Today’s Elite 8 > MONDAY / AUGUST 10, 2015
“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. (click on links for complete event info)
Music, Dance, Performing Arts
> John Fedchock New York Big Band
Blue Note, 131 West Third St. / 8PM +10:30PM, $10-$15
This powerful and distinctly New York-flavored big band — led by the trombonist and composer-arranger John Fedchock, and featuring experienced section players like the trumpeter Scott Wendholt and the baritone saxophonist Gary Smulyan — celebrates the release of its strong new album, “Like It Is.” (NYT-Nate Chinen)
Ralph Stanley and the Clinch Mountain Boys
City Winery, 155 Varick St. / 8PM, $
“What has changed in America since Harry S. Truman was president? Not Mr. Stanley’s banjo. This stalwart bluegrass musician has been performing solo, with family and in this talented ensemble since 1946. The Library of Congress designated him a “Living Legend” in 2000. With Matt Turk.“(Anderson-NYT)
>Natalie Douglas: Hello Dolly
Birdland, 315 W44th St. / 7PM, $30
“Septuple MAC winner Natalie Douglas goes for bust in a tribute to the musical treasure chest of country legend Dolly Parton, including “Jolene” and “Coat of Many Colors.” (TONY)
>Turn The Beat Around: 54 Below Celebrates Studio 54
54 Below, 254 W54th St./ $40-$50
54 Below salutes the disco heyday of the legendary Studio 54 nightclub. Among the many performers are Cheryl Freeman, Willam Blake, Scott Coulter, Lennie Watts, Brian Charles Rooney, Mike Schwitter and Kelli Rabke. “ (TONY)
Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, 307 W 26th St. / 11PM, FREE
popular show is known for always featuring the city’s best up-and-coming comedians.
surprise special guests—Chris Rock, Louis C.K. and David Cross—keep audiences hooked. (tonight’s show is sold out, there will be a standby line for this show.
listed here to remind you to