While many in New Jersey are taking matters into their own hands to help the people of Ukraine, 13-year-old Kealia Grace Smith took her cello to the beach where she arranged the Ukraine National Anthem in four parts and performed it.

Photos Courtesy of Kealia Grace
Photos Courtesy of Kealia Grace
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Check out this incredible version:

Kealia pronounced (KAY-AH-LEE) is a member of the Philadelphia Youth Artist Orchestra. She did it to encourage people to donate money to the Ukraine refugees.

She joined us on NJ 101.5 to talk to us about it, you can listen to our conversation On-Demand starting at 02:34:

 

She tells us  in her press release:

"I’ve been very upset about everything in Ukraine, and it really pains me to see what’s happening there. Watching people evacuate, especially little kids and pets, is so difficult for me. I wanted to bring a little comfort and hope to everyone who’s impacted by the conflict in Ukraine.”

Photos Courtesy of Kealia Grace
Photos Courtesy of Kealia Grace
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Kealia did not know the Ukraine national anthem, much less arrange it into 4 parts. Here's how she learned it:

“I actually looked at videos of people performing the Ukrainian National Anthem, most in large choirs. I arranged it into four parts for cello and recorded myself playing each part individually and then I put it all together. I performed it on the beach, 10 minutes from my house. My mom and dad used their phones to record the video. My dad also brought our recording of the audio for me to hear as I played the cello.”

So what got Kealia into the cello?

Photos Courtesy of Kealia Grace
Photos Courtesy of Kealia Grace
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“I've had an interest in music since I was really little. One of the shows I liked was Little Einstein's, and they talked a lot about music there. I started piano lessons at age six, but I also really wanted to play in an orchestra, so I listened to different instruments, and the rich tone of the cello stood out for me. I started playing that when I was 8. I also started playing clarinet in school the year after.”

Photos Courtesy of Kealia Grace
Photos Courtesy of Kealia Grace
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Now she travels over 1hr 15 minutes each way to study cello with Dr. Joanne Erwin from Rowan University. That's dedication and it pays off when you hear her play.

Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Steve Trevelise only. Follow him on Twitter @realstevetrev.

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Best coffee shops & cafes near NJ beaches

When it comes to food, New Jersey is known for many things such as pizza and pork roll. Don't count us out when it comes to coffee.

With all the hustle and bustle involved in the average New Jersey resident's day, coffee is essential. It doesn't matter whether you're living in the cities of North Jersey or the vacation spots at the shore.

In fact, as the former owner of two Jersey shore coffee houses, Coffee Dot Comedy in Sea Isle City and the Daily Grind in Ocean Grove, I know firsthand how much people at the Jersey shore love their coffee.

With respect to that, I asked my social media following where the best coffee houses at the Jersey Shore were, especially since my two places no longer exist.

Below is what they came up with. (And see this other article for their coffee shop and cafe recommendations for Central Jersey.)

Gravy or sauce? These restaurants make the best red in Central Jersey