NYC Events,”Only the Best” (07/17) + Today’s Featured Pub (WestVillage)

“We search the internet everyday looking for the very best of What’s Happening, primarily on Manhattan’s WestSide, so that you don’t have to.” We make it as easy as 1-2-3.

For future NYC Events, check the tab above: NYC Events-JULY”
It’s the most comprehensive list of top events this month that you will find anywhere.
Carefully curated from “Only the Best” NYC event info on the the web, it’s a simply superb resource that will help you plan your NYC visit all over town, all through the month.

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Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

ERTEGUN HALL OF FAME FESTIVAL (July 17-19)
at Dizzy’s Club/ 7:30 and 9:30 p.m., $40
“At this series of concerts, Jazz at Lincoln Center celebrates the three newest inductees into its Ertegun Hall of Fame. Things kick off on Tuesday, when the bassist Ben Wolfe pays tribute to Jimmy Blanton, who expanded the role of the bass in large-ensemble jazz during his time with Duke Ellington. On Wednesday, the vocalists Shenel Johns and Vuyo Sotashe perform pieces from Nina Simone’s repertoire, and on Thursday, the pianist and vocalist Freddy Cole plays in honor of his brother Nat King Cole.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

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6 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> Batsheva — The Young Ensemble 
>> Thumbscrew
>> MUMMENSCHANZ
>> Jeremy Jordan and Ashley Spencer:
>> Undiscovered Italy: Sicily
>> The Taste of Grand Central Market
Continuing Events
>> New York Television Festival

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Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Batsheva — The Young Ensemble  (July10-22)
Joyce Theater, 7:30PM, $66+
“Straight from a run at the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in Massachusetts comes Batsheva — The Young Ensemble, the junior offshoot of Tel Aviv’s leading troupe Batsheva. The outfit brings with them Naharin’s Virus, a Bessie Award–winning piece by Ohad Naharin, who recently announced that he’s stepping down as the company’s director but will continue to choreograph. Adapted from Peter Handke’s play Offending the Audience, the deeply ambiguous work, which had its U.S. premiere in 2002, includes sections of Handke’s text, a huge blackboard at the back of the stage, and other deeply theatrical strategies.” (Elizabeth Zimmer, VillageVoice)

Thumbscrew (July 17-22.)
Village Vanguard, 178 Seventh Ave. S., at 11th St. / 8:30 and 10:30 p.m, $35
“Proudly of the moment, the new jazz trio Thumbscrew is also mindful of the tradition that it so diligently messes with. Last month, the band, which features Mary Halvorson, on guitar, Mike Formanek, on bass, and Tomas Fujiwara, on drums, concurrently released “Ours,” a collection of spiky originals, and “Theirs,” which interprets the work of an eclectic array of composers, including the jazz exemplars Wayne Shorter, Stanley Cowell, and Benny Golson.” (Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

MUMMENSCHANZ (July 4-22)
at the Gerald W. Lynch Theater at John Jay College / 7PM, $25-$85
“The famed Swiss theater troupe, founded in 1972, returns to New York with its surreal sensibility — and, of course, plenty of props — to present “You and Me,” a new show created by Floriana Frassetto, one of the group’s founders. Using its usual ingredients of shadow, light, bodies and masks, the group conjures a magical world that is also, handily, good family fare.” (NYT – Gia Kourlas)

Jeremy Jordan and Ashley Spencer: Starring Opposite You
Sony Hall, 235 w46 / 7:30PM, $35+
“Jordan made by history originating the lead male roles in two Broadway musicals in the 2012-13 season: the short-lived Bonnie and Clyde and the Disney hit Newsies. He also played Jamie in The Last Five Years, Jimmy on the NBC hate-watch classic Smash and Winn on Supergirl.) In concert, he is charming and sings like a dream. In his latest concert engagement, he shares the stage—and multiple duets—with his very talented wife, Ashley Spencer, who has played leading roles in Broadway musicals including Grease and Rock of Ages.” (TONY)

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Smart Stuff / Other NYC Events
(Lectures/Discussions, Book Talks, Film, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)

Undiscovered Italy: Sicily
92nd Street Y, 1395 Lexington Ave./ 7PM, $45
Sicily is a mix of Europe, Africa and Asia all in one place.

“Home to Greek temples, Roman amphitheaters, Norman Arab castles and medieval churches. In fact, the eastern section of Sicily, once the heart of Magna Grecia has more Greek ruins than in Greece. Discover the fascinating traces in art, architecture and even food of the many civilizations that have conquered her in Francine Segan’s lively talk on the largest island in the Mediterranean.

Talk includes a tasting of some of Sicily’s specialty foods including:
Galvanina: an Italian soda that uses such organic Sicilian fruits as prickly pear and blood orange
Bonajuto: Sicilian chocolates made with cocoa beans stone ground by hand — plain dark chocolate, sea salt dark chocolate and a unique marjoram dark chocolate
Pasta with Sicilian citrus pesto: made with oranges, almonds & basil
Sicilian cheeses and cannoli”

The Taste of Grand Central Market (also Thursday)
Grand Central Market / 2 to 3 p.m., free samples
‘If you’ve never visited the Grand Central Market, this week might be the right time. The Taste of Grand Central Market will celebrate 20 years of retail and dining at the terminal on Tuesday and Thursday with free samples from 2 to 3 p.m. There also will be food demonstrations both days, with the Pescatore Seafood Co. showing how to make a summer roll on Tuesday, and Sushi by Pescatore rolling out their creations Thursday.” (amNY)

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Continuing Events

New York Television Festival (July 14-20)
“Pop into screenings for the 59 selections in the pilot competition that anchors the 14th annual fest, and you’ll generally pay no more than $5 (with advance registration); same with special events like the exclusive preview for Bobcat Goldthwait’s new anthology series. The $150 festival pass option is for creatives hoping to work in television and includes panels including one for writers with scribes for “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” (pictured) and “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.” (nytvf.com)  (amNY)

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♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, plus dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.6 million, had a record 63 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2018 – awesome! BUT quality shows draw crowds. Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just earlier on the day of performance.

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Bonus: Nifty 9 – Best Cabarets / Piano Bars NYCity
These are my favorite places for an after dinner night on the town – music and drinks.
Hit the Hot Link and check out what’s happening tonight:

Feinstein’s/54 Below – 254 W 54th St.

The Green Room 42 – 570 Tenth Ave.

Don’t Tell Mama – 343 W 46th St.

The Rum House, in the Hotel Edison – 228 W. 47th St.

Laurie Beechman Theatre – 407 W 42nd St.

Marie’s Crisis – 59 Grove St.

The Duplex – 61 Christopher St.

Sid Gold’s Request Room – 165 W 26th St.

Cafe Carlyle, in the Carlyle Hotel – 35 E. 76th St.
This is the only one not located on Manhattan’s WestSide, and it ain’t cheap, but it has some of the finest singers.

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NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

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A PremierPub / West Village

Corner Bistro 331 W. 4th St.

Sometimes you just need a beer and a burger. If so, Corner Bistro is the place you want. Located just outside the hip Meatpacking district, this corner bar and grill is decidedly unhip, but it’s not uncrowded, especially at night. Seems that everyone knows this place has one of the better burgers in town.

kac_120405_phude_corner_bistro_bar_1000-600x450In the maze of streets known as the West Village, where West 4th intersects with West 12th (and West 11th, and West 10th, go figure), you will eventually find Corner Bistro on the corner of West 4th and Jane Street. An unassuming neighborhood tavern, it looks just like dozens of other taverns around town.

The bartender tells me that the Corner Bistro celebrated it’s 50th anniversary last year. The well worn interior tells me that the place itself is much older.

Corner Bistro has outlasted many of those other taverns around town because they know how to keep it simple — just good burgers and beer, fairly priced. The classic bistro Burger is only $6.75, and should be ordered medium rare, which will be plenty rare for most folks. Actually, it will be a juicy, messy delight – make sure you have extra napkins. I like to pull up a stool and sit by the large front window in the afternoon, where I can rest my burger and beer on the shelf, and watch the Villagers walk by.

Corner Bistro seems to attract very different groups of patrons depending on time of day. While it’s crowded with locals in the evening, in the afternoon you hear different foreign languages, and watch groups of euro tourists wander in, led by their guidebooks and smartphones.

For the classic Bistro experience, order your burger with a McSorley’s draft, the dark preferably. This is the same beer that you can get over at the original McSorley’s in the East Village, the pub that claims to be the oldest continually operating bar in NYCity. The only difference is that this McSorley’s ale is served with a smile by the bartenders here. Or you can get a Sierra Nevada, Stella, or Hoegaarden on tap if you want to go upscale a bit. Either way this is a simple, but quality burger and beer experience that is just too rare these days (sorry for the pun).
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Website: cornerbistrony.com
Phone #: 212-242-9502
Hours: 11:30am-4am Mon-Sat; 12pm-4am Sun
Happy Hour: NO
Music: Juke Box
Subway: #1/2/3 to 14th St. (S end of platform)
Walk 2 blk W. on 13th St. to 8th Ave.; 1 blk S. on 8th Ave. to Jane St.
Update:
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“Pub” is used in it’s broadest sense – bars, bar/restaurants, jazz clubs, wine bars, tapas bars, craft beer bars, dive bars, cocktail lounges, and of course, pubs – just about anyplace you can get a drink without a cover charge (except for certain jazz clubs).

If you have a fave premier pub or good eating place on Manhattan’s WestSide let us all know about it – leave a comment.
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Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

NYC Events,”Only the Best” (07/16) + Museum Special Exhibitions: Manhattan’s 5th Avenue

“We search the internet everyday looking for the very best of What’s Happening, primarily on Manhattan’s WestSide, so that you don’t have to.” We make it as easy as 1-2-3.

For future NYC Events, check the tab above: NYC Events-JULY”
It’s the most comprehensive list of top events this month that you will find anywhere.
Carefully curated from “Only the Best” NYC event info on the the web, it’s a simply superb resource that will help you plan your NYC visit all over town, all through the month.

