Classic News (00 to 04)
WITE LITE - ANGELA's 40th 11/20/04
What seemed like a difficult venue (the band was considered too loud in sound check) turned into another outstanding performance by WITE LITE on Saturday night. With Kevin Finnegan flying in for the family affair, WITE LITE played a three set show atSchlafly's Brewery. Going back to the standard Cadillac Ranch opener, the band did not play any new material though did resurrect Werewolves of London in the third set. (Click here for the complete set list)
Vocals were especially strong and the band's slow Beatles tunes won raves from young and old audience members. Manchisi took MVP honors with a very strong performance though broke a string during the Blitzkrieg Bop second set opener forcing a delay between Ramones tunes and a 10 minute delay while changing strings forcing a "Jazz Odyssey" from the band and an impromptu Steven Greene stand up act.
Though all the band was very strong, there were some memorable moments. Sean McNamara's version of Fire (Whose car was he driving in anyway?), Bill Greene's key change for Party sent the song into the upper registers and forced a take two, and Kev Finnegan forgetting the "oil of aphrodite" in Cosmik Debris. These were all overcome by a Johnny Cash possessed version of Folsom Prison Blues and a blistering War Pigs closer.
Paul Abouchon of IRONMAN sound again ably handled mixing duties in a very tough room and has been crowned the honorary 5th member of the band (He is the best!!!)
Hopefully, a Christmas gig will close out a strong 2004.
WITE LITE - EDDIE's 40TH 10/30/04
WITE LITE returned for their second gig in two months (they even have one in November as well) to celebrate Eddie McD's 40th in another Halloween bash. The Munsters opener was a bit sloppy though the band got into a groove by the third song. New songs such as All I've Got to Do, Cinnamon Girl, My Wife, Blitzkrieg Bop and I Wanna Be Sedated were all keepers though Manchisi's Ramones wig made it difficult to see the chord changes making for an even more authentic Ramones experience (Click here for the complete set list).
Tom Greene took MVP honors with solid vocal performances throughout (and the best version of War Pigs in recent memory). Zach Manchisi (flying in for the gig) was also strong as Elvis.
The third set included the AM version of Free Bird and Casey Jones in honor of Eddie and also included Moby Dick and the Heartbreaker guitar solo. The band's sound was excellent thanks to an outstanding mix from Paul Abouchon of IRONMAN sound.
Look for another 4oth birthday party in mid to late November.
WITE LITE AT SARATOGA 9/11/04
In their tightest performance in recent memory, WITE LITE rocked Saratoga Lanes at the annual Rock 'n' Bowla III. Playing 2 sets (Including a marathon 28 song second set as best I can remember it) the band was in excellent form from the opening Summertime Blues to the Take Me Out to the Ballgame closer.
Rehearsals started off slow as soundman NICK of IRONMAN sound worked to get the band's trademark "wet sound". Once that was taken care of, it was a great evening with a strong mix as the band traded in POD's for backline amplifiers. Thanks Nick!!
The first set was perhaps the band's cleanest ever though did not bring the crowd to the dance floor. Mystery Dance did appear to interest a few though was played at breakneck speed. Few signs of dancers during Somethin Else were immediately cleared during a blistering version of Apolitical Blues that received low ratings from the wives. Manchisi broke a string during Throw it Away but was undaunted and the band continued while the road team of Nick and Bob made the repairs.
The second set started slow but once Play That Funky Music began, the dance floor was mobbed all the way through Smoke on the Water (yes Smoke on the Water which was an audience request) including a guest vocal version of Cadillac Ranch. (Click to Download the Complete Set List as best I can remember it! ). New songs like Party, Squeeze Box and I Just Want to Celebrate were all crowd pleasers. White Punks on Dope and War Pigs ended the show though the band took requests explaining the Hey Ya and You Shook Me All Night Long selections!! Closing with a high speed "Take Me Out to the Ballgame", the band appears to be in great shape for the upcoming end of year gigs, which will hopefully include The Wizard and guitarist Finnegan. Stay tuned.......
WITE LITE - DRESSEL'S 05/22/04 (HAPPY BIRTHDAY KAREN AND DOUG!)
WITE LITE extended their reach to the Central West End last night playing a 40th Birthday Party for Karen and Doug at Dressel's. In addition to a great crowd and a great time had by all, the gig marked two firsts for the band. The band was booked on a referral from a prior gig and were also called out for encores late in the evening. It didn't take the band long to respond to the sight of lighters in the crowd and they resumed playing before laying down their guitars!
The second floor room was a challenge acoustically but once again the band benefited from an outstanding mix from newcomer Dave Helv of IRONMAN sound. Dave was voted MVP of the evening for managing the mix under some difficult conditions. Thanks Dave!
