Jamie and Tommy both prepared raspberry lambic-marinated duck. Tommy's purple potatoes put his dish over the top, but Jamie's dish also got compliments from the judges.

The Red Team lost the competition (yet again) and was forced to unload supply trucks while the Blue Team test drove Grand Prix race cars.

At once, Elise started complaining about having to do manual labor. The unloading looked daunting with a truckload of ice (20-pound bags) and at least 20 kegs of beer. Jamie just wanted to get the job done and was seen hauling two bags of ice on her shoulders at once! This led Elise to say "I don't need to carry two bags of ice like I was Hercules trying to show off." Hence, Jamie's new nickname.

Everyone on the Red Team is over Elise's attitude and loud mouth. They had a team meeting to confront her bad attitude and as dinner service began the next night she seemed to be trying to work better with her teammates.

Red Team got off to a great start with appetizers but fell short when it came to plate entrees. Jamie and Krupa were having communication problems. I blame Krupa's hangover. Jamie's fish was "pink" and Krupa couldn't cook any meat properly. After being called out by Chef Ramsay, they finally got it together to finish service.

Elise returned to her old ways and lied about her soggy salad, then started yelling out orders at the others.

The Blue Team didn't fare much better. Natalie wasted more than 30 scallops by not knowing how to sear them properly, then she undercooked the fish. Twangy Jonathan had a beef Wellington fiasco which he blamed on others. Both got kicked out of the kitchen.

At the end of service, Ramsay decided that neither team had won. Each team had to nominate two members for elimination.

Krupa nominated herself. I was expecting the others to send in mouthy, lazy Elise. But Elise had other ideas and nominated JAMIE! Jamie was shocked (so was I) and started a shouting match with Elise in which each said the other needed to work on their attitude.

In the confessional, Jamie was close to tears. "I just can't deal with her anymore."

The Blue Team nominated backstabber Jonathan and scallop murderer Natalie.

During the elimination, Chef Ramsay asked Jamie why she thought she should stay. "Chef, I have a lot of fight in me," she said.

Ramsay decided to send Krupa home.

But in a shocking twist, the unpredictable host said "We're not done yet," and the show ended. What does that mean? Jamie looked scared standing up on the chopping block. Will someone else be eliminated? Will it be Jamie? My guess is 'no' because there's a shot of her in the sneak preview for tonight's episode. But really, this was too close for comfort.

A few questions to ponder:
1. Why won't Elise just shut up?
2. Why can't anyone cook scallops or beef Wellington correctly?
3. What happens to all the food that isn't cooked properly? Do you think they give it to the homeless?
4. Will the Red Team ever win a challenge?

The winner of the reality cooking show will get a $250,000 salary as head chef of the prestigious BLT Steak in New York City.

—Posted by Jana Morreale, Day/features editor

"Hell's Kitchen" airs 8 p.m. Mondays and Tuesday on Fox.



Carrie, Jamie and Amanda prepare for a dinner service. Fox publicity photo.

Buzz Worthy: "Jamie Gregorich continues to play it cool on 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "Ill communication in Hell's Kitchen; Gregorich safe again"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton's Jamie Gregorich takes home trophy on tonight's 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "What will the wrathful Ramsay do to Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich tonight on 'Hell's Kitchen'?"

Buzz Worthy:  "Jamie Gregorich survives another night in 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Bradenton Herald front page story that ran Sunday, July 24: "‘Hell’s Kitchen’ contestant talks about surviving debut show, returning to Euphemia Haye,"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich still standing the heat in 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich on 'Hell's Kitchen' part 2 of the season premiere"

Buzz Worthy: "Jamie Gregorich survives first night on 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich on 'Hell's Kitchen' season debut"

Bradenton Herald: "Bradenton chef heats up ‘Hell’s Kitchen’"

WATCH previous episodes of "Hell's Kitchen."

Jamie Gregorich page on Fox.com.

UPDATED 4:45 p.m.: Gregg Allman vs. Dickey Betts: Ticket sale showdown on Friday (Aug. 12)

Undated photo of Betts (left) and Allman.
UPDATED 4:45 p.m.: "REVISED - GREGG ALLMAN In Concert At Ruth Eckerd Hall Saturday, January 14. Tickets go on sale Friday, Sept. 9."