==========================================================

Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

CHARLIE PUTH
at Radio City Music Hall / 7:30 p.m., $55+
“Mr. Puth first emerged as a pop powerhouse in 2015, when he was responsible for two of the year’s most difficult-to-avoid earworms: the retro “Marvin Gaye,” featuring Meghan Trainor, and the “Furious 7” soundtrack smash “See You Again” alongside Wiz Khalifa. In 2017, though, the 26-year-old New Jersey native debuted a slightly more sophisticated sound with the single “Attention,” an aesthetic shift that has since charmed music critics as easily as it has the teens who were already flooding his Instagram photos with adoring comments.” (NYT-NATALIE WEINER)

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5 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> Jeremy Jordan and Ashley Spencer:
>> Jon Gordon Quartet
>> Jim Caruso’s Cast Party
>> The Fall of Wisconsin:
>> The Unpunished Vice: A Life Well Read
Continuing Events
>> New York Television Festival

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Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Jeremy Jordan and Ashley Spencer: Starring Opposite You (also July 17)
Sony Hall, 235 w46 / 7:30PM, $35+
“Jordan made by history originating the lead male roles in two Broadway musicals in the 2012-13 season: the short-lived Bonnie and Clyde and the Disney hit Newsies. He also played Jamie in The Last Five Years, Jimmy on the NBC hate-watch classic Smash and Winn on Supergirl.) In concert, he is charming and sings like a dream. In his latest concert engagement, he shares the stage—and multiple duets—with his very talented wife, Ashley Spencer, who has played leading roles in Broadway musicals including Grease and Rock of Ages.” (TONY)

Jon Gordon Quartet
Dizzy’s Club, Jazz at Lincoln Center/ 7:30PM, +9:30PM, $30
With alto saxophonist Jon Gordon, pianist Bryn Roberts, bassist Matt Clohesy, and drummer Quincy Davis

“Gordon has embraced the history of his instrument, carrying with it the ability to extend music as a universal language” – NEA Jazz Master Wayne Shorter
Jon Gordon is a sensational musician. His mastery of the alto saxophone is profound; his music is as intense as it is lyrical. Every time I hear him play I am struck by his emotional depth and his riveting virtuosity. Gordon has been championed by such icons as Benny Carter and Phil Woods for his singular and innovative musical voice, both as an improviser and as a composer. In Jon Gordon’s music, you can hear the past, the present, and the future, all at the same time – Bill Charlap”

Jim Caruso’s Cast Party
Birdland, / 9:30PM, $30
Jim Caruso’s Cast Party is a wildly popular weekly soiree that brings a sprinkling of Broadway glitz and urbane wit to the legendary Birdland in New York City every Monday night. It’s a cool cabaret night-out enlivened by a hilariously impromptu variety show. Showbiz superstars, backed by Steve Doyle on bass, Billy Stritch on piano and Daniel Glass on drums, hit the stage alongside up-and-comers, serving up jaw-dropping music and general razzle-dazzle.” (broadwayworld)

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Smart Stuff / Other NYC Events
(Lectures/Discussions, Book Talks, Film, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)

Dan Kaufman: “The Fall of Wisconsin: The Conservative Conquest of a Progressive Bastion and the Future of American Politics”
The Half King, 505 W. 23rd St./ 7PM, FREE
“The untold story behind the most shocking political upheaval in the country.

For more than a century, Wisconsin has been known nationwide for its progressive ideas and government. It famously served as a “laboratory of democracy,” a cradle of the labor and environmental movements, and birthplace of the Wisconsin Idea, which championed expertise in the service of the common good. But following a Republican sweep of the state’s government in 2010, Wisconsin’s political heritage was overturned, and the state went Republican for the first time in three decades in the 2016 presidential election, elevating Donald J. Trump to the presidency.”

The Unpunished Vice: A Life Well Read
McNally Jackson Books, 52 Prince St./ 7:00PM, FREE
“Edmund White made his name through his writing but remembers his life through the books he has read. Blending memoir and literary criticism, The Unpunished Vice is a compendium of all the ways reading has shaped White’s life and work. His larger-than-life presence on the literary scene lends itself to fascinating, intimate insights into the lives of some of the world’s best-loved cultural figures.” (ClubFreeTime)

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Continuing Events

New York Television Festival (July 14-20)
“Pop into screenings for the 59 selections in the pilot competition that anchors the 14th annual fest, and you’ll generally pay no more than $5 (with advance registration); same with special events like the exclusive preview for Bobcat Goldthwait’s new anthology series. The $150 festival pass option is for creatives hoping to work in television and includes panels including one for writers with scribes for “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” (pictured) and “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.” (nytvf.com)  (amNY)

==========================================================================
♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, plus dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.6 million, had a record 63 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2018 – awesome! BUT quality shows draw crowds. Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just earlier on the day of performance.

===========================================================
Bonus NYC events– Jazz Clubs:
Many consider NYCity the Jazz capital of the world. My favorite Jazz Clubs, all on Manhattan’s WestSide, feature top talent every night of the week.
Hit the Hot Link and check out who is playing tonight:

Greenwich Village:
(5 are underground, classic jazz joints. all 6 are within walking distance of each other):
Village Vanguard – UG, 178 7th Ave. So., villagevanguard.com, 212-255-4037 (1st 8:30)
Blue Note – 131 W3rd St. nr 6th ave. bluenotejazz.com, 212-475-8592 (1st set 8pm)
55 Bar – basement @55 Christopher St. nr 7th ave.S. 55bar.com, 212-929-9883 (1st 7pm)
Mezzrow – basement @ 163 W10th St. nr 7th Ave. mezzrow.com,646-476-4346 (1st 8)
Smalls – basement @ 183 W10th St. smallslive.com, 646-476-4346 (1st set 7:30pm)
Cornelia Street Cafe – UG, 29 Cornelia St. corneliastreetcafe.com, 212-989-9319 (6pm)

Outside Greenwich Village:
Dizzy’s Club – Broadway @ 60th St. — jazz.org/dizzys / 212-258-9595 (1st set 7:30pm)
Birdland – 315 W44th St.(btw 8/9ave) — birdlandjazz.com / 212-581-3080 (1st 8:30pm)
Smoke Jazz Club – 2751 Broadway nr.106th St. — smokejazz.com/ 212-864-6662 (7pm)

Special Mention:
Caffe Vivaldi – 32 Jones St. nr Bleecker St. — caffevivaldi.com / 212-691-7538 (1st 7pm)
a classic, old jazz club in the Village, Caffe V often surprises with a wonderfully eclectic lineup. It’s my favorite spot for an evening of listening enjoyment and discovery.

Alas, Caffe V is no more, another victim of a rapacious NYC landlord. Owner Ishrat fought the good fight and Caffe V will be sorely missed.

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NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

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WHAT’S ON VIEW
These are My Fave Special Exhibitions @ MUSEUMS / Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue
(See the New York Times Arts Section for listings of all museum exhibitions,
and also see the expanded reviews of these exhibitions)

‘SCENES FROM THE COLLECTION’  “After a surgical renovation to its grand pile on Fifth Avenue, the Jewish Museum has reopened its third-floor galleries with a rethought and refreshed display of its permanent collection, which intermingles modern and contemporary art, by Jews and gentiles alike — Mark Rothko, Lee Krasner, Nan Goldin, Cindy Sherman, and the excellent young Nigerian draftswoman Ruby Onyinyechi Amanze — with 4,000 years of Judaica. The works are shown in a nimble, non-chronological suite of galleries, and some of its century-spanning juxtapositions are bracing; others feel reductive, even dilletantish. But always, the Jewish Museum conceives of art and religion as interlocking elements of a story of civilization, commendably open to new influences and new interpretations.” (Farago) 212-423-3200, thejewishmuseum.org

Museum of the City of New York

NY AT ITS CORE (ongoing)
“Ten years in the making, New York at Its Core tells the compelling story of New York’s rise from a striving Dutch village to today’s “Capital of the World.” The exhibition captures the human energy that drove New York to become a city like no other and a subject of fascination the world over. Entertaining, inspiring, important, and at times bemusing, New York City “big personalities,” including Alexander Hamilton, Walt Whitman, Boss Tweed, Emma Goldman, JP Morgan, Fiorello La Guardia, Jane Jacobs, Jay-Z, and dozens more, parade through the exhibition. Visitors will also learn the stories of lesser-known New York personalities, like Lenape chieftain Penhawitz and Italian immigrant Susie Rocco. Even animals like the horse, the pig, the beaver, and the oyster, which played pivotal roles in the economy and daily life of New York, get their moment in the historical spotlight. Occupying the entire first floor in three interactive galleries (Port City, 1609-1898, World City, 1898-2012, and Future City Lab) New York at Its Core is shaped by four themes: money, density, diversity, and creativity. Together, they provide a lens for examining the character of the city, and underlie the modern global metropolis we know today. mcny.org” (NYCity Guide)

and you should be sure to check out these special exhibitions at that little museum on Fifth Ave., The Metropolitan Museum of Art
(open 7 days /week, AND always Pay What You Wish for NewYorkers)

‘THE FACE OF DYNASTY: ROYAL CRESTS FROM WESTERN CAMEROON’ (through Sept. 3). “Upstairs, the Michelangelos continue to knock ‘em dead; downstairs, in the African wing, a show of just four commanding wooden crowns constitutes a blockbuster of its own. These massive wooden crests — in the form of stylized human faces with vast vertical brows — served as markers of royal power among the Bamileke peoples of the Cameroonian grasslands, and the Met’s recent acquisition of an 18th-century specimen is joined here by three later examples, each featuring sharply protruding cheeks, broadly smiling mouths, and brows incised with involute geometric patterns. Ritual objects like these were decisive for the development of western modernist painting, and a Cameroonian crest was even shown at MoMA in the 1930s, as a “sculpture” divorced from ethnography. But these crests had legal and diplomatic significance as well as aesthetic appeal, and their anonymous African creators had a political understanding of art not so far from our own.” (Farago)

‘HEAVENLY BODIES: FASHION AND THE CATHOLIC IMAGINATION’  (through Oct. 8). “Let us pray. After last year’s stark exhibition of Rei Kawakubo’s irregular apparel, the Met Costume Institute is back in blockbuster mode with this three-part blowout on the influence of Catholicism on haute couture of the last century. The trinity of fashion begins downstairs at the Met with the exceptional loans of vestments from the Vatican; upstairs are gowns fit for angels in heaven (by Lanvin, Thierry Mugler, Rodarte) or angels fallen to earth (such as slinky Versace sheaths garlanded with crosses). The scenography at the Met is willfully operatic — spotlights, choir music — which militates against serious thinking about fashion and religion, but up at the Cloisters, by far the strongest third of the show, you can commune more peacefully with an immaculate Balenciaga wedding gown or a divine Valentino gown embroidered with Cranac’s Adam and Eve.” (Farago)

