Wednesday, May 31

Dining “among the rooftops” of New York in 1905


Dîner sur le Toit, Gouache on board.
"Spending a warm evening in a New York rooftop bar or restaurant is one of the city’s sublime summertime pleasures. New Yorkers in the Gilded Age thought so as well. After the first roof garden opened on top of the Casino Theater at Broadway and 39th Street in the 1880s, other theaters and hotels opened entertainment venues on their roofs, offering cool breezes and panoramic views illuminated by the city’s new electric lights. 'A number of hotels, including the Waldorf-Astoria, the Vendome, Hotel Belleclaire, the Majestic, and the Women’s Hotel, all have charming roof-gardens,' states a 1904 article in Leslie’s illustrated magazine. French artist Charles Hoffbauer was captivated by the roof garden craze too. In 1904, this Impressionist painter created a series of paintings depicting well-dressed men and women dining on a New York City rooftop. ..."
Ephemeral New York
Charles Hoffbauer’s Rooftop Diners
W - Charles Hoffbauer

The Kitchen Presents Two Moon July (1986)


"... The television production Two Moon July was a multidisciplinary event that featured experimental video, film, visual art, performance and music in a theatrical framework. More than thirty artists participated in the program, which was produced for the Kitchen by Carlota Schoolman and directed by Tom Bowes. This production reflects a moment when art centers were experimenting with new modes of presenting the arts for television. The participating artists read like a 'who's who' of 1980's downtown art icons. Short excerpts from video and film works (by artists including Vito Acconci, Dara Birnbaum, Bruce Connor and Bill Viola) are intercut with performances and art installations in the Kitchen's gallery spaces. ... Art works by '80s art stars Cindy Sherman, Robert Longo and Jonathan Borofsky are integral to the mise en scene, while music by downtown legends Brian Eno, Philip Glass and Arto Lindsay, among others, provides a running soundtrack. ..."
UbuWeb (Video)

Habana Leones


1951 Habana Leones
Wikipedia - "The Habana club was one of the oldest and most distinguished baseball teams in the old Cuban League, which existed from 1878 to 1961. Habana, representing the city of Havana, was the only team to play in the league every season of its existence and was one of its most successful franchises. In their early history they were known by their colors as the Reds; later they adopted the names of Leones or Lions. Throughout their existence they had a famous rivalry with Almendares. ..."
Wikipedia
NY Times - The Pride of Havana: A History of Cuban Baseball By ROBERTO GONZÁLEZ ECHEVARRÍA
SABR: Lazaro Salazar
PEBA: Havana Leones
BR: Cuban Winter League
The Rise of the Latin American Baseball Leagues, 1947–1961

Tuesday, May 30

Filmed by Libin+Cameron: James White & The Blacks (1980 Live Performance Hurrah NightClub)


"Okay, so it’s Monday… That’s bad enough already, but it’s also a Monday in January and much of the eastern part of the US of A is totally blanketed in snow and freezing cold, so maybe you had to brave the elements to get to work, or maybe it’s a winter wonderland “snow day” for you and you’re sitting at home. Either way, I can’t help but to think, no matter your circumstances right now, this very moment as you are reading this, that your life will be improved by these recently posted video clips of Blondie’s Debbie Harry guesting onstage with James White and the Blacks at the Hurrah’s nightclub in New York City in 1980. ..."
Post-punk funk: Debbie Harry and James White & The Blacks cover Chic and James Brown, 1980
YouTube: Sophisticated Cancer, Melt Yourself Down, Money to Burn, Good Times (Deborah Harry)

2009 December: James Chance, 2011 December: No New York, 2014 July: No Wave: Post-Punk. Underground. New York. 1976-1980, 2014 July: Bush Tetras, 2015 January: Buy - James Chance and the Contortions (1979), 2015 July: James White And The Blacks - Off White (1979), 2015 October: Pat Place, 2016 January: Lost Chance (1981), 2017 January: Twist Your Soul: The Definitive Collection (2010), 2017 April: Contort Yourself / (Tropical) Heatwave full 12” (1979)Z.

ToposText


"The Aikaterini Laskaridis Foundation, established as a non-profit making organization on April 24, 2007 by a Presidential Decree, continues the cultural activity of the late Aikaterini Laskaridis, initiated some fifty years ago in Neo Faliro and continuing to this day. The Scope of the Foundation is to promote Greek arts and letters as well as maritime tradition and history. As an active and lively cultural – educational organization, it organizes and performs every year a large number of cultural and educational programmes. Target audiences include the general public, and especially students and the teacher and university professor communities; our educational programs involve more than 20,000 children each year. ..."
ToposText

Charles "Teenie" Harris


"Watch many photographers today working on digital SLRs and you’ll see them shoot, pull the camera down to peek in the digital screen to check the image, then repeat. This action has become known as chimping, and old salts will say that it betrays the photographer as an amateur, because back in the days of film, once you took a photo, that was what you had. But in the days of film, especially in a controlled setting, photographers often made redundant shots to make sure they captured what they wanted. Not Charles 'Teenie' Harris. A native of Pittsburgh’s Hill District, the city’s cultural center of African-American life, Harris was a semi-pro athlete and a numbers runner before he bought his first camera in the 1930s. ..."
TIME - One Shot Teenie: A Retrospective of Charles Harris
TEENIE HARRIS ARCHIVE (Carnegie Museum of Art)
NPR: The Big Legacy Of Charles 'Teenie' Harris, Photographe (Radio)R
Wikipedia
Charles Harris

Monday, May 29

Ebo Taylor - Life Stories (Highlife & Afrobeat Classics 1973-1980)


