Amoeblog

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 #84: Janelle Monae, Duck Down BBQ, Puerto Rican Day Parade, All-City Graffiti Archive + more

Posted by Billyjam, June 4, 2014 04:00pm | Post a Comment

Boot Camp Clik "Trading Places" - The legendary BK crew throw a free BBQ/concert tomorrow

Yesterday (June 3rd) was the official launch of this season's annual citywide park concert series SummerStage with a free show by Ty Dolla $ign at Red Hook Park in Brooklyn. The series continues this evening at the same location where Mark McGuire, Marissa Nadler, and Delicate Steve all perform (again for free) at 7:00pm. An excellent triple bill this show is worth it just to check out Mark McGuire alone who plays an array of instruments and musical styles that include mandolin, drum machines, guitars (electric and acoustic), and a Talkbox as witnessed on the former Emeralds member's latest solo album Along the Way whose sound Amoeba.com likened to "early New Age—think Tangerine Dream and Brian Eno." More info.

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New York State of Mind Amoeblog #83: CitiBike One Year Anniversary, World Science Festival, WFMU Record Fair, NYC Film Festivals + more

Posted by Billyjam, May 28, 2014 11:53am | Post a Comment


Greetings from New York City where right now am in the Chelsea District on 25th Street down the block from where the production crew trucks from Law & Order are setting up for a shoot that will run through tonight. As I walked by the shoot, I half-expected to hear that L&O signature doom doom sound effect emit from the set.  According to one tech guy I talked to briefly, the television show's film crew are "hoping it won't rain again." That's a valid concern since, over the past week here in NYC, we've been enduring a series of thunderstorms (plus humidity). In fact, the heavy rainstorms over the Memorial Day weekend disrupted a lot of planned outdoor events, which was a bummer for New Yorkers and visitors, including the 1500 sailors in town for Fleet Week. But weather forecasters predict good weather to arrive with June, just round the corner. 

Otherwise, things are pretty good in NYC: a recently released report says that NYPD's stop and frisk incidents under the new mayor are down a whopping 89%. This is good, but from what I've seen round town, random stops of cyclists seems to be on the increase. Alex Baldwin's recent national news-grabbing arrest for riding his bike the wrong way on a one-way street was just one of many citations and arrests made by busy NYPD on cyclists in the past month. Meanwhile CitiBike - the Manhattan bicyle sharing program that boasts 6,000 blue bikes at 330 docking stations from 59th Street all the way downtown - just celebrated its one year anniversary yesterday and, despite a few problems that are all being worked on including budgetary ones and keeping up with demand, is doing real well.

New York State of Mind Amoeblog #81: The Dream House, CASH Music Summit, DMC NYC Part II, Hip Hop Hall of Fame Awards + more

Posted by Billyjam, May 13, 2014 06:55am | Post a Comment

Checked out legendary drone sound installation art space The Dream House in TriBeCa (pictured above) last weekend and it was amazing. Luckily I got to check it out when I did since the long running space is about to temporarily close again this Sunday (May 18th) before taking a break until its next (22nd season) in mid September.  A long running collaborative "Sound and Light Environment" piece, that dates back to 1993, by sound artist/composer La Monte Young and visual artist Marian Zazeela the Dream House is presented by the MELA Foundation. There at 275 Church Street there is a non descript door with no sign but just a buzzer that will get you inside and up the long steep flight of stairs to the third floor exhibit  - a floor below where the minimalist exhibits' creators live. Luckily too since any other tenant would surely not wish to live above such a wall (floor?) of sound which is one long continuous hypnotic humming single frequency drone care of giant speaker stacks in the long purple light fused room that overlooks Church Street looking up towards Canal. The shaggy carpeted floor is strewn with pillows to lay down and relax on and get the best effects of the drone. The guy at the door suggested moving your head around to get alternate soothing effects of the loud (but not deafening) throbbing drone. For some attendees the experience is a religious like one that transcends visitors beyond this lower Manhattan space.

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