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Museum Mile is a section of Fifth Avenue which contains one of the densest displays of culture in the world. Eight museums can be found along this section of Fifth Avenue:
• 105th Street – El Museo del Barrio (closed Sun-Mon)*
• 103rd Street – Museum of the City of New York (open 7 days /week)
•  92nd Street – The Jewish Museum (closed Wed) (Sat FREE) (Thu 5-8 PWYW)
•  91st Street  –  Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum (open 7 days /week)
•  89th Street –  National Academy Museum (closed Mon-Tue)
•  88th Street –  Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum (closed Thu) (Sat 6-8 PWYW)
•  86th Street –  Neue Galerie New York (closed Tue-Wed) (Fri 6-8 FREE)
Last, but certainly not least, America’s premier museum
•  82nd Street – The Metropolitan Museum of Art (open 7 days /week)*
*always Pay What You Wish (PWYW) for NewYorkers

Although technically not part of the Museum Mile, the Frick Collection (closed Mon) (Wed 2-6pm PWYW; First Friday each month (exc Jan+Sep) 6-9pm FREE) on the corner of 70th St. and Fifth Avenue and the The Morgan Library & Museum (closed Mon) (Fri 7-9 FREE) on Madison Ave and 37th St are also located near Fifth Ave.
Now plan your own museum crawl (info on hours & admission updated June 2, 2015).
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For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see Recent Posts in right Sidebar dated 07/14 and 07/12.
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Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

NYC Events,”Only the Best” (07/15) + Today’s Featured Pub (Greenwich Village)

“We search the internet everyday looking for the very best of What’s Happening, primarily on Manhattan’s WestSide, so that you don’t have to.” We make it as easy as 1-2-3.

For future NYC Events, check the tab above: NYC Events-JULY”
It’s the most comprehensive list of top events this month that you will find anywhere.
Carefully curated from “Only the Best” NYC event info on the the web, it’s a simply superb resource that will help you plan your NYC visit all over town, all through the month.

==========================================================

Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

Vive la France!
Bastille Day on 60th Street
E. 60th Street btwn Lexington and Fifth Ave./ 11 a.m.-5 p.m., free-$14
“Celebrate Bastille Day in style with the French Institute-Alliance Francaise this Sunday. Their annual Bastille Day Block Party begins with a live screening of the World Cup showdown, followed by Champagne and live jazz music. Later, there’s a French market and live theatrical performances, the chance to win a trip to Paris, and tastings from the South of France.” (Metro)

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7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> ‘Summergarden: New Music for New York’
>> Roni Ben-Hur Quartet
>> DR. LONNIE SMITH TRIO
>> Sonny Fortune
>> Cassandra Wilson
>> Batsheva — The Young Ensemble 
>> Conversation: The Soulfulness of David Bowie
Continuing Events
>> French Restaurant Week
>>
World Cup viewing parties
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Music, Dance, Performing Arts

‘Summergarden: New Music for New York’ (Sundays through July 29)
Museum of Modern Art (enter through the Sculpture Garden gate on West 54th Street between Fifth and Six avenues), 8PM, FREE
Tonight: Jazz Concert I: Michael Rodriguez Quintet

“The Museum of Modern Art’s annual outdoor presentation of contemporary classical music and jazz returns to the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Sculpture Garden. Members of the New Juilliard Ensemble, under the direction of Joel Sachs, perform Sunday, July 8, and Sunday, July 22. Jazz groups from Jazz at Lincoln Center perform July 15 (Michael Rodriguez Quintet) and July 29 (Matthew Shipp Trio). (amNY)

Roni Ben-Hur Quartet with special guest Joyce Moreno (Jul 13-15)
Dizzy’s Club, Jazz at Lincoln Center/ 7:30 pm 9:30pm, $30 – $45
“Roni Ben-Hur, is a formidable guitarist and with deep musical roots both in jazz and in the music of Brazil. For this performance, he is bringing a group of musicians from Brazil to pay tribute to some of the country’s beloved composers. “Expect uplifting sambas, sensual bossa novas, and much more—all infused with a New York jazz spice,” he explains. “I am especially excited about our special guest, legendary songstress Joyce Moreno. A true master of this music, Joyce has been on the vanguard of the evolution of Brazilian music and has charmed people around the world for many decades. I feel very fortunate to share the stage with her, and it will be a memorable experience to everyone in the room to hear her.”

DR. LONNIE SMITH TRIO
at Jazz Standard / 7:30 and 9:30 p.m., $35
“In January, this organist and jazz-funk pioneer released “All in My Mind,” a swooping, mystical document replete with earthy gravitas and explosive, cosmic inquiry. Here, he performs with his stalwart trio, featuring the guitarist Jonathan Kreisberg and the drummer Johnathan Blake. On Friday and Saturday, Dr. Smith, a National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Master, is also joined by Alicia Olatuja, who was featured on the album and whose expansive voice can beam and smolder at the same time.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

Batsheva — The Young Ensemble  (July10-22)
Joyce Theater, 2PM, $66+
“Straight from a run at the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in Massachusetts comes Batsheva — The Young Ensemble, the junior offshoot of Tel Aviv’s leading troupe Batsheva. The outfit brings with them Naharin’s Virus, a Bessie Award–winning piece by Ohad Naharin, who recently announced that he’s stepping down as the company’s director but will continue to choreograph. Adapted from Peter Handke’s play Offending the Audience, the deeply ambiguous work, which had its U.S. premiere in 2002, includes sections of Handke’s text, a huge blackboard at the back of the stage, and other deeply theatrical strategies.” (Elizabeth Zimmer, VillageVoice)

Sonny Fortune (July 13-15)
Smoke, 2751 Broadway, btw105th/106th Sts./ 7, 9, 10:30PM, $38
“Fortune may be best known as a participant on two of Miles Davis’s hairiest recordings of the seventies: “Agharta” and “Pangaea,” on which the saxophonist gamely found his own space within the congested sonic terrain of guitars and percussion. The air has cleared for him since then; this enduring player leads a straight-ahead quartet featuring the pianist Michael Cochrane.” (Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

Cassandra Wilson (July 12-15.)
Blue Note, 131 W. 3rd St./ 8PM, +10:30PM, $45-$65
“There may be other promising vocal talents nipping at her toes (Cecile McLorin Salvant, anyone?), but Wilson’s primacy as today’s female jazz singer par excellence remains a given. Wilson, who revelled in daring eclecticism before it became de rigueur, melds personality and chops with thrilling audacity. Don’t expect her to drift into the right lane anytime soon—recent projects have found her examining the Irish side of her ancestry.”
(Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

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Smart Stuff / Other NYC Events
(Lectures/Discussions, Book Talks, Film, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)

Elsewhere but this is Bowie’s last weekend and looks worth the detour:
Conversation: The Soulfulness of David Bowie
Brooklyn Museum, Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Auditorium, 3rd Fl./ 2PM
“Join us as we close out David Bowie is with an intimate conversation on the influence of soul on David Bowie’s musical stylings. Award-winning guitarist and composer Carlos Alomar draws on thirty years of experience as Bowie’s music director and a member of his funk rhythm section, the D.A.M. Trio, to reflect on the overlooked but vital influence of R&B and soul on Bowie’s pop career. He is joined by vocalist Robin Clark, whose vocals were first featured on Young Americans (1975), which became a pivotal moment in Bowie’s career and rock history. Moderated by music journalist Christian John Wikane.”

=======================================================

Continuing Events

French Restaurant Week (LAST DAY)
Various locations // $17.89-$178.90
“Mais oui, it’s the start of French Restaurant Week. Indulge in some of the city’s finest French bistros and brasseries offering prix fixe specials. Participating restaurants include La Sirene, Fig and Olive, and Bistrot Leo. French Restaurant Week actually runs longer than a week, ending on Bastille Day weekend, July 15th.” (Gothamist)

“What a weekend for Francophiles. This Saturday is Bastille Day, celebrating the birth of the modern French nation. Don your beret and stop by Le Coq Rico for $10 “Frenchie” wine-based cocktails between 12 p.m. and 8 p.m., like the Harry Rico with passion fruit and thyme. The Citroen & Velosolex Club will also bring vintage French cars to the restaurant outside at noon for photo ops. Bar Boulud beckons passersby with can-can dancers and live music on their outside terrace from noon to 8 p.m., along with stations selling crêpes, Choux à la Crème (profiteroles with classic vanilla Chantilly) and wines.” (GrubStreet)

World Cup viewing parties (LAST DAY)
Championship Match Sunday July 15:
   France vs Croatia 11AM
Don’t miss the World Cup, which only comes every four years. Many bars and restaurants will be screening the games and offering food and drink specials across the city. Here are the best lists of where you can find them::
NYT – where to watch the World Cup in New York City.
Soccer Republic – best bars to watch the World Cup in NYC.
Thrillist – World Cup bars NYC
Remeczcla – the 10 Best Venues to Watch the World Cup in NYC
Metro – NYC’s best soccer bars to watch the FIFA World Cup 2018
NYCGO – Ways to Watch the World Cup in New York City
Daily News – The best bars in NYC to watch your favorite team

New York Television Festival (July 14-19)
“Pop into screenings for the 59 selections in the pilot competition that anchors the 14th annual fest, and you’ll generally pay no more than $5 (with advance registration); same with special events like the exclusive preview for Bobcat Goldthwait’s new anthology series. The $150 festival pass option is for creatives hoping to work in television and includes panels including one for writers with scribes for “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” (pictured) and “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.” (nytvf.com)  (amNY)

==========================================================================
♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, plus dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.6 million, had a record 63 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2018 – awesome! BUT quality shows draw crowds. Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just earlier on the day of performance.

=====================================================

Bonus NYC Events – Music Venues:
So much fine live music every night in this town. These are my favorite non jazz music venues on Manhattan’s WestSide. Hit the Hot Link and check out who’s playing tonight:

City Winery – 155 Varick St., citywinery.com, 212-608-0555
Joe’s Pub @ Public Theater – 425 Lafayette St., joespub.com, 212-967-7555
Beacon Theatre – 2124 Broadway @ 74th St., beacontheatre.com, 212-465-6500
Town Hall – 123 W43rd St. (btw 6/7), thetownhall.org, 212-997-6661
Le Poisson Rouge – 158 Bleecker St., lepoissonrouge.com, 212-505-3474
Sony Hall – 235 W 46th St. (btw 7/8), sonyhall.com, 212-997-5123
and one more, not exactly WestSide:
Bowery Ballroom – 6 Delancey St. boweryballroom.com,

Special Mention:
Caffe Vivaldi – 32 Jones St. nr Bleecker St. caffevivaldi.com, 212-691-7538
a classic, old jazz club in the Village, Caffe V often surprises with a wonderfully eclectic lineup. It’s my favorite spot for an evening of listening discovery and enjoyment.

