Big day for Big Joe and the Amateur Talent Show at Jenkinson’s on PPB. Normally the audience votes by applause for which of the contestants they favor. But for the semifinals and finals, Big Joe imports a celebrity panel of judges. Celebrity by Big Joe and Jersey Shore standards, that is. After all, keep in mind that 101.5 is New Jersey’s only radio station, and its radius of reception is only about 50 miles. But hey — that’s why we love it!
As dusk settled in, the celebrity judges took to their table. The only judge you’re likely to have heard of is Robert John. He had a #1 hit in 1979 called Sad Eyes, which for the life of me I can’t recall hearing on the air at the time, but I do remember him for his top 10 re-make of The Tokens’ The Lion Sleeps Tonight. Couldn’t find a video of Robert doing it, so here’s the original:
Robert John grew up as Bobby Pedric on Howard Avenue in the Brownsville section of Brooklyn, truncating his given name of Robert John Pedric, Jr. The three other judges you never heard are Pat Joyce, Cat Constantino, and Kevin What’sisname, all of whom I gather are Jersey folks. A requirement to enter Big Joe’s Talent Show is that contestants must be residents of New Jersey, so it would only be fair to insist that the celebrity judges are Jersey people.
Once again, the semifinalists took readied themselves under the 101.5 tenbased on stage presence (10 points max), appearance (10 points max) and talent (20 points max). Neither Miriam nor I could figure out how the judges came up with the three winners they selected for each of the age categories. But then again, we’re not Robert John, Cat Constantine, Pat Joyce, and Kevin What’sisname.
One thing we all agreed on was the weather which thankfully abated from the weekends’ sweltering Friday/Saturday to leave us with a beautiful evening outdoors. In the event of inclement weather, the show is held indoors at Jenkinson’s. But the real charm of the show is that it’s on the beach, at dusk, with palm trees and marmalade skies.