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In the second edition of “2 Slices & A Story,” Scott Stapp reveals a rather funny-ass story from a Creed performance at Madison Square Garden.

Did Winter Storm Jonas slow me down last weekend? You’re talking to someone who grew up in Western New York and went to school at Syracuse University. A few scenes from Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

A photo posted by Ralphie Aversa (@ralphieaversa) on


And the snow was far from finished when I snapped that Saturday afternoon. By Saturday evening, people were literally sledding down Amsterdam.


On Monday, the cleanup struggle was still real.

New York City-born actor Zach McGowan stopped by ahead of a few big premieres: Season 3 of The CW’s show “The 100,” which he has an arc on and Season 3 of Starz’s hit “Black Sails” – a show he has been on since the start. McGowan talked about landing both roles and growing up during the 80’s on the Upper West Side.

A goal for 2016 is to continue something I’ve been trying since 2014 – exploring, creating and experiencing more while finding ways to push myself out of my comfort zone. Specific to this year though, I’m making a conscious effort to share those moments on my social networks whenever possible. So on Sunday morning, when I awoke at the crack of dawn and decided to come to the studio and get some work done, I also made time to enjoy the view.


That is a bank which I pass on my daily/nightly commute and I JUST noticed the lighting. I found myself looking around a bit more on this particular commute, and when I arrived at 33rd and 7th, I saw a lighting configuration of the Empire State Building that was a bit different than normal.


NAH BRAH. As I completed my work, the sun rose and it was spectacular.


After finishing some taping for Monday, I hit the gym for a quick run and then – in the spirit of experiencing more – tried something new.


As perhaps you can imagine, I’m planning a return trip. Also, the quinoa chips were fantastic. But alas, there was cooking to be completed (which you saw on my Snap story; add me: ralphieaversa). I knocked out a Buffalo Chicken Wing Dip and packed up the Bloody Mary bar before heading to John Foxx’s apartment, where I gave birth to a food baby.


Sunday was indeed the real MVP.

There are a number of goals I’ve set for 2016; two include writing more for this blog and posting higher quality and quantity to social media, specifically Instagram. So Friday night, when I was in the studio I decided to take a second and enjoy the view.


Post-show Friday turned from a late night to an early morning. I retreated to the Upper West Side, only to head back down to Penn Station a few hours later as I had a train to catch for Providence, R.I. I love many things about Amtrak, including but not limited to the view.


My radio show has aired in Providence since 2009 and has always done well there. This certainly has endeared me to the area. Nothing but love for the Ocean State.


Oh – so I traveled up to Rhode Island for the Cumulus Providence Holiday Party. I liked that it was on a Saturday and after the craziness of Christmas and New Year’s. The party was held in scenic Newport, a town I had never visited. Thankfully my colleague Jay (who usually is with me covering award shows) picked me up from the train station and showed me around. It doesn’t matter what time of year – witnessing something as powerful as the Atlantic Ocean in person is pretty spectacular.


Extra point for me because the caption of that post read, “I keep on hoping we’ll eat cake by the ocean.” Love DNCE. Anyways, Saturday night in Newport was much fun. But alas, another early morning and early train ride awaited me. Returning to the greatest city in the world makes it all worth it though.

I was live in Times Square for New Year’s Eve on 95.5 PLJ. In addition to counting down in to 2016, I chatted with Charlie Puth, Miss America and George Zimmer. Check out some of the sights and sounds below!



Stars converged inside The Theater at Madison Square Garden for a special benefit concert honoring what would have been John Lennon’s 75th birthday. A few of the musicians participating in the event along with the evening’s host, Kevin Bacon, stopped to chat with me on the red carpet. The concert aired on AMC Saturday, December 19.
bacon

New York City-based musician Ryan M. Vaughn stopped by to chat about “A Holiday Benefit,” an annual compilation album and charity concert. For the second straight year, money raised will be sent to ArteAmor, a non-profit that places artists in orphanages across the globe so that kids living in extreme poverty can experience the arts.

The benefit concert was held at Rockwood Music Hall on the Lower East Side and hosted by yours truly. To buy the album, click here.

When Jerry Seinfeld plays venues like the F.M. Kirby Center in Wilkes Barre, PA, there is at least one problem he doesn’t have to worry about: friends and family asking for comp tickets.

That probably will not hold true as Seinfeld begins a residency, the first of his career, just blocks from his New York City apartment at the historic Beacon Theatre. The comedian will begin calling the Upper West Side venue his home minutes away from home starting January 7, with monthly gigs scheduled through the end of the year and planned for as long as the interest from both Seinfeld and the public holds. The exception is November, with no shows booked; there are two in October to make-up the lost date.

So why did Seinfeld, who is seemingly enjoying a semi-retirement of performing his stand-up routine across the country and filming the web series, “Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee,” want to do this? Beacon Theatre is managed by the Madison Square Garden Company, which hosts another iconic New Yorker every month at its main venue.

“When Billy Joel does ‘New York State Of Mind’ at The Garden, it’s different,” explained Seinfeld about seeing the Piano Man inside the World’s Most Famous Arena. “It sounds different; it feels different than when he does it in Charlotte.”

Seinfeld said during a press conference announcing the residency that the experience inspired him to reach out to James Dolan, Executive Chairman of MSG.

“Yes!” Dolan replied when I asked what his initial reaction to Seinfeld’s idea was. “Jerry Seinfeld wants to do anything with us, the answer is always ‘yes.’

“I’m not surprised,” Dolan later told me. “He’s all about New York, and obviously so is Billy. So it just makes perfect sense.”

Seinfeld even bought Joel’s Long Island home from him and joked during the media gathering that he was out to “sabotage” his career. All jokes aside, Dolan clearly views the two acts in a class of their own.

“It’s hard to say,” responded the executive when I inquired about residencies being a new trend for venues and live events. “Billy Joel and Jerry are both special and it’s not like any comedian could do this or any entertainer like Billy Joel could do this. There is a matchup between them, New York and the marketplace.”

Dolan also noted that his favorite “Seinfeld” character was the Soup Nazi, which didn’t seem to surprise the show’s star.

“Oh that’s funny,” Seinfeld said. “I get that. The Soup Nazi is all business, so is Jim.”

The comedian hasn’t had much of a “routine” from a professional perspective since the show ended, and his new gig really doesn’t alter that.

“There’s no specific day or week,” he explained regarding the schedule. “It’s just; if they have an open night and I’m free, we’re just going to do it like that.”

Tickets range in face value from $79 to $175 but good luck grabbing a seat at that; all shows for 2016 are already sold out. So what is Seinfeld going to do when friends start calling for comps?

“I’m not prepared at all,” he told me. “And, I don’t really know how I’m going to handle it. I think I may just lose some friends.

“No, there’s no question this could be a huge mistake! There’s no question about it.”

Photo: Kevin Mazur

Photo: Kevin Mazur

Zella Day did not take a typical path to the stage. The 20 year-old grew up in a small Arizona town known more for skiing and snowboarding than sunbathing. When she was young, Day moved with her mother and sister to California, but the purpose of the trip was not so she could live out her dreams as an artist. Rather, her parents divorced, and Day’s grandmother lived in Long Beach.

The singer/songwriter’s first gig was on the stage of her grandma’s coffee shop; 11 years later she is now performing at much bigger venues across the U.S. Day stopped by our studio and chatted about her family, along with the transition she has made this year from supporting to headlining act. Day, a self-proclaimed “small-town” girl, also talked about exploring our wonderful city.