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January 16th, 2009


by You the Reader

Rhonda Liss.

While parties and fetes will have our nation’s capitol in celebrity and limousine gridlock on Tuesday, January 20, 2009, The Southampton Inn-located in the heart of the historic village-will be the setting for a jubilant, East End style Inaugural Celebration in honor of President Barack Obama and Vice-President Joseph Biden, as well as two newly elected local leaders: Town Justice Andrea Schiavoni and Town Councilwoman Sally Pope. The Southampton Inn is located at 91 Hill Street in Southampton Village.

The Southampton Town Democratic Committee will host the evening of music, dinner and dancing to celebrate the tremendous efforts of the East End community in helping to elect the new leadership for the country. Organizers hope all who are interested, regardless of political party, will join in this celebration.

Guests will gather for cocktails followed by a seated gourmet dinner featuring a special menu prepared by Brian Naylor, Executive Chef of OSO, The Southampton Inn’s new acclaimed restaurant that was recently named Best New Restaurant in Dan’s Papers annual Best of the Best.

The evening’s entertainment includes Gospel, Jazz, Latin, Folk and Popular musical performances, highlighting not only the diversity of the country but that of the East End as well. Featured artists include tenor James D. Lamb III a Southampton native who began singing at age nine under the leadership of the Rev. Dr. Frank Anthone White of Kings Chapel Church of God in Christ in Southampton. He has also trained with Professor Byron L. Preston of Galilee Church of God in Christ. He has performed in the McDonald’s Gospel Fest two times at Madison Square Garden (2003 and 2005), on BET with Dr. Bobby Jones, and has also performed for the last five years with Ms. Maryanne McElroy in the Harvest Fest Gospel concert, organized by the East End Arts Council.

Saxophonist, vocalist and songwriter Charles Certain is also slated to perform. Certain started as a songwriter in Seattle when his debut CD “Certain Moods” was nominated for Best Smooth Jazz CD of the Year 2000. The next year two of his songs were included on Daren Motamedy’s “It’s All Good,” which went on to win that same award. Mr. Certain has traveled extensively with has his band, Touche. For the Inaugural Celebration performance, he will be joined by Ken Kresky, an accomplished pianist and vocalist. Mr. Certain has lived on the Shinnecock Reservation with his family since 2001. “Charles Certain moves in unique and wondrous ways when he plays Nu-Jazz, R&B, and Funk, it is all good. More importantly he is all good, keeping the Shinnecock culture alive while bringing us together,” says Bob Zellner, civil rights activist, author of The Wrong Side of Murder Creek: A White Southerner in the Freedom Movement.

Also appearing is soprano Rhonda Liss, who has made a career on the opera, concert and musical theatre stage. She has appeared with the Metropolitan Opera, performed at Carnegie Recital Hall, and as a soloist at Radio City Music Hall and in London’s West End. Locally, Ms. Liss participated in the successful Obama Benefit Cabaret “There’s Nothing Like A Dem” at the Southampton Inn over this past Labor Day weekend. Her most recent solo cabaret shows in NYC were “Silver Linings: A Gypsy’s Tale” and “Moonlight Becomes You.”

Originally from El Salvador, Carlos Ponce has been singing in this country for fifteen years. He has performed with Banda Heavy and traveled around the country with Potencia Band. Locally, he has performed at Gurney’s Inn and, this past December, was in a concert at the Ross School to benefit Madres, an organization that benefits Columbian children. In addition to singing tunes from his extensive repertoire, Mr. Ponce will be bringing his favorite D.J. to spin Latin favorites for dancing.

Additional performers will be announced in the coming days, as will special guests.

Inaugural Ball 2009 will be hosted by Southampton Democratic Committee on Tuesday, January 20, 2009 from 7:00pm-11:00pm. Includes Hors d’ Oeuvres, Three Course dinner & dancing, Cash bar. “Festive Dress” (black tie is optional). Cost per person is $45. For more information or to make reservations contact 631-537-1428 or

Checks should be made payable to:
Southampton Town Democratic Committee.
P.O. Box 384,
Westhampton, New York 11977
or through PayPal, at

Out of town guests interested in staying at the charming Southampton Inn can contact Tony Cotignola for all special rates at 631-283-6500.

Filed Under: Arts & Leisure | Events | the Hamptons





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