Tag Archives: Brooklyn

Intentional nostalgia: Mission of Burma and Speed the Plough played The Bell House

Mission of Burma at The Bell House, Brooklyn, NY, Feb. 7, 2014 (Photos © 2014 Steven P. Marsh)

Mission of Burma at The Bell House, Brooklyn, N.Y., on Feb. 7, 2014: Roger Miller, Clint Conley and Peter Prescott. (Photos © 2014 Steven P. Marsh)

Back in February — it seems such a very long time ago — I stopped by at The Bell House in Brooklyn to catch a double bill featuring two of my favorite bands.

Speed the Plough at The Bell House in Brookly, NY, on Feb. 7, 2014.

Speed the Plough at The Bell House in Brooklyn, N.Y., on Feb. 7, 2014: Ed Seifert, Toni Paruta Baumgartner, Mike Baumgartner and Cindi Merklee.

Mission of Burma and Speed the Plough both factored heavily in my experience at the late, lamented Maxwell’s in Hoboken, so it was a real joy to see them together at the Bell House, which was becoming Maxwell’s musical successor even before the lights went out in Hoboken. (And it’s no surprise, given that former Maxwell’s booker and co-owner Todd Abramson has been booking bands at the great Gowanus club for quite awhile now.)

The show was awesome, as expected. And the crowd — packed with more than a few familiar faces from Maxwell’s — was enthusiastic.

So step into my time machine and get a look at some shots from the show. If you were there, the pics will spark some good memories. If you didn’t make it, I apologize if my images make you envious.

Either way, enjoy them.

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Stew in Brooklyn tonight

20131123-153753.jpg I’ll be at the new BRIC House tonight to check out Stew’s Listening Party, a work-in-progress show.

Interestingly, this was originally billed as Stew and Heidi’s Listening Party, and was supposed to be a collaboration with his longtime collaborator Heidi Rodewald. But her name has disappeared from the program.

I haven’t heard reports from last night’s premiere, but I’m sure it was a trip. I’m booked at the7:30 pm show, which originally was scheduled to he the second andfinal gig. However, another show was added at 10 pm.

So if you got shut out before, you may be able to get tickets for tonight’s late
show by tapping here.

I’ll try to get take some photos and post them here later.

Stew stirs things up with fantastic new songs at Barbès

The hat was more crumpled at Barbès on July 25, but Stew's energy was at a peak. (Photo © 2012, Steven P.  Marsh)

The hat was more crumpled than this at Barbès on July 25 and Stew’s energy level seemed higher than usual. (Photo © 2012, Steven P. Marsh)

By the time his latest gig in his musical living room (aka Park Slope, Brooklyn, boîte Barbès) rolled around Thursday night, July 25, singer-songwriter and Tony Award winner Stew had dumped his original staged plan to play versions of his songs from Passing Strange and other numbers from his extensive repertoire.

Instead, he launched into a tight song cycle “inspired by recent events.” In other words, songs about George Zimmerman and the Trayvon Martin case. If yoy don’t know what I’m talking about, it’s time to get out from under that rock where you’ve been living and catch up on the news!

If you’re a Passing Strange fan who passed on the show for one reason or another and are thinking now that this make you feel OK about missing, hold that thought. I’m here to tell you differently. Continue reading

Stew and The Negro Problem returning to Barbès

UPDATE: Stew Sez Showtime’s now 9:30 p.m.

Photo from Stew's Facebook announcement of the upcoming gig at Barbès.

Photo from Stew’s Facebook announcement of the upcoming gig at Barbès.

There was a moment or two of confusion Thursday morning when Stew,the singer-songwriter and Tony winner for the book of Passing Strange posted on Facebook that he and his band, The Negro Problem, would be appearing two weeks from now at “our beloved Barbès” and included the date of Oct. 25.

Stew, Heidi and an incarnation of The Negro Problem at Barbés in 2011. (Photo © 2011, Steven P. Marsh)

Stew, Heidi and an incarnation of The Negro Problem at Barbés in 2011. (Photo © 2011, Steven P. Marsh)

Well, fans of Stew’s work won’t have to wait that long. Maybe Stew is just jonesing for Fall. But according to the Barbès calendar, it’s Thursday, July 25, at 10 p.m., which is in two weeks.

Whew. Glad I could clear that up.

Stew posted a Facebook update on Friday, July 19, saying showtime was changed to 9:30. So I’m getting there by 9 just to be on the safe side:

showtime for stew & the negro problem’s BARBES show this THURSDAY JULY 25th is now 9:30. We will play some songs inspired by recent events.

