Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, Happy Holidays 2010!

Hey No-Star Nation,

I can't believe it's been another year! Another year of shows, another year of rehearsing, recording, writing, negotiating, planning; another year of getting to know many of you!

We were nominated for a Nightlife Music Award this year, but unfortunately, we haven't been able to find out if we have won or not (the awards ceremony was last week, but the winners haven't been posted yet). If anybody has a clue, send us an e-mail, aye?

We recently completed our 6th year as the house band for the "Sounds of Christmas" show presented by Hess Rd. Weslyan Church, and this year we took the show on the road. Another great time, great performances, and wonderful hospitality from all involved-- Thanks.

We are now entering our seventh year as a band. I continue to be blessed to work with amazing, talented, dedicated people. This is definitely the greatest band I've ever been in (and I've been in a lot of bands!). I'd like to thank everybody in the No-Stars' bullpen and office (especially Bruce, Tony, Bret, and Susan) for all they do.

We are making some changes. You're going to be pleased. We're looking forward to a blues-rockin' 2011. There's so much to say, it's hard to know where to begin. Check back often for updates on the band, the new studio, new music, and our expanding gig schedule.

This coming Friday and Saturday, we are at Vizzi's in Kenmore, and the Double Diamond in Ellicottville, respectively. We hope to see you there. If not, have an OUTSTANDING Christmas and New Years, and we hope you had a great Hanukkah!

Onward and Upward in 2011...

God Bless & Good Blues,


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Alan Parsons, your Mighty No-Stars, and a mini Batcave Update... (and Happy Thanksgiving)

Last week, Bruce Rounds, our friend Reggie Evans, and myself traveled to Nashville, TN, for the second annual Producer's & Engineers Summit at "Welcome to 1979" recording studio. Welcome to 1979 is an analog recording facility in West Nashville, owned by engineer Chris Mara. Last year I was pleased to make the acquaintance of such accomplished audio professionals as Bob Ohlsson (Nashville mastering engineer, formerly of Motown Records in Detroit) and independent producer and musician Mark Rubel. This year we met an amazing cross-section of audio talent that included folks that have recorded everybody from Led Zeppelin and the Beach Boys, to major contemporary and heritage Country artists. Besides a full weekend of music and recording workshops and a great hang, the kicker this year was a listening party with Pink Floyd's "The Dark Side of the Moon" in the original quadraphonic version, with an interview/commentary talk afterwards by Alan Parsons himself. Outstanding. We will definitely be back, and I highly recommend this weekend to anybody interested in the production of records.

Regarding The Batcave ("the walk," "the room," " 'Reggie's Place' ,"), we are moving along quite nicely. While we have been rehearsing there for months, Bruce and I have been taking our time with sound treatment, signal routing, and interior design, which has paid-off with a great looking and sounding control room and studio. We are close to a finished product that we will be willing to reveal to the public, so stay-tuned for more news, photos, and videos coming your way.

In gig news, we'll be back down in Ellicottville, NY at the Double Diamond this Friday, November 26th (the day after Thanksgiving). Music starts at 9:30pm, and we hope to see you there! It's been awhile, so we're jazzed to get back on the road for some music-making. It's going to be a great gig.

God Bless, Good Blues, and Happy Thanksgiving,


Thursday, October 28, 2010

Annual Cut & Paste Awards are up again...

A tiny bit less cut & paste this year, but still mostly cut & paste at the Annual Cut & Paste Awards 2010...



Friday, September 24, 2010

Joel Fest a Rockin' Success...

Nocturnal Productions, Gregg Juke & The Mighty No-Stars, Susan Fischer, and the executive committee of the Joel Thomas Benefit Fund would like to thank ALL of the people, businesses, organizations, musicians, and all-around great folks that contributed to Joel Fest through donations of time, money, or both. Thank you for your financial, physical, logistical, emotional, and spiritual support. Thanks for buying tickets and spending money on the raffles and auctions. We had an outstanding time and raised a lot of money!!!!

It was a long time in the planning, and quite a few long days in the making, but it was all worth it. You all made this event successful beyond our wildest dreams, and for that we are truly grateful.

It was really great to see and hear all of the musicians performing at this once-in-a-lifetime concert, and even more gratifying to see a lot more of the music community (even those that weren't performing) come out to support Joel and his fight against ALS.

If you missed Joel Fest, but would like to help with our on-going efforts to create sustainable assistance through the Joel Thomas Benefit Fund, please visit the website at . We'd love to hear from you.