Alas, Caffe V is no more, another victim of a rapacious NYC landlord. Owner Ishrat fought the good fight and Caffe V will be sorely missed.

See Below.
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NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):
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A PremierPub and 3 Good Eating Places – Greenwich Village

Caffe Vivaldi / 32 Jones Street (btw. Bleecker St./W4th St.)

Café Vivaldi is a classic, intimate club located in Greenwich Village on Jones Street, the street featured on the cover of Bob Dylan’s second album, “Freewheelin’. ”

maxresdefaultEach night Ishrat, the long time proprietor and impresario, carefully curates and schedules an eclectic series of musicians. You can often see him at his table in the corner, hard at work reviewing music videos and listening to cd demos on his laptop, scouting out future bookings. Musicians come from all over to play and sing in a club in Greenwich Village. Some are local New Yorkers, others are just passing through, in town for a few days.

There is a small bar, seating maybe 10. It’s close to the stage and I find it’s a perfect spot to sip a glass of red wine while listening to the music. The room itself has the performance area at one end and a cozy fireplace at the other. The performance area here is small, dominated by a large black Yamaha Grand piano. Tables are bunched together and most people at the tables are eating lite meals or sampling the wonderful desserts.

There is also a good selection of fairly priced wines,  but you are here because of the music. You can never be quite sure what you’re going to find, and that’s half the charm of this place. It’s not a home run every night, but many nights it’s pretty special.

I remember the night I saw the most talented bossa nova group, just in from San Paulo. As I listened, I wondered if there was any better music playing anywhere else in New York City that night. And at Caffé Vivaldi there is never a cover charge. Their recently redesigned web site does give you a better idea of the type of music playing each night.

At one time Greenwich Village was filled with clubs just like this, but times change. Real estate interests have impacted the village, and not for the better. Even Caffé Vivaldi had a rough time recently, when a new landlord raised the rent exorbitantly. Fortunately, Ishrat has built a loyal following over the years, and a fund raiser and slightly more reasonable rent has kept Café Vivaldi in business.

When Woody Allen and Al Pacino wanted to make movies featuring the timeless quality of Greenwich Village they came to Vivaldi. It’s important that we keep this special place alive, for if we lose Cafe Vivaldi, NYCity will have lost a piece of it’s soul.

CAFFE VIVALDI HAS CLOSED,  JUNE 23 WAS THE FINAL NIGHT. VERY SAD.
As reported in the “Gothamist”:
“Caffe Vivaldi, one of the last bohemian bastions of the West Village, is set to close this weekend. During its 35 years on Jones Street, the casual cafe won the hearts of locals and celebs alike, including Oscar Isaac, Bette Midler, and Al Pacino.

Despite that friendly communal atmosphere, the owners ultimately struggled to survive under their notorious vulture landlord Steve Croman, who they say waged a harassment campaign against the restaurant, and eventually tripled their rent.”

Website: http://caffevivaldi.com/
Phone #: (212) 691-7538
Hours: Music generally 7:30PM – 11PM, but varies
Lunch/Dinner 11AM-on
Subway: #1 to Christopher St.
Walk 1 blk S. on 7th ave S. to Bleecker St., 1 blk left on Bleecker to Jones St., 50 yards left on Jones St. to Caffe V.
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“Pub” is used in it’s broadest sense – bars, bar/restaurants, jazz clubs, wine bars, tapas bars, craft beer bars, dive bars, cocktail lounges, and of course, pubs – just about anyplace you can get a drink without a cover charge.

If you have a fave premier pub or good eating place on Manhattan’s WestSide let us all know about it – leave a comment.
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3 Good Eating places

It’s not difficult to find a place to eat in Manhattan.
Finding a good, inexpensive place to eat is a bit harder.
Here are a few of my faves in this neighborhood:

Fish – 280 Bleecker St. (just a bit S. of 7th ave South)
This was an easy pick – the best raw bar special in town. $9 gets you 6 of the freshest oysters or clams + a glass of wine or beer. Don’t know how they can do it, but I tell everyone I know about this place. And it’s located right in the heart of some of the best no cover music in town.

Bleecker Street Pizza – 69 7th ave S. (corner of Bleecker St.)
The place is tiny and not much to look at, but this is one good slice. They like to brag that they have been voted “Best pizza in NY” 3 years in a row by the Food Network. I believe them. I would have voted for them.

Num Pang – 21 E 12th St. (btw. University Place/5th ave.)
This is a Cambodian banh mi sandwich shop that kept me well fed while I was in class nearby recently. It’s cramped, even for NYCity, but usually there is room up the spiral staircase to sit down and eat. In good weather carry your sandwich a few blocks to Union Square park. You may have to wait a few minutes, because everything is freshly made, but it’s worth it. Can you believe – an unheard of 26 food rating by Zagat.

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“3 Good Eating places” focuses on a quick bite, what I call “Fine Fast Food – NYCity Style”
No reservations needed.
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NYCity is the most diverse and interesting place to find a meal anywhere in the world. With more than 24,000 eating establishments you might welcome some advice.

◊ For all my picks of 54 Good Eating places, and essays on my favorite 18 PremierPubs in 9 Neighborhoods on Manhattan’s WestSide, order a copy of my e-book:
“Eating and Drinking on NYCity’s WestSide” ($4.99, available FALL 2018).
◊ Order before NOV.30, 2018 and receive a bonus – 27 of my favorite casual dining places with free Wi-Fi.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

NYC Events,”Only the Best” (07/14) + Museum Special Exhibitions: Manhattan’s WestSide

“We search the internet everyday looking for the very best of What’s Happening, primarily on Manhattan’s WestSide, so that you don’t have to.” We make it as easy as 1-2-3.

For future NYC Events, check the tab above: NYC Events-JULY”
It’s the most comprehensive list of top events this month that you will find anywhere.
Carefully curated from “Only the Best” NYC event info on the the web, it’s a simply superb resource that will help you plan your NYC visit all over town, all through the month.

==========================================================

Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

Elsewhere, but this sure looks worth the detour:

Kronos Quartet + Trio Da Kali
Prospect Park Bandshell / 7:30PM, FREE
“In an alternate universe, I long ago dropped everything I was doing and committed myself to following the Kronos Quartet around the world. Unfortunately, I don’t live in that universe, so I just try to see them any opportunity I can. Last year, the Malian griot supergroup Trio Da Kali collaborated with them on the transportingly sublime album Ladilikan, which brought together grand classical gestures with folk, blues, and gospel stylings. (The music of Mahalia Jackson was a key influence on the record.)

This joint concert will have the two ensembles performing “separately and together,” which means it should run a gamut of styles, genres, and periods. And something tells me that hearing the powerful voice of Trio Da Kali vocalist Hawa Diabaté rise above the Brooklyn night will bring shivers to thousands.”
(Bilge Ebiri, VillageVoice)

=========================================================
7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> Jorge Drexler
>> Sonny Fortune
>> Django Reinhardt NY Festival:
>> Cassandra Wilson
>> Go Africa Harlem!
>> City of Water Day
>> Conversation: Daphne Brooks and Jack Halberstam
Continuing Events
>> French Restaurant Week
>>
World Cup viewing parties
========================================================

Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Jorge Drexler / Trending Tropics / ÌFÉ / DJ Raff
in association with LAMC (Latin Alternative Music Conference)
SummerStage, Rumsey Playfield, Central Park / 3PM, FREE
“Jorge Drexler, the multiple Latin and Grammy-winning artist, isn’t just one of Uruguay’s preeminent songwriters. He’s perhaps one of the few musicians who’s also a licensed doctor. The prolific Drexler, who has released nearly two dozen albums, puts on spectacular shows in Latin America, and will do the same in New York.

Trending Tropics is the new group feat. Eduardo Cabra “El VIsitante” and Vicente Garcia plus numerous multi-instrument players from the Caribbean. They’re joined by ÌFÉ, a Puerto Rican group headed by Otura Mun that celebrates Afro-Caribbean lineage through grooves rooted in hip-hop and Ifá faith traditions.”

Sonny Fortune (July 13-15)
Smoke, 2751 Broadway, btw105th/106th Sts./ 7, 9, 10:30PM, $38
“Fortune may be best known as a participant on two of Miles Davis’s hairiest recordings of the seventies: “Agharta” and “Pangaea,” on which the saxophonist gamely found his own space within the congested sonic terrain of guitars and percussion. The air has cleared for him since then; this enduring player leads a straight-ahead quartet featuring the pianist Michael Cochrane.” (Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

Django Reinhardt NY Festival: Django Allstars w Romero Lubambo, Edmar Castaneda and Veronica Swift (LAST DAY)
Birdland / 8:30PM, +11PM, $50
“After a fabulous concert at Carnegie Hall, May 1st, titled FOREVER DJANGO “Passing the Family Torch”, The Django Festival Allstars hit the road again with a cross-country tour starting at their US home, Birdland, where it all started led by Samson Schmitt on Guitar It’s the Django Reinhardt Festival’s 19thyear and going strong.”

