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Music in the Air . . . with Mark ‘Fenny’ Fenichel: Rock For A Reason raised $5K to benefit Edward Boss Prado Foundation

Published in Morgan Hill October 12-25, 2016

By Mark Fenichel

Photo by Marty Cheek From left to right, Connie Murray, Kathy Carrera, Aleda Phillips, Laura Gonzalez-Escoto, Majhon Phillips, Cecelia Ponzini, Allen Phillips, Heidi Bowers and Jennifer Tate accept a check for Cecelia's Closet.

Photo by Marty Cheek
From left to right, Connie Murray, Kathy Carrera, Aleda Phillips, Laura Gonzalez-Escoto, Majhon Phillips, Cecelia Ponzini, Allen Phillips, Heidi Bowers and Jennifer Tate accept a check for Cecelia’s Closet.

My musical friend Majhon Phillips last month produced the second annual “Rock For a Reason: Dancing Through the Decades” to benefit The Edward Boss Prado Foundation. Her Music As Language instruction business produced the show with help from more than 25 local companies and sponsors. All proceeds were matched by Modern Woodmen of America, which allowed Rock for a Reason to donate $5,000 to the foundation, founder Cecelia Ponzini plans to use the proceeds to purchase new storage facilities for her Cecelia’s Closet ever-expanding inventory which donate clothes and other items to local families in need.

Rock for A Reason featured James Myrick and Jack Jenney of Soul Kiss and Jason Craven of the EMJ Trio along with local students who performed top hits from the 1950s up through today.

Briana Pember sang the classic Etna James song “At Last,” belting out the lyrics with a lot of soul in her voice.

“It’s really fun because no one is really judging you too hard but you just get up there and sing,” she said.

Emily Hansen sang the Gloria Gaynor song “I Will Survive,” getting people up and dancing.

“I like performing,” she said.”It’s fun because it releases stress because it gets you out of the problems that you have.”

She encourage other young people to try out Music As Language because they will strength their vocal range, she said.

Attendees enjoyed dancing, singing, walking through the various arts and crafts booths, and sampling appetizers provided by Mama Mia’s. “This event is important to our community because it’s the youth of our area helping local youth,” Phillips said. “Every act of kindness and generosity grows to create more so why not use great music and fun as a starting point?”

Music as Language is based out of Morgan Hill and offers private lessons in piano, voice, guitar, drums, bass, music theory, and songwriting.

Music As Language aims to educate students on the fundamentals of music, while incorporating communication skills through listening and making informed opinions about what they hear. This music studio understands that not everyone will be a professional performer so they teach a balanced and well-rounded private music program to help students learn and communicate musically.

Contact Music As Language at

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On another note, I love to write about live local music in the South Valley region. With fall upon us, the outdoor festival season is done for a while and the wineries are winding down their live music events.

But music is still in the air in Morgan Hill. The Moveable Feast on the Third Street Plaza has acoustic duos every Wednesday through Oct. 19 and every Wednesday Chris and Friends has his amazing acoustic open mic at GVA Cafe from 6 to 9 p.m.

You can also find live music any night of the week at 88 Keys Cafe (now open for lunch during the week) but there are not many other places in town for live music.

Morgan Hill resident Lance Wagner owns Little Lou’s BBQ in Campbell and has some of the best live music around every day of the week in that popular restaurant. We hope one day this exceptional business will open a music venue in Morgan Hill.

There is also talk of a new wine bar in town so I will keep you all posted when I find out more information. I am also hopeful that The Hill Bar & Grill will start live music again with the new owners, Huberto Acevedo of Margarita’s Bar and Grill, taking over soon. We look forward to their grand opening soon.

I am always looking for more music stories and music related things to write about. I have some great music stories that I will be writing about in future issues and I encourage you to send me your music thoughts and suggestions you may want to see in this column. Send them to