The first set was extremely strong and included Doug on harmonica for Mary Jane and an audience participation version of Suffragette City (Click to Download the Complete Set List as best I can remember it! ). With the first set behind them, the band was poised for a killer second set though Manchisi broke a string early on during Glory Days which seemed to take some of the energy from the band. Audience participation versions of Honky Tonk Woman helped restore this though the set was shortened as a result.
The third set opened with the live debut of I Just Want to Celebrate and also included the debut of Cosmik Debris. The band was a little sloppy through the night but the audience didn't seem to care. Kevin Finnegan flew in for the evening and was strong throughout though the 6:15AM flight back to Newark this morning was tough for all involved.
Look for upcoming summer plans and special thanks to Karen and Doug for inviting us. Happy 40th!
WITE LITE - FOUR SEASONS COUNTRY CLUB 10/25/03
Elvis Presley (Zach Manchisi), Johnny Cash (Kevin Finnegan), Sid Vicious (Bill Greene), NEO (Mike Manchisi), and the Monster from the Crypt (Tom Greene) united for an outstanding show at the Four Seasons Country Club. The band was in very good form last night and benefited from an outstanding mix from Paul Abouchon of IRONMAN sound. (This guy is the best!). Elvis took home top honors as MVP of the gig.
The band did not stray from the well crafted set list (Click to Download the Complete Set List ) and opened with the Theme from the Munsters. Other Halloween favorites included Werewolves of London and Monster Mash. Elvis stole the show with Summertime Blues (dropped to the key of G to highlight the King's deep voice), Don't be Cruel, Fire, Jailhouse Rock, Roadhouse Blues (a duet with Chef Al), Heartbreak Hotel and Monster Mash.
The "Kill Bill" second set was as good as the band has ever been and kicked off with a stirring rendition of Johnny Cash's Folsom Prison Blues. Other new selections in the set included the Elvis tunes and No Particular Place to Go (yes it is in the key of G).
Set 3 included guest vocalists Chef Al (Roadhouse Blues), Stephen Greene (Honky Tonk Woman) and Paula (Twist and Shout). Given the upcoming Holiday Season, the Grinch was a big hit other than Manchisi's lyrical struggle ("I still wouldn't touch you with a 39 1/2 foot pole". San Berdino and Urge (Never has the band been so off for so long) will be retooled at the band's next practice though Zappa fan's didn't seem to care (we received a request for Dancin' Fool) that the band (especially Neo) was struggling with the tune.
All in all a great show!
Look for a Holiday gig at Christmas......
WITE LITE - 08/30/03 - "Rock n Bowla II"
Though guitarist Kevin Finnegan was unable to make this one, The Wizard returned and ignited the crowd into a frenzy in the sequel to the "Rock n Bowla" event at Saratoga Lanes. Guest keyboard/guitarist Steve Lennartz added to the band's sound and IRONMAN once again provided an excellent mix through the NEXO sound system (Thanks Bob!!)
Set I was strong with two new songs opening (Throw It Away/Miracle Man) and the crowd even remarked that the band's originals "weren't terrible" (high praise indeed!) Click to Download the Complete Set List. Most of the first set was played to the pool table crowd as the bowling alley was packed. The Wizard made an early appearance on Summertime Blues though it was Set II (entitled the dance set) where the magic began. Pulling the crowd out with Fire and Brandy, the band began to attract the dancers with staples like Buttercup, I'm a Believer and Play That Funky Music. (The band is going back to the drawing board regarding placement of the new Doobie Brothers rock block!)
Set III brought the house down with unplanned performances of Shout, Daydream Believer and Can't Buy Me Love along with reprises of many of the second set tunes. All band members were strong throughout and guest Lennartz was impressive given that he began learning the set list at 4:30 that afternoon!
Look for a potential Halloween and Christmas gig from the band to wrap up 2003.
WITE LITE - 06/28/03 - Sylvestri 40th Party
Ebony replaced Lucille as guitarist Kevin Finnegan switched to a Stratocaster for the Sylvestri 40th Birthday party at Four Seasons country club. The three set performance started off a little stiff with the current song list starting to show it’s age. Manchisi’s broken string during Cadillac Ranch highlighted the bands weakest performance of that song in many years. Signs of life started with the first set closer (Birthday) after which the band kicked into a very strong but loose second set. The 2nd set block of Play that Funky Music, I’m a Believer, Buttercup, Slow Down and I Saw Her Standing There was clearly the peak of the evening. Unplanned performances of Shout and Daydream Believer also showed promise.