Thanks, stay tuned, God Bless & Good Blues,

Gregg Juke

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Joel Fest

Well, Summer went by fast, and we're already into the Fall season. Much is happening, but what's most important to us right now is what's coming up this weekend: Joel Fest in Tonawanda, NY. As many of you may know, our friend Joel needs help, and we have been spending the past 8-9 months planning the benefit party/event of the century. We have a concert with some of WNY's premier musical talent planned, as well as a day of fun, great food, raffles, auctions, fundraisers, and special activities. Joel will also be there, signing copies of his new book, "Creature Comforts."

Please visit to find out more about Joel Fest, the Joel Thomas Benefit Fund, and how you can help, even if you can't make it to this fantastic show and event.

We hope to see you there!


Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Summer Update 2010

Hey No-Star Nation,

Long-time no-post, so here is a quick update on Your Mighty No-Stars...

Joel is doing well, but remains unable to perform with the band at this time. We have welcomed old friend, talented musician, irrespressible cut-up, and former Bleeding Hearts bassist Tony Blasting into the No-Stars as long-term sub (Tony will be on bass for at least the next year... he's also a fine keyboardist and singer). Say "hi" to Tony on an upcoming gig.

We'll be presenting a benefit for Joel and his family on Sunday, September 19th; watch this space or visit our main website for details. You should also check-out the brand new for continuing updates on the event and all-things Joel.

We'll be in Attica tonight (Wednesday, July 28th) at 6:30pm for a town concert. This Sunday at the annual St. Christopher's Summerfest, and on Saturday, August 7th at the Buffalo Blues and Barbecue event at LaSalle Park in Buffalo ( ). Check our schedule at for the rest of this summer's concert calendar and other upcoming dates.

A recent poster placed this note (see below) in the comments section of the May blog entry. "T Bowen's" suggestions are so spot-on, they bear repeating... And, as one lucky fan recently learned-- always be polite (an SM58 plugged into a modest sound-system will always be louder than the most obnoxious, albeit sans-sound-reinforced heckler). Perhaps we'll ask T Bowen to make some regular commentary here on the blog; something like a guest column... We shall see.


T Bowen's Comments--

Music listeners etiquette guide

Live performance:

From time to time you may find a live performance too loud for your liking. Among the many options such as finding a quieter club for your conversation, moving farther from the band, or noise reducing earware, is the idea of speaking for everyone with a direct request for lower volume from the band. Some would start with an attention getter ranging from a mild "hey fellas" or "pardon me" to blanket accusations of fornication or other outright profanity. Seasoned musicians suggest the hand clasp and slight bow followed by the two handed motion palms down indicating a request for lowering of volume. This is guaranteed to work every time assuming you own the club or are otherwise involved in the band-paying process. Be that not the case, look for a handy tip jar and indicate your appreciation of the hard work and talent along with a desire for lower volume. (understand your performers have likely been going deaf for some time). Look for more handy live music do's and don'ts right here at Juke the Mighty!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

End of May Update

Hello There, No-Star Nation;

Just a quick update to let you know that things are moving along behind-the-scenes. We have a previously released track that will be included on the upcoming "Jammin' for a Cure" CD to benefit breast cancer research. Also, work on The Batcave Recording Studio is coming along swimmingly; we'll have some new projects to announce here soon.

Joel will continue to take his health sabbatical for the time being; we have hired our old friend Tony Blasting (formerly of the Bleeding Hearts) as a long-term sub on bass, so look for him and say "hey" on our upcoming gigs this summer. We're planning a big benefit concert for Joel and his family this Fall, and we'll certainly keep you all informed.

I've got some more review copy coming out soon in Drum! Magazine, so look for my byline there.

Our condolences go out to former Mighty No-Star and saxophonist Jack Prybylski, who recently lost his mother after a brief illness. Our prayers and thoughts are with you, Jack.

Thanks for your continued support, God Bless & Good Blues,


Sunday, April 11, 2010

Reflecting On Important Things We've Lost...

Chu Nero, Roseanne Perez, Jay Dzina, Rich Schneider, Blues Beat Magazine, The Tap Room.


God Bless & Good Blues,


Monday, April 05, 2010


Not Rock & Roll, but Rest & Relaxation...

Ha. As if.

While we are currently experiencing some downtime from public appearances, there's a lot going on in the inner sanctum at No-Star Nation HQ. We are booking gigs, working on a new CD, planning a big benefit show (and a wedding), and we have been interviewing/auditioning long-term subs. There are a couple of big announcements that will be made soon, so stay-tuned.