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Go see Buke and Gase perform upstate

Buke and Gase opening for Mission of Burma at The Bell House, Gowanus, Brooklyn, on Jan 29, 2011. (Photo © 2011, Steven P. Marsh)

Buke and Gase opening for Mission of Burma at The Bell House, Gowanus, Brooklyn, on Jan 29, 2011. (Photo © 2011, Steven P. Marsh)

See that rhyme in the headline? When was the last time you saw that on Will You Miss Me When I’m Gone?

Unless memory fails, that would be never.

But that’s no excuse for not checking out Buke and Gase when they perform Thursday, July 11, in The Spiegeltent on the campus of Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson.

It’s a lovely shlep from New York City, straight up the Hudson River. You can even get there by train aboard Amtrak to the Rhinecliff station, but check the schedules closely. You won’t be able to get a train home to NYC until the next morning, as the last southbound trip departs at 5:06 p.m.

Buke and Gase are coming to The Spiegeltent at Bard College.

Buke and Gase are coming to The Spiegeltent at Bard College.

Buke and Gase (formerly Buke and Gass, but changed because Gass was too easily misinterpreted), is a duo originally from NYC who started playing their jury-rigged instruments (the Buke is an electrified six-string baritone ukulele and the gass/gase is a guitar/bass hybrid) and writing raucous songs that sound like nothing any other indie-rock band is doing — and in a good, infectious way.

If you’re a regular reader, you already know about B&G’s Arone Dyer (onetime bicycle mechanic who plays the Buke and foot percussion) and Aron Sanchez (who handles the Gase and more foot percussion). We’ve written about them a number of  times before. Read the previous posts here, here, here and here.

They’re still doing it, but they got a place upstate in Hudson awhile back, likely making this Bard gig a really easy commute for them.

Arcade Fire’s violinist Sarah Neufeld is joining them for this show.

The Bard Spiegeltent is a pretty cool space. If you don’t know what a one is, think of an old-fashioned carousel building with no carousel inside. Very festive, chill and laid-back.

INFO: 8:30 p.m., Thursday, July 11, 2013. The Spiegeltent, Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, N.Y. $20 online. Click here for more info and tickets.

Stew & The Negro Problem at Barbès: A refuge from the storm and a special surprise

Blizzard? Who cares, when there’s a chance to see Stew, Heidi and the gang in an intimate Brooklyn boîte

Stew and Heidi Rodewald perform with a version of their band, The Negro Problem, at Barbès in Park Slope, Brooklyn in March 2011. And yes, that's Joe McGinty in the foreground.  (Photo © 2011, Steven P. Marsh)

Stew and Heidi Rodewald perform with a version of their band, The Negro Problem, at Barbès in Park Slope, Brooklyn in March 2011. And yes, that’s Joe McGinty in the foreground. (Photo © 2011, Steven P. Marsh)

If the predicted nightmare blizzard doesn’t bring New York City to a screeching halt on Friday, you should be at  Barbès in Brooklyn’s Park Slope neighborhood to catch a surprisingly un-publicized gig by Stew & The Negro Problem.

(Click through to the jump for all the details.) Continue reading

Peter Stampfel and the Ether Frolic Mob perform tonight

Peter Stampfel torturing a banjo and assaulting our ears at the Gerdes Folk City 50th Reunion in 2010. (Photo 2010, Steven P. Marsh)

Peter Stampfel torturing a banjo and assaulting our ears at the Gerdes Folk City 50th Reunion in 2010. (Photo © 2010, Steven P. Marsh)

Speaking of the Greenwich Village folk music scene, here’s somebody you won’t see at the IFC Center tonight: Peter Stampfel, one of the singular characters of that musical generation. He’s still making music, though not with his original, and best-known band, the Holy Modal Rounders.

He should be there tonight. But you won’t see him at IFC tonight because he’s going to be very bust in Red Hook, Brooklyn, while the film is showing.

Peter and his latest band, The Ether Frolic Mob (a band with a constantly shifting cast of characters, as far as we can tell), are scheduled to play at the Jalopy Theatre and School of Music, 315 Columbia St., Red Hook, Brooklyn, tonight. Peter’s band is slated to play at 9 p.m., following the Bushwick Gospel  Singers’ 8 p.m. set.

Tickets are $10, available in advance by clicking here and at the door — as long as you don’t get there too late!