"Following his recent studio album with Afrobeat Academy, Love And Death, his first international release, Ghanaian highlife guitar legend Ebo Taylor teams up again with Strut for a long overdue definitive compilation of his seminal 1970s recordings, Life Stories, focusing on his solo albums and some of his lesser known side projects including the dynamite Apagya Show Band and short-lived Taylor-led combos Assase Ase, Super Sounds Namba and The Pelikans. The selection also touches on his writing and production work for C.K. Mann and a collaboration recording with fellow member of early '70s nightclub band Blue Monks, Pat Thomas. ..."
Paris DJs
Discogs
YouTube: Atwer Abroba, Heaven, Yes Indeed, Ohiani Sua Efir, Odofo Nyi Akyiri Biara, Amponsah

2011 August: Ebo Taylor, 2013 March: "Ayesama"

Temporary Equilibrium by Eleanor Ray


Morandi, Natura Morta (Still Life), 1956
"Arguing against Frank Stella’s famous assertion that 'Painting is made with colored paint on a surface and what you see is what you see,' Philip Guston claimed that a painting is 'not there physically at all.' For Guston, who spoke energetically about his varied experiences with the paintings he admired, powerful works could not be seen quickly or definitively. 'The art of the past is a hidden art,' he once said. Despite his acknowledged difficulties with talking about painting, Guston was unwilling to wave away the stubbornly elusive quality of the paintings, and the ordinary objects, that moved him. ... For Guston and Morandi, painting what was around them – books and shoes, bottles and boxes – provided a way to engage with certain aspects of painting that, while always in plain sight, refuse to be pinned down. ..."
This Recording

Martha Cooper: Five Decades of Street Art and Culture Around the Globe


Woman with white pants on 180th Street platform, Bronx, NYC, 1980.
"Photographer Martha Cooper has always lived life on her own term. ... By this time a new culture was bring born: street art. Forgoing the letterforms of graffiti, it embraced the pictorial traditions of murals and the techniques of aerosol art, and a new generation of artists was readily embraced by the art world. Cooper suddenly found herself in demand, as the photographs she had created were now being reproduced by artists like Shepard Fairey and Chris Stain to create street art works inspired by photographs from Street Play. ..."
Feature Shoot

Sunday, May 28

Greenwich Village Stories: A Collection of Memories (2012)


"'In an age of cities, there is just one village that is known by people the world over: Greenwich Village,' writes Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter in Greenwich Village Stories: A Collection of Memories. Carter is one of 66 artists, writers, actors and others who reminisce about their time in the village in the new book by the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation. ... Contributors range from Mario Batali to Penny Arcade to Wynton Marsalis and the book also includes historical photos and other artworks. The photo on the cover of the book, taken by Robert Otter in 1965 at the corner of Bleecker and MacDougal Streets, remains a bit of a mystery...."
THIRTEEN (Video)
Greenwich Village Stories
A love letter to Greenwich Village by luminaries who have called it home
NY Times: Grinding Beans Long Before the Baristas Came
amazon

The Thelonious Monk Quartet: The Complete Columbia Studio Albums Collection (2012)


"In a sense, I understand why Thelonious Monk's albums on Columbia, recorded between 1962 and 1968, have been neglected. His earlier sessions, on Blue Note, Prestige, and Riverside, were the ones where he introduced his classic songs, developed his eccentric style, and played with star-studded rhythm sections. The six quartet albums for Columbia feature a total of just six new Monk songs. And they find him playing with a working band of accompanists — no John Coltrane, Coleman Hawkins, Johnny Griffin, Art Blakey, or Roy Haynes here. Yet the Columbias — Monk's Dream, Criss-Cross, It's Monk's Time, Monk, Straight No Chaser, and Underground — are shamefully underrated, and the proof is in Sony's new six-CD boxed set from Sony, The Thelonious Monk Quartet: The Complete Columbia Studio Albums Collection. ..."
Stereo Phile
New Yorker: The Best of Thelonious Monk
allmusic
amazon

2012 September: Thelonious Monk: Straight No Chaser, 2013 August: Five Spot Café, 2014 February: Thelonious Monk - Genius of Modern Music, Vol. 1, Vol. 2, 2015 February: "Epistrophy" - Thelonious Monk / Kenny Clarke (1941), 2016 November: Underground (1968).

Five Came Back (2017)


"Five Came Back is an irresistibly watchable and ebullient celebration of five remarkable Hollywood studio directors – William Wyler, Frank Capra, George Stevens, John Ford and John Huston – who tackled the second world war head on. These were the patriotic idealists who put their talents to work on the frontline, creating enlightened propaganda for Uncle Sam. It is a romantic story in its way, although one that sometimes succumbs to its own need for derring-do and self-mythologising. ... But Five Came Back is certainly timely and welcome, with its emphasis on how these five musketeers were fighting against isolation and cynicism, as exemplified by Charles Lindbergh and the America First movement. ..."
Guardian
NY Times: ‘Five Came Back,’ and Inspired the Likes of Spielberg
YouTube: Five Came Back | Official Trailer

Saturday, May 27

The Syncopated Geography of Hip-Hop


"Since its beginnings, the hip-hop universe has expanded, its centers of gravity multiplied. The culture that was initially localized in the boroughs of New York, and which encompasses not only rap music, but also includes DJ-ing, breaking, graffiti, and fashion, has since been destabilized, and the culture continues to scatter and fragment through a continual alteration of sound, space, and technologies. Not long after its birth in the 70s, hip-hop spread like wildfire across the United States and around the world, with imitation and replication as a central facilitator of this dispersal and cross-pollination of musical and lyrical styles. Cities such as Atlanta, Miami, Houston, Memphis, Detroit, D.C., Philadelphia, Seattle, Minneapolis, Chicago, New Orleans, and several others soon developed their own communities and local styles that imitated the parent cultures residing in New York and L.A. while also reflecting the unique experiences of what it meant to live in each of these urban (or, in some cases, rural) locales. ..."
The Geography of Hip-Hop (Spotify)
Hip-Hop Map: A Story Map (Spotify)

Are You Glad to Be in America? - James Blood Ulmer (1980)