Cassandra Wilson (July 12-15.)
Blue Note, 131 W. 3rd St./ 8PM, +10:30PM, $45-$65
“There may be other promising vocal talents nipping at her toes (Cecile McLorin Salvant, anyone?), but Wilson’s primacy as today’s female jazz singer par excellence remains a given. Wilson, who revelled in daring eclecticism before it became de rigueur, melds personality and chops with thrilling audacity. Don’t expect her to drift into the right lane anytime soon—recent projects have found her examining the Irish side of her ancestry.”
(Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

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Smart Stuff / Other NYC Events
(Lectures/Discussions, Book Talks, Film, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)

Go Africa Harlem!
Visit Africa in Harlem
116th Street btwn. 7th and 8th Aves./ 10AM-6PM, FREE
“Harlem hosts its annual street festival celebrating the best of Africa this Saturday with a day full of food, music and fashion. Go Africa Harlem! will feature eight grills with traditional tastes from across the continent, as well as two stages with performers including Sekouba Bolomba, Afrikan Kartel, Ashe Jam Band, Noli Spy Ypsilon and DJ Birane. The festival supports development among the African and Caribbean diaspora.” (Metro)

City of Water Day
No man is an island, but Manhattan is
Pier 17, South Street / 10 a.m.-4 p.m., FREE
“Learn about the ecosystems that literally keep Manhattan afloat with City of Water Day, which combines fun and educational activities for all ages entirely free, this Saturday, at the South Street Seaport. Spanning topics from health and wellness to conservation, activities include free boat tours on the East River, live music and stage performances, face-painting, food vendors, hands-on craft booths, fishing lessons and even a life-size cardboard kayak race.” (Metro)

Elsewhere but this is Bowie’s last weekend and looks worth the detour:

Conversation: Daphne Brooks and Jack Halberstam
Brooklyn Museum, 200 Eastern Parkway (Washington Ave.)/ 2PM
$16 general Museum admission included
Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Auditorium, 3rd Floor

“Join Daphne Brooks and Jack Halberstam for an interdisciplinary conversation on David Bowie’s legacy. As leading scholars working at the intersections of race, gender, and performance, Brooks and Halberstam explore the world of Bowie and his worldwide impact on popular culture.” (ThoughtGallery.org)

=======================================================

Continuing Events

French Restaurant Week (July 02-15)
Various locations // $17.89-$178.90
“Mais oui, it’s the start of French Restaurant Week. Indulge in some of the city’s finest French bistros and brasseries offering prix fixe specials. Participating restaurants include La Sirene, Fig and Olive, and Bistrot Leo. French Restaurant Week actually runs longer than a week, ending on Bastille Day weekend, July 15th.” (Gothamist)

“What a weekend for Francophiles. This Saturday is Bastille Day, celebrating the birth of the modern French nation. Don your beret and stop by Le Coq Rico for $10 “Frenchie” wine-based cocktails between 12 p.m. and 8 p.m., like the Harry Rico with passion fruit and thyme. The Citroen & Velosolex Club will also bring vintage French cars to the restaurant outside at noon for photo ops. Bar Boulud beckons passersby with can-can dancers and live music on their outside terrace from noon to 8 p.m., along with stations selling crêpes, Choux à la Crème (profiteroles with classic vanilla Chantilly) and wines.” (GrubStreet)

World Cup viewing parties (starting June 14 – thru July 15)
Championship Match Sunday July 15:
   France vs Croatia 11AM
Don’t miss the World Cup, which only comes every four years. Many bars and restaurants will be screening the games and offering food and drink specials across the city. Here are the best lists of where you can find them::
NYT – where to watch the World Cup in New York City.
Soccer Republic – best bars to watch the World Cup in NYC.
Thrillist – World Cup bars NYC
Remeczcla – the 10 Best Venues to Watch the World Cup in NYC
Metro – NYC’s best soccer bars to watch the FIFA World Cup 2018
NYCGO – Ways to Watch the World Cup in New York City
Daily News – The best bars in NYC to watch your favorite team

==========================================================================
♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, plus dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.6 million, had a record 63 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2018 – awesome! BUT quality shows draw crowds. Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just earlier on the day of performance.

=====================================================
Bonus: Nifty 9 – Best Cabarets / Piano Bars NYCity
These are my favorite places for an after dinner night on the town – music and drinks.
Hit the Hot Link and check out what’s happening tonight:

Feinstein’s/54 Below – 254 W 54th St.

The Green Room 42 – 570 Tenth Ave.

Don’t Tell Mama – 343 W 46th St.

The Rum House, in the Hotel Edison – 228 W. 47th St.

Laurie Beechman Theatre – 407 W 42nd St.

Marie’s Crisis – 59 Grove St.

The Duplex – 61 Christopher St.

Sid Gold’s Request Room – 165 W 26th St.

Cafe Carlyle, in the Carlyle Hotel – 35 E. 76th St.
This is the only one not located on Manhattan’s WestSide, and it ain’t cheap, but it has some of the finest singers.

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NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

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WHAT’S ON VIEW
My Fave Special Exhibitions – MUSEUMS / Manhattan’s WestSide
(See the New York Times Arts Section for listings of all museums,
and also to see their expanded reviews of exhibitions)

Museum of Modern Art:

A special pat on the back to MOMA, who is now displaying art from the seven countries affected by Trump’s travel ban.

“Trump’s ban against refugees from seven Muslim-majority nations has sparked acts of defiance in NYC, from demonstrations across town, to striking taxicab drivers at JFK to Middle Eastern bodega owners closing their shops in protest. Recently, the Museum Of Modern added its two cents by bringing out artworks it owns from the affected countries, and hanging them prominently within the galleries usually reserved for 19th- and 20th-century artworks from Europe and the United States. Paintings by Picasso and Matisse, for example, were removed to make way for pieces by Tala Madani (from Iran), Ibrahim El-Salahi (from Sudan) and architect Zaha Hadid (from Iraq). The rehanging, which was unannounced, aims to create a symbolic welcome that repudiates Trump by creating a visual dialog between the newly added works and the more familiar objects from MoMA’s permanent collection.” (TONY)

‘ADRIAN PIPER: A SYNTHESIS OF INTUITIONS, 1965-2016’ (through July 22). “A clarifying and complicating 50-year view of a major American artist’s career, this exhibition is also an image-altering event for MoMA itself. It makes the museum feel like a more life-engaged institution than the formally polished one we’re accustomed to. For the first time it has given over all of its sixth-floor special exhibition space to a single living female artist who is best known for her art about racism, and for good reason: It’s powerful work, brilliantly varied in form. She has also consistently used her own image in inventive, distanced, self-mocking ways, as in two well-known self-likenesses done several years apart: one, a pencil drawing titled “Self-Portrait Exaggerating My Negroid Features” (1981); the other, a crayon-enhanced photograph called “Self-Portrait as a Nice White Lady” (1995). In these images, as in all of her work, her aim is not to assert racial identity but to destabilize the very concept of it.” (NYT-Cotter)

‘BODYS ISEK KINGELEZ: CITY DREAMS’ (through Jan. 1). “The first comprehensive survey of the Congolese artist is a euphoric exhibition as utopian wonderland featuring his fantasy architectural models and cities — works strong in color, eccentric in shape, loaded with enthralling details and futuristic aura. Mr. Kingelez (1948-2015) was convinced that the world had never seen a vision like his, and this beautifully designed show bears him out.” (NYT-Smith)
212-708-9400, moma.org

‘THE LONG RUN’ (through Nov. 4). “The museum upends its cherished Modern narrative of ceaseless progress by mostly young (white) men. Instead we see works by artists 45 and older who have just kept on keeping on, regardless of attention or reward, sometimes saving the best for last. Art here is an older person’s game, a pursuit of a deepening personal vision over innovation. Winding through 17 galleries, the installation is alternatively visually or thematically acute and altogether inspiring.” (NYT-Smith)
212-708-9400, moma.org

Rubin Museum of Art

Chitra Ganesh: The Scorpion Gesture (Through Jan. 7)
“The Brooklyn artist’s new animations ingeniously combine her own drawings and watercolors with historical imagery, peppering the journeys of bodhisattvas with contemporary pop-culture references. Five of these pieces are installed on the museum’s second and third floors amid its collection of Himalayan art, elements of which appear in her psychedelic sequences of spinning mandalas and falling lotus flowers. (Ganesh’s works are activated, as if by magic, when viewers approach.) In “Rainbow Body,” a cave, which also appears in a nearby painting of Mandarava, is filled with people in 3-D glasses, watching as the guru-deity attains enlightenment. “Silhouette in the Graveyard” is projected behind a glass case containing a small sculpture of Maitreya, from late-eighteenth-century Mongolia, for a cleverly dioramalike effect. Prophesied to arrive during an apocalyptic crisis, the bodhisattva is seen here against Ganesh’s montage, which includes footage of global catastrophes and political protests, from the Women’s March to Black Lives Matter.” (

New-York Historical Society 

“Celebrating Bill Cunningham (thru 9/9)
marks the New-York Historical Society‘s recent acquisition of objects, personal correspondence, ephemera, and photographs that reflect the life and work of Bill Cunningham. One of the late 20th century’s most influential trend-spotters and style authorities, the legendary New York Times journalist and photographer was frequently spied on the city’s streets, at fashion shows, and elegant soirées capturing images of New York’s fashion innovators and cultural glitterati. Among the highlights of Celebrating Bill Cunningham are a bicycle that he rode around the city; his first camera, an Olympus Pen-D, 35mm; signature blue jacket; personal photographs of Cunningham at home and with friends; correspondence, including a few of the hand-made Valentines he frequently sent to friends; and a New York City street sign, “Bill Cunningham Corner,” that was temporarily installed at 5th Avenue and 57th Street in his honor, following his death. Soon after he arrived in New York, Cunningham worked as a milliner, and items on view from his millinery line, William J., include an innovative beach hat, along with other hats and fascinators; and a press release written for the William J. spring 1960 millinery show. Also on display are selections from Cunningham’s Facades, his eight-year photographic project documenting New York City’s architectural and fashion history, which was shown at the museum in 2014.” (cityguideny.com)

Also now open at NY Historical SocietySummer of Magic: Treasures from the David Copperfield Collection. (thru Sept.16)

SPECIAL MENTION (not Manhattan’s WestSide, but let’s show some love to da Bronx)
at the New York (Bronx) Botanical Garden:

‘GEORGIA O’KEEFFE: VISIONS OF HAWAI‘I’ (through Oct. 28). “Finding out Georgia O’Keeffe had a Hawaiian period is kind of like finding out Brian Wilson had a desert period. But here it is: 17 eye-popping paradisal paintings, produced in a nine-week visit in 1939. The paintings, and their almost psychedelic palette, are as fleshlike and physical as O’Keeffe’s New Mexican work is stripped and metaphysical. The other star of the show, fittingly, is Hawaii, and the garden has mounted a living display of the subjects depicted in the artwork. As much as they might look like the products of an artist’s imagination, the plants and flowers in the Enid Haupt Conservatory are boastfully real. On Aloha Nights every Saturday in June and every other Saturday in July and August, the garden is staging a cultural complement of activities, including lei making, hula lessons and ukulele performances.” (NYT – William L. Hamilton)
718-817-8700, nybg.org / easy 20 minute ride from Grand Central on Metro North.

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For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see Recent Posts in right Sidebar dated 07/12 and 07/10.
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NYC Events,”Only the Best” (07/13) + Today’s Featured Pub (Midtown West)

“We search the internet everyday looking for the very best of What’s Happening, primarily on Manhattan’s WestSide, so that you don’t have to.” We make it as easy as 1-2-3.

