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The Be-All End-All Guide to Early September Art

Artwork by Dilek Baykara via Cotton Candy Machine.

Artwork by Dilek Baykara via Cotton Candy Machine.

It’s easy to forget that the skinny streets of the Lower East Side are bursting at their seams with galleries and performance art spaces. Let the fact that forty of them are holding opening receptions on the same night this month serve as a reminder. That’s a lot of art (and free wine). Highlights include “Dots, Stripes, Liquid Cyber and Other Plaiditudes,” a fashion design and photography exhibit at Strange Loop Gallery, and an inaugural group show at Monya Rowe Gallery, which just bailed on its Chelsea home in favor of a spot on Orchard Street, featuring the Dali-level surrealism of Larissa Bates and Jacolby Satterwhite’s experimental videos.
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Josh Brolin’s Stepsister Made a Rock Opera About a Swamp Goddess in Space

The year after Molly Brolin (stepsister of Josh Brolin) and her fellow Berklee grad Justin Johnson moved to Greenpoint in 2010, Johnson saw “a dark sorceress cast a spell of calm over all the bodega workers in Manhattan” while he was working in a stockroom in Soho.

That stress-incited hallucination evolved into Smile Swamp Princess, a rock opera co-composed by Megan Lui and directed by Molly’s neice Eden Brolin. It debuts at Wild Project next week.
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The St. Mark’s Bookshop Held Its ‘Last Party Ever,’ But Hey, Poetry Is Back!

If you missed Bob Holman’s reading at the St. Mark’s Bookshop (described as the soon-to-relocate shop’s “last party ever”), don’t worry, the whole thing is now on the Internet (you know, that thing that’s killing the bookstore?). Holman introduces his reading, accompanied by griot music, by reiterating the state of the “real live bookshop": “The word is, this is the last reading at this location,” he says. “But we have it from good source that the St. Mark’s Bookshop will reopen at a nearby location but it cannot be disclosed because it’s all fucking real estate and if you say it, it never happens, right?”
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Sid Bernstein, Who Brought The Stones to the East Village, Has Died

(Photo: the private collections of Jason Knox and Harold C. Black)

Promoter Sid Bernstein will long be known as the man who brought the Beatles to America for their 1965 concert at Shea Stadium. But Bernstein, who died last Wednesday at age 95, also presented British Invasion groups like the Kinks and the Moody Blues at the Academy of Music, an aging East Village movie theater on East 14th Street at Third Avenue.
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Yippie and Peace Activist Mayer Vishner Is Dead, Apparently a Suicide

Mayer near his community garden parcel in the Village.

Mayer near his community garden parcel in the Village.

Mayer Vishner, a longtime anti-war activist, editor, and close associate of Abbie Hoffman and the Yippies, died in his Greenwich Village apartment at the age of 64 last week — an apparent suicide, according to friends and colleagues.

Paul Krassner, 81, a founder of the Yippies and editor of The Realist, said yesterday that he spoke to Vishner around 2 a.m. Thursday, after he had returned from Texas to leave his cat with a friend.
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Harry Styles of One Direction Was ‘Wilding’ at Lit Last Night

(Photo: Prince Terrence's )

(Photo: Prince Terrence’s )

Well, Jay Z didn’t show up in Bushwick, but here’s something that actually did happen: Harry Styles of One Direction was “wilding on the dance floor” at Lit last night, according to DJ Prince Terrence, who posted this Instagram shot of the teen idol presumably celebrating his win at the MTV Music Video Awards the night before.
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All These People Showed Up For a Secret Jay Z Show That Never Happened

(Photo: Sara Edwards)

(Photo: Sara Edwards)

The #HovaHoax of 2013 might just be the biggest punking since Radiohead was a no-show at Zuccotti Park. Because there apparently weren’t enough free shows going on this weekend, someone started a rumor that Jay-Z (er, Jay Z) was doing a surprise gig — not at his own Barclays Center, where the MTV Music Video Awards went down Sunday, but on Troutman Street in Bushwick.
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On Sunday There’ll Be Cool Jazz, Hot Jazz, and Jazz Poetry, You Dig?

This weekend, it’s “all that jazz” in a very literal sense. You already know that the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival is bringing legendary Miles Davis sideman and cool-jazz pioneer Leo Konitz to Tompkins Square Park for a free show. But that’s just the start of it. If you need to get out of the sun at any point between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m., you might want to duck into A Gathering of the Tribes, where Bird meets the word in the form of the Charlie Parker Poetry Reading. Downtown poets Bob Holman, Steve Dalachinsky, Patricia Spears Jones and a host of others will do their thing at Steve Cannon’s East Third Street apartment gallery.
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