The special sound of Roger Ceresi’s All-Starz and All-Starz Horns created all sorts of excitement last Friday night inside the Tri-City Elks Lodge No. 14 on West Shore Road in Warwick.
People of all ages packed the Lodge’s lower level and enjoyed everything from the music of the eight-piece band to some dynamic dancing and food during a special four-hour show.
“This show was better than its billing,” offered Joe Martini, a member of the Tri-City Elks Lodge and an accomplished disc jockey who spins music from the 1950s to the present. “It’s easy to see why Roger’s group has been invited back to Waterfire for an unprecedented eighth straight year.”
Ceresi and company treated a crowd of 200 people plus to his powerful vocals while his All-Starz filled the spacious room with high energy jump blues, rhythm and blues as well as a bit of rock and roll.
“Kind of reminds me of the old American Bandstand days,” assessed Michael Mangan, who came from his home in Narragansett and follows Ceresi and his All-Starz all over Rhode Island. “There aren’t many people sitting down.”
That’s because Ceresi’s music – that didn’t drive the audience out of the building – creates a sudden urge to dance.
“Look at all the smiles,” suggested William O’Connor, a Warwick resident who brought three guests to what he called “a spectacular show. This is high-energy stuff ... what a great event for the (Tri-City) Elks Lodge.”
Many people in the crowd, which came to Warwick from all over the state, were impressed with the All-Starz Horns, a trio of musicians whose sound is – people like Joe Jamroz of Johnston noted: “Spectacular!”
The All-Starz’ brass section is made up of Carl Queforth on trombone, John Abrahamsen on trumpet and Barry Fleischer on saxophone.
Ceresi’s All-Starz, who have been together for a decade, also include Riverside Rob” Nelson, who plays guitar and also sings, Papa Dick Souza on upright bass and electric mass, Matt McCabe on the electric piano and Joey Sullivan on drums.
Ceresi and company created such a high energy mood, that even the Lodge’s bartenders – Carolyn Lombardi and Doreen McCarron – scooted swiftly back and forth behind their station and almost as though they too were dancing to the music.
“Great night,” assessed Helen Defosse, who at age 75 does most of the cooking at the tri-City Elks Lodge 14 along with Jim Hawkins, 79, who doubles as the Lodge’s secretary and classic cook. “Everyone is smiling and having a great old time!”
While Ceresi and company created lots of excitement with their special sound, Defosse and Hawkins had the right recipe for anyone who was hungry after twisting and turning all over the dance floor.
“We’ve got everything from Dynamites (ground beef with sauce) for $3 to Sausage and Pepper sandwiches to Tuna and Egg Salad Bulkies ($2) to Onion Rings ($2) and Stuffies ($2),” the classic cooks declared. “We don’t want anyone to go hungry.”
Thus, on this night Roger Ceresi and his All-Starz turned the Tri-City Elks Lodge 14 into a special showplace and set the stage for what a lot of people hope will be more music-filled events in the near future.