You know that I know that you know that Nick Stuccio’s mammoth FringeArts center on Columbus doesn’t look bloody likely to open in time for the September festival. No perf-art, craft beer or noshables there for now. The spot is coming along and who says there won’t be some events there, sooner than later. Thank God though for Underground Arts. As of last night, Callowhill Street’s hot spot was named the official FringeArts Fest’s go-to-post-show late night cabaret, bar and hang out (Fergie will be pleased) rather than the alternative-to-the-fest saloon it has been in the last few years.
Queen Latifah and Shakim Compere (Flavor Unit Entertainment) with James Lindsay and Meek Mill (Mill has his own movie-media company, Dream Chasers Films) will produce a flick based on Mills’ song “The Tony Story.” Mill will star in what is being billed as a fictional American crime drama inspired by Mill’s experiences growing hard and famous in Philly. Carlito Rodriquez has the screenplay covered and Cess Silvera (Shottas) will direct. “I’m particularly excited about this project as Shakim and I are huge fans of Meek and his work,” says the Queen in a prepared statement.
Speaking of film, Paula Moritz and Jesse Cute just got a little bit busier now that Allied Live, a marketing and ad agency catering to local performing arts, became part of Allied Integrated Marketing Philadelphia (AIMP), a group you know mainly from free movie passes and pre-release screenings. Allied Live’s first client: the Prince Music Theater, who has AEG Live-booked gigs with the likes of Kamal Bell and Seu Jorge ready for their summer sched.
You’re not done helping New Jersey. That’s why you should read this, heed this and head to Keyport, NJ in Monmouth County today (June 27) to catch Bobby Flay do his “Throwdown at the Jersey Shore.” In tribute to those who weathered Sandy, Flay. Gov. Chris Christie, and competing chefs will start cooking-off at 2 p.m. at a makeshift outdoor kitchen by the beach.
If you’re looking to favorite your favorite Philly actor or fete your favorite local play, you’re going to have to hold your horses. The wait will be worth it though: the Barrymores, our award-giving version of the Tonys without the worry of slamming Bret Michaels in the head with a set piece, will return in autumn 2014, celebrating the 2013/2104 season. Nothing for you, 2012/13. A new group called Theatre Philadelphia is picking up where the Theatre Alliance of Greater Philadelphia (they folded in 2012) left off. There are new rules and restrictions too. Find director/Theatre Philadelphia board president Kevin Glaccum. He’s got the details.
The friends of DJ Eddie Tully, of whom we are assured are leeeeeegion, will all stop by Stratus Lounge tonight (June 27) to help him turn 40. They won’t celebrate him, he’s actually 24 and they’ll just simply worry him until he ages.
It seems like eons ago that I broke the news that Avram Hornik’s Four Corners peeps were taking over my Broad Street neighbor the Boot & Saddle. I spied it the day the orange liquor-sticker went up in October 2011. Sneaky then that R5’s Sean Agnew, the booking pardner at the B&S, has staked a claim, secretly, on the cowboy club’s live-show opening events on its Facebook page: “Shhh, we secretly announced the first three shows,” went the FB post announcing Grails (Sept. 14), Lightning Dust (Sept. 16) and Laura Veirs (Sept. 20). When I joked with Agnew about the silent-but-deadly FB approach to announcing its first gigs, Agnew said that it was “not a sneak attack” and that “an exact opening date” before the shows hit was being worked on. As for whether or not, Boot & Saddle will stay true to its onetime C&W roots, Agnew says that “ it will feature all sorts of music: “indie rock, singer/songwriters and yes, sometimes country bands.” Yeeeeeeeehah.
Contrary to previous reports, when The Garage opens later this week within the boundaries of Pat’s/Geno’s bounty, it will host its own food cart with a rotating series of chefs manning the big silver box. I guess they wouldn’t mind you bringing your own cheesesteak or burrito from down the block, but maybe you should ask first.
