Can you believe it, our little country another year older? Last year I spent July 4th in Roswell, NM where the Honey Bear Dancers put on a show worthy of our great nation; here’s a video for your viewing pleasure (Happy 4th of July!):
Aren’t you glad you’re in NYC and not Roswell, NM? Haha. Well, there are some great things for you to do here this weekend (though none of them involves the Redneck Woman song- as far as I know). I’ve already posted some great events for Thursday.
From free events like Smash the Church, Smash the State: A Queer Vision of Independence (co-presented by Bluestockings and City Lights Books) to the pointed and provocative work of artists like Arcade, Dorsey, Bornstein and Justin Bond and shows like The Mattachine Project and the Baraka de Soleil curated Black-Out, HOT! Festival strives to provide a platform for art and ideas that embody progressive and uniquely queer voices.
For more questionable theater this week and next you can head to the Joyce Theater to see the Umbilical Brothers “mimic every sound imaginable, creating a warped world where they whip up another uproarious fiesta of carefully choreographed mayhem.” F just saw their show and said it was hilarious; after seeing this video I can see why:
Onstage, the band’s chemistry fuses the bonafides of gospel with the fiery theatrics of early punk rock, as if Atche invokes the haunted vocal grooves from Archie Shepp’s “Attica Blues,” bolstered by strained rhythms echoing the DKs’ “Holiday in Cambodia.” All of that’s wrapped in a handsome wardrobe, and instilled with a techno flow that colludes the deviating sounds.
Head out there and judge for yourself.
On Saturday you have many options for celebrating the birth of our country (messy and imperfect but still inspiring in its absurdity).
Union Hall is celebrating our more esoteric athletic pursuits with a bocce ball tournament! There will also be karaoke and burgers (for the less athletic amongst us).
If it’s dancing you want Studio B is the place to be; there will be different DJs on both of the two floors as well as DJs spinning on the open rooftop- get down like it’s 1776.
For most of us July 4th means fireworks and while in NM pretty much anyone can set off their own (in their backyard, on the road in front of their house, in the middle of the highway…), in NYC it’s all about being in the right spot to see them. New York Magazine has some great tips; I second their West Side Highway suggestion.
On Sunday laze around the Brooklyn Yard; the weekly Sunday Best series will include guest DJ Losoul this week. Here’s a shot from one of last year’s events:
Brooklyn Yard '08
Stay tuned for additions and happy Independence Day!
Adults and children of all ages are welcome to help decorate the midsummer pole, make flower wreaths, play traditional games and dance to authentic fiddle music. Food stands will offer traditional delicacies from New York’s finest Swedish restaurants and food purveyors.
Keep your ears open for news of the equally traditional riotous afterparty!
Also on Friday you can help support Ground UP Productions and have a drink under the stars at their Rooftop Rendezvous! The posh event will be held on the Scholastic Center Rooftop Terrace and in the adjacent Greenhouse, both of which have enviable views of Soho. Get discount tickets HERE.
Saturday is the biggest event of the summer (at least if you’re a mermaid)- The Coney Island Mermaid Parade!! Words fail to describe the brilliance of this event, so here are some photos from past parades:
That is exactly the kind of madness that defines NYC!
Should you be looking for something more literally tasty there are also two amazing food-centric events happening on Saturday. First, you can witness a competition of gelatinous proportions at the Gowanus Studio Space; the great Jello-O Mold Competition will be judged on creativity, aesthetics, structural/sculptural ingenuity and edibility/culinary appeal. Can we achieve the jell-o art of times past?
If Jello-O isn’t hearty enough for you head over to 513 Henry St at Sackett in Carroll Gardens, where the Greenhorns are presenting the Goat Spit Summer Throwdown:
Join the Reverend Billy and the Greenhorns — a group of especially ambitious (and young!) farmers — in the previously abandoned Vermont Market & Pharmacy in Carroll Gardens for an afternoon of delectable treats and plenty of sustainable tips. Goat gets roasted on a bike-powered spit; you can fill up on greens, burgers, pickles, beer, and espresso, too. A rooftop gardening workshop coaxes your own latent green thumb, while a documentary on the Greenhorns also screens, perhaps serving as inspiration.
On Sunday Central Park Summer Stage is embracing francophilia with a line-up that showcases the diversity of French contemporary music. I am particularly excited about Coralie Clément; watch this adorable music video and you will be too!
“Summertime… and the livin’ is easy;” I can hear Billie Holiday crooning in my ear as I type those words. It is going to be a GREAT weekend everyone! I will be in Boston with G and his fellow BC Law grads but you have a delectable spread to choose from.
Tonight, at Public Assembly, enjoy burlesque and sideshow to the backbeat of live rock n roll!