For future NYC Events, check the tab above: NYC Events-JULY”
It’s the most comprehensive list of top events this month that you will find anywhere.
Carefully curated from “Only the Best” NYC event info on the the web, it’s a simply superb resource that will help you plan your NYC visit all over town, all through the month.

==========================================================

Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

Roni Ben-Hur Quartet with special guest Joyce Moreno (Jul 13-15)
Dizzy’s Club, Jazz at Lincoln Center/ 7:30 pm 9:30pm, $30 – $45
“Roni Ben-Hur, is a formidable guitarist and with deep musical roots both in jazz and in the music of Brazil. For this performance, he is bringing a group of musicians from Brazil to pay tribute to some of the country’s beloved composers. “Expect uplifting sambas, sensual bossa novas, and much more—all infused with a New York jazz spice,” he explains. “I am especially excited about our special guest, legendary songstress Joyce Moreno. A true master of this music, Joyce has been on the vanguard of the evolution of Brazilian music and has charmed people around the world for many decades. I feel very fortunate to share the stage with her, and it will be a memorable experience to everyone in the room to hear her.”

=========================================================
7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> Sonny Fortune
>> On Kentucky Avenue
>> Django Reinhardt NY Festival:
>> Batsheva — The Young Ensemble
>> Cassandra Wilson
>> Houdini Weekend
>> FRED AND GINGER
Continuing Events
>> French Restaurant Week
>>
World Cup viewing parties
========================================================

Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Sonny Fortune (July 13-15)
Smoke, 2751 Broadway, btw105th/106th Sts./ 7, 9, 10:30PM, $38
“Fortune may be best known as a participant on two of Miles Davis’s hairiest recordings of the seventies: “Agharta” and “Pangaea,” on which the saxophonist gamely found his own space within the congested sonic terrain of guitars and percussion. The air has cleared for him since then; this enduring player leads a straight-ahead quartet featuring the pianist Michael Cochrane.” (Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

On Kentucky Avenue (also 7 dates thru July 28)
Aaron Davis Hall (at City College)/ 7PM, $25
“Ty Stephen, N’Kenge and Andricka Hall head the cast of this musical revue by Stephens and Adam Wade, inspired by the history of Atlantic City’s Club Harlem.” (TONY)

Django Reinhardt NY Festival: Django Allstars w Romero Lubambo, Edmar Castaneda and Veronica Swift (July 10-14)
Birdland / 8:30PM, +11PM, $50
“After a fabulous concert at Carnegie Hall, May 1st, titled FOREVER DJANGO “Passing the Family Torch”, The Django Festival Allstars hit the road again with a cross-country tour starting at their US home, Birdland, where it all started led by Samson Schmitt on Guitar It’s the Django Reinhardt Festival’s 19thyear and going strong.”

Batsheva — The Young Ensemble  (July10-22)
Joyce Theater, 7:30PM, $10+
“Straight from a run at the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in Massachusetts comes Batsheva — The Young Ensemble, the junior offshoot of Tel Aviv’s leading troupe Batsheva. The outfit brings with them Naharin’s Virus, a Bessie Award–winning piece by Ohad Naharin, who recently announced that he’s stepping down as the company’s director but will continue to choreograph. Adapted from Peter Handke’s play Offending the Audience, the deeply ambiguous work, which had its U.S. premiere in 2002, includes sections of Handke’s text, a huge blackboard at the back of the stage, and other deeply theatrical strategies.” (Elizabeth Zimmer, VillageVoice)

Cassandra Wilson (July 12-15.)
Blue Note, 131 W. 3rd St./ 8PM, +10:30PM, $45-$65
“There may be other promising vocal talents nipping at her toes (Cecile McLorin Salvant, anyone?), but Wilson’s primacy as today’s female jazz singer par excellence remains a given. Wilson, who revelled in daring eclecticism before it became de rigueur, melds personality and chops with thrilling audacity. Don’t expect her to drift into the right lane anytime soon—recent projects have found her examining the Irish side of her ancestry.”
(Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

=========================================================

Smart Stuff / Other NYC Events
(Lectures/Discussions, Book Talks, Film, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)

Houdini Weekend / Summer of Magic (July 13–July 15)
New-York Historical Society / 7-9PM, FREE with Pay -as-you-wish Friday night
“NYHS kicks off its Summer of Magic with a weekend-long celebration of the world’s most famous magician, Harry Houdini. Watch the Great Dubini swallow needles, see an escape artist free himself from a straitjacket, and be wowed by illusionists performing the oldest tricks in the book (literally).” (whatshouldwedo.com)

FRED AND GINGER
at the Film Society of Lincoln Center (July 13-15).
“The Film Society of Lincoln Center hosts a welcome retrospective celebrating the partnership of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. It’s a chronological journey — and, sadly, over in a flash — beginning with their first collaboration, the 1933 film “Flying Down to Rio,” in which the pair were cast in supporting roles. (The star was Dolores del Rio, but their carioca stole the show.) The following year, they made “The Gay Divorcee,” which cemented their artistic partnership and led to delights like “Swing Time,” “Shall We Dance” and their crowning glory “Top Hat.”

=======================================================

Continuing Events

French Restaurant Week (July 02-15)
Various locations // $17.89-$178.90
“Mais oui, it’s the start of French Restaurant Week. Indulge in some of the city’s finest French bistros and brasseries offering prix fixe specials. Participating restaurants include La Sirene, Fig and Olive, and Bistrot Leo. French Restaurant Week actually runs longer than a week, ending on Bastille Day weekend, July 15th.” (Gothamist)

World Cup viewing parties (starting June 14 – thru July 15)
Championship Match Sunday July 15:
   France vs Croatia 11AM
Don’t miss the World Cup, which only comes every four years. Many bars and restaurants will be screening the games and offering food and drink specials across the city. Here are the best lists of where you can find them::
NYT – where to watch the World Cup in New York City.
Soccer Republic – best bars to watch the World Cup in NYC.
Thrillist – World Cup bars NYC
Remeczcla – the 10 Best Venues to Watch the World Cup in NYC
Metro – NYC’s best soccer bars to watch the FIFA World Cup 2018
NYCGO – Ways to Watch the World Cup in New York City
Daily News – The best bars in NYC to watch your favorite team

==========================================================================
♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, plus dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.6 million, had a record 63 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2018 – awesome! BUT quality shows draw crowds. Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just earlier on the day of performance.

===========================================================
Bonus NYC events– Jazz Clubs:
Many consider NYCity the Jazz capital of the world. My favorite Jazz Clubs, all on Manhattan’s WestSide, feature top talent every night of the week.
Hit the Hot Link and check out who is playing tonight:

Greenwich Village:
(5 are underground, classic jazz joints. all 6 are within walking distance of each other):
Village Vanguard – UG, 178 7th Ave. So., villagevanguard.com, 212-255-4037 (1st 8:30)
Blue Note – 131 W3rd St. nr 6th ave. bluenotejazz.com, 212-475-8592 (1st set 8pm)
55 Bar – basement @55 Christopher St. nr 7th ave.S. 55bar.com, 212-929-9883 (1st 7pm)
Mezzrow – basement @ 163 W10th St. nr 7th Ave. mezzrow.com,646-476-4346 (1st 8)
Smalls – basement @ 183 W10th St. smallslive.com, 646-476-4346 (1st set 7:30pm)
Cornelia Street Cafe – UG, 29 Cornelia St. corneliastreetcafe.com, 212-989-9319 (6pm)

Outside Greenwich Village:
Dizzy’s Club – Broadway @ 60th St. — jazz.org/dizzys / 212-258-9595 (1st set 7:30pm)
Birdland – 315 W44th St.(btw 8/9ave) — birdlandjazz.com / 212-581-3080 (1st 8:30pm)
Smoke Jazz Club – 2751 Broadway nr.106th St. — smokejazz.com/ 212-864-6662 (7pm)

Special Mention:
Caffe Vivaldi – 32 Jones St. nr Bleecker St. — caffevivaldi.com / 212-691-7538 (1st 7pm)
a classic, old jazz club in the Village, Caffe V often surprises with a wonderfully eclectic lineup. It’s my favorite spot for an evening of listening enjoyment and discovery.

Alas, Caffe V is no more, another victim of a rapacious NYC landlord. Owner Ishrat fought the good fight and Caffe V will be sorely missed.

======================================================

NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

=============================================================================

A PremierPub / Midtown West

Russian Vodka Room / 265 W 52nd St (btw 7th/8th ave)

Sure, you could travel to Minsk or even Brighton Beach, for an authentic Russian experience, but why bother. On those days when you feel you must wash down your dish of kasha with a few glasses of icy, cold vodka, the Russian Vodka Room will definitely satisfy your urge.

From the outside this place looks a bit drab, and with no windows, a bit mysterious. Midtown tourists walk right by on their way to see “Jersey Boys,” just down the block.
(Alas, no more. After 10 years, “Jersey Boys” finally closed, now it’s “Mean Girls.”)

lThose in the know enter a secret hideaway, a dimly lit front room with soft jazz playing – a perfect spot for an illicit late-night rendezvous, or maybe a meet-up with your Russian spy handler, but that’s later in the evening. Early in the evening the large U-shaped bar fills with the after work happy hour crowd, a group made very happy by the much reduced prices.

Their website says: “Welcome Comrades”. Of course, this welcome focuses on dozens of different vodkas, including their own special infusions, which marinate in giant, clear glass jugs visible around the room. The large vodka martinis ensure that you won’t confuse this place with your mother’s Russian Tea Room.

But man does not live by vodka alone. Eat some food, especially the tapa like appetizers. Be decadent and try the cheese blintzes with chocolate, or try a main dish like beef stroganoff with kasha.

Your best bet is to go on a night when the piano man is playing. This guy, who looks like he has eaten a lot of those cheese blintzes, plays five nights a week from 7 to 12 (no Mondays and Thursdays). When the piano man is playing American pop tunes, and you are at the crowded, dimly lit bar testing the horseradish infused vodka, that’s when the RVR shines.

