by Meaghan Paulosky
Nearly 9% of the United States calls New York and New Jersey home. When Hurricane Sandy hit in October 2012, that number was shaken. The devastating post-tropical cyclone cost the United States nearly $62 billion in damages, amounted to 125 fatalities, and left over 8 million homes without power. An untold number families lost irreplaceable possessions and had to idly watch as their homes turned into a veritable warzone.
When the storm had passed, New York/New Jersey natives lived up to their reputations – they stepped up. Whether through benefit concerts, Red Cross donations, relief collections, or telethons, neighbors came together and showed the rest of us just how much “stronger than the storm” they could be. Nearly a year later, though, the wounds are still healing. They still need our help. That’s why Trenton-born musician, Lisa Bouchelle, decided to take action.
When not touring the country with ‘Lisa Bouchelle & The Bleu’, Bouchelle spends her weekends writing and playing on the Jersey Shore circuit. Knowing so many of the residents personally and having spent much of her life in the area, the storm became personal. “[My friends’] homes were damaged and in some cases destroyed. It caused me to feel helpless.”
That feeling of weakness doesn’t last long for a Jerseyite, and it certainly didn’t for Bouchelle. “I wanted to write an ‘anthem’ type rock song and include many musicians and singers that had a direct link [to] New Jersey to help get the word out that there is still much to be done.”
With inspiration from her friend Bill Frankel, Bouchelle wrote the song in about a week. “It was uplifting and moving while I was writing…the ups, the downs, the intensity of the storm…and finally – the collective resign of the people to rise again.”
From there she pulled together a collection of like-minded, Jersey born-and-bred musicians. Some from Bouchelle’s past, others just happy to help. All, though, are bound to New Jersey and share an important, common goal.
The collaboration, rightfully called “Restore the Shore”, drew from recordings in a number of studios, requiring the compilation of an even larger number of tracks. In the end, the song was mixed in New York City and deemed ready for release on June 21, 2013 – the first official day of Summer 2013 and the unofficial return of the Jersey Shore.
Shares Bouchelle, “[There] was much loss, but we can pull together and have the common mission to Restore the Shore, not just physically, but spiritually…”
To do your part in restoring the shore, visit www.restoretheshoresong.org or go on iTunes for a song purchase. Proceeds will go directly to the Hurricane Sandy New Jersey Relief Fund, chaired by Mary Pat Foster, wife of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie. And don’t forget to visit the shore and show some love this Labor Day Weekend! Play the song on your way!
Featured performers include: Garry Tallent (Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band) – Bass, Jerry Gaskill (King’s X) – Drums, Bobby Bandiera (Bon Jovi) – Guitar, Lorenza Ponce (Sheryl Crow, Dixie Chicks, Bon Jovi) – Violin, John Popper (Blues Traveler) – Harp, Southside Johnny (Asbury Jukes) – Vocals, Gary US Bonds – Vocals, Glen Burtnik (Styx, The Orchestra) – Vocals, Winston Roye (Soul Asylum) – Vocals, John Easdale (Dramarama) – Vocals, Lisa Bouchelle – Vocals, Jay Siegal (The Tokens of “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” fame) – Vocals, Steve Forbert – Vocals, Fiona – Vocals, Christine Martucci – Vocals, Ernie White – Vocals, Lisa Sherman – Vocals, Jimmy Maraventano (Jimmy & the Parrots) – Vocals
Additional vocals by Pat Guadagno, Corey Wagar, Keith Roth, Bob Burger, Lee Mrowicki, and Hal Selzer. Additional guitars by Scott Rednor, Stephen DeAcutis, and a multi-platinum artist who wishes to remain anonymous. “Restore The Shore” c 2013 by Lisa Bouchelle/Bill Frankel. Produced by Stephen DeAcutis. Co-produced by Lisa Bouchelle, Hal B. Selzer, and Michael Waldman. Mixed by Michael Barbiero. Mastered by Greg Calbi at Sterling Sound. Distributed by INGrooves/Fontana Distribution. Photo courtesy of RTY Photography.