One we can clue you in on is that we are about to experience the fruition of over 20-years of planning and dreaming--The Batcave Recording Studio will be a reality in the very near future. It will be a place to record our future albums and solo projects, produce and present other media ventures in-the-works, a rehearsal space for Gregg Juke & The Mighty No-Stars, and for some very special recording artists that are not in the band, but are definitely part of the Nocturnal Productions/No-Stars family, a place to record future releases with a maximum of soul and vibe, and a minimum of muss, fuss, and budget-busting, eye-popping bills. This will be the spot for those that want to make music, and are ready to move beyond the home studio environs, but are not interested in the big commercial studio headaches. Of course, you'll have to find it first, which means you're either a very special guest, or you're Ras Al Ghul.

Another news flash of interest: Gregg Juke & The Mighty No-Stars have contributed a track to a new benefit compilation CD called "Jammin' for the Cure," featuring many of your favorite Buffalo & WNY Blues artists, with proceeds going towards breast cancer research for a cure and prevention. Check it out at .

More later, keep the faith.

God Bless & Good Blues,


Saturday, February 27, 2010

Some News...

We had a great weekend of gigs this past Friday and Saturday, February 26 & 27. On Friday, we were in Medina at the Lee-Whedon Memorial Library. Yes, a library! We've never done that before, and I thought that I'd seen everything. But this is a regular concert venue in the town of Medina, and despite the despicable winter weather, about 100 brave citizens came out to the show and had a great time. On Saturday, we played at Ilio Di Paulo's restuarant in Blasdell, for the annual ABATE engineering party. A good time was had by all. Last week, we were at the annual Griffis Sculpture Park fundraiser and moonlight snowshoe walk in Springville. Great gig, fun people! This weekend, we had our drummer, Bret Norvilitis, on bass, and our former/retired drummer Dr. Bill O'Shea on drums. They both did an outstanding job!!

If you've been following the band for the past several months (since November, actually), or even if you've been reading this blog, you know that we've been without our bass-player of the past six years, and for Bruce and I, our friend of more than 20 years-- Barker Bass endorser Joel Thomas. Joel has needed to take some time off; its been coming for quite awhile, as he has needed a rest, and for the last several months that he played with us, you could see it on his face, if not hear it in his words: "Somebody pack-up my gear and get me out of here; I'm exhausted." He was having trouble playing the instrument that he loved, which was causing him quite a bit of frustration, and now we can tell you why. We wanted to wait until everything was confirmed, and although there is still a margin of error, a recent trip to the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota has corroborated the local doctor's initial diagnosis-- ALS (commonly known as Lou Gehrig's Disease).

Joel is a fighter. We are praying and believing that this is a fight that he can win, and he is being very proactive regarding his treatment and his general health. He has been building muscle and staying in shape. He has even started playing a little bit. But it will most likely be at least a year before he can rejoin the No-Stars. In the meantime, we will not only be supporting Joel, but finding ways to continue to work toward our goals and to entertain as many people, and bring as many new listeners to the Blues, as we can.

We will be planning a major live benefit for Joel and his family in the up-coming months, and several of us are working on a more sustainable model of support, which we will certainly unveil to all of you in the No-Star Nation as soon as we have hammered-out all of the details. In the meantime, your thoughts and prayers are welcomed, and we thank all of you that have offered support, or simply come up to us on gigs and asked "Where's Joel?" or "How is he doing?" It means a lot to him and to us, so thanks again. We will share whatever details that are appropriate, when they are available.

Once again, we thank you all for your support during this difficult time...

God Bless & Good Blues,


Wednesday, January 27, 2010

New Gig and some Important Info.

Hey No-Star Nation,

How are you? Enjoying the first weeks of 2010?

We have a gig this Friday, the 29th, at Vizzi's. Come on out if you're in the WNY area; it's an intimate setting (read: small but energetic place), with some of the best food in the area (and that's saying something).

OK, time for us to give you a bit of a belated update. Our dear friend and bassist, Joel Thomas, has had to temporarily step-down from the No-Stars due to some health issues... We can't say anymore right now, but we'll keep you informed as soon as we are able. Joel is likely to be away from the bandstand for awhile. We are already missing him, but if you've been to the last couple of gigs, you know that our newest Mighty No-Sub, Frank Reino, is ably holding-down the bottom end. Frank will most likely be filling in on most of the gigs through this winter and into the summer of 2010, so please stop by and say hello, and make him feel welcomed. Again, we'll give you more information on Joel as it becomes available and we are able to do so. Our thoughts and prayers are with him and his family, and the bass-chair will be kept warm for his return!

God Bless & Good Blues,