BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - The Gov. Livingston Guitar Club brought their "Road Trip" Coffee House back home to the GL Cafeteria for one last show before school broke for summer to show off the talents of both veteran and first time performers.
The event, organized by Student Assistance teacher Bob Segear, showcased approximately 20 student and teacher performers (see photo gallery of entertainers) who jammed to popular hits by Bob Dylan, Fleetwood Mac, Black Keys, Elvis Presley, self written songs, and Segear played a classic Eagles tune, "This Train Leaves Here This Morning."
Segear introduced the students and teachers and handed a special commemorative guitar pick [inscribed with "Jammin' @ GL"] to each of the first time performers.
He started the Guitar Club five years ago as a volunteer club for students to come to his classroom during lunch to jam and share common music interests with other students. This "positive alternative program" has led to friendships that extend outside of school to "play music, sing songs and to just have fun." They bring their talent on the road a few times a year to provide an opportunity for students to share their musical skills to their friends and family.
Graduated senior Bernie Greene, a member of the GLTV crew, was introduced to the Guitar Club four years ago when he filmed one of their first shows. Since, Greene has purchased six guitars and finally took the stage at this show to play a Nirvana song.
Segear's dream tp impact the lives of students has been seen time and again. Students are drawn to Segear's genuine passion and commitment to inspire students to enjoy the natural high of playing music.
It isn't easy to step out of your comfort zone and perform in front of a room full of peers, as experienced by Columbia Middle School teacher Rebecca Siebelt. "I give a lot of credit to all of you," said Siebelt, who eased into her performance of "Landslide" by Fleetwood Mac.
Graduated senior Matt Koutsaftes presented Segear with a banner he designed to hang as the backdrop for future Road Trip Coffee House concerts for years to come.
In addition to the Road Trip Coffee House performances, students have been encouraged to compose songs for the statewide "New Jersey Shout Down Drugs Music Competition." In the recent past, GL had seen success in the competition with the 2014 1st and 2nd place entries by Kate Parker, Teddy Cole, Ryan Hernandez and Kylie Meltzer. This year, freshman Olivia McKeon was a finalist with a song she wrote and performed on piano.
Editor's Note: The GLHS Guitar Club advisor is Mr. Bob Segear. To get additional information on the GLHS Guitar Club or make a donation you can contact Bob Segear by calling (908-464-3100 ext 2713) or by email @ email@example.com. The Berkeley Heights Education Foundation as well as the Berkeley Heights and Mountainside Municipal Alliances have supported the efforts of the club.