Guest Vocalists highlighted the show with the standout being Chef Al’s performance of Roadhouse Blues, Dana Greene's "Happy Birthday", Paula's performance of Twist and Shout and John Sylvestri’s performance of Take Me Out to the Ballgame (the third one of the evening). Finnegan took MVP honors though rushed through Urge and the band signed many items at the end of the evening which will likely fetch significant dollars on eBay!
I Fought the Law
Whip Comes Down
When We Were Younger
Take Me Out to the Ballgame
Hard to Handle
Please Please Me
You Really Got a Hold on Me
Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet
Take Me Out to the Ballgame
Play that Funky Music
I’m a Believer
I Saw Her Standing There
Honky Tonk Woman
Back in the USSR
Take Me Out to the Ballgame
End of the World
Fight for Your Right
Twist and Shout
WITE LITE - 05/03/03 - Greene Derby Party
In a combination Derby party as well as a celebration of Wendy's brother Brian's 30th birthday, WITE LITE turned in a strong 3 set performance to a large outdoor crowd. Backed by a superb sound system courtesy of IRONMAN sound and with another outstanding mix by soundman Paul Abouchoun, the band opened with I Fought the Law and ended the set with a rendition of Happy Birthday followed by the Beatles version of Birthday. Second set was weaker from the band's perspective though Dead Flowers and Play that Funky Music were very strong. Build Me Up Buttercup (though a crowd favorite) was the weakest song of the evening and the band has committed to tighten things up around this one. Power outages hit the band during China Grove and Mary Jane's Last Dance though the band played on and completed both tunes once power resumed . Guest singer/30th Birthday Boy/Derby Pool Winner Brian joined the band for Bring It on Home, Ice Cream Man and You Shook Me All Night Long and the band closed the evening with Brown Eyed Girl, Twist and Shout and Richie's Room. Special thanks again to Paul the soundman who took MVP honors if for no other reason, was able to directly amplify Tom Greene's signal to the PA as Tom forgot to bring the amplifier for his bass cabinet!!! Hello?????
I Fought the Law Dead Flowers Roadhouse Blues
Hard to Handle Please Please Me Something Else
Wall Street You Really Got a Hold Honky Tonk Woman
Fire China Grove Back in the USSR
Substitute Play that Funky music Mary Jane’s Last Dance
She Said Yeah I’m a Believer Miracle Man
Summertime Blues Brandy End of the World
When we were younger Ain’t seen nothing yet Hymn 43
Take me out to the ballgame Buttercup Uncontrollable Urge
Cadillac Ranch Finnless Fight for Your Right
Birthday Slow Down Moby Dick
I Saw her standing there Bring it on home
Ice Cream Man
You Shook Me All Night
Brown Eyed Girl
Twist and Shout
WITE LITE - 04/19/03 - All the Kid's Love Richie's Room
In a tuneup for the upcoming 5/3/03 Kentucky Derby gig, WITE LITE played Rich Greene's 40th Birthday showcasing a bunch of new material to a small but appreciative crowd. Opening with a strong version of Richie's Room, the band went into Throw it Away showing great potential until a broken string cut the tune short. (Manchisi is overplaying as of late and this was one of two string breaks during the night). Other new tunes included Birthday, Play that Funky Music, Less Than Zero, Miracle Man, You Really Got a Hold on Me, Mary Jane's Last Dance, Long Train Runnin', China Grove, Dead Flowers, American Band, Back in the USSR and Let Me Roll It. The band even paid homage to Zeppelin with Moby Dick, Bring it on Home and snippets from Heartbreaker. Sound was good and loud killing the porcelain dogs on the floor above though vocals suffered late in the evening (most notably Manchisi's version of Let Me Roll It). All in all, a good warmup for the Derby gig and possible summer tour. Stay tuned..................
WITE LITE - 11/01/02 - Mike's 40th - The Surprise Party
Rushing home to make a late night showing of Jackass, Mike Manchisi was surprised by a crowd of well wishers for his 40th birthday. The evening was a celebration of family, good friends and WITE LITE with surprise appearances by Zach, Kevin and Frank who all flew in from NY for the day. My heartfelt gratitude to all who were there.
The evening culminated with a basement jam that included all members include a surprise appearance by Tom Townsend. In addition to the standards, the addition of Townsend enabled the band to resurrect hits like Ebby's Lament, Wall Street (complete with middle) and Time Gone By. A standards set also included Route 66 and a version of Mac the Knife that even appealed to the older crowd. Corinne Manchisi even sang Dreams and Build Me Up Buttercup to the enjoyment of all.
The party went well into the evening and included a Frank Manchisi rock block consisting of Complicated Shadows, Daydream Believer and Love In Vain.
It was a great night and one I'll never forget!
WITE LITE - 09/13/02 - Baja Rock Club - The MIKE MANCHISI PROJECT??
