Members of the bike messenger community came together in Tompkins Square Park on Friday to mark the naming of a bench for bike messenger and photographer ‘Fast’ Eddie Williams. Friends featured in his 2004 photo book ‘Bike Messengers Life – New York City‘ joined Eddie’s son Nagi, daughter Koko and dozens of working messengers for the service. The beautiful weather allowed for a fitting sun set over the bench that sits opposite the big tree on the south side of the park, a longtime gathering spot for New York bike messengers.
Gone are the days of the humble coffee shop a la Central Perk in Friends— in our current era of Instagram, many cafes moonlight as bars or performance venues during off-hours, featuring trendy, eye-catching drinks and a strong social media presence as well.
It’s not yet ice cream weather (grrr), but that isn’t stopping OddFellows Ice Cream Co. from expanding to Nolita. The quirky parlor with locations in Williamsburg and the East Village just added another outpost at 55 East Houston Street, and there is a lot happening here.
A drag queen let me into Community Board 3’s State Liquor Authority licensing committee meeting on Monday night. Inside, she was joined by a bevy of others who came out in droves to support Club Cumming, actor Alan Cumming’s East Village bar that recently ran into trouble due to their liquor license lacking a stipulation to allow live music and DJs.
Two forthcoming venues in hallowed spaces have announced their initial lineups. Asbury Lanes, the Bowery Presents reboot of the 57-year-old bowling-and-music dive in Asbury Park, will open May 25 with a Cold Seas show, and Coney Island Baby, the new incarnation of the former Brownies and HiFi space in the East Village, opens April 26 with hardcore legends Murphy’s Law.
Avant-garde jazz pianist and composer Cecil Taylor died at his Brooklyn home Thursday evening. He was 89. A polarizing figure during the jazz heyday of the 50s and 60s due to his frenzied and untraditional playing style, Taylor helped to pioneer the free jazz genre along with Ornette Coleman. His avant-garde style has influenced countless musicians and left an indelible mark on the jazz as a whole.
The space that used to house Coup, on Cooper Square, still feels like a cocktail lounge, but the young people at the bar during a recent visit were hunched over laptops instead of pints. Scrawled on three massive rolls of brown paper were the talking points of Suraj Patel, the Congressional candidate who is now using the space as his campaign headquarters. Patel’s platform, outlined on his website, states that voting should be digital, gender is a spectrum, healthcare is a right, and marijuana should be legalized.
Wednesday, March 28 at Lot 45, 7 pm: $25
When you think of vaudeville, you may imagine charismatic and fast-talking magicians, jokesters, and other memorable figures circa hundreds of years ago. Though it had its heyday in the past, this type of vaudevillian evening is far from extinct, and you can find it tonight in the form of Wondershow, a night helmed by mentalist Eric Walton. In addition to mind-melting tricks from Walton himself, you can also see “elegant sleight of hand” from Alex Boyce, dancing from Jenny Rocha and Her Painted Ladies, and comedic experiences from Jonathan Burns and Harrison Greenbaum. Time Out called this show “professional mindfuckery,” so provided that’s what you’re into and consent is obtained, I assume you shall be in for a treat. More →
Last Thursday, the theater at MoMA went back to the 20th century when Performing Difference: Gender in the 1980s Downtown Scene, a day of panel discussions presented in conjunction with the exhibit “Club 57: Film, Performance, and Art in the East Village, 1978-1983.”, took over one of the museum’s spacious screening rooms.
A woman with a shock of wild red hair and oversized sunglasses approached me outside of Flower Power Herbs and Roots as I stood waiting for Lata Chettri-Kennedy, the East Village shop’s herbalist.
“Are you…” she trailed off, her gaze caught by two leather stools at the entrance of her door. “Chair karma! We have been having very good chair karma lately.” Without missing a beat, she picked up the stools and walked them inside.
The walls of Flower Power were filled with loose herbs and teas, herbal extracts and oils, flower essences, local honey, ritual herbs, and a library of herbal healing books. Hanging from the ceiling were dried flowers, wreaths made by local artisans, strings of lights, and arrangements of branches and leaves, which made one feel as though they had left the streets of New York and walked into a store of C.S. Lewis’s making.