There are three fantastic concerts taking place tonight, and I suspect everyone will find at least one of them appealing.
For something folksy and slow, with plenty of strumming and melancholy, go to The Living Room, where Dare Dukes will be singing about his current home town of Savannah, Georgia as well as our fine urban jungle. In this video Dare is playing with Savannah accordionist, Rose Lifschutz:
Also this evening, one of my favorite rock bands will be hitting the stage at Bowery Ballroom. Black Taxi always put on an excellent live show and they’re catchy numbers, like Pretty Mama, get the whole crowd moving. Watch it here then go out and see it live:
Finally, B is very excited to see Hooray for Earth at Union Hall. Watch this (rather odd but cool) music video and I’m sure you’ll see why:
I am saved from having to make a choice between these three concerts by a prior commitment- tickets to Turandot at the Metropolitan Opera. I hope you are able to make a choice! Enjoy!
Last Friday after seeing In the Loop at BAM (it was hilarious, full of snide one-liners) P and I walked down to Union Hall to see Annie and the Beekeepers and Keegan Dewitt perform (and to eat mini-burgers). We went mostly on a whim so Annie’s voice took me entirely by surprise. It has the sort of deep smooth sound you don’t often hear from such a young performer and it made me nostalgic for the great female singers I grew up with (Joni Mitchell, Natalie Merchant, Sarah Mclachlan, etc.). Their bluegrass/folk sound is enriched by their truly excellent musical skills. They met at Berklee College of Music and all three are a credit to the institution. I hesitated between buying their first recording, Annie Lynch and the Bee Keepers or their more recent one, the Squid Hell Sessions EP, but was convinced by Ms. Alexandra Spalding to buy both (always have a beautiful woman selling things- works every time). Listening to their music at home I have been especially pleased with a number of the lyrics, like this line from their song Dirty Laundry:
We made a promise/a promise is worth nothing it’s but a word/and I’ve burned those words into the ground/like ashes to the dirt
Annie Lynch, Alexandra Spalding and Ken Woodward
The last act of the night was Keegan Dewitt. I’ll admit when he first started playing the piano I was thinking of heading upstairs for a game of bocce ball but once he started singing I was quite enamored. His voice is amazing and hearing it coupled with a sole instrument makes it stand out that much more. I picked up his CD Sadness to Relate but discovered when I tried to play it that it’s blank! (Anyone want to send me a replacement?) I was somewhat bummed out by this but I suppose I’ll just have to wait until he’s back in town to hear all that lovely crooning again.
Check them both out online and I’ll let you know if they play again in The Big Apple.
P.S. Keegan Dewitt’s manager promised to mail me another CD as soon as he read this post (thanks Robert!)
We have quite a week ahead of us, particularly if the rain confines itself to convenient times of day! Tonight, don’t forget there’s an excellent indoor event at Union Hall- the Board Game Olympics! The organizers at Metro Metro have some good tricks up their sleeves- get out there and play nice!
If you want to do a bit more moving and a bit less eating Wednesday night check out the Official Tango Factory Milonga Opening at Drom. There will be “live electro tango music” and a “dance exhibit”- sounds promising, if a bit on the unusual end of tango!
There’s a ton going on Thursday; my pick if it’s not raining is a screening of To Catch a Thief in Brooklyn Bridge Park. This might well be the most romantic event of the summer- the bridge glittering above you as Cary Grant and Grace Kelly (future Princess of Monaco) exchange smoldering looks on the silver screen. Sneak in a bottle of wine and a blanket to cuddle under; check out the trailer for a taste of what you’re in for:
If you’re looking for a more classic sound check out the Saxophone Summit at Kaufmann Concert Hall. The 92Y is hosting this all-star concert with saxophonists including Jimmy Heath, Phil Woods and Steve Wilson.
Finally, if you’re still feeling nostalgic, round out your week with a visit to Camp Wanatachi, aka Glasslands Gallery, for lots of great music and theatrical reenactments, plus s’mores, friendship bracelets and hair wrap stations!
This weekend is chock full of excellent events. Be sure to check my previous post for fun stuff happening tonight and tomorrow. Plus, a quick addition for tonight, if you won’t be able to make it to the Excess Energy party at Hugs Thursday you can check out Brian Blackout at Fontana’s tonight; he’ll be spinning a lot of 70’s arena rock, funk, psychedelia and indie rock- sounds like a party to me!
Friday night Rooftop Films takes the show the the ground (the lawn of Automotive High School in Wburg) for Animation Block Party! They’re “dedicated to exhibiting the world’s best independent, professional and student animation,” and they’ve definitely followed through in the past. This is going to be a fantastic show, full of comedy and drama and animation in all sorts of styles.
If you’re looking for a classic film join kids of all ages in Hudson River Park for a screening of Ghostbusters! Check out the trailer to remind yourself of just how great it is:
On Saturday night you can go to the rave you always dreamed of attending- FIXED is coming back to the basement of the Tribeca Grand! Guest DJs Riton, Lemonade and Free Energy will keep you dancing all night long!
Also on Saturday Indian Idol Kailash Kher will be rocking the Prospect Park Bandshell! His music is described as “adding elements of folk, reggae and rock to Indian pop” and he definitely looks like he knows how to put on a show.
On Sunday, for a change of pace from all the beer celebrations, celebrate pork at 3rd Ward’s 2nd Annual Pig Roast and Dance Party! Butchers from Marlow & Sons will be slicing and dicing for your culinary enjoyment (there will also be beer, don’t worry). Here’s an impressive (and kind of gross) image from last year’s event:
Our Lady J is a New York based singer/songwriter known for her visionary gospel stylings and powerhouse pianistic skills. Along with her “Pink Champagne Orchestra” and “Train-To-Kill Gospel Choir,” she has sold out crowds at The Zipper Factory, Ars Nova, The Beechman Theatre, as well as world venues including London’s prestigious South Bank Centre and the Spiegeltent (in Manchester, UK). She has also traveled the globe as music director and arranger for Justin Bond’s recent original song cycles. This year, Out Magazine named her as one of the “Out 100,” a list of the people who helped shape LGBT culture in 2008.
On Monday MetroMetro is hosting the 3rd Board Game Olympics at Union Hall; games include Trivial Pursuit, Jenga, Uno, Battleship, Connect Four, Memory and Operation! Sign up in advance and use those skills your parents said were useless!
Stay tuned for additions and have a great weekend!
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!