Coheadlining with C Jane Run , the band played the last two sets to a packed house consisting primarily of MasterCard employees and raised $575 for United Way. Not to be deterred by a poor sound mix, the band (known as Mike Manchisi's band WITE LITE) ripped into the standards. Only Something Else seemed to be a bad pick as it cleared the dance floor to a generational crowd that was not familiar with Eddie Cochran. The second set was brief in order to accommodate a 1AM curfew but included Roadhouse, Ain't Seen Nothin' Yet, Brandy (for a couple who was celebrating their wedding at the club???)) a blues number and finally Honky Tonk Woman. With the crowd chanting OZZY, the band left the stage (an obvious reference to the War Pigs staple that the band is known for). The following continues to grow and the band is looking for additional gigs.
WITE LITE - 08/24/02 - Saratoga Lanes
With band differences behind them, WITE LITE rocked Saratoga Lanes on Saturday evening in front of a packed 8 lane bowling alley. The first set was strong as the band opened with I Fought the Law and When the Whip Comes Down followed by Cadillac Ranch, Younger, Please Please Me, Something Else, She Said Yeah, Wall Street, Can't Explain and closed with Hymn 43. The new Aqualung ending seems promising and it was great to have Kevin Finnegan providing the bantor and the solid rhythm work for the gig. It was the second set however that sealed the night. Marked by a guest appearance from Zach Manchisi, the band launched into Roadhouse Blues, Fire and Summertime Blues before Zach left the stage to take on managerial duties. Zach's presence was so strong that he "audibled " the second set after the dance floor became packed from songs like Ain't Seen Nothing Yet, Brandy, and I'm a Believer. The song selections kept the crowd dancing and proved to be WITE LITE's most successful gig yet. In addition to singing duties, Zach was also single handedly responsible for raising $125 in the bucket to pay Paul the soundman, who delivered a strong mix. The first half of the show has already been released on DVD and is making its way around the East Coast as we speak. Zach (aka The Wizard) has now been given management responsibilities for the band as noted on the Home Page. Set 3 featured Dion, Louie, Louie and a version of Shout that rocked the house. A tremendously strong performance by Bill Greene in the 3rd set earned him MVP honors though the band was strong and tight throughout. Look for a year-end Christmas gig in addition to the upcoming 9/13 St. Charles event.
WHAT A SHOW!!!
WITE LITE - 10/19/01 - Sylvestri Going Away Party
Playing in Lenny's Basement to a full house (It's all relative!), WITE LITE played two very long sets to celebrate the Sylvestri family move from Polo Parc at Lenny's Basement. The first set was strong and the entire night included many new songs including 8 versions of Take Me Out to The Ballgame, China Grove, Long Train Running, Warning, You Ain't Seen Nothing Yet, I'm a Believer, Bad Moon Rising and Suffragette City. Set 2 featured a Karaoke session that highlighted the band's varied styles, with songs from Willie Nelson, Chuck Berry, Dion and a version of Shout that could be released as Side 3 of the Live Album!. The standards were all there and the evening was a hit by all accounts. Look for a year-end Christmas gig as we speak.
WITE LITE - 9/3/00 - Wendystock II
Playing to a small crowd in Town and Country, WITE LITE played two sets at Wendystock II. The first set was weaker by most observers standards as well as the bands though set 2 was very strong. New songs included Mystery Dance, Johnny B. Goode, and Bad Moon Rising, a hit with the crowd despite the drummers objections! The group is looking for a Christmas gig as we speak.
WITE LITE - 7/15/00 - Lafayette Pub and Grill
Playing at the new Lafayette Pub and Grill along with the Benders, WITE LITE played two strong short sets led by outstanding vocal performances by Tom Greene. The group also added Mystery Dance to the set list and are rumored to be rehearsing many new songs including some that were actually recorded in the 90's! The sets were divided into a more mellow set followed by a heavier finale, though the group had trouble getting anyone to the dance floor.
Set 1 - Substitute, Somethin Else, Mystery Dance, End of the World, Slow Down, I Saw Her Standing There, Uncontrollable Urge, Brandy, Build Me Up Buttercup
Set 2 - Roadhouse Blues, Apolitical Blues, I Fought the Law, Please Please Me, War Pigs, Hard to Handle, San Berdino
WITE LITE - 5/26/00 - Billy G's 40th
Poorly disguised as a rehearsal dinner, WITE LITE played the Baxter Ridge Clubhouse to rave reviews for their first year 2000 Gig. Plane snafus prevented retired band member Frank Manchisi from participating though Zach Manchisi was again in rare form with standards like Fire and Jack Daniels Blues.The GIG renewed interest in WITE LITE and 2000 promises some additional gigs for the band.