"In 1972, Ornette Coleman took guitarist James Blood Ulmer under his wing and taught Ulmer the principles of harmolodics, a musical system that treats the elements of harmony, rhythm, and melody equally. On Are You Glad to Be in America?, it drives a series of group improvisations that are simultaneously complex and direct. The sound of Are You Glad? is largely defined by its rhythm section: G. Calvin Weston and Ronald Shannon Jackson's propulsive drumming, Amin Ali's kinetic bass, and Ulmer's tightly wound guitar. The two drummers lay down persistent, tense rhythms that establish the album's nervous energy. ..."
allmusic
W - On Are You Glad to Be in America?
amazon
YouTube: Are You Glad To Be In America (Live)
YouTube: Are You Glad To Be Living In America, Jazz Is The Teacher (Funk Is The Preacher), Pressure, TV Blues

2015 November: Prime Time (1981), 2016 September: Black Rock (1982)

Green woodworking


Wikipedia - "Green woodworking is a form of wood craft or in broad terms, carpentry, that works unseasoned or 'green' timber into finished items. Unseasoned wood is wood that has been freshly felled or preserved by storing it in a water-filled trough or pond to maintain its naturally high moisture content. Green wood is much softer than seasoned timber and is therefore much easier to shape with hand tools. As moisture leaves the unseasoned wood, shrinkage occurs and the green woodworker can use this shrinkage to ensure tight joints in their work. To enhance the effect of the shrinkage, one half of a joint may be forcibly over-dried in a simple kiln while its encapsulating component is left green. The components tighten against each other as the parts exchange moisture and approach equilibrium with the surrounding environment. ..."
Wikipedia
Greenwoodworking
what is green woodworking?
YouTube: Green Wood Working NT, 50 Dollar Tool Kit for Green Woodworking

Friday, May 26

Books. Dieter Roth. Bjorn Roth. Studio.


"Beginning 27 April, Hauser & Wirth will present an exhibition offering rare insights into the central role that books played in the remarkably diverse artistic practice of legendary German-born Swiss artist Dieter Roth (1930 – 1998). Fueled by artistic restlessness, Roth’s wildly experimental approach to drawing, printing, and book making eventually found its way into ambitious large-scale sculptural installations, many conceived and executed in collaboration with his son Björn Roth. The exhibition at Hauser & Wirth presents ‘The Studio of Dieter and Björn Roth, Ackermannshof, Basel’ (1995 – 2008), an installation of the actual studio in Basel, Switzerland, shared by the father and son artmaking team, that includes furniture, books, and an array of personal items reflecting not just the Roths’ practice but a defining philosophy in which art and daily life are indivisible. ..."
Hauser Wirth
Hauser Wirth: Installation Views
Mousse Magazine
Alchetron
YouTube: Dieter Roth. Björn Roth. Inaugural Exhibition at Hauser & Wirth New York 18th Street

Psych kg 173 flux lp kommissar hjuler speaks

2010 July: Dieter Roth

War - The World Is a Ghetto (1972)


"War's third album as an act separate from Eric Burdon was also far and away their most popular, the group's only long-player to top the pop charts. The culmination of everything they'd been shooting for creatively on their two prior albums, it featured work in both succinct pop-accessible idioms ('The Cisco Kid,' etc.) as well as challenging extended pieces such as the 13-minute 'City, Country, City' -- which offered featured spots to all seven members without ever seeming disjointed -- and the title track, and encompass not only soul and funk but elements of blues and psychedelia on works such as the exquisite 'Four Cornered Room.' ... Not only does it sound great, but there are important touches such as the phasing in 'Four Cornered Room,' not only on the percussion but also on the vocals, guitars, and other instruments, and the overall effect is a seemingly contradictory (yet eminently workable) shimmering blues, even working in a mournful and unadorned harmonica amid the more complex sounds."
allmusic
Superseventies
W - The World Is a Ghetto
amazon
YouTube: The World Is a Ghetto (Full Album) 44:01

The New York Trilogy - Paul Auster (1986)


Wikipedia - "The New York Trilogy is a series of novels by Paul Auster. Originally published sequentially as City of Glass (1985), Ghosts (1986) and The Locked Room (1986), it has since been collected into a single volume. ... The New York Trilogy is a particular form of postmodern detective fiction which still uses well-known elements of the detective novel (the classical and hardboiled varieties, for example) but also creates a new form that links 'the traditional features of the genre with the experimental, metafictional and ironic features of postmodernism.' A 2006 reissue by Penguin Books is fronted by new pulp magazine-style covers by comic book illustrator Art Spiegelman. ..."
Wikipedia
Pseudo-Intellectual Reviews
The New Canon: The Best in Fiction Since 1985
An Examination of the Identity of Author and Character and Their Relationship Within the Narrative Structure of Paul Auster's New York Trilogy
[PDF] The New York Trilogy (City of Glass) - Chapter 8
amazon

Thursday, May 25

Aleppo After the Fall


"As the Syrian civil war turns in favor of the regime, a nation adjusts to a new reality — and a complicated new picture of the conflict emerges. One morning in mid-December, a group of soldiers banged on the door of a house in eastern Aleppo. A male voice responded from inside: 'Who are you?' A soldier answered: 'We’re the Syrian Arab Army. It’s O.K., you can come out. They’re all gone.' The door opened. A middle-aged man appeared. He had a gaunt, distinguished face, but his clothes were threadbare and his teeth looked brown and rotted. At the soldiers’ encouragement, he stepped hesitantly forward into the street. He explained to them, a little apologetically, that he had not crossed his threshold in four and a half years. ..."
NY Times

