Perth Amboy Musician Tosses Hat in the Ring

BJ Torres City Council Candidate

BJ Torres plays guitar and sings in the legendary New York punk band The Krays. On September 13th  they perform in the “Sunday Matinee on the Bowery,” online concert with “Godfather of Hardcore” Stigma and Antidote NYHC. The show will help “Save our Stages” by raising funds to save Jessie Malin’s popular NYC music venue Bowery Electric.  “We cannot lose these venues,” said BJ Torres.  “The music community is like a family and comes together to support each other and solve problems with creativity, loyalty and generosity” BJ said. Being active in the music community has been an important part of BJ’s life, and also inspires his public service. 

For the past 20 years BJ Torres has been a professional musician in 5 bands and has written and produced many recordings.  He is a singer, songwriter, backup vocalist, and guitar and bass player. BJ’s songs are about urban life and his personal experience growing up in pre gentrified NJ and NY. He is a seasoned veteran that has played CBGB’s and The Stone Pony and he has toured nationally and internationally. BJ enjoyed success as an artist living and performing in Jersey City’s vibrant art scene.

BJ moved to the Perth Amboy Waterfront in 2012 to be with his fiancé Caroline Pozycki.  “We both agreed that Perth Amboy is very special and we decided to make it our home.” BJ got to know Perth Amboy by volunteering to develop a plan to use arts and culture to revitalize the City. “I got to know the valuable assets that Perth Amboy has, it’s history, its culture, it’s recreation” BJ said.

BJ Torres
BJ Torres in United States of Boogaloo

BJ began to implement the arts plan by adding vibrancy to the waterfront. He produced the Live at the Ferry Slip Music Series, which transforms the Historic Perth Amboy Ferry Slip into a live music venue on the Perth Amboy Waterfront, showcasing local artists in a beautiful setting. He was appointed to the Perth Amboy Arts Council and has served as Chair. The Arts Council has plans for an outdoor gallery in the downtown with 10 large murals that will make it a destination.  “The Perth Amboy downtown is a diamond in the rough. Communities throughout Middlesex County like Carteret, Avenel, Metuchen, and New Brunswick have been using the arts to revitalize. Perth Amboy can too,” BJ said.

BJ Torres with 2020 Vision Team running mates Rose Morales for City Council and Helmin Caba for Mayor

BJ Torres decided to join the 2020 VisionTeam and run for Perth Amboy City Council with Helmin Caba for Mayor and Rose Morales for Council. “ I believe that the City can achieve its potential if we work together” said BJ.  “When the administration works with the boards and commissions and the community, great things can be achieved. That is why I joined the 2020 Vision Team.”

BJ is a graduate student at Rutgers University getting his Masters in Labor Relations. He teaches at Rutgers while attending classes. He also has his Bachelors of Science from Rutgers in Labor Relations, with highest honors. “We need stability in City Hall. I will use my experience in Labor Relations to help foster a collaborative administration” BJ said. BJ is a father of 2 sons, Emilio and Joaquin, who are both accomplished sailors thanks to the Raritan Yacht Club Youth Summer Sailing Program. Before returning to school, BJ worked for 20 years in health care and is an expert in the NJ Charity Care Program and Medicaid.

BJ Torres serves as a Perth Amboy Democratic Committeeman. He is also the founder and organizer of the Perth Amboy Waterfront Neighborhood Association, where he has been working with residents to build community and address neighborhood issues.  BJ has served as a Perth Amboy Civic Trustee, where he learned to research best practice cost effective solutions to address our City’s problems. And finally, he co-founded the popular blog Perth Amboy Now, which shares an events calendar and positive stories and photos about Perth Amboy, as well as current news.

“I have solutions to address the economic impact of the shutdown and I believe I can make a real contribution to help the City. My knowledge of labor relations will benefit the City, and my experience working together with residents to solve problems will allow me to help make positive change happen” said BJ.