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Rest In Rubble, 5Pointz

Posted by Billyjam, November 10, 2014 05:50pm | Post a Comment

As we approach the one year anniversary of the controversial whitewashing of 5Pointz -  the once vibrant outdoors aerosol art mecca in Long Island City, Queens - I thought it time for an update on what's going on in the site that was a free public outdoor art gallery for two full decades. It was on November 19, 2013, when most of the colorful aerosol pieces by world famous street artists were whitewashed over after being officially condemned to make way for high rise luxury condos. It was yet another casualty in the expanding gentrification of New York City's five boroughs. 

Following frequent visits to 5Pointz over the past three months since the demolition of the square block area at Jackson Avenue and Davis Street began, I can confirm that the December 31st projected completion date of the demolition process should be right on schedule. Once that's done, then the construction of two 47 to 50-story luxury apartment buildings will begin. After these two high rise buildings (which will house 1,000 apartments) are completed, the owner of the property promises to allocate a good deal of wall space for aerosol artists to return to the site and continue doing their work. However, most artists have vowed to never return to contribute their art. Of course, what actually happens when these new buildings are fully completed - likely sometime in 2016 - remains to be seen. Even though the fight to save 5Pointz in its original status is long lost, artists and activists have been closely monitoring the new developments. Hence when news surfaced that the owner of the property was going to name the new luxury apartment towers "5Pointz" and have the name trademarked, these artist/activists loudly protested saying that the developers were merely trying to capitalize off the work and reputation the artists who had voluntarily shared their art at their own expense over the past 20 years by using the name that Meres One had given the space after taking it over from when it was Phun Factory.
 

As a longtime fan of 5Pointz, it was a place I would frequently visit to enjoy the new art, take pictures, and run into folks I know like longtime NY/NJ aerosol artist DEMEROCK (originally of the Wallnuts crew). At 5Pointz, especially on the weekends, there always seemed to be something going on from hip-hop video shoots to photo shoots taking place (one time I saw a bride and groom in formal wear get their wedding pics taken with graf as backdrop). Even if I didn't walk by, I'd make a point of taking the 7 train as its elevated tracks offered the perfect view of 5Pointz and its multitude of colorful pieces. Naturally then when I stopped by earlier today to witness the increasing piles of rubble and the few remaining buildings with nary a few pieces of art left, it was a sad thing to witness. The one part with some art that still remains (pictured at top above) includes the aerosol-sprayed lettering in large-scale font "END OF AN ERA" that adorns the top part of building and pretty much sums it up. While longtime supporters of the old 5Pointz vow that they'll have nothing to do with the new apartment towers, it is the end of that era and a new (albeit more sanitized) era will take its place where artists will again be welcome to share their art on designated wall space. It is my guess that most artists will be happy to share their work there. Meantime though, I spill a lil on the curb for the old 5Pointz, which now rests in rubble. Below are a few "BEFORE" photos from 2013 and 2012 that correspond with the "AFTER" as in now shots above.
 
 
5 POINTZ BEFORE shot from 2012

Music History Monday: November 10

Posted by Jeff Harris, November 10, 2014 10:59am | Post a Comment

To read more Behind The Grooves, go to http://behindthegrooves.tumblr.com.

On this day in music history: November 10, 1975Chicago IX: Chicago's Greatest Hits, the ninth Chicago IXalbum by Chicago, is released. Produced by James William Guercio, it is recorded at CBS Studios in New York City, Columbia Recording Studios in Los Angeles, and the Caribou Ranch in Nederland, CO from January 1969 - December 1973. The first greatest hits package for the band, the 11-song compilation will feature tracks from Chicago's first seven albums. Though it will exclude any selections from their third and fourth albums, due to Chicago III not yielding a major hit single and their sprawling 4-LP live set recorded at Carnegie Hall also not having any singles released from it. It will also not contain any tracks from Chicago VIII, which had only been released eight months before. Since XI is issued only as a single LP, it will include the edited versions of "Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is? (original pressings feature the promo radio edit, later replaced by the commercial 45 edit when reissued on CD), "Make Me Smile," and "Beginnings" (faded earlier to run only 6:28, with the full 7:51version restored on the CD release) to meet the time constraints of vinyl. The album's cover artwork features a photo of the band members on a painting scaffold, making it one of the few Chicago albums to actually feature the band on the front cover. Original vinyl pressings will feature custom label artwork and inner sleeve, with later repressings using the standard red Columbia label and generic inner sleeves. CBS will also release the album in quadraphonic stereo. Chicago IX: Chicago's Greatest Hits will spend five weeks at number one on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified 5x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

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Celebrate Our Birthday With an Amoeba T-shirt and Get 10% Off This Weekend

Posted by Amoebite, November 10, 2014 08:00am | Post a Comment

Wear your Amoeba Shirt and get 10 percent off

Amoeba is turning 24 this year. And to celebrate, we’ve got a great deal for you!