2014 August: The Islamic State, 2014 September: How ISIS Works, 2015 February: The Political Scene: The Evolution of Islamic Extremism, 2015 May: Zakaria: How ISIS shook the world, 2015 August: ISIS Blows Up Ancient Temple at Syria’s Palmyra Ruins, 2015 November: Times Insider: Reporting Europe's Refugee Crisis, 2015 November: Three Teams of Coordinated Attackers Carried Out Assault on Paris, Officials Say; Hollande Blames ISIS, 2015 November: The French Emergency, 2015 December: A Brief History of ISIS, 2015 December: U.S. Seeks to Avoid Ground War Welcomed by Islamic State, 2016 January: Ramadi, Reclaimed by Iraq, Is in Ruins After ISIS Fight, 2016 February: Syrian Officer Gave a View of War. ISIS Came, and Silence Followed., 2016 March: Brussels Survivors Say Blasts Instantly Evoked Paris Attacks, 2016 April: America Can’t Do Much About ISIS, 2016 June: What the Islamic State Has Won and Lost, 2016 July: ISIS: The Cornened Beast, 2016 October: Archaeological Victims of ISIS Rise Again, as Replicas in Rome, 2016 December: Battle Over Aleppo Is Over, Russia Says, as Evacuation Deal Reached, 2017 January: Eternal Sites: From Bamiyan to Palmyra, 2017 February: Tour a City Torn in Half by ISIS, 2017 March: Engulfed in Battle, Mosul Civilians Run for Their Lives.

The Jazz Age: American Style in the 1920s


Detail of a firescreen by Edgar Brandt in wrought iron and gilding, from around 1925.
"The first major museum exhibition to focus on American taste during the creative explosion of the 1920s, The Jazz Age is a multi-media experience of more than 400 examples of interior design, industrial design, decorative art, jewelry, fashion, and architecture, as well as related music and film. Giving full expression to the decade’s diversity and dynamism, The Jazz Age defines the American spirit of the period. During the 1920s, the influences that fueled design’s burst of innovation, exoticism, and modernity were manifold and flowed back and forth across the Atlantic. Jazz music, a uniquely American art form, also found a ready audience in Europe. An apt metaphor for the decade’s embrace of urbanity and experimentation, jazz captured the pulse and rich mixture of cultures and rhythms that brought a new beat to contemporary life. ..."
Cooper Hewitt
VOGUE - See How They Roared: A Pair of Exhibitions at the Cooper Hewitt Celebrates the Style and Dash of the Jazz Age
NY Times: Unnamed, Art Deco Steps Out With Plenty of Company in ‘The Jazz Age’
amazon

King Tubby & Clancy All Stars - Sound System International Dub LP (1976)


"Those with a casual interest in dub may find that this recently discovered album sounds a bit raw -- but for aficionados of the genre, it's a treasure trove. It finds a young King Tubby (who would later become dub's most famous and celebrated practitioner) flexing his chops and experimenting with techniques that he would later hone to a razor sharpness: the wholesale dropouts with throbbing echo that are in full effect on 'Joe'; tastefully selected scraps of vocals that float all over the place on 'Kingston Dub Town' (a brilliant and strangely tender dub version of the Lord Creator hit 'Kingston Town'); the reductions of backing tracks down to a dry and spare minimum, only to suddenly flower into echo-drenched blooms of sound -- all of these are techniques that Tubby either pioneered or perfected, and it's fascinating to hear them being applied to these late rocksteady and early reggae classics before he was fully in control of them. ..."
allmusic
Pressure
YouTube: Sound System International Dub LP 43:04

Wednesday, May 24

The Queens landscape by Frank Gohlke and Joel Sternfeld


The Lemon Ice King of Corona, 108 Street, 2003
"Steidl has just published Landscape as Longing, a book of photographs by Frank Gohlke and Joel Sternfeld made in Queens neighborhoods in New York between 2003 and 2004. The title immediately evokes the idea of desire and expectation tinged with nostalgia, and seems to suggest a definition and a method: landscape as a form of wistful anticipation. Gohlke and Sternfeld’s book is not, contrary to what one might expect, a celebration of multiethnic and multicultural Queens, and if there is a hint of journalism it is only in the style which occasionally draws on documentary photography. The views are captured with sober precision, with no aestheticization, if not for the fact that the whole is bathed in the same summer light. There is nothing excessive about them, either: Gohlke and Sternfeld’s Queens is a rather sad looking suburb, filled with parking lots, empty streets, garish store fronts, and highways; it’s an amalgam, devoid of coherence or cohesion, of industrial zones, no-man’s lands, natural areas, and residential lots. ..."
Steidl Verlag
GUP
amazon

Eddie & Ernie


"Eddie & Ernie were the Phoenix-based soul duo of Eddie Campbell and Ernie Johnson, issuing about 15 singles between 1963 and 1971. To make matters a little confusing, some of the singles were credited to Ernie & Eddie, the New Bloods, or Ernie & Ed. There were also 1967 solo releases by Campbell and Johnson. ... They were good soul singers, though, often recording their own material, sometimes sounding a little like Memphis or Alabama deep soul singers with a slightly less avowedly church-like overlay, sometimes going into more minor melodies and downbeat subject matter than most such soul performers did. Eddie & Ernie, like so many soul singers, did some time in gospel groups as youngsters before hooking up as a duo. ..."
allmusic
W - Eddie & Ernie
Discogs
YouTube: Outcast, We try harder, I Can't Do It, I'm a Young Man, Bullets Don't Have Eyes, Listen, I'm Gonna Always Love You, It's A Weak Man That Cries, The Cat (Eastern), Thanks For Yesterday, Lost friends, I Can't Do It (I Just Can't Leave You), Bullets Don't Have Eyes

Sundial and SUN - Bill Zavatsky


Sundial, vol. 2, no. 1 (Winter 1968).
"SUN — the magazine and the press (never 'Sun Press' or 'Sun Books” or 'Sun magazine') — emerged from the collapse of Sundial, a literary magazine started at Columbia University by undergraduate Lawrence Susskind in 1966. (The sundial at the center of 116th Street, which runs through the campus, offered its name as a hub of activity.) Sundial was funded by the Protestant Episcopal Office in Earl Hall, and featured dynamic graphic design and an eclectic approach that opened its pages not only to Columbia students but to anybody connected to the school. ..."
from a secret location
You Publish Too Much!: A Room 220 Interview with Bill Zavatsky
W - Bill Zavatsky
[PDF] Sundial/SUN, 1966 – 1983, compiled by Bill Zavatsky

