Rising rents and changing neighborhoods got you down? Tonight head over to Bushwick’s main-squeeze community space, Mayday, for an art and music fest to commiserate on our supremely “gentrifucked” city.
The show (which, let’s be honest, will be less misery and more party) is organized by Buendia Brooklyn, a collective of local rappers, graffiti artists, and MCs operating out of Sunset Park– a neighborhood that’s still (somewhat) insulated from twee cocktail bars and doggy spas. (They even have a non-ironic bowling alley!)
Brooklyn Brewery today announced plans to roll out their barrel program to the Brooklyn Navy Yard in a big way. The Williamsburg-based beer operation already has a warehouse at the yard where they’re aging 2,000 barrels of wine, bourbon, rum and mezcal by way of experimental processes. But come 2018, the company will open their new “primary headquarters” to the public inside Building 77 at the center of the yard, where they plan to produce 50,000 barrels of beer annually.
As the cliché goes, a talented artist can make their work look easy. Most successful works of art, then– anything from albums to paintings and photographs– belie the huge amount of effort and skill that went into their creation. This might stem from the idea that showing too much of the maker’s hand demystifies the process, and therefore risks ruining the magic of art. That distance is especially important when it comes to music– for most genres anyway, maintaining a separation between the audience and the performer, both physical and psychologically, is an essential part of the experience.
Bedford Avenue has more than its share of coffee spots, starting with the El Beit reboot that opened in March. But this next one promises to be a little different. Equilibria, opening just down the block from Oslo and Black Brick, isn’t just a cafe offering free wifi– it doubles and triples as a pharmacy and wellness store.
If you care about the gold rush sweeping Brooklyn and you haven’t been listening to WNYC’s There Goes the Neighborhood podcast…well, you must be living under a rock (or maybe in Tribeca). The eight-episode capsule podcast, hosted by The Nation‘s Kai Wright, is required listening. From studying landlord and developer tactics to understanding people’s complicated relationships with their homes and neighborhoods, it goes beyond the constant stream of tenant harassment cases to really try to make sense of the historical and social context around the recent developments in the changing the city.
Anarkia, Brazilian street artist (Film still from “Street Heroines”)
Tonight, you can catch original works by no fewer than 17 street artists all in one place. In an effort to bring attention (and raise some cash money) for her work-in-progress documentary, Street Heroines, filmmaker Alexandra Henry is hosting a one-night-only pop-up exhibition and fundraiser with the help of some of local female street artists including Danielle Mastrion (you may recall her Beastie Boy murals in the East Village), Alice Mizrachi, and Lexi Bella. With the help of Howl Happening, Rabbithole Projects in Dumbo will play host to the free event, which starts at 7:30 pm.
The city is awash in purple as New Yorkers mourn the death of yet another music legend this year. Last night, cries of “Purple Rain” and “Little Red Corvette” reverberated around our neighborhoods as people danced into the wee hours.
“The OlsenTwins Hiding from the Paparazzi” has gone from being a wild idea crowded-funded by Matt Harkins and Viviana Olen (the comedic duo behind the Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan 1994 Museum) to becoming a real brick-and-mortar affair on Grand Street, right in the heart of Williamsburg (where else?).
In 2013 Mayor Bill De Blasio was voted into office with pledges to reign in police violence and stop-and-frisk policing targeted at blacks and latinos. (Remember that emotional video about needing to have stop-and-frisk conversations with his son, Dante?) And since he took office, street-stops have continued on a downward trend–there were about 24,000 stops last year, a far cry from the peak of 685,000 in 2011 under Bloomberg.
Bernie Sanders supporters showed up in droves today at the candidate’s Brooklyn rally, undeterred by the nippy cold weather and wind gusts that sent even the NYPD tugboat off of Greenpoint’s Transmitter Park a’bobbin (perfectly in-synch with the pump-up soundtrack’s reggae rotation, I might add). The mood was elated as the Brooklynite presidential candidate prepares to battle it out with Hillary Clinton for New York state delegates, a fight set to go down on her (sort-of) home turf less than two weeks from today.
It’s nearly SXSW time, which means we all have new bands on the mind. But what about the artists who exist outside of the pop-music industrial complex? Mama Coco’s Funky Kitchen, a Brooklyn-born music collective founded by Oliver Ignatius, the seasoned industry vet and recording guru, that boasts a network of around 120 bands that support each other in creating what Ignatius calls “pop music at its finest,” which is to say music that embraces “the shock of the new, the shock of the raw, and often the genuinely weird.”
In light of the release of their seventh MCFK compilation (which we’re premiering below), we thought it was an ideal time to catch up with Oliver Ignatius and hear more about the collective and the bands we’re seeing so much of around the DIY scene.
Rendering of 25 Kent Avenue, Toby Moskovits’s waterfront office complex (Image via Steelblue Consulting / Heritage Equity)
Already ground zero for some of the city’s most dramatic rezonings, Williamsburg is facing yet another contentious development: an eight-story, 480,000-square-foot office complex known as the Brooklyn Generator. On Tuesday, Community Board 1 met to vote on whether or not to support the creation of a special mixed-use zone that would allow developers to move forward with the massive project. And they didn’t take the matter lightly. “This is going to affect us for the rest of our lives,” CB1 chairperson Dealice Fuller said of the board’s decision.