It’s the kind of place where the noise gets louder and the crowd gets happier as the happy hour goes on. I’m generally a beer guy, but I like to come here with a group of friends. We find a table in the back room near the piano man; we eat, and we drink vodka ‘till it hurts (and it will hurt).
=====================================================
Website: http://www.russianvodkaroom.com/
Phone #: 212-307-5835
Hours: 4pm-2am; Fri-Sun closes 4am (that could be trouble)
Happy Hour: 4-7pm every day
$4 shots infused vodka (2oz), $5 cosmos; $4 czech draft beer
Music: FR-SU; TU-WE / 7pm-12am
Subway: #1 to 50th St.
Walk 2 blk N. on B’way to 52nd St.; 1 blk W. to RVR
Confusingly, the Russian Samovar is right across the street, on the S. side of 52nd St.
The RVR, your destination, is on the N. side of 52nd St.
Update: music now includes a younger, trimmer piano man. “Tiny” we miss you.
Update#2: Rumor that “Tiny” is back playing only on Friday nights – need to check it out.

==============================================================================
“Pub” is used in it’s broadest sense – bars, bar/restaurants, jazz clubs, wine bars, tapas bars, craft beer bars, dive bars, cocktail lounges, and of course, pubs – just about anyplace you can get a drink without a cover charge (except for certain jazz clubs).
If you have a fave premier pub or good eating place on Manhattan’s WestSide let us all know about it – leave a comment.
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

NYC Events,”Only the Best” (07/12) + GallerySpecialExhibits: Chelsea

“We search the internet everyday looking for the very best of What’s Happening, primarily on Manhattan’s WestSide, so that you don’t have to.” We make it as easy as 1-2-3.

For future NYC Events, check the tab above: NYC Events-JULY”
It’s the most comprehensive list of top events this month that you will find anywhere.
Carefully curated from “Only the Best” NYC event info on the the web, it’s a simply superb resource that will help you plan your NYC visit all over town, all through the month.

==========================================================

Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

Cassandra Wilson (July 12-15.)
Blue Note, 131 W. 3rd St./ 8PM, +10:30PM, $45-$65
“There may be other promising vocal talents nipping at her toes (Cecile McLorin Salvant, anyone?), but Wilson’s primacy as today’s female jazz singer par excellence remains a given. Wilson, who revelled in daring eclecticism before it became de rigueur, melds personality and chops with thrilling audacity. Don’t expect her to drift into the right lane anytime soon—recent projects have found her examining the Irish side of her ancestry.”
(Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

=========================================================
6 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> Orquesta Akokán
>> Gato Preto
>> On Kentucky Avenue
>> CLAUDIA ACUÑA
>> Django Reinhardt NY Festival:
>> MUMMENSCHANZ
Continuing Events
>> French Restaurant Week
>>
World Cup viewing parties
========================================================

Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Orquesta Akokán
Damrosch Park, Lincoln Center, Dance lesson at 6:30 pm,
Live music at 7:30 pm/ $0-$25
Style: Salsa
Dance Instructors: Christopher Rogicki and Nayelli Valencia Turrent teach Cuban Salsa and Rueda de Casino
DJ: Ron McGugins

“Blending vintage sound, original tunes, infectious rhythms, and endless heart, Orquesta Akokán extends the golden era of Cuban mambo to now. Following their critically acclaimed debut album on Daptone Records, power vocalist José “Pepito” Gómez and an orchestra of Cuban music all-stars bring the spirit of old Havana to the heart of Manhattan.”
“An explosion of brass and saxophone call the dancers to order then the rhythm rides on the pulse of the saxes, calling to mind the full-bodied sound of past masters Perez Prado and Tito Puente.” – NPR

Gato Preto
Atrium at Lincoln Center / 7:30PM, FREE, but get there early for a seat.
“Based in Germany with roots in Mozambique, Ghana, Portugal, and Germany, producer Lee Bass and MC Gata Misteriosa have been lighting up the global bass scene with their Afro-Futurist, masked mystique since 2013. Using synths and effects processors side-by-side with live Djembe rhythms and dancers, all underlaid by supersonic bass and breakbeats, Gato Preto blends the favela funk of Rio, Township grooves from South Africa, and kuduro-techno hybrid of Angola into an irresistible mix. Having played at clubs and festivals around the world, including the African Futures Festival in South Africa, Uganda’s Nyenge Nyege Festival, and South by Southwest this past March, Gato Preto (“Black Cat” in Portuguese) casts their spell over the Atrium in a rare NYC appearance.”

On Kentucky Avenue (also 8 dates thru July 28)
Aaron Davis Hall (at City College)/ 7PM, $25
“Ty Stephen, N’Kenge and Andricka Hall head the cast of this musical revue by Stephens and Adam Wade, inspired by the history of Atlantic City’s Club Harlem.” (TONY)

CLAUDIA ACUÑA (July 11-12)
at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola / 7:30 and 9:30 p.m., $35
“The bold and clarion singing of Ms. Acuña, a Chilean vocalist based in New York, doesn’t line up exactly with the sound of Abbey Lincoln, who addressed spiritual and political matters in a rough, simmering tone. What they had in common were their convictions and an unbending devotion to investigating their respective musical traditions. When Lincoln, who died in 2010, first heard Ms. Acuña, she recognized a kindred spirit, accepting her as a mentee. Here Ms. Acuña will perform a selection of Lincoln’s songs with Pablo Vergara on piano, Juancho Herrera on guitar, Carlos Henderson on bass and Keita Ogawa on drums.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

Django Reinhardt NY Festival: Django Allstars w Romero Lubambo, Edmar Castaneda and Veronica Swift (July 10-14)
Birdland / 8:30PM, +11PM, $50
“After a fabulous concert at Carnegie Hall, May 1st, titled FOREVER DJANGO “Passing the Family Torch”, The Django Festival Allstars hit the road again with a cross-country tour starting at their US home, Birdland, where it all started led by Samson Schmitt on Guitar It’s the Django Reinhardt Festival’s 19thyear and going strong.”

MUMMENSCHANZ (July 4-22)
at the Gerald W. Lynch Theater at John Jay College / 7PM, $25-$85
“The famed Swiss theater troupe, founded in 1972, returns to New York with its surreal sensibility — and, of course, plenty of props — to present “You and Me,” a new show created by Floriana Frassetto, one of the group’s founders. Using its usual ingredients of shadow, light, bodies and masks, the group conjures a magical world that is also, handily, good family fare.” (NYT – Gia Kourlas)

=========================================================

Smart Stuff / Other NYC Events
(Lectures/Discussions, Book Talks, Film, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)

More Smart Stuff coming soon.

=======================================================

Continuing Events

French Restaurant Week (July 02-15)
Various locations // $17.89-$178.90
“Mais oui, it’s the start of French Restaurant Week. Indulge in some of the city’s finest French bistros and brasseries offering prix fixe specials. Participating restaurants include La Sirene, Fig and Olive, and Bistrot Leo. French Restaurant Week actually runs longer than a week, ending on Bastille Day weekend, July 15th.” (Gothamist)

World Cup viewing parties (starting June 14 – thru July 15)
Championship Match Sunday July 15:
   France vs Croatia 11AM
Don’t miss the World Cup, which only comes every four years. Many bars and restaurants will be screening the games and offering food and drink specials across the city. Here are the best lists of where you can find them::
NYT – where to watch the World Cup in New York City.
Soccer Republic – best bars to watch the World Cup in NYC.
Thrillist – World Cup bars NYC
Remeczcla – the 10 Best Venues to Watch the World Cup in NYC
Metro – NYC’s best soccer bars to watch the FIFA World Cup 2018
NYCGO – Ways to Watch the World Cup in New York City
Daily News – The best bars in NYC to watch your favorite team

==========================================================================
♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, plus dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.6 million, had a record 63 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2018 – awesome! BUT quality shows draw crowds. Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just earlier on the day of performance.

=====================================================

Bonus NYC Music Venues:
So much fine live music every night in this town. These are my favorite non jazz music venues on Manhattan’s WestSide. Check out who’s playing tonight:

City Winery – 155 Varick St., citywinery.com, 212-608-0555
Joe’s Pub @ Public Theater – 425 Lafayette St., joespub.com, 212-967-7555
Beacon Theatre – 2124 Broadway @ 74th St., beacontheatre.com, 212-465-6500
Town Hall – 123 W43rd St., thetownhall.org, 212-997-6661
Le Poisson Rouge – 158 Bleecker St., lepoissonrouge.com, 212-505-3474
and one more, not quite WestSide
Bowery Ballroom – 6 Delancey St. boweryballroom.com,

Special Mention:
Caffe Vivaldi – 32 Jones St. nr Bleecker St. caffevivaldi.com, 212-691-7538
a classic, old jazz club in the Village, Caffe V often surprises with a wonderfully eclectic lineup. It’s my favorite spot for an evening of listening discovery and enjoyment.

Alas, Caffe V is no more, another victim of a rapacious NYC landlord. Owner Ishrat fought the good fight and Caffe V will be sorely missed.
===========================================================

NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

================================================================================

Chelsea Art Gallery District*

Chelsea is the heart of the NYCity contemporary art scene. Home to more than 300 art galleries, the Rubin Museum, the Joyce Theater and The Kitchen performance spaces, there is no place like it anywhere in the world. Come here to browse free exhibitions by world-renowned artists and those unknowns waiting to be discovered in an art district that is concentrated between West 18th and West 27th Streets, and 10th and 11th Avenues. Afterwards stop in the Chelsea Market, stroll on the High Line, or rest up at one of the many cafes and bars and discuss the fine art.

Here are two exhibitions the New Yorker likes:

Damien Hirst (thru July 20)

“Superabundant multicolored dot paintings, randomly composed in sizes from smallish to giant, are as perfectly dead as a trisected shark in formaldehyde-filled glass cases, which is also on view. There’s no formal structure or even optical dazzle, except by occasional accident. These aren’t active pictures. They’re passive slabs, yielding nothing to contemplation that they don’t impart at first glance. Neither good nor bad, they maintain an imperturbable, mortuary dignity—Hirst’s cynosure. He creates visual curios that look like art while dispensing with art’s pesky demands on thought, feeling, and perception. His works are aesthetic cryptocurrency. There are worse things in the world.” () Gagosian, 555 W. 24th St.

==========================================================

For a listing of 25 essential galleries in the Chelsea Art Gallery District, organized by street, which enables you to create your own Chelsea Art Gallery crawl, see the Chelsea Gallery Guide (nycgo.com) Or check out TONY magazine’s list of the “Best Chelsea Galleries” and click through to see what’s on view.

*Now plan your own gallery crawl, but better to plan your visits for Tuesday through Saturday; most galleries are closed Sunday and Monday.