Tuesday, May 23

Maximalism or Minimalism? The Modern Ice Cream Lover’s Dilemma


Ample Hills’ It Came From Gowanus with munchies topping (left) and Van Leeuwen’s strawberry with sprinkles
"On a recent Sunday at Van Leeuwen in Cobble Hill, coffee, chocolate, and Earl Grey tea ice creams filled the dipping cabinet in gradated shades of beige. A fifteen-minute walk away in Gowanus, Ample Hills Creamery was stocked with tubs of The Munchies, a pretzel-flavored scoop layered with potato chips, crackers, and M&Ms; and the store’s exclusive dark chocolate, orange brownie, hazelnut crack cookie, and white chocolate pearlfilled signature, It Came From Gowanus. ..."
VOICE

2014 August: Ice Cream

Brian Eno Releases Top 5 Favorite Fela Kuti Songs Playlist


"... Before about mid-September 1973 I didn’t have much interest in polyrhythmic music. I didn’t really get it. That all changed one Autumn day when I walked into Stern’s Record Shop off Tottenham Court Road in London. For reasons I’ve long forgotten, I left the store with an album that was to change my life dramatically. It was AFRODISIAC by Fela Ransome-Kuti (as he was then known) and his band The Africa 70. I remember the first time I listened and how dazzled I was by the groove and the rhythmic complexity, and by the raw, harsh sounds of the brass, like Mack trucks hurtling across highways with their horns blaring. Everything I thought I knew about music at that point was up in the air again. The sheer force and drive of this wild Nigerian stuff blew my mind. My friend Robert Wyatt called it ‘Jazz from another planet’ – and suddenly I thought I understood the point of jazz, until then an almost alien music to me.” – Brian Eno
Fela (Spotify)
YouTube: Thoughts On Fela

Crawdaddy


Wikipedia - "Crawdaddy was an American rock music magazine launched in 1966. It was created by Paul Williams, a Swarthmore College student at the time, in response to the increasing sophistication and cultural influence of popular music. The magazine was named after the Crawdaddy Club in London and published occasionally during its early years with an exclamation point, as Crawdaddy!. According to The New York Times, Crawdaddy was 'the first magazine to take rock and roll seriously', while the magazine's rival Rolling Stone acknowledged it as 'the first serious publication devoted to rock & roll news and criticism'. ... The magazine spawned the career of numerous rock and other writers. Early contributors included Jon Landau, Sandy Pearlman, Richard Meltzer and Peter Knobler. ..."
Wikipedia
NPR: Remembering Paul Williams, Founder Of Rock Magazine 'Crawdaddy!'
amazon
Crawdaddy Magazine 1966-1968

Monday, May 22

'Those are our Eiffel Towers, our pyramids': Why Standing Rock is about much more than oil


"On May 15, the Dakota Access Pipeline is scheduled to start delivering oil. The indigenous community of Standing Rock, North Dakota, has protested the pipeline for two years since its re-routing. Media coverage has largely portrayed the protest as an environmental movement and discussion of indigenous religion is rare. However, while environmental protection is a central and connected issue, discussions of Standing Rock that do not include an understanding of Native American religious traditions are missing important context. Over 5,000 years ago, the inhabitants of a village along the Green River, Kentucky, practiced the Cult of the River Keepers. Skeletons show evidence of auditory exostoses, a growth of cartilaginous tissue on ear bones that is found in humans who are repeatedly exposed to cold water – suggesting they frequently performed religious ceremonies in the river. ... Understood in its religious context, the Standing Rock Sioux are not anti-industry protestors, but practitioners of religious elements that may predate Judaism, Christianity, and Islam by centuries."
Guardian
Guardian: The Dakota pipeline is already leaking. Why wait for a big spill to act?

2011 July: Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee - Dee Brown, 2012 September: The Ghost Dance, 2016 September: A History and Future of Resistance, 2016 November: Dakota Access Pipeline protests, 2016 December: Police Violence Against Native Americans Goes Far Beyond Standing Rock, 2016 December: Dakota Protesters Say Belle Fourche Oil Spill 'Validates Struggle', 2017 January: A Murky Legal Mess at Standing Rock, 2017 January: Trump's Move On Keystone XL, Dakota Access Outrages Activists, 2017 February: Army veterans return to Standing Rock to form a human shield against police, 2017 February: Standing Rock is burning – but our resistance isn't over, 2017 March: Dakota Access pipeline could open next week after activists face final court loss, 2017 April: The Conflicts Along 1,172 Miles of the Dakota Access Pipeline

The 1960s heyday of Village bar the Lion’s Head


"It had an early incarnation on Hudson Street. And even past its heyday, it lingered on as a popular neighborhood bar until the taxman shut its doors in 1996 (left, during last call). But the Lion Head’s glory days as a legendary Greenwich Village watering hole was during the 1960s. That’s when the downstairs bar at 59 Christopher Street equally attracted literary types and longshoremen, and drinkers could rub elbows with writers, newspaper reporters, Irish folk singers, politicians, and a pre-fame Jessica Lange, who waited tables. Pete Hamill, a writer at the New York Post in the mid-1960s, recalled the energy and excitement there in his wonderful 1994 memoir, A Drinking Life. 'In the beginning, the Head had a square three-sided bar, with dart boards on several walls and no jukebox,' he writes. 'I don’t think many New York bars ever had such a glorious mixture of newspapermen, painters, musicians, seamen, ex-communists, priests and nuns, athletes, stockbrokers, politicians, and folksingers, bound together in the leveling democracy of drink.' ..."
Ephemeral New York
NY Times: Years After Last Call, Keeping a Bar’s History Alive
Lion’s Head roared - Greenwich Village saloon was home to many Irish and other rogues
NY Daily News: LAST CALL FOR LION'S HEAD BAR IN VILLAGE (Video)
Lion’s Head