Tonight you can party for a cause at the Bed Stuy Food Not Bombs Benefit:
Tonight is also opening night for a lovely new French film showing at BAM- Summer Hours (L’heure d’été), directed by Olivier Assayas and starring Juliette Binoche and Charles Berling, amongst others. You know I’m a huge francophile so I’m biased, but you can watch the trailer and decided for yourselves:
Futurity is an original indie-rock musical by Brooklyn-band The Lisps. A theatrically staged song cycle, Futurity tells the story of a Union soldier in the Civil War who is an aspiring science fiction writer. The work fuses traditional Americana, found text, experimental music, and The Lisps’ own brand of quirky co-ed pop.
This weekend is the last weekend you can see the Raspberry Brothers make fun of Snakes on a Plane at Clearview Chelsea Cinemas; when you need some AC and a nice reclining seat, not to mention a good laugh, check them out.
Saturday night go to your first great dance party of the summer- the Down and Derby at Studio B.
4 crawfish pours (4-5lbs of crawfish per person) along with corn on the cob, potatoes, mushrooms, onions, garlic, sausage and spices served with unlimited beer and New Orleans Hurricanes!
Sounds like a challenge to me!
This weekend is also the New York Airshow at Jones’ Beach! Performers include the USAF Thunderbirds, the Warbirds Over Long Island and the Canadian Forces Snowbirds! Bring your sunscreen and enjoy the spectacle!
Tacos, sangria, little kids running around, trees, water, and good, good music. Residents Doug Singer, Justin Carter, and Eamon Harkin are playing alongside soulful house maestro Quentin Harris all afternoon and evening.
And if you’re looking for a traditional BBQ (of sorts), I recommend Flatbush Farm for all your Memorial Day needs:
As Obama Nation observes Memorial Day, the Farm will offer a traditional American-style BBQ on our outdoor patio: grilled barn burgers, pulled pork sandwiches, cole slaw, shiskebabs, grilled hot dogs, chips and potato salad. Drink pourer Jason Roberts will serve up the new and refreshing BUMBLE TEA—Earl Grey infused vodka-based sweet tea!
I hope everyone had a great weekend and a great Monday. I am in full LSAT study mode (or at least I should be) so I won’t be able to attend many events until after June 8th but I will certainly tell you all about them and hopefully live vicariously through you!
Tonight you have a choice between indie rock, a tribute to The Bed In and a night of neuroscience!
If the term The Bed In means something to you, you should undoubtedly be at the Gershwin Hotel tonight where Neke Carson and Michael Wiener will be presenting “Give Peace a Chance”:
Book launch benefit celebrating the 40th anniversary of John and Yoko’s historic Bed In. With a Give Peace a Song Cabaret. Celebrate the 40th anniversary of John and Yoko’s famous Bed-in for Peace 1969 in Montreal. Get a sneak preview of the photo exhibition that will open May 26 in Liverpool. Launch Joan Athey’s new book. Brooklyn-born photographer Gerry Deiter, on assignment for Life Magazine was the only photographer there the entire eight days. Special guests Guitar Legend Gary Lucas and composer Steven Lynch will be on hand to add to the proceedings plus more surprise quests. The Cabaret includes a presentation of Bed-in images, a reading from eye-witnesses to the recording of Give Peace A Chance, a special guest — writer Charles Childs (who worked with Alex Haley on Roots) presents excerpts from his unpublished interview with the couple. Climb into bed and talk peace like John and Yoko did. Local musicians rock the room with their favorite John Lennon songs. This is also a fundraiser for music writer Paul Williams. He sustained a head injury in 1995 while cycling and needs 24 hour care for the dementia that has recently manifested itself.
Dr. Arancio is a cellular neurobiologist at Columbia University’s Department of Pathology and Taub Institute for Research on Alzheimer’s Disease and the Aging Brain. In his lab at Columbia University, neuroscientist Ottavio Arancio explores the molecular mechanisms of memory formation.
Settle down in the comfy couches and learn about the workings of your brain (or at least the cells you didn’t kill with tequila last week).
On Wednesday you can satisfy all your local food/wine cravings in one place- Brooklyn Uncorked at the spectacular Brooklyn Academy of Music at 30 Lafayette Avenue in Fort Greene. This lovely event is run by the trio of Edible Publications and features wine from local wineries including:
Baiting Hollow, Bedell/Corey Creek, Bouké, Bridge Vineyards, Brooklyn Oeneology, Castello di Borghese, Channing Daughters, Clovis Point, Diliberto, Grapes of Roth, Harbes, Lieb, Long Island Merlot Alliance, Macari, Old Field, Osprey’s Dominion, Palmer, Raphael, Roanoke, Sherwood House, Shinn, Sparkling Pointe, Waters Crest, Wölffer Estate
as well as food from:
Amy’s Cookies, Bodum, Bridge Winery, Buttermilk Channel, DiPalo’s, Fizzy Lizzy, Get Fresh, Great Performances, iCi, North Fork Potato Chips, NuNu Chocolates, Palo Santo, Plowshares Coffee, Rick’s Picks, SerendipiTea, Stonehome Wine Bar, The Farm on Adderley, The Smoke Joint, Vere Chocolate, Wine Cellar Sorbets
B is a big fan of Wye Oak but he won’t be able to attend because he will be spinning at Hugs. I am pleased to announce that Sunday Singles was a big hit (it was written up in Gothamist amongst other lovely blogs) and Excess Energy is bringing you Love Machine:
On Thursday there will be a reception at the Brenda Taylor Gallery for their new exhibit- the Love Armor Project. Check out their website for the history, as far as I’m concerned this picture says it all:
Also on Thursday you can check out the second Puppet Playlist- Magnetic Fields at The Tank Theater.
