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MARTY ROCKS

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It’s an old event thrown from a new office. .

Although Marty "Party" Markowitz has abdicated his state Senate seat to assume the borough presidency, his two signature summer concert series will take place without pause.

The 20th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. concert series at Wingate Field in Prospect Lefferts-Gardens presents shows every Monday beginning at 7:30 pm until Aug. 18, at the field located between Winthrop Street and Kingston Avenue, opposite Kings County Hospital.

On Monday, July 15, the Martin Luther King Jr. series will present an evening of gospel with Shirley Caesar, Keith "Wonderboy" Johnson and the Spiritual Voices in addition to Dottie Peoples. The following week the Isley Brothers, famous for such songs as "Shout," "Love is a Wonderful Thing" and "Fight the Power," will join jazz virtuoso Roy Ayers.

Teddy Pendergrass and Ashford & Simpson will headline the July 29 program to be followed on Aug. 5 by "WBLS Mystery Night of Today’s R&B." On Aug. 12, Teena Marie and Kool & the Gang’s J.T. Taylor will take the stage for the second to last show.

Topping the series will be a flashback to last summer’s race for Borough Hall, with Markowitz’s Caribbean campaign clarion, the Mighty Sparrow, hosting the winning performers of the 2002 Trinidad and Tobago Carnival band contest.

Meanwhile in Coney Island, the Seaside Summer Concert Series at Asser Levy Park on West Fifth Street at Surf Avenue, will open at 7:30 pm this Thursday, July 11 with Sinatra - Frank Sinatra Jr., that is - performing with the Brooklyn Philharmonic Orchestra.

"Brooklyn is Brooklyn," Sinatra Jr. said in a Borough Hall press release. "Brooklyn has become a place of American folklore. The people have always been very good to us. They have always been wonderful. The New York crowd is very fond of Frank Sinatra [senior] and always have been very good to him."

The band will feature a homecoming of sorts for longtime Sinatra pianist, Bill Miller, who grew up in Bensonhurst and spent 40 years playing with "Ol’ Blue Eyes." He will join junior for the seaside set - Sinatra’s first since the ’70s.

The following week, Coney Island will erupt with the Classic Rock Explosion, featuring Alan Parsons, Christopher Cross, Jack Bruce of Cream, Mark Farner of Grand Funk Railroad and Eric Carmen.

A slightly mellower set will envelope the beachfront on July 25, with a tribute to Motown with the Four Tops, and Dennis Edwards’ Temptations followed on Aug. 1 with the Beach Boys.

The Swedish sensation ABBA, featuring some of the original band members, will perform on Aug. 8, to be succeeded by a slightly more patriotic evening of oldies on Aug. 15 with Jay Black & The Americans, Ben E. King, Johnny Maestro & The Brooklyn Bridge. The series will be capped on Aug. 22 with the annual "Salsa by the Sea," a best of Latin music celebration.

But that’s not all Party Marty has up his musical sleeve as he will host performances at Borough Hall plaza, in front of the Borough Hall steps at noon every Wednesday.

On July 17, folk-pop threesome K.J. Denhert Trio will perform, followed by experimental jazz group Jazz Beatniks.

Gordon, Bennett and Barbado will perform country blues on July 24, and July 31 will bring the Latin ska sounds of RedRube to Downtown Brooklyn.


Shows for all three concert series are free. Seating is limited, so bring a chair. Performance lineups are subject to change. For updates, call the concert hotline at (718) 469-1912 or (718) 802-3700.

Updated 4:00 pm, November 10, 2010
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