Promoters weren't up for a ticket sale day showdown?
------
Few rock 'n' roll feuds are more famous than Gregg Allman vs. Dickey Betts.

On Friday at noon (Aug. 12), tickets go on sale to see the Gregg Allman Band perform with original Allman Brothers Band drummer Jaimoe's Jasssz Band at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater on Jan. 14.

That same minute, tickets go on sale to see Dickey Betts and Great Southern with Gregg's son, Devon Allman's Honeytribe, on Dec. 7 at Ferguson Hall, part of the Straz Center for the Performing Arts, in Tampa.

Incidentally, the next day is Gregg's birthday.

Yeah, the previous night's show should make for interesting father/son conversation.

Back when I interviewed Gregg and Devon in 2006, they were touring together and all seemed good in the family. Hope this doesn't mean they've had a falling out. One of the highlights of the Sarasota Blues Fest that year was witnessing Gregg invite Devon on stage for a duet of "Midnight Rider," which ended with the two men embracing.

Although I would love to see it, the chances of Gregg and Dickey hugging anytime soon, or even sharing stage space, seems about as likely as an encore performance by Elvis.

Dickey Betts/current publicity photo

The ABB founding members have not, to the best of my knowledge, spoken since 2000.

Betts was reportedly suspended via fax that spring, leading to a lawsuit and the singer/guitarist's permanent firing, or separation, depending on who you ask.

In recent years, singer/keyboardist Allman, who resides in Savanah, Ga., has brought the Allman Brothers Band and the Gregg Allman Band back to their highest standing since the mid-1970s.

Meanwhile, Sarasota resident Betts' Great Southern Group, which consists of mostly local residents who regularly can be seen performing across Manatee and Sarasota counties in their respective solo groups, also continues to elate audiences with fiery live performances.

Gregg Allman/current publicity photo
The Gregg Allman Band will be performing songs from his new, commercially and critically successful solo album "Low Country Blues." Gregg's solo performance also usually include ABB and solo hits he penned such as "Midnight Rider," "Whipping Post," "Dreams," "Melissa," "Please Call Home," "Ain't Wastin' Time No More," "Wasted Words," "Come and Go Blues," "Queen of Hearts" and "Multi-Colored Lady."

Those songs will not be performed by Betts. He hasn't released a studio album in a decade and sticks to mostly choosing from the classic songs he wrote: "Ramblin' Man," "Blue Sky," "In Memory of Elizabeth Reed," "Jessica," "Revival," "Les Bre in A Minor," "Southbound," "Crazy Love," "Seven Turns," "No One to Run With" and "Highway Call."

I plan to attend both shows.

Just wish Allman and Betts would share the stage again.

Also wish I would've seen a performance by Elvis.

Gregg Allman with Jaimoe's Jasssz Band, Jan. 14, Ruth Eckerd Hall, 1111 McMullen Booth Road, Clearwater. Tickets: $35-$69.50. Information: 727.791.7400 or www.rutheckerdhall.com.

Dickey Betts and Great Southern with Devon Allman’s Honeytribe, Dec. 7, Ferguson Hall at David A. Straz, Jr. Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N W.C. MacInnes Place, Tampa. Tickets: $29.50-$69.50.


Allman and Betts seated side-by-side performing acoustic version of "Melissa" in 1990.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Damon Fowler returns from Italy tour for Sugar Shack Monday at Aces in Bradenton

Damon Fowler at Blues Revue open house Friday in Bradenton's Village of the Arts. Note Fowler's producer/pal Scott Cable in the background. Photo by Wade Tatangelo.

This week's edition of Damon Fowler's Sugar Shack Mondays at Aces Live in Bradenton features a full evening of Blind Pig recording artist the Damon Fowler Group.

And maybe some special guests.

And, yes, probably our beloved puppets.

During the interview portion of the show, I'll be talking to Fowler, Chuck Riley (bass) and Devin Neel (drums) about their recent tour of Italy. We'll also discuss the hugely successful Blues Revue bash Fowler and Neel special guested at Friday.

See you at Aces or watch online. Both options free!