Donate to help New Amsterdam Records recover from Sandy’s devastation and you’ll be helping the cause of New Music, too

Nonprofit New Music powerhouse is really on the ropes in the wake of the storm

A photo of some of the losses is posted on New Amsterdam’s blog.

Please donate now to help New Amsterdam, if you can

Superstorm Sandy wasn’t kind to anyone in the New York metro area. But our friends at New Amsterdam Records, which became the virtual center of the New Music universe here in recent years, has really taken it on the chin.

Their Brooklyn headquarters at 98A Van Dkye St. in Red Hook — where they’ve been for just six month or so — has been devastated by the storm. The nonprofit New Amsterdam (they’ve had 501 (c)(3) status for a year) lost all its financial records. And the storm wiped out 70% of their CDs, which New Amsterdam held and distributed for the artists, who actually owned them.

Yes, this all really, really sucks. But New Amsterdam ‘s co-founders, Judd Greenstein, William Brittelle and Sarah Kirkland Snider didn’t get this far by being wussies. They’re a plucky bunch and they’re already looking toward brighter days.

Here’s where we come in: Let’s help them get to those brighter days faster. If you care about New Music, especially the artists that New Amsterdam has brought to attention in New York and the world with its CDs and its amazing Ecstatic Music Festival at Merkin Concert Hall, kick in some cash. Help them out.

Click on their Hurricane Recovery page to make a tax-deductible donation.

And don’t forget to buy New Amsterdam products. Go to a record store, if you remember what that is. Or go online and buy from any of the wonderful online sites that carry NewAm CDs and downloads. Given the tremendous loss of product at HQ, it’s unlikely NewAm will be shipping anything anytime soon. But if you want to see what’s in the NewAm catalog, click here.

Much of the money goes directly to the artists, but New Amsterdam benefits from ever sale as well.

Once you’ve done your bit, follow New Amsterdam’s recovery on Facebook and Twitter, and check out photos on its Flickr stream.

And if you’re nearby, offer your time, too. Judd, Bill and Sarah are going to need all the help they can get.

Stew, Heidi & The Negro Problem to play the final Weeksville Garden Party in Brooklyn on Saturday

Stew & Heidi Rodewald of The Negro Problem. (Photo © 2012, Steven P. Marsh)

Will You Miss Me When I’m Gone‘s favorite band, The Negro Problem, is playing a gig in Brooklyn this Saturday, July 28. They’re in the hood for the fourth and final installment of the Weeksville Garden Party, a July tradition of free weekly performances at the Weeksville Heritage Center at 1698 Bergen Street between Rochester and Buffalo Avenues in Brooklyn’s Crown Heights neighborhood.

The Weeksville Heritage Center itself, dedicated to the unique history of the 19th Century village of Weeksville, founded by free blacks, is worth exploring. We’d recommend arriving early — doors are at 4, with The Negro Problem set to perform at 6 — to check the place out.

Remember, it’s free. But if you like the show and the museum, they’ll gladly accept donations. We know WYMMWIG‘s readers are generous. Don’t let us down.

Sharon Van Etten just can’t stop touring

Sharon Van Etten at the Bowery Ballroom on Feb. 26, 2012.

We’ve been away from this page for too long. But an email landed in our in box this morning that inspired us to sit down and log in.

Sharon Van Etten, who’s on Will You Miss Me When I’m Gone‘s Top 10 Artist lists, announced the dates for her fall tour today.

Van Etten at the Northside Festival, 2010.

It seems like Sharon, a wonderful, low-key Brooklyn singer songwriter has been touring nonstop since releasing her third full-length album, Tramp, on Jagjaguwar early this year. While we’re glad she’s been sharing her extraordinary voice and songwriting with audiences around the world, we have a feeling that she hasn’t spent much time at home in Bushwick, Brooklyn, just a couple of neighborhoods away — and a world apart — from  Ditmas Park,  the home of  other musical luminaries like Sufjan Stevens and most of the members of The National.

Her new tour dates continue the marathon. It takes her to Portugal, Spain, France and the U.K. before bringing her stateside for a good long wander through the eastern half of the U.S. before wrapping up back in New York City.

Sharon’s a hard-working musician. But don’t let the volume fool you. Click through to the jump for more photos of Sharon through the years, along with her full tour schedule.

And take note of the period from Aug. 23 to Sept. 25. I don’t see any shows scheduled, do you? We can only hope that’s when we’ll be seeing her around Brooklyn.

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