Every Picture Tells a Story - Rod Stewart (1971)


"Without greatly altering his approach, Rod Stewart perfected his blend of hard rock, folk, and blues on his masterpiece, Every Picture Tells a Story. Marginally a harder-rocking album than Gasoline Alley -- the Faces blister on the Temptations cover '(I Know I'm) Losing You,' and the acoustic title track goes into hyper-drive with Mick Waller's primitive drumming -- the great triumph of Every Picture Tells a Story lies in its content. Every song on the album, whether it's a cover or original, is a gem, combining to form a romantic, earthy portrait of a young man joyously celebrating his young life. Of course, 'Maggie May' -- the ornate, ringing ode about a seduction from an older woman -- is the centerpiece, but each song, whether it's the devilishly witty title track or the unbearably poignant 'Mandolin Wind,' has the same appeal. ..."
allmusic
W - Every Picture Tells a Story
amazon, iTunes
vimeo: Maggie May (Live)
YouTube: Every Picture Tells a Story 8 videos

2016 November: Gasoline Alley (1970)

Sunday, May 21

When Posters Were the Samizdat of the Lower East Side


"Fliers and posters were the social media of the pre-internet era on the Lower East Side, covering walls and other surfaces with general announcements, political communiqués and personal manifestoes. Affixed with sticky wheat paste and nearly impossible to scrape away, they were a scourge to some, but to others they were a code that could be used to trace the neighborhood’s rich political discourse. ... Now, reproductions of more than 100 of those images are on display in a storefront museum on Avenue C, artifacts of a rebellious time when that neighborhood was the setting for contentious battles over development and homelessness, police conduct and control of its central public space, Tompkins Square Park, in the East Village. ..."
NY Times

2010 March: ACT UP New York, 2015 Auguat: Art as Activism: Graphic Art from the Merrill C. Berman Collection, 2016 October: How Posters Work, 2017 January: See Red Women's Workshop - Feminist Posters 1974–1990, 2017 April: Make Art Not War: Political Protest Posters from the Twentieth Century

Joe Bussard's Country Classics


Wikipedia - "Joe Bussard (born Joseph E. Bussard, Jr., July 11, 1936 in Frederick, Maryland, United States) is an American collector of 78-rpm records. Bussard maintains a collection of more than 15,000 records, primarily of American folk, gospel, and blues from the 1920s and 1930s, believed to be one of the largest (and best quality) in the world. ... From 1956 until 1970, he ran the last 78 rpm record label, Fonotone, which was dedicated to the release of new recordings of old-time music. ... Bussard currently produces a weekly music program, Country Classics, for Georgia Tech's radio station, WREK Atlanta. He has radio programs on three other stations: WPAQ-AM 740 in Mount Airy, North Carolina, WELD-AM 690 in Fisher, West Virginia, and WTHU-AM 1450 in Thurmont, Maryland. ..." 
Wikipedia
Soundcloud: Joe Bussard's Country Classics: Banjo Episode, Joe Bussard's Country Classics on WPAQ - October 31, 2015
iTunes
YouTube: Joe Bussard's Country Classics 27 Video

Tom Cora ‎– Gumption In Limbo (1991)


"Cora was one unique voice in cello playing, that is for sure. The big flaw of this record resides in the occasional repetitions of Cora (that shrieking cello which sounds too sonically 'pwetentious' to my ears), but there are plenty of beautiful moments. Cora lacked a certain 'cerebral' tendency that makes cello music sometimes sound lameass, as found in Joelle Leandre's playing, and he paired easily folk-like melodies with astonishing sounds removed from the tonal focus, as well as the standard distortion employed by professional cellists - despite the apparent lack of logic in some moments that are too disjointed, this is a great solo cello album, almost as good as Reijseger's Colla Parte. - Moritat"
Rate Your Music
Discogs
YouTube: Gumption In Limbo 43:57

2010 June: Tom Cora, 2012 February: Fred Frith & Tom Cora, 2012 April: The Ex + Tom Cora

Saturday, May 20

05401PLUS


"Who We Are. 05401PLUS is a monthly print magazine advocating on behalf of the new ecological, aesthetic and socio-political consciousness in the Champlain Bio-Region. Essays, reportage, satires, essays on current social, political, and cultural issues, book, film,and art reviews, poetry, short fiction, and art are welcome. While we are focusing on the local scene, we welcome any subject matter that has bearing on our expanding world view. ..."
05401PLUS
Archives: Issues
"05401 is committed to promoting an integrative, multidiciplinary dialogue in the public realm. We try to make professional language accessible, and to make everyday language intelligible. We celebrate the sacred and the profane, the serious and the funny, the ecstatic and the catatonic. 05401 invites, welcomes contributions to our ongoing dialogue in architecture, planning, food and sex. We welcome suggestions for additional topics. ... 05401 is edited by Louis Mannie Lionni. Our contributors have included Alan Broughton, Andy Simon, Anna Blackmer, Annie Lionni and Pippo Lionni, Barbara Zucker and Gina Zucker, Ben Sachs Hamilton, Bob Tieger, Brian Tokar, Bud Lawrence, Carl Rothfels, Carla Schwartz, Carolyn Bates ..."
05401
05401 : Issues
05401PLUS Magazine Takes Long View of Burlington