TIP: After your gallery tour, stop in Ovest at 513W27th St. for Aperitivo Italiano (Happy Hour on steroids). Discuss all the great art you have viewed over a drink and a very tasty selection of FREE appetizers (M-F, 5-8pm). OR try this NYT recommendation: “When you’re done, adjourn to the newly renovated Bottino , the Chelsea art world’s unofficial canteen on 10th Avenue (btw 24/25 St.) “

=======================================================
For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see recent posts in right sidebar dated 07/10 and 07/08.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

NYC Events,”Only the Best” (07/11) + Today’s Featured Pub (Times Square / Theater District)

“We search the internet everyday looking for the very best of What’s Happening, primarily on Manhattan’s WestSide, so that you don’t have to.” We make it as easy as 1-2-3.

For future NYC Events, check the tab above: NYC Events-JULY”
It’s the most comprehensive list of top events this month that you will find anywhere.
Carefully curated from “Only the Best” NYC event info on the the web, it’s a simply superb resource that will help you plan your NYC visit all over town, all through the month.

==========================================================

Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

GABRIEL GARZÓN-MONTANO
at Rumsey Playfield / 6 p.m., FREE
“With the release of his first full-length album, “Jardin,” last year, Mr. Garzón-Montano finally capitalized on the wave of press that started when a substantial chunk of one of his songs was sampled by Drake in 2015. “Jardin” showcases the singer and pianist’s singular approach to alternative R&B, one influenced by both his classical and jazz bona fides and the rhythms of Colombian cumbia. At this free concert, he’ll appear alongside the producer and D.J. Nicola Cruz, whose sets draw on an Ecuadorean and French heritage; the edgy reggaeton singer Tomasa Del Real; and the global house D.J. Latin Bitman.” (NYT-NATALIE WEINER)

=========================================================
6 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> Brianna Thomas Band,
>> CLAUDIA ACUÑA
>> Batsheva — The Young Ensemble
>> Django Reinhardt NY Festival:
>> MUMMENSCHANZ
>> Romeo & Juliet:
Continuing Events
>> French Restaurant Week
>>
World Cup viewing parties
========================================================

Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Brianna Thomas Band, with guest vocalist Frank Senior
Damrosch Park, Lincoln Center / Dance lesson at 6:30 pm
Live music at 7:30 pm, $0-$
Style: Jump Blues, Swing, Rhythm and Blues
Dance Instructors: LaTasha Barnes and Bobby White teach Lindy Hop and Vernacular Jazz
DJ: Odysseus Bailer

With “a strong voice and a big range” (New York Times), NYC singer and bandleader Brianna Thomas draws on Bessie Smith, Ma Rainey, and other great blueswomen of the past for this soulful night. With her ace band, stellar voice, and open-hearted personality, she’s one of your best bets for achieving transcendence on the dance floor this summer.”
“The best young straight-ahead jazz singer of her generation.”
– Wall Street Journal

CLAUDIA ACUÑA (July 11-12)
at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola / 7:30 and 9:30 p.m., $35
“The bold and clarion singing of Ms. Acuña, a Chilean vocalist based in New York, doesn’t line up exactly with the sound of Abbey Lincoln, who addressed spiritual and political matters in a rough, simmering tone. What they had in common were their convictions and an unbending devotion to investigating their respective musical traditions. When Lincoln, who died in 2010, first heard Ms. Acuña, she recognized a kindred spirit, accepting her as a mentee. Here Ms. Acuña will perform a selection of Lincoln’s songs with Pablo Vergara on piano, Juancho Herrera on guitar, Carlos Henderson on bass and Keita Ogawa on drums.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

Batsheva — The Young Ensemble (July10-22)
Joyce Theater, 7:30PM, $10+
“Straight from a run at the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in Massachusetts comes Batsheva — The Young Ensemble, the junior offshoot of Tel Aviv’s leading troupe Batsheva. The outfit brings with them Naharin’s Virus, a Bessie Award–winning piece by Ohad Naharin, who recently announced that he’s stepping down as the company’s director but will continue to choreograph. Adapted from Peter Handke’s play Offending the Audience, the deeply ambiguous work, which had its U.S. premiere in 2002, includes sections of Handke’s text, a huge blackboard at the back of the stage, and other deeply theatrical strategies.” (Elizabeth Zimmer, VillageVoice)

Django Reinhardt NY Festival: Django Allstars w Romero Lubambo, Edmar Castaneda and Veronica Swift (July 10-14)
Birdland / 8:30PM, +11PM, $50
“After a fabulous concert at Carnegie Hall, May 1st, titled FOREVER DJANGO “Passing the Family Torch”, The Django Festival Allstars hit the road again with a cross-country tour starting at their US home, Birdland, where it all started led by Samson Schmitt on Guitar It’s the Django Reinhardt Festival’s 19thyear and going strong.”

MUMMENSCHANZ (July 4-22)
at the Gerald W. Lynch Theater at John Jay College / 7PM, $25-$85
“The famed Swiss theater troupe, founded in 1972, returns to New York with its surreal sensibility — and, of course, plenty of props — to present “You and Me,” a new show created by Floriana Frassetto, one of the group’s founders. Using its usual ingredients of shadow, light, bodies and masks, the group conjures a magical world that is also, handily, good family fare.” (NYT – Gia Kourlas)

Romeo & Juliet: Shakespeare’s Classic Tale of Two ‘Star-Cross’d Lovers’
NY Classical Theater (July 2-15, no Thursdays)
The Battery, Castle Clinton National Monument / 7:00 pm, FREE
“In fair Verona, the long-standing feud between families Montague and Capulet cause tragic results for their respective children, Romeo and Juliet. After meeting at a masked ball, Romeo and Juliet fall in love, only to discover the surname of their beloved. Revenge, love, and a secret marriage force the lovers to take drastic measures. In the end, both families learn the perils of needless violence.” (ClubFreeTime)

=========================================================

Smart Stuff / Other NYC Events
(Lectures/Discussions, Book Talks, Film, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)

More Smart Stuff coming soon.

=======================================================

Continuing Events

French Restaurant Week (July 02-15)
Various locations // $17.89-$178.90
“Mais oui, it’s the start of French Restaurant Week. Indulge in some of the city’s finest French bistros and brasseries offering prix fixe specials. Participating restaurants include La Sirene, Fig and Olive, and Bistrot Leo. French Restaurant Week actually runs longer than a week, ending on Bastille Day weekend, July 15th.” (Gothamist)

World Cup viewing parties (starting June 14 – thru July 15)
Today’s Match Wednesday July 11:
   England vs Croatia 2PM
Don’t miss the World Cup, which only comes every four years. Many bars and restaurants will be screening the games and offering food and drink specials across the city. Here are the best lists of where you can find them::
NYT – where to watch the World Cup in New York City.
Soccer Republic – best bars to watch the World Cup in NYC.
Thrillist – World Cup bars NYC
Remeczcla – the 10 Best Venues to Watch the World Cup in NYC
Metro – NYC’s best soccer bars to watch the FIFA World Cup 2018
NYCGO – Ways to Watch the World Cup in New York City
Daily News – The best bars in NYC to watch your favorite team

==========================================================================
♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, plus dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.6 million, had a record 63 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2018 – awesome! BUT quality shows draw crowds. Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just earlier on the day of performance.

=====================================================
Bonus: Nifty 9 – Best Cabarets / Piano Bars NYCity
These are my favorite places for an after dinner night on the town – music and drinks.
Hit the Hot Link and check out what’s happening tonight:

Feinstein’s/54 Below – 254 W 54th St.

The Green Room 42 – 570 Tenth Ave.

Don’t Tell Mama – 343 W 46th St.

The Rum House, in the Hotel Edison – 228 W. 47th St.

Laurie Beechman Theatre – 407 W 42nd St.

Marie’s Crisis – 59 Grove St.

The Duplex – 61 Christopher St.

Sid Gold’s Request Room – 165 W 26th St.

Cafe Carlyle, in the Carlyle Hotel – 35 E. 76th St.
This is the only one not located on Manhattan’s WestSide, and it ain’t cheap, but it has some of the finest singers.

========================================================================
NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

========================================================================

A PremierPub

Jimmy’s Corner 140 W 44th St (btw B’way & 7th ave)

IMG_2083Jimmy’s Corner is right in the heart of Times Square, but you won’t find it on the corner, it’s mid-block. Enter this long narrow bar and you are struck by the walls covered with mostly black-and-white boxing photographs, and memorabilia. Soon enough you learn that “Corner” refers to proprietor Jimmy Glenn’s long career as a corner man for some of boxing greats – Liston, Tyson, even “the greatest,” Ali.

Jimmy’s is a sort of time machine, taking you back to a time and place that no longer exists. All around you Times Square has cleaned up, grown up, assumed a new identity. Jimmy’s probably hasn’t changed a bit since it first opened in 1971. Certainly the bar itself looks original and the prices haven’t changed much either. When I brought a friend, who owns her own bar, she was surprised when she got the small tab for a round of drinks. Figured there must be a mistake, that maybe they forgot to charge for all the drinks.

Times Square today is filled with neon glitz and wandering tourists from Dubuque, but not Jimmy’s. You’ll likely find some old timer’s at the bar nursing their drinks, some younger locals at tables in the back, and maybe a few adventuresome tourists clutching their trusty guidebooks. There’s no food served here because this is just a bar, and sometimes that’s all you need.

On nights when no local team is playing, it’s a fine place to sip some drafts and listen to a great old time jukebox, with a great selection of  40s& 50s R&B and soul. On sports nights this very narrow bar can get a bit claustrophobic, filled with excited fans watching their team on the TVs. Either way, Jimmy’s is the place to be if you are looking for an old time bar in the new Times Square.
————————————————————————————————————————
Website: are you kidding !
(although there is a facebook page with lots of photos –
facebook.com/jimmyscornernyc)
Phone #: 212-221-9510
Hours: 11am – 4 am, except Sunday they open 12 noon
Happy Hour: not necessary, low prices all day, every day
Subway: #1,2,3 to TimesSquare 42nd st
walk 2 blks N on 7th ave to 44th st; ½ blk E to Jimmy’s

================================================================================
“Pub” is used in it’s broadest sense – bars, bar/restaurants, jazz clubs, wine bars, tapas bars, craft beer bars, dive bars, cocktail lounges, and of course, pubs – just about anyplace you can get a drink without a cover charge (except for certain jazz clubs).
If you have a fave premier pub or good eating place on Manhattan’s WestSide let us all know about it – leave a comment.
================================================================================
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment