Archive: July, 2011
CP's Kelsey McGlynn embarks on a hood-specific summertime boutique crawl. This week, she takes the Regional Rail northwest to tackle Manayunk's consignment shops.
Greene Street Consignment, 4313 Main St., 267-335-5478
The modern, vibrant vibe of Greene Street Consignment immediately caught my eye as I walked along Main Street Manayunk. As soon as I walked in the door, I was greeted by Rachael, a store employee who was more than happy to show me around the well-organized shop.
The sales floor is stocked with great summer styles in an array of colors. “Our clothing covers a big age range,” Rachael explained, “which makes us different.” Greene Street features mostly women’s clothing, but there's a small men’s section in the back. It's clear that Greene Street focuses more on trends than tags. Their clothing is unique, reasonably priced and there’s something for everyone — whether you're a middle-aged mom or just about to embark on your first semester at college. Put this place on your shopping to-do list as a definite go-to for colorful, seasonal styles.
WHO: Joakim, Matthew Quiet, Dave P, Adam Sparkles, Thomzilla
WHAT: Every Thursday, the peoples behind Making Time and Rvng Intl. turn it out real proper in the Ruby Lounge basement of Voyeur for a party called Snacks. The throwdown tonight, however, is extra special because they have Tigersushi Records head honcho Joakim laying down the peak-hour sounds. Hailing from Paris, Joakim just released the “Forever Young” single from his upcoming album. And if that’s not enough, Portland’s Matthew Quiet will also be guest DJing. All this radness is free, people, and going late!
WHEN & WHERE: Thu., July 14, 10 p.m.-3:30 a.m., free, Voyeur, 1221 St. James St., voyeurnightclub.com.
WHY: Anything goes.
“I'm going to go in one direction or the other ... I've got 2 roads before me,” said Brandy Hartley, the longtime promotional and production manager at Johnny Brenda’s, in an email to me on Tuesday afternoon. Her response wasn’t in reference to what she’d give BC Camplight in his rider or how the next Birdie Busch Hootenany would be handled. Hartley said as much in regard to the fact that she’ll be leaving JB’s of her own accord after five and a half years of service with a smile. She’ll be missed. Maybe. She hasn’t said whether or not what she’ll be doing next will take her out of Philly. She’ll know within two weeks, which means I’ll know within two weeks, which means you’ll know within two weeks. Either way, she sounds confident in the fact that she has accomplished all she origially set out to do (agreed) and that JB's future looks bright (agreed agreed). Stay tuned ...
Robert Dubac’s play Male Intellect: An Oxymoron?, on stage at Ambler's Act Two Playhouse, offers up a look into the male psyche while trying to answer the age-old question: “What do women want?” The one-man show features Bobby (Dubac), who recently fought with his significant other, Julie. When faced with what to do about the situation, Bobby begins to ask what it is that Julie wants and in the process uncovers the funny nuances that distinguish the genders. The act also features Dubac’s take on five male alter-egos: his father “The Colonel,” a French philosopher, a Jersey boy, an old bachelor and a hot-rod with Jack Nicholson’s voice. Surprisingly, the characters all provide him a piece of insight into the female mind.
The play as a whole is well-fitted to previous decades. The war of the sexes has been a topic of comedy since Greek theater so the premise is far from innovative. While Dubac takes a slightly more “sensitive” and open take on the gender phenomenon, he ultimately brings up the same points and clichés comedians have been bringing up for years. With women’s “Do I look fat?” setup, a man’s love of beer and belching, cats vs. dogs, and the constant question of sex, this play seemed better fit for a 1990s romantic comedy starring Meg Ryan than contemporary theater.
Each week, Emily Apisa puts together a rundown of book-centric events that’ll keep you “lit” like a firecracker all week long.
[ Wednesday ]
➤ Dwayne Booth (aka Mr. Fish)
This cheeky political cartoonist has been featured in major publications across the country, including the Village Voice, Vanity Fair and LA Weekly. As an equal-opportunity offender, Mr. Fish has illustrated commentary on everything from Wall Street scumbags to Executive Branch hotshots. Come hear Mr. Fish talk about his caricatures of American life as depicted in his new book Go Fish: How to Win Contempt and Influence People. Wed., July 13, 7 p.m., free, Moonstone Arts Center, 110A S. 13th St., 215-735-9600.
[ Thursday ]
➤ Erica Jong with contributors Julie Klam and Karen Abbott
Jong has solicited work from over 25 women authors in her collection of essays explaining the role sex plays in the female life. With so many points of view, Sugar in My Bowl: Real Women Write About Real Sex ranges from heartfelt to humorous as each author draws from personal experiences and upbringings. Joining Jong at this author event are Klam, an Emmy-nominated writer with two books to her name and Abbott, a NYT bestselling Philadelphia scribe. Thu., July 14, 7:30 p.m., free, Free Library (Central Branch), 1901 Vine St., 215-567-4341.
[ Friday ]
Even if the most French thing you’ve ever done was eat french fries at Chez McDonald’s, you’re still considered French on Bastille Day, at least according to Eastern State Penitentiary. Thursday, July 14 marks the 17th year for one of the summer’s most anticipated events, the annual Bastille Day Festival, which commemorates the beginning of the French Revolution in 1789. This year, the four-day (July14-17) extravaganza features a bar crawl, French cuisine, a street festival and so much more!
Fairmount French Fling Bar Crawl
If the French know about anything, it's how to drink. Starting at 7 p.m. tonight, eight Fairmount bars, including Fare (2028 Fairmount Ave.), London Grill (2031 Fairmount Ave.) and Urban Saloon (2120 Fairmount Ave.), will have Kronenbourg 1664 beer specials and Mouton Cadet wine specials … drink up!
Fairmount Goes French
Julia Child isn’t the only one who mastered the art of French cooking … some restaurants in Fairmount did, as well. Friday night, restaurants including The Belgian Café (601 N. 21st St.), Jack's Firehouse (2130 Fairmount Ave.) and Bridgid's Bar & Restaurant (726 N. 24th St.), will offer French dishes on their menus. After dinner you’ll have the choice of viewing a French-themed film, Ratatouille at 7 p.m. at Mugshots Coffeehouse (2100 Fairmount Ave.) or The Hunchback of Notre Dame at 8 p.m. on Eastern State Penitentiary’s (2027 Fairmount Ave.) lawn.
Bastille Day Street Festival
The focal event of the festival begins at 2 p.m. on Saturday in front of Eastern State Penitentiary with activities for everyone in the family. Dressed in your favorite 18th century French garb, you’ll be able to enjoy French food, kids’ activities, a pet parade, fashion show, costume contest and live entertainment from Philly Musette, the Bearded Ladies Edith Piaf Cabaret Street Performers and Peek A Boo Revue Can Can Dancers. It will surely get you in the mood to storm the Bastille (Eastern State) at 5:30 p.m. and drag Marie Antoinette (Terry McNally) to the guillotine!
Neighborhood Watch looks for Philly’s most fashionable. This week, they spot two hotties enjoying froyo in the Gayborhood.
Jenna looking cute as a button in her mix-matched ensemble
While trying to beat the heat with a cup of froyo in Sweet Endings on 13th and Walnut, we zeroed in on Jenna (18), who was enjoying a mix of strawberry, watermelon and chocolate yogurt deliciousness. Her mix-matched Forever 21 outfit (skirt and oversized top) was a perfect mix of text and floral print, and accented with DSW sandals.
Each week, Peter Chawaga breezes past those big-name theater companies to turn a spotlight on the city's indie stages.
This Sunday, 11th Hour Theatre Company will host their annual Philly Rocks Concert to raise money for their upcoming season. For the last six summers, they've put on cover-band concerts featuring singers from the local theater scene performing the classics we all know and love. This year’s theme is the '70s and each performer will do two songs made famous by Led Zeppelin, The Who, Pink Floyd, Fleetwood Mac, Aerosmith, Kansas and others. When I asked 11th Hour’s artistic director Michael O’Brien about the show he told me that “the biggest misconception is that people think it’s gonna be like a karaoke event. It really is a rock concert in every sense of the word. The singers are all really spectacular and it speaks to what 11th Hour does in town.”
