Cory Dorvil is Making Beats

Cory Dorvil, one half of The Dorvil Brothers, has been working with me creating beats in GarageBand. For those of you closer to my age than to Cory’s, a beat is a piece of music and “GarageBand is a digital audio workstation (DAW) and music sequencer that can record and play back multiple tracks of … Read more

Reconnecting Through Music

In 1975 I was in eleventh grade at Msgr. Farrell High School. Frank Caporaso sat in the desk in front of me in chemistry class. Farrell is an all-boys Catholic high school and, as you might imagine, all that testosterone with no tempering female presence sometimes led to a Lord of the Flies classroom ambience. … Read more

A Rare Girl

I’ve been working with Colleen for several years. At first I didn’t exactly knock it out of the park in terms of popularity. Although she doesn’t use words, Colleen has very effective methods of communication. In my case it was the growl and the grimace that she used to let me know that my music … Read more

57 Years of Music and Friendship

Steve and John at St. Clare's 1963

CHP volunteer Steve Pavis and I have a long history. We’ve known each other since kindergarten and for most of our 57 years of friendship Steve has been my music “guru”. As kids, Steve’s musical knowledge and tastes were much more sophisticated than mine, (I remember him talking about Hendrix when we were in 6th … Read more

Getting to Know Steve

Steve Pavis and John have been friends since they were five years old, growing up together on Staten Island, NY. Steve’s several older siblings made him a very hip music fan from a young age and he has been John’s music guru since the 6th grade. During the punk rock era of the late ‘70s … Read more

Thinking of You

John singing with the Second Story Band

Thinking of you and looking forward to making music with you, again!

Getting to Know Marilyn


Marilyn Tuzzo, Volunteer Extraordinaire, started working with The Coffeehouse Project after observing the effect the music had on her mother during one of John’s Somerset County Senior Wellness Center programs. With her background in teaching and peer leadership facilitation and her fancy dance moves, it made all kinds of sense for her to join the … Read more

What’s the Point?

Our goal is to improve lives through music making. When I reflect on this goal, I sometimes wonder if an hour of smiling, singing and dancing is “enough”. I keep coming back to the conviction that it is – and, also, that it isn’t. The research scientist in me wants to make sure that the … Read more

CHP Family Focus: The Dorvils

Mary Dorvil at home

When I was young, my daddy wasn’t there, so Mommy had to bump me up and down the stairs, so Moved to Elizabeth after Brick City New ‘hood but still in the nitty gritty Had a stutter and my tongue got tied Kids teased and I just couldn’t hide Feelin’ sorry for myself, Mama cut … Read more

My Guitar, Myself

Once, when the Italian actress Anna Magnani was having her portrait taken she told the photographer, “Please don’t retouch my wrinkles. It took me so long to earn them.” I used to be the kind of person who was so struck by the visual beauty of a Fender Stratocaster guitar that when I finally owned … Read more