By Greg Ellison
Pines-based five-piece unit to perform variety of genres outdoors at winery, Friday
(June 18, 2020) In another sign of life as covid-19 restrictions are rescinded, the Ocean Pines-based Still Rockin’ band will deliver a free live performance at Windmill Creek Winery on Friday, starting at 5 p.m.
Still Rockin’ bassist Dave VanGasbeck said the five-piece unit is scheduled to play an outdoor show Friday June 19 from 5-8 p.m. at the vineyard and winery located at 11206 Worcester Hwy.
“We’ve been practicing with social distancing for about a month,” he said.
Primarily mining rock, blues and soul classics from the ’50s-’70s, the act is comprised exclusively of Ocean Pines residents, with decade-plus member and veteran saxophonist Bernie Kessler tracing the groups’ formation to the Parke neighborhood.
VanGasbeck is the latest axe player to join Kessler, drummer Tony Karacoulakis, guitarist and lead vocalist Tom Flanagan and keyboardist and vocalist Char Vanvick.
“I just joined it last year,” he said. “I’m the baby of the group.”
VanGasbeck said despite the challenging times, band members are charged up to return to Windmill Creek, one of the group’s past venues, which include the Ocean Pines Yacht Club, Costa Ventosa Winery, and the American Legion, the Dunes Manor and Clarion Hotels in Ocean City.
“It’s a sad time for everybody because of the covidvirus and it’s a sad for the entertainment industry,” he said.
Unlike numerous touring acts left with empty slates and support crews who have gone unpaid since the pandemic onset, the members of Still Rockin’ pursue music for pleasure not pay, not to imply performances are done gratis.
“We’re doing this because we love it and because it’s fun,” he said. “We’re not doing it to get rich because we’re already retired.”
Pursuing their artistry is the objective.
“Everybody’s been involved for the largest proportion of their life,” he said. “It’s a passion and we enjoy the hell out of playing.”
Promoting gigs tends to happen organically.
“Each one of us has our own activities and our own circle of friends, so we always invite them,” he said.
In addition to serving as the Ocean Pines Volunteer Fire Department President, VanGasbeck is also in the Ocean Pines Corvette Club and an avid pickleball player.
“A couple of the other members … play pickleball so we have a bunch of fans from the [Ocean Pines] Pickleball Club,” he said. “We pretty much play by word of mouth.”
VanGasbeck said the groups’ set lists are steeped in classic rock, pop, blues and country standards.
“We play generally oldies … although we do intersperse some newer music,” he said. “We’re always learning something new and always refining what we already know.”
The wide-ranging musical fare has attracted a multi-generational following after more than a decade of regular gigging.
“We do have a broad fan base of younger people all the way to some who are older than us,” he said. “There are a lot of younger people that like the oldies [and] some of the first generation bluesmen.”
For more information see the Still Rockin’ Facebook page.
Safety guidelines will be adhered to for the performance this Friday with the outdoor location providing ample room for socially distanced lawn chairs and blankets.