Damon Fowler's Sugar Shack Mondays
Showcasing the best in touring talent
8:30 p.m. Mon., August 8 with special guest:
Damon Fowler Group 
No cover

Click to watch the performances and my interview with Fowler (and perhaps some special guests)  at
8:30 p.m. Monday, August 8


Watch live streaming video from sugarshackmonday at livestream.com
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I don't want my MTV


MTV used to matter so much to me.

From my column running today:

MTV had a hold on me.

A most sweet forbidden fruit I desperately craved.

Couldn’t get enough of it.

From elementary school through my first years of college, it entertained and informed me.

This past Monday the network turned 30.

And now I wish it would go away.

Read more.


Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Bradenton band Have Gun, Will Travel reveal name of new record; release date, sign deal with Denver-based label

L to R: Matt Burke, J.P. Beaubien, Daniel Burke, Scott Anderson - PUBLICITY PHOTO

Bradenton alt-country ensemble Have Gun, Will Travel has officially joined Denver-based Suburban Home Records. The label will release the band's new album "Mergers & Acquisitions." The official record release party will be Oct. 21 at Skipper's Smokehouse in Tampa and presented by community radio station WMNF (88.5).

HGWT recorded most of “Mergers & Acquisitions” at their practice space in downtown Bradenton. Other parts of the album were recorded with Andy Feldman who co-produced the album with HGWT. Scott Anderson (lead guitarist of HGWT) mixed it. Steve Connelly mastered the record. The artwork for the album will be done by Janell Francois with photography by Kelley Jackson. Devon Stuart of the Takers makes a guest appearance on the on the song “Thirteen Miles to Empty,” which HGWT has been playing in concert recently.

Burke and I discussed the song and the new album in May: 
“It’s a more upbeat, country rock type of song about the obstacles of being in a band on the road, but from a lighthearted perspective,” Burke said of  "Thirteen Miles to Empty."

“I used to be a little self-conscious about adding any kind of humor into my songs -- maybe I took my writing a little too seriously. But the more music I branch out and listen to and soak in, I’m inspired to try new things with my writing.”

Burke cited Loudon Wainwright III and John Prine as singer/songwriters who excel at being funny and poignant.

“Time Machine,” a moving song about battling homesickness while driving from show to show, will also likely be performed at Party on the Plaza (event took place May 21).

It’s the lead track on the recently released Bay Area Arts & Music (BAAMO) compilation “Tales of Highways & Low Roads,” the most-played album on WMNF last week.

Another version of “Time Machine,” along with “13 Miles to Empty” and a re-recorded version of “Freightliner” (from the first EP) will appear on Have Gun’s untitled, upcoming release planned for late summer/early fall.

Whereas “Postcards from the Friendly City” largely focuses on life in Bradenton, the new material takes listeners on a cross-country journey. Have Gun has toured as far as Colorado recently and the experiences are reflected in Burke’s richly detailed writing.

“It’s not that I’m trying to make any sort of cohesive story, but knowing there’s a theme in place helps direct the writing for the remainder of the songs once I see a common thread,” Burke said.
Continue reading "Bradenton band’s ‘Blessing’ on national Chevy ad."

Read the complete publicity release: Suburban Home signs Have Gun Will Travel, will release “Mergers & Acquisitions.”

Have Gun, Will Travel official website. 

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Jamie Gregorich continues to play it cool on "Hell's Kitchen"

TIFFANY TOMPKINS-CONDIE /ttompkins@bradenton.com Bradenton resident and “Hell’s Kitchen” contestant Jamie Gregorich holds her signature dish, lollipop lamb chops, at Euphemia Haye, the Longboat Key restaurant where she works as a sous chef.

Jamie Gregorich is becoming a star by playing it cool on "Hell's Kitchen."

While sadistic celebrity chef host Gordon Ramsay's reality-television cooking competition brings out the unhinged worst in most, the Manatee County native remains wonderfully calm.

The 25-year-old Bradenton resident had three close-up quotes in the first five minutes of tonight's episode of "Hell's Kitchen."

During the opening montage with clips from Monday's show, where bossy Elise again barely survived, Jamie said:

"It's not about being friends, it's about professionalism. Your mouth keeps getting us in trouble."

The sous chef at acclaimed Longboat Key eatery Euphemia Haye then called Elise's celebrating "a little offensive."

As soon as Ramsay announced tonight's all-female Red Team vs. Blue boys (plus Natalie) competition would be preparing dinner for a 20-year high school reunion, millions of TV viewers received another nice look at the class of 2004 Manatee High School graduate and Manatee Technical Institute alumni/instructor.

"I loved high school," Jamie said. "I wish I could go back to high school."

And then Red Teamer Elizabeth was chosen to spearhead the meal. The chief diners told her they wanted Hawaiian. And one woman didn't eat red meat. Elizabeth apparently listens about as well as a toddler, vaguely reporting back to her teammates to prepare Asian cuisine and not mentioning the whole no-dead mammals thing.

Jamie smelled something fishy from the start.

"I was confused to whether she had the right details or not," Jamie said of Elizabeth.

Time to cook.

A rare, perhaps, telling moment: Elise, who never admits a mistake to anyone, says to our hometown hero: "I dropped  a scallop, Jamie," sounding genuinely apologetic.

Much to my frustration, the editors/producers didn't show Jamie's reaction.

When the Red Team learns of Elizabeth's blunder it's Jamie again speaking for the team.

"Are you kidding me," she says into the camera. "They wanted Hawaiian? We're gonna look like jackasses."

Blue destroys Red with a six for six shut-out on the meat/fish challenge.

Good news? Jamie again with the confessional.

"I'm so sick of losing. I hate losing."

And then more of the Bradenton woman doing The Friendly City proud.

"Elizabeth used the wrong ingredients," she said. "Everything was wrong."

Blue Teams is rewarded with an afternoon of booze and hot tub relaxation on a four-level yacht.

Red Team has to decorate the dining room and make about a millions leis.

Elise complains about lifting a heavy palm tree. Jamie picks it up sans griping, no problem. Yeah, she has a gym membership that gets plenty of use.

Blue Team returns from the boat knocked out loaded. Their tongues thick with too much champagne, they attempt to tease the Reds.

"I can't understand anything they're saying," Jamie says.

Next day finds the Red Team, preparing Blue Team's dishes, for the high school reunion dinner. As always, they're working in separate kitchens. Blue suffers from sparkling wine hangovers. Red again must overcome diva clashing.

Cut to Jamie confessional.

"It's ironic we're preparing for a high school reunion and Carrie and Elise are fighting like high schoolers."

Back to the hellishly hectic kitchen.

And then it happened.

The local luminary dropped her first on-air F-bomb.

"Hey, what the (expletive) is this?" Jamie shouts.

The mark of a true reality star.

At least she said it in the right context — under pressure — and not while gossiping about someone, like the other contestants do.

Carrie, Jamie and Amanda prepare for a dinner service. Fox publicity photo.

So, the F-bomb didn't disappoint me. Not at all. Sorry.

What did, though, was when Ramsay asked, "Who's gonna lead the Red Team?"

Shot of Jamie with her head down.

"I will, chef," Elise said.

Come on, Jamie!

The Red Team redeemed itself, though, hugely. Blue Team cracked, kicked out of kitchen and Monterray got sent back home to Darby, Pa.

The juiciest segment?

Preview for next week's episodes showing Jamie standing up to Elise.

"You need to work on your attitude," the Manatee cooking maven tells the big mouth.

The winner of the reality cooking show will get a $250,000 salary as head chef of the prestigious BLT Steak in New York City.


"Hell's Kitchen" airs 8 p.m. Mondays and Tuesday on Fox.

Buzz Worthy: "Ill communication in Hell's Kitchen; Gregorich safe again"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton's Jamie Gregorich takes home trophy on tonight's 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "What will the wrathful Ramsay do to Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich tonight on 'Hell's Kitchen'?"

Buzz Worthy:  "Jamie Gregorich survives another night in 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Bradenton Herald front page story that ran Sunday, July 24: "‘Hell’s Kitchen’ contestant talks about surviving debut show, returning to Euphemia Haye,"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich still standing the heat in 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich on 'Hell's Kitchen' part 2 of the season premiere"

Buzz Worthy: "Jamie Gregorich survives first night on 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich on 'Hell's Kitchen' season debut"

Bradenton Herald: "Bradenton chef heats up ‘Hell’s Kitchen’"

WATCH previous episodes of "Hell's Kitchen."

Jamie Gregorich page on Fox.com.


Monday, August 1, 2011

Ill communication in Hell's Kitchen; Gregorich safe again

Carrie, Jamie and Amanda prepare for tonight's dinner service.


Bradenton's Jamie Gregorich has survived the heat of "Hell's Kitchen" for another night.
Not surprising since the 25-year-old sous chef at Longboat Key eatery Euphemia Haye seems to be concentrating on cooking instead of yelling and swearing like the other "cheftestants."
In fact, she started off the show lecturing big mouth Elise who returned from elimination ready to cause trouble in the house. "It's not about being friends, it's about professionalism," Gregorich said. "Your mouth keeps getting us in trouble."
This week's competition featured a demonstration of molecular cooking which turned oranges to juice with soundwaves and then into sorbet with liquid nitrogen. Then celebrity chef host Gordon Ramsay pulled the rug out from under them. There would be no more fun with liquid nitrogen today. It was "Back to Basics," using only fire and water to cook proteins. Gross. Boiled meat.

In a head-to-head/protein-to-protein competition the Red Team and the Blue Team were neck and neck. Unfortunately, Gregorich overcooked her salmon and lost her round. But the worst mistake came from poor Krupa, who mistook filet Mignon for veal. And you call yourself a chef! Only Chef Ramsay realized it, and of course was "f-bomb" mad.

So the Red Team lost again. They had the pleasure of scrubbing the hot tub and a stinky fountain and also prepping both kitchens for dinner service. The Blue Team was sent to a swanky spa in Beverly Hills for some bathing, massaging and much-needed eyebrow waxing.

The dinner service portion of the show always seems so complicated. Everything dish and side dish and garnish has to be timed perfectly or you have to start over again. The key to a good service is to communicate effectively with your teammates. Neither team has accomplished this yet. For instance, tonight featured badly cooked beef Wellington (Monterrey), soupy pasta AND risotto (Krupa), and a dazed and confused Gina walking around the kitchen with scallops and not listening to anyone.

In one gross note, I think points should've been taken from the Red Team for Jennifer's sweaty serving of the halibut sashimi. Ewww.

Monterrey, Tommy, Krupa, Gina and Elise were kicked out of the kitchen for their lack of communication skills but both teams managed to finish service to their diners. Gregorich appeared to have things in hand and was calm, cool and collected at the end.

Ramsay said neither team was a winner this week and told them to choose two chefs from each team who's elimination would better the team. He then told them to "F" off. Nice guy.

The Blue Team nominated Monterrey and Tommy. The Red Team chose Krupa for her meat mishap and Elise for her loud, grating, irritating, big mouth.

Chef Ramsay scored points for tricking Elise into thinking she was going home, but in the end he did his own thing and kicked off Gina for her lack of fight.
The winner of the reality cooking show will get a $250,000 salary as head chef of the prestigious BLT Steak in New York City.

"Hell's Kitchen" airs 8 p.m. Mondays and Tuesday on Fox.

-- Jana Morreale, Day/features editor

TIFFANY TOMPKINS-CONDIE /ttompkins@bradenton.com Jamie Gregorich prepares her signature dish, lollipop lamb chops, at Euphemia Haye

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton's Jamie Gregorich takes home trophy on tonight's 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "What will the wrathful Ramsay do to Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich tonight on 'Hell's Kitchen'?"

Buzz Worthy:  "Jamie Gregorich survives another night in 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Bradenton Herald front page story that ran Sunday, July 24: "‘Hell’s Kitchen’ contestant talks about surviving debut show, returning to Euphemia Haye,"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich still standing the heat in 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich on 'Hell's Kitchen' part 2 of the season premiere"

Buzz Worthy: "Jamie Gregorich survives first night on 'Hell's Kitchen'"

Buzz Worthy: "Bradenton chef Jamie Gregorich on 'Hell's Kitchen' season debut"

Bradenton Herald: "Bradenton chef heats up ‘Hell’s Kitchen’"

WATCH previous episodes of "Hell's Kitchen."

Jamie Gregorich page on Fox.com.