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Pajammin’ to jam at ‘10 inauguration

By Alex Gershanov
Published: December 2009

Following mayor-elect Setti Warren’s inaugural ceremony, a diverse collection of musical and artistic groups are scheduled to perform on January 1. Among those listed are the Newtones and Pajammin’, a rock band of six South seniors.

The event, which takes place at Newton City Hall, follows Warren’s campaign theme of “bringing Newton together. Warren’s Campaign Manager Pat Johnston explained that the event intends to “reach out to everyone and have a diverse cross section of Newton [residents]. The final hour of the program is supposed to be devoted to the young people of the city, including multiple groups from both North and South.

Johnson contacted senior Alice Lee, who had interned for Warren over the summer, asking if she knew of any students that were interested in performing at the ceremony. Lee proposed the offer to musical student groups The Delta and Pajammin’, from which senior lead singer, Nick Sobel, contacted the Newtones. Currently, only Pajammin’ and the Newtones are confirmed as playing at the inauguration.

Sobel is excited to play at such a prestigious event.

“Just the fact that we’re playing not at some high school event or battle of the bands has more implications and makes it a little more important, he said. “It’ll certainly be more exciting with hopefully more people there than usual.

Pajammin’ plans to perform, along with several original pieces, some popular covers that they have played in the past as well as a few new ones.

“People at the shows appreciated some of our more popular covers and we’re  going to bring up some new ones, some new originals that we’ve only tried out at one show, Sobel said. “It should work out to be a pretty exciting show.

The Newtones, who just last year recorded with artist Ben Folds, will be performing the Beatle’s hit, “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, as well as “California Dreaming by The Mamas &The Papas. Newtones Music Director, junior Oliver Baverstam, was surprised that the group would get to sing at such an important event.

“It’s a big deal, he said, “I didn’t think we’d get to sing at a big political inauguration.
The festivities surrounding Warren’s inauguration will be held in three parts and will last two days’€December 31 to January 1.

The first part, entitled “Newton Gives, will provide an opportunity for residents to help the community by partaking in the building of a skating rink for the Newton Highlands playground and by packaging gift boxes of food, clothes, and other essentials to American troops stationed overseas.

The second portion, called “Newton Reflects, will consist of Warren, his family, and residents joining members of the clergy for readings, music, and a sermon delivered by Reverend John Connolly of the Sacred Heart Church.

The final segment, known as “Newton Celebrates, will take place after Warren’s swearing in and will involve food, music, film, and other performing arts to reflect on Newton’s past, present, and future. According to Johnson, the entertainment of the afternoon will include a wide variety of performing groups including a puppeteer, a Chinese dragon performer, choral groups, and various musical groups ranging from violin ensembles to rock bands.

Johnson explained that the emphasis was on the “diversity of ages and different types of groups that would be performing. According to Warren’s website, a specific portion of the program was dedicated to young performers because they represent the future of the city.

“A lot of young people from North and South worked hard for Setti and the campaign and got involved in general so we’re trying to give an opportunity for all those young people to come to City Hall, be a part of it, and perform and hear some music that they like, Johnson said.

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