Genese Grill in her studio

Salah Ragab and The Cairo Jazz Band


Wikipedia - "Salah Ragab (Arabic: صلاح رجب) was an Egyptian drummer and musician credited with founding Egyptian jazz. A Major in the Egyptian Army through the 1960s, he first attempted to form a jazz band in 1964, with American saxophonist Mac X. Spears. Together with Hartmut Geerken and Edu Vizvari, he founded one of the first Egyptian jazz big bands. ... On this recording the band consists of five saxophones, four trumpets, four trombones, piano, bass, drums and percussion and various other oriental instruments. ... Salah Ragab accompanied the great band leader and composer Sun Ra on a Tour in Egypt, Greece, France and Spain in 1984. ..."
Wikipedia
Dusted Magazine
Soundcloud: A Tribute To Sun Ra, Egypt Strut
YouTube: Salah Ragab and the Cairo Jazz Band Presents Egyptian Jazz (1968-73) 40:40

A family affair: St-Viateur Bagel celebrates 60 years


"'Bagel!' chimed the voice at the other end of the phone line, by way of greeting. I had called St-Viateur Bagel on Monday morning looking for owner Joe Morena, but even before I found him I had found my lede. I mean, what else is there to say? On Sunday, St-Viateur will celebrate 60 years of bagels with a block party taking over the street that bears its name. All proceeds will go to the Foundation of the Stars. That’s a lot of years, and a lot of bagels — a lot of bagels made, and a lot of bagels eaten, by you, me and everyone we know. ..."
Montreal Gazette (Video)

2014 November: Bagel, 2016 February: Bialy, 2016 August: Montreal-style bagel

Friday, May 19

Dominique Goblet - Pretending Is Lying (2016)


"The first book to appear in English by the acclaimed Belgian artist Dominique Goblet, Pretending Is Lying is a memoir unlike any other. In a series of dazzling fragments—skipping through time, and from raw, slashing color to delicate black and white—Goblet examines the most important relationships in her life: with her partner, Guy Marc; with her daughter, Nikita; and with her parents. The result is an unnerving comedy of paternal dysfunction, an achingly ambivalent love story (with asides on Thomas Pynchon and the Beach Boys), and a searing account of childhood trauma—a dizzying, unforgettable view of a life in progress and a tour de force of the art of comics."
NYRB
NY Times: A Belgian Artist’s Graphic Memoir Looks at the Sometimes Tortured Course of Love
NPR: With A Photographer's Eye, A French Cartoonist Interrogates Truth
Pretending Is Lying is a Mystifying, Satisfying Hidden Gem
amazon

Marc Ribot Trio - Fat Man Blues (2015)


"The guitarist Marc Ribot has played in just about every conceivable setting in New York City. But through his involvement in punk bands, funk and soul groups, film scoring, the noise community, session work with rootsy singer-songwriters, South American and Caribbean folkloric projects, the contemporary classical scene and all the other experiments, he's also long held a love of jazz, from its hairiest to most clean-shaven expressions. Ribot has created bands dedicated to Albert Ayler and John Coltrane, saxophonists whose grounding in strong melody powered their fully liberated solo flights. He played in Allen Toussaint's Bright Mississippi band, which adapted the earliest New Orleans jazz. And he tours with a trio which gives him access to his full palette. ..."
NPR: Live At The Village Vanguard - Marc Ribot Trio
YouTube: Fat Man Blues (Live)

2011 February: Selling Water By the Side of the River - Evan Lurie, 2012 September: Marc Ribot, 2013 February: Silent Movies, 2013 November: The Nearness Of You, 2014 January: Full Concert Jazz in Marciac (2010), 2014 May: Gig Alert: Marc Ribot Trio, 2014 September: Marc Ribot Trio with Mary Halvorson at The Stone, 2015 September: Marc Ribot y Los Cubanos Postizos - The Prosthetic Cubans (1998), 2015 November: Marc Ribot Ceramic Dog (2014), 2016 February: Musical Improvisation in the Marlene Dumas Exhibition (2015).

Direct Action: Protest and the Reinvention of American Radicalism


"The press photos from Standing Rock Sioux Reservation show a chilling reversal of an old Western movie cliché. A vulnerable encampment is gathered at the foot of a hill, while above, a mass of armed warriors stands silhouetted against a leaden sky. The reversal? It’s the Native Americans — defending their water supply and sacred sites against the intrusion of a commercial pipeline — who are peacefully occupying the lower ground, while gathered above is the armed might of U.S. government law enforcement. Direct Action, L.A. Kauffman’s survey of (mostly) American protest movements over the past 45 years, doesn’t reach all the way up to Standing Rock, the activist confrontation that has claimed headlines and seized the sympathetic attention of the liberal public in recent months. ..."
New Mexican's Weekly Magazine
ALTERNET: In 1971 the People Didn't Just March on Washington—They Shut It Down
amazon

Thursday, May 18

The Closed Balkan Route - Marko Drobnjakovic


Clothes left out to dry overnight are frozen due to extremely low temperatures, Belgrade, Serbia, Jan. 23, 2017.
"Around 1,500 migrants who have fled war and poverty in their countries in hopes of reaching Western Europe have found temporary shelter in an abandoned warehouse in central Belgrade, the Serbian capital. Men and boys from countries like Afghanistan or Pakistan have occupied the decrepit complex as they wait for an opportunity to move on toward neighboring EU nations Hungary or Croatia. Several thousand migrants have remained stranded in Serbia since nations along the so-called Balkan route officially closed last March. The influx has been reduced, but hundreds of migrants still cross illegally into Serbia from Bulgaria or Macedonia on a daily basis before moving on, seeking the help of smugglers to cross the heavily guarded EU borders. ..."
Guernica
W - European migrant crisis
Anatomy of a Refugee Wave: Forced Migration on the Balkan Route as Two Processes
Closed Balkan route means lucrative times for human traffickers
Guardian: Tens of thousands migrate through Balkans since route declared shut (August 2016)
This map shows how much the refugee crisis is dividing Europe (Video)

(March 2016)