On the road to the Roots celebrating the Borgata’s 10th anniversary (July 1) and America’s anniversary (July 4) comes two Roots offshoots for your perusal. First comes collaborator Greg Porn’s video for “Cloud 9,” a new single from his due-July-30 debut mix-tape Amerikin Junkie. Secondly, and coming in August, is Dice Raw’s new album Jimme’s Back. A concept album about wrongful incarceration, Dice not only debuted several of its tracks at Manhattan’s Apple Store on June 25. Dice announced there that he had changed the spelling of its title to reflect the recent passing of his childhood friend, Philly rapper Jimme Wallstreet who was killed June 20, days after participating in an anti-violence rally. Look for this album to be the release of summer.
I supported Sam Katz for mayor once or twice. Why wouldn’t I support him in his quest to keep making his 12-part documentary about Philadelphia history, The Great Experiment? Want to help him edit this monster? Katz started a Kickstarter to raise $53,500 by Aug. 9. Hit that.
No joke. With the Rolling Stones making gentle stops at Cuba Libre and Sal D’Angelo’s Rittenhouse hot spot (really?) before leaving town (great shot of Comcast’s Peter Luukko giving the Stones mini-Liberty Bells backstage at the Wells Fargo Center, by the way. Thanks Ike Richman) I got to thinking about the wild times they at the Locust Club when Philippe Chin ran the joint. It all hit home when The Insider ran a bit about Chef Chin leaving Philippe Chin French-Asian Bistro & Deck Bar in Somers Point, a spot he opened spring of last year. Chin ran a FB post about having nothing to do with what remains of the restaurant and that he was heading to “paradise.”
Pennsylvania may be the most racist state outside of the south, according to professors from the University of California (damn you, National Annenberg Election Survey), but at least Philly is nice. Philly is the nation’s third “Most Generous City,” according to a survey by the dating-auction website, WhatsYourPrice.com.
They ranked the nation’s 15 most selfless cities based on the generosity of their single men, and the cost of what a man put out for a first-date was $199. Bravo.
Congrats to Philly fashion bloggers Tom and Lorenzo. I’ve interviewed the couture-conscious-couple in the past, so I can’t say that it’s a total shock that once they heard the news that the Supreme Court found the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional, the longtime pair got engaged. Via Twitter, no less. Hot-cha.
Marshall Allen, Ed Wilcox, John Cecil Price and Charles Cohen are playing The Fire on June 30. If this isn’t an avant-garde power summit, I don’t know what could be.
WHOWHATWHERE: Did we talk about J. Cole doing his secret show for $1 at TLA on South Street last weekend? No we did not. Cole’s new Born Sinner album just climbed to the top of the Billboard chart. Kenny Gamble’s Philly International Records hosted a helluva party with the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park for its African American Heritage Celebration. One-time PIR arranger/keyboardist Dexter Wansel and Bunny Sigler performed and Mr. Gamble gave an award to Evelyn Champagne King for all the good she’s brought to disco. After stopping at Clear Channel radio’s studios, Courtney Love played TLA for the first night of her I’m Still Alive tour. Also hitting up their stations was the Backstreet Boys (Q-102), Everclear and Two Gallants (Radio 104.5). Hell, how is it that ’90s indie-rockers Filter avoided 104.5? No matter, we caught them right before they played Electric Factory. Speaking of radio, Jerry Blavat spent the night in Manhattan, hitting up the Waldorf-Astoria for Don Rickles’ Friars Club toast with local boy Bob Saget, Bob DeNiro and Joan Rivers in the crowd. Blavat was once Rickles valet as he wrote, quite famously, in his autobiography You Only Rock Once, due out shortly in paperback. June 26 was Jerry Pinkney Day in PA. And just in time for “Witness: The Art of Jerry Pinkney” at the Art Museum on June 28. Joining Pinkney to celebrate at the Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building was the PA’s first lady Susan Corbett, state Senator Larry Farnese, state rep Michelle Brownlee, councilwoman Blondell Reynolds Brown and the sad-but-true departing Philly chief cultural officer Gary Steuer. Ooh, all that city government in one place. How was it that potential Republican mayoral candidate Dana Spain wasn’t there? She was probably coming down off the high of her PAWS’ charitable Celebrity Chefs Showcase event at Lincoln Bank Park’s VIP suite. Lastly, just days after opening Serpico, Stephen Starr got the Mann Center’s “Party in the Park” gala awards for all the good he’s given the village green. Mandy Patinkin and a small ensemble played for Starr and the gala’s guests.
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