Amoeblog

New York State of Mind Amoeblog #89: Free Movies, Concert Guide, George Carlin Way, Afrika Bambaataa's Record Collection + more

Posted by Billyjam, July 16, 2014 02:00pm | Post a Comment

1984's Ghostbusters, set in New York City, is among the free films screened in NYC this week


The bevy of free outdoor movies continues with a wide range of choices of movies and locations to view them that include tonight (July 16) at Pier 63 at Hudson River Park (near 23rd Street) where the award winning 2013 film American Hustle will screen for free. This is a great location and does not get as packed as some of the other spots like Bryant Park but note that the front half of the lawn, which is damp most of the time so bring a plastic sheet, is on a backward slant from the screen so try to avoid sitting there or you will keep falling backwards. More info.   Meanwhile at the aforementioned Bryant Park's (42nd Street at Sixth Ave.) weekly HBO sponsored screening this Monday (July 21s) will be National Lampoon's Vacation. More info. Over in Brooklyn at McCarren Park tonight (July 16) SummerScreen presents Ben Stiller's silly but fun Zoolander. What  makes this free outdoor movie series extra special is that they also  have a live concert beforehand. This evening that will be the must-see double bill of two hot new NYC hip-hop acts Ratking and Princess Nokia. 6 pm start time with film screening at sundown (8:30pm approx). McCarren Park is at N. 12th St. at Bedford Avenue, Williamsburg. More info. Then on Friday evening at Pier 46 (again on Hudson River Park) "Ghostbusters (trailer above) will screen at  part of the summer movie series' Family Fridays with free popcorn to accompany the free movie.  Pier 46 is along West St. at Charles St. More info.

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New York State of Mind Amoeblog #88: Crotona Park Jams, Outdoor Movies, Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival, 4 Knots Music Festival & More

Posted by Billyjam, July 9, 2014 02:12pm | Post a Comment

Summer is officially well underway here in New York City with proof being that there are simply too many things going on simultaneously to possibly attend them all -  a good thing because every day there is a myriad of fun events (mostly free, and mostly outdoors) to chose from ranging from music concerts of all genres, to films in fun locations, to dance productions, and art shows, etc. These include the must-attend annual summer tradition of the Tools of War grassroots hip-hop produced Park Jams which take place in parks in the Bronx and Manhattan over the three main summer months on either Tuesday or Thursday late afternoon/early evenings. Since it's now July that means that the Park Jams, with the focus on the DJs, are happening at Crotona Park up in the Boogie Down Bronx - bringing the phenomenon, that gave birth to hip-hop four decades ago, back full circle. 

Last week, up until the summer thunderstorm kicked in the last quarter of the four-hour event, those entertaining included 1980's DMC champ DJ Cheese, "forever" host Grandmaster Caz, and legendary hip-hop DJ Jazzy Jay who is pictured top care of Ignacio Soltero. (Soltero also took photo above from one of last month's Spanish Harlem Tools of War Park Jams at White Park). Tomorrow (Thursday July 10) at the Crotona Park, Bronx location at the same time (4pm-8pm) the lineup will include DJ Cash Money, DJ Jazzy Joyce, and DJ Looie Loo. For full listings see flyer below or click here.

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New York State of Mind Amoeblog #87: July 4th in New York City, Motown Exhibit, Old New York + more

Posted by Billyjam, July 2, 2014 11:12am | Post a Comment
Following five consecutive July Fourth holidays with the big NYC fireworks display over the Hudson River on the West Side of Manhattan, this year's New York City Fourth of July fireworks display is returning to the other, East River, side of Manhattan where three large barges will be docked near the Brooklyn Bridge and scheduled Friday evening/night (approx 9:20pm) to fire off an estimated 40,000 firework shells to celebrate Independence Day - Big Apple style. That may be bad news for folks over in New Jersey and along the West Side of Manhattan who got used to having a great vantage point of the annual fireworks display but good news for those on the East Side including all along the FDR Drive as well as in as well as in parts of Queens and Brooklyn (including Brooklyn Bridge Park) who will have a great view. For those not in NY or unable to attend the entire event - officially known as the Macy's 4th of July Fireworks® Spectacular - can be watched nationally on NBC-TV as a live two-hour 8pm-10pm special that will feature performances by Ariana Grande, Hunter Hayes, Miranda Lambert, and Lionel Richieand hosted by Nick Cannon.


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New York State of Mind Amoeblog #86: Local Project in Long Island City, NYC Daily Life in the 1950's, Met Opera in Brooklyn Bridge Park

Posted by Billyjam, June 25, 2014 11:53am | Post a Comment

The talented aerosol artists / muralists, whose vibrant colorful work adorned the walls of the recently displaced (evicted) 5POINTZ graffiti arts mecca in Long Island City (LIC) Queens to make way for the impending construction of luxury condos, were not the only victims of the late 2013 shutdown of the globally revered outdoor public arts space. The long-running, local, non-profit, underground arts organization LP (Local Project Arts Space), who were housed inside the Long Island City 5POINTZ complex, were also unceremoniously evicted. Luckily they found a new home just several blocks away but now they have the challenge of meeting the higher rents in this once run-down industrial section of Queens which, like so much of New York City, is undergoing a gentrification makeover - read: driving out the artists and working folks who can no longer afford to exist there.

In the case of LP whose mission statement has always been to provide local artists a platform to show their work, under the shrewd guidance of its Chilean born director Carolina Penafiel (see Amoeblog interview above), it has come up with creative ways to pay the rent and exist (subsist?) in its new home on 44th Road. These include preparing to sublet out some of its space as small office cubicles and also, in the short-term to cover the rent for the immediate two months, a 30-day Kickstarter campaign that will end on July 12th. Tied into that campaign this Friday, June 27th 2014, they will have a sign-up donation station for visitors to contribute to the organization (in turn they get a brick in the wall with their name engraved on it), as part of a photography art show entitled The Bad, The Good, The Beautiful, The Ugly Pt 2. There will also be spoken word artists and DJs  including myself (doing a live WFMU broadcast) on Friday evening. For more info on LP and this Friday's exhibit visit their website, and click link for more info on their current Buy-A-Brick Kickstarter campaign  and/or peep video below.

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New York State of Mind Amoeblog #85: Mermaid Parade, NYC Pride, Northside Fest, River To River, LES Film Festival + more

Posted by Billyjam, June 18, 2014 12:00pm | Post a Comment

       


This week is a good time to be in New York City with a bevvy of wonderful events taking place including the once endangered, wonderfully flamboyant annual Coney Island for the Mermaid Parade which happens Saturday (June 21) at the beachside Brooklyn district (take the F train to the last stop). The above three hour video, care of TradingPhotos.com, of last  year's parade will give you an idea of what to expect at the giant scale art parade with burlesque and vaudeville event. More info

Meanwhile NYC's Pride Week (June 24-29, kicks off with a family night, free screening of “The Wizard of Oz” in Lower Manhattan at Hudson River Park’s Pier 46. For full details on the event packed Pride Week, that concludes with a parade and dance party headlined by Demi Lovato, visit the NYC Pride website .
 


There are two full days left to Williamsburg's Northside Festival which is being described as Brooklyn’s answer to South by Southwest - only in its formative days, back before big megastars headed to Austin and it was just underground unknown bands. Comparatively the Northside Festival is much more modest in scale and content with approximately 400 up-and-coming (mostly local) bands of different genres including Baked and Ava Luna scheduled for the week long music and film festival at various venues that ends tomorrow (Thursday June 19th) night.  Like SxSW there will also be panels and speakers including the likes of Jon Steinberg of BuzzFeed. For exact show/event details and tickets click here.

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