And what's that, you ask? O'Brien says 11th Hour is committed to bringing contemporary and intimate works of musical theater to the Philadelphia stage with a particular focus on the story being told, not the spectacle that sometimes accompanies musical theater. In their six-year history they’ve been nominated for 22 Barrymore Awards, winning six. O'Brien tells me that Philly Rocks gives people a great opportunity to preview the kinds of things you’ll see in their upcoming season. “Rock music is a huge part of contemporary musical theater," he says. "We kind of want to go back to the roots of where it all started.”
The proceeds from Sunday’s show will go towards 11th Hour’s September production of Bomb-itty of Errors, an all-rapped version of Shakespeare’s Comedy of Errors featuring four guys and a DJ playing five characters each.
Sun., July 17, 7 p.m., $25, World Café Live, 3025 Walnut St., 267-987-9865, 11thhourtheatrecompany.org.
Intern Brian Wilensky set his iPod to shuffle. This is where it led him ...
1. The Mothers of Invention — “Take Your Clothes Off When You Dance”
There was a time when all I wanted in life was to play in a band that rivaled the weirdness of even the lesser-weird Zappa songs. I’d throw this one in the lesser-weird pile. Maybe that’s why it sort of makes me want to dance.
2. Frank Zappa — “While You Were Art II”
Frank, the genius composer, can do whatever he wants. Even if it sounds like random '80s synthesizer noise. But it isn’t noise, dammit. Frank transcribed and programmed his guitar solo and other accompaniment from “While You Were Out,” on Shut Up ‘n Play Yer Guitar into a Synclavier synth and made it into a classical piece for Jazz from Hell. Sounds easy enough, right?
3. The Cramps — “Domino”
You won’t even know you’re doing it, but one of the natural effects of this song — and most Cramps' songs — is that it’ll put you in your power stance without even knowing it. There aren’t any frills here, just a heavy rock tune from the psycho-billy originators and Lux Interior telling a story about a “real gone guy” named Domino.
4. Trey Anastasio — “Vultures”
This one’s from Trey’s album with his good buddy Tom Marshall, Trampled by Lambs and Pecked by the Dove. It could be the theme song for every time you gently plopped a pebble into an untouched pond in the middle of the woods in the northeastern U.S. And then you exhale and pass it to the left.
5. Charlie Parker — “Klactoveesedstene”
How am I supposed to say something about a song I have such a hard time pronouncing? It bops, it swings, Miles Davis plays on it and it can bring Grandpa back to the good ol’ days when radios were a piece of furniture.
6. Frank Zappa — “But Who Was Fulcanelli?”
Oh, that’s just Frank, he likes to play guitar solos and this one sort of topples and trips over itself all the way to the finish line. But I bet it made sense in Frank’s head. It’s from Guitar, a compilation album by Frank that’s nothing but excerpts of his extended guitar jams. That may sound a little self-absorbed, but you’d release this album, too, if your guitar chops could even hold a candle to Frank’s.
Two weeks ago, I featured Gordon Voidwell as a newcomer to watch in our Black Music Month series. I was able to catch up with him, to talk about style, summertime, his influences, and what’s in store. Here’s Gordon setting the record straight.
City Paper: Where are your peoples from? The Islands? States down south? Has it had an effect on your music at all?
Gordon Voidwell: My mom’s side were colonial Euro-American-type people. They were apparently Quakers and didn’t own slaves but that might just be something they said to ease tension at Thanksgiving dinners. My father’s family were brought here — with a lot of Africans during that same colonial period, I forget what it’s called. Oh yeah — slavery. So yeah, father’s side is from the Southeast and mom’s side from the Northeast. Both sides probably had documented and undocumented love affairs, coerced or willing, with Native Americans. As such, my people are sorta from all over this country and world. I can’t draw a direct line on how that’s affected my music, but yeah, I’m sure it has.
CP: You come from a musical family. What are some the artists that you were raised loving?
GV: It’s a bit random. My family was heavy into jazz, but my mom loved top 40 radio in the ’80s and ’90s. It ranges from like Fats Waller to Madonna, Whitney Houston to Miles Davis. And then Stevie Wonder is like the Holy Grail.
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