Wear your Amoeba T-shirt to the store during our birthday weekend (Saturday, Nov.15 through Monday, Nov. 17) and get 10% off your purchase. (It’s limited to one discount per day and can’t be combined with other coupons or offers.)

If you don’t have an Amoeba T-shirt yet, pick one up in our stores in a myriad of colors, or order on Amoeba.com.

amoeba berkeley

This weekend doesn’t just celebrate the birth of the original Amoeba store in Berkeley, which was opened Nov. 17, 1990, on Telegraph Avenue. In 1997, on Nov. 15, the Amoeba mitosis happened—the cell split and we were TWO, as Amoeba opened an even bigger store where the old Rock & Bowl was on Haight Street in San Francisco. Then, on Nov. 17, 2001, the Amoebas gave birth to a WHOPPING GRANDBABY with Amoeba Music Hollywood on Sunset Boulevard. With hundreds of thousands of titles in a two-story building over an entire city block, it’s not only our biggest store but the biggest independent music store in the world! Find out even more about our stores and take video tours of each store here.

So come help us celebrate the birth of all three of our stores this weekend. It’s our party and we’ll give you 10% off if we want to.

One album wonders: The Open Mind's The Open Mind

Posted by Eric Brightwell, November 10, 2014 01:00am | Post a Comment
THE OPEN MIND - THE OPEN MIND (1969)

Around 1963, Putney-based musicians Mike "Mike Bran" Brancaccio (guitar), Phil Fox (drums), Timothy du Feu (vocals), and Ray Nye (bass) formed The Apaches, who recorded a demo with none other than Joe Meek. Nye left the band and du Feu moved to bass after they acquired a new singer, Terry Martin (real name Terry Schindler). They changed their name to The Drag Set in 1965.

The Drag Set

Two years later the band were writing their own material and released their first and only single as The Drag Set, “Day and Night” b/w “Get Out of My Way” in early 1967 on Go. Go was a short-lived label which released mostly mod and soul music by the likes of The Barney Sisters, Carl Douglas And The Big Stampede, Neil Spence, Our Plastic Dream, Phil Brady And The Ranch Set, The Roll Movement, Samantha Juste, Scots Of St. James, and Sugar Simone.


The Drag Set realized that there might be some unintended connotations to their name and in 1968 changed it to the suitably psychedelic The Open Mind, on the suggestion of De Feu

The Open Mind

The following May they released their first single with their new name, “Horses And Chariots” b/w “Before My Time.” In July the band released a collection of mod-tinged, leather pants heavy psych which proved to be their only LP, titled The Open Mind and released by Philips

The Open Mind

In August of 1969, The Open Mind released a non-album single, “Magic Potion” b/w “Cast a Spell," produced by Fritz Fryer, guitarist of The Four Pennies. "Magic Potion" proved to be The Open Mind's final release, although they soldiered on until 1973, at which point Phil Fox quit. 


After that, De Feu and Schindler were joined by Stephen Florence and a new drummer and became Armada (not to be confused with Rod Torfulson's Armada Featuring Herman Menderchuck), who broke up after releasing no music.

Pick Up David Bowie's New Album at Amoeba and Get 2 Tickets to 'David Bowie Is'

Posted by Amoebite, November 7, 2014 04:00pm | Post a Comment

David Bowie Is Screening

The new David Bowie retrospective Nothing Has Changed, comes out Monday, November 17, and when you buy it in-store at Amoeba Hollywood on 11/17, you’ll get two free tickets to a special screening of the documentary David Bowie Is later that night at the LA Film School at 8pm.

David Bowie Is documents the traveling exhibition on Bowie organized by London’s Victoria & Albert Museum. Described by The Times as “stylish & outrageous” and The Guardian as “a triumph,” the exhibition features a remarkable collection of photographs, stage costumes, and other rare possessions from the David Bowie Archive. The documentary was filmed on the closing night of the V&A exhibition and features legendary Japanese fashion designer Kansai Yamamoto, Pulp front-man Jarvis Cocker, and other Bowie collaborators.

The exhibition is currently on display at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, so if you can’t make it out to see it, the film’s the next best thing.

David Bowie Is exhibition at Victoria & Albert Museum

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