Friday, March 20, 2015

JCherry & the Strawberries LIVE @ The 3rd Annual Middletown Music Festival 2014

Down The Road In Reverse, written by CherrySparks

In The Belly of The Beast, click here!

"In The Belly Of The Beast” recorded before a live audience with Michael Arafeh of The Coffeehouse. "In The Belly Of The Beast”, is part poetry, blues, and roots rock. A critical look at life, politics, and the world we live in. From “Lies”, to “Dirty Water”, the “Dog’s On Prozac”, and “The Illuminati”, just a few titles on this 13 track record. “J-Cherry & The Strawberries took to the stage and played to a house that overflowed the music room and spilled out into the library. A local artist with a passion for music, lead singer J-Cherry, a.k.a. Jennifer Shafer Wood, plays her own soulful style of blues, poetry, and funk surrounded by an ethereal musical background.” David Gellar, Middletown Patch. 

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

International Women's Day Middletown!

International Women's Day, 2014. 
from left to right, JCherry, Bobby Knoll, Rusa D'Alessandro, Elizabeth McKenty,and Dina Abramo Pratt 
Middletown Art Academy

International Women's Day is celebrated on March 8 all around the world to unite women from all backgrounds and promote equality. Here in Middletown on Sunday, March 8 at 3:00pm, at MAC 650 Art Space on 650 Main Street, Middletown, there will be 16 diversified ladies speaking. From artists, writers, entrepreneurs, religious leaders, mothers, and grandmothers, along with art and music. This is a day to celebrate women and it is a tradition that is growing in the North End of Middletown.

With a history that reaches back to the early part of the twentieth century, International Women’s Day is an important means for women to educate, share, and exchange ideas. Here in Middletown it all started a few years ago in a intimate setting spearheaded by Rusa D’Alessandro. D'Alessandro is an impassioned woman, The Head Mistress and founder of Middletown Art Academy, and the producer of, The North End Gallery Walk that happens from May thru October on the first Thursday of the month. “I am dedicated to creating a much needed platform here in CT for future generations of women. Where women can unite under one roof in celebration of themselves, and one another, and to remember other great women who have come before us. Let us learn, get inspired, network, and lend a helping hand to each other as sisters. That's what March 8th is all about,” explained D’Alessandro. 

Rusa D'Alessandro,
   head mistress and founder, 

Middletown Art Academy,
The North End Gallery Walk  

When women join forces amazing things can happen. It’s all about networking and reaching out to each other. Rusa along with local artist and producer JCherry have teamed up to make this year’s International Women’s Day a special event. JCherry is the producer of, VOICE of the CITY a popular radio show airing on WESU 88.1FM, The Middletown Music Festival,, and manages her band, JCherry & The Strawberries. They released their first album, "In The Belly Of The Beast" last spring.  “ I am a writer, broadcaster, artist, and mother. I work in music and broadcasting. Historically men have dominated the music and broadcasting industry. Things have changed over the last few decades. But there is still a lot of inequality in pay and the treatment of women. We need to progress further. I want my daughters to have a level playing field where gender doesn’t matter, only your skills and talents do,” explained JCherry.

 artist, producer, emcee, 
VOICE of the CITY, WESU 88.1FM
According to D’Alessandro, the time is now, more than ever, to educate, to share, and to positively inspire and encourage woman of all ages, backgrounds, and walks of life. This year the International Women's Day 2015 theme is:  MAKE IT HAPPEN. The local speakers exemplify, MAKE IT HAPPEN, on daily basis. All around the world, International Women's Day represents an opportunity to celebrate the achievements of women while calling for greater equality. MAKE IT HAPPEN is a means to encouragee effective action for advancing and recognizing women. Connecticut is a melting pot of empowered women.

Special Guests:

1.Kate Drew -  Educator at Renbrook School in West Harford, CT 

2.Bobbye Knoll Peterson- Executive Director at North End Action Team
3. Michele Rock - Social Services 

4. Cassandra Day - Editor, Middletown Press,  
5. Floresia V Allen - Allen’s Abatement Services and Founder S.W.E.E.T Potato Society Inc 501(c)3 Sisters Working, Educating & Evolving Together and N.A.W.I.C Region 1 Member at Large New England 

6. Teresa Rogers - artist, curator, event planner , DIY’er · at Studio 4 Stafford Springs, Connecticut!about/c240r

7. Alicea Charamut - Connecticut River Watershed Council
8. Amy LaBossiere – Still Waters , The Art of Tao LaBossiere 
9. Marguax Hays ,Vocalist/Performance Artist 

10. The Rev. Julia Burkey- Pastor
11. Sandra Russo-Driska - Sandra James Boutique
Erica Lynn Hulme, singer/songwriter, artist, tattoo artist,
13. Cindy Witter,
14.  JCherry aka Jennifer Shafer Wood,
15. Rusa D’Alessandro, Middletown Art Academy 

Suggested Donation of $15, please. Part of your donation will go to benefit ART ANGEL Scholarship. 
Through North End Action Team Middletown Art Academy provides economically disadvantaged children in Middletown’s North End with the opportunity for a quality, values-based, fine art education in a safe environment Raised funds would sponsor one + lucky girl (s) allowing them to follow their hearts passion by paying for their private art lessons and all art supplies at MAA.