Puppet Playlist takes talented puppeteers and brilliant musicians and slams them together into an evening of live theater to stir the senses. Our second Playlist will feature new works of puppetry set to a litany of love songs by The Magnetic Fields. Between sets, hear new interpretations of Magnetic Fields music — on cello, accordion, guitar and more. A chance to see some of New York’s most interesting puppet artists and musicians at play. Performers (and their work) have been seen all over New York and throughout the world, on, off- and off-off-Broadway, at Here Arts Center, Shakespeare in the Park, the Metropolitan Opera, FringeNYC, Lincoln Center, with Jim Henson Productions, and on both American and International TV (yes, that includes the Muppets). Featuring pieces by: Eric Wright, Melissa Creighton, Marta Mozelle MacRostie, Ithai Benjamin, Darragh Martin, Maja Rajenovich, and Mary Robinette Kowal and Jodi Eichelberger. Musical performers include: Hannah Temple, Matt Singer, Emily Hope, Anna Leuchtenberger, Jon Levin, Jo Williamson.
There are two shows but they will sell out so be sure to reserve here.
A few early weekend announcements…
Friday night, weather permitting, there will be telescope observation at the Columbia observatory. Regardless of cloudy skies there will be a lecture, The Good the Bad and the Ugly- Astronomy in the Media, by Jackie Faherty.
Last but not least, The Wet Spots have a late show at Joe’s Pub. They are described as “vaudevillian, oversexed, and weirdly Canadian: think sex club by way of Monty Python.” I was deeply skeptical until I watched this video and now I’m kind of hooked:
Have a wonderful week and stay tuned for additions!
St. Hallmark day is fast approaching and I have yet to come up with a game plan. Even on the (admittedly rare) occasions that I have been in a relationship on Valentine’s Day I’ve found this a difficult challenge. I don’t really go in for $150 “Romantic Tasting Menus” or jewelry in poor taste (for goodness sakes gentlemen- what were you thinking?). The truly romantic gestures (moonlight, rose petals, home cooked meals, a signed copy of ‘Love in the Time of Cholera’) seem forced when they’re being performed on such a commercialized occasion. I am simply too cynical to suspend my disbelief, even when I am in love.
This year I am not in love, which means my options break down into the following four categories:
The Angry Event
These are events somehow based around a cynical dislike of romance, love, couples, the jewelry industry, the flower industry, the chocolate industry and especially Hallmark. In general these become anti-consumerist more than anything else. Beware of people drinking themselves into a stupor and/or trying to bitch about their ex’s to anyone within shouting range. Here are a few to consider:
For a pre-Vday burst of anger head to Desert Island in Williamsburg Friday night to hear Koren Shadmi read from her new book ‘In the Flesh,’ a collection of macabre short stories about the perils of dating in Brooklyn.
This is often some form of speed dating designed to help you find someone to be “romantic” with by the end of the night. Most of the people present are desperate, lonely and horny so attendance is really only advisable if you are also all three of those things. If you’re lucky there will be that one person who is attractive and dorky in the right way and miraculously feels the same way about you, in which case all you have to worry about is how to tell your friends you met at a singles event without sounding lame. In general however you’re more likely to end up in a room full of unattractive women trying not to look desperate and skeevy men trying to look classy. However, if you are feeling optimistic, check these out:
Valentine’s Day @ Dewey’s Flatiron- you receive half a playing card at the door and if you can find the person with the other half you both get a free drink.
A bunch of friends hitting the town and trying to pretend it’s not Valentine’s Day! This can go splendidly, just as any night on the town can go splendidly. It can also devolve into a group therapy session in which you all cry about being alone and how hard it is to meet people and how you’re afraid you’ll never manage to sustain a relationship (do you really want to?). Judge your group carefully to determine if your outcome is likely to be positive and be careful not to end up at a bar that’s having some kind of “romantic special”. Some safe spots to get down with your girls:
Valentine’s Death Prom @ Studio B- the name is enough of a reason!
Stay home, eat grilled cheese, watch an action movie and don’t feel sorry for yourself. Ok, try not to feel sorry for yourself. Don’t think about your ex’s (or who they’re with now) and please please don’t think about that guy you’re sort of seeing (and don’t call him). To make this option a bit more positive try turning it into a romantic solo evening- think a long hot bath with marvelous bath products from Lee-lai (available at Sustainable NYC and Greenhouse Essentials and on their website) and some exquisite chocolate from Vosges.
Please try your best to enjoy St. Hallmark day! Let me know what you end up doing and be sure to add any events you hear about in advance!