2015 September: Traveling in Europe’s River of Migrants, 2017 April: The Refugee King of Greece

In from the cold - by W.S. Di Piero


Richard Diebenkorn, Seawall (1957), oil on canvas
"As I write here in San Francisco in August, the cold, hard-blowing fog in my Haight-Ashbury neighborhood astonishes out-of-towners. The unprepared (or reckless) wear tank tops and shorts and hug their goose bumps, but they’re grooving on it, because it’s San Francisco. We who live and shiver here know that soon, maybe, Indian summer will be upon us in September, the air will soften, the fog will keep its distance, and the city will more sensibly be a place where people might want to take the air. If you do visit, and if you have an interest, three exhibitions are drawing big crowds. The splashiest, and intellectually the most probing, is an ample exhibition at the de Young, in Golden Gate Park, of work Richard Diebenkorn produced while living in Berkeley from 1953 to 1966. ... The Berkeley years were an explosive, exploratory time for Diebenkorn: having absorbed the precedents of Abstract Expressionism, especially the work of de Kooning and Gorky, he’d developed a swinging, propulsive way of painting. He sheeted overlays of angular planes aroused by jumpy marks and calligraphic play. His deep, complex color had a steady lyrical hum. ..."
San Diego Reader
Richard Diebenkorn: The Berkeley Years 1953–1956 (Video)
Beyond Belief: 100 Years of the Spiritual in Modern Art: Highlights from SFMOMA’s Collection (Video)
Impressionists on the Water

2016 March: W.S. Di Piero, 2016 December: Coney Island: Visions of an American Dreamland, 1861-2008, Josef Koudelka: Nationality Doubtful, 2017 March: March of time: 20th Century icons from an old art museum in Buffalo are at the Museum of Art.

Gloucester HarborWalk #: Charles Olson 3rd Letter on Georges, unwritten to Schooner Footage


"Olson reads 3rd letter on Georges, unwritten sent to actor, Sterling Hayden's footage of schooner racing and while at home at 28 Fort Square, Gloucester. Hayden raced the Gertrude L. Thebaud under Capt. Ben Pine in 1938. Excerpt from Polis is This: Charles Olson and the Persistence of Place by Henry Ferrini and Ken Riaf."
YouTube: Gloucester HarborWalk #: Charles Olson 3rd Letter on Georges, unwritten to Schooner Footage
Gloucester HarborWalk (Video)

2009 January: Charles Olson, 2009 April: Rockport Harbor, 2010 September: Charles Olson: The Art of Poetry No. 12, 2011 July: Charles Olson: February 21, 1957, 2012 April: A Trip to Charles Olson’s Gloucester, 2012 June: In Which We Lather Our Sensibilities At Length, 2013 January: Mass.Charles Olson, 2013 May: The Maximus Poems, 2013 November: A Guide to The Maximus Poems of Charles Olson , 2015 March: "In Cold Hell, in Thicket" (1950), 2017 May: The Collected Poems of Charles Olson edited by George Butterick.

Wednesday, May 17

Comey Memo Says Trump Asked Him to End Flynn Investigation


James B. Comey, the former F.B.I. director, during a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing this month.
"President Trump asked the F.B.I. director, James B. Comey, to shut down the federal investigation into Mr. Trump’s former national security adviser, Michael T. Flynn, in an Oval Office meeting in February, according to a memo Mr. Comey wrote shortly after the meeting. 'I hope you can let this go,' the president told Mr. Comey, according to the memo. The documentation of Mr. Trump’s request is the clearest evidence that the president has tried to directly influence the Justice Department and F.B.I. investigation into links between Mr. Trump’s associates and Russia. Late Tuesday, Representative Jason Chaffetz, the Republican chairman of the House Oversight Committee, demanded that the F.B.I. turn over all 'memoranda, notes, summaries and recordings' of discussions between Mr. Trump and Mr. Comey. ..."
NY Times (Video)
NY Times: What Is Obstruction of Justice? An Often Murky Crime, Explained
NY Times: Five Contradictions in the White House’s Story About Comey’s Firing
NY Times: The Opinion Pages | Can Donald Trump Be Trusted With State Secrets?

The Fleshtones - Roman Gods / Upfront EP (2011)


"While much of the Fleshtones' back catalog has been collecting dust for decades in the United States, the rock & roll archivists at Australia's Raven Records have thankfully stepped up and begun reissuing the cream of the band's early output for I.R.S. Records, first with the excellent compilation It's Super Rock Time!: The I.R.S. Years 1980-1985, followed by a two-fer CD featuring the albums Hexbreaker! and Speed Connection: Live in Paris 85 in their entirety. Raven now completes the job with a third CD that features the band's first EP, the five-song Up-Front from 1980, and their first full-length album, 1982's Roman Gods. ..."
allmusic
W - Up-Front (EP), W - Roman Gods
W - The Fleshtones
Discogs
amazon
YouTube: Roman Gods (Live), I Was a Teenage Zombie, Beautiful Light
YouTube: Roman Gods...Plus (Full Album) 1:19:07

Robert Wyatt - Shleep (1997)


"By the time Robert Wyatt made 1997's Shleep-- his first album in six years-- he was something of a British institution: a magnificent, one-of-a-kind singer who'd become mostly known for memorable cameos on other people's records. The popular perception of him seemed to be his wheelchair and long white beard, without much between them. Shleep, though, re-established Wyatt as the center of attention, and became the foundation of his career's third act, documented (along with parts of the first two) by the second new batch of re-releases of his discography. Shleep reintroduced a long-absent sense of playfulness and joy into Wyatt's work. ..."
Pitchfork
Progarchives
W - Shleep
YouTube: Shleep 54:14

2010 November: Robert Wyatt, 2011 October: Sea Song, 2012 October: Comicopera, 2013 March: The Last Nightingale, 2013 September: Solar Flares Burn for You (2003), 2014 March: Cuckooland (2003), 2014 October: Robert Wyatt Story (BBC Four, 2001), 2014 December: Different Every Time (2014), 2016 March: Interviews (2014), 2016 June: Dondestan (Revisited)(1998), 2016 September: Ruth Is Stranger Than Richard (1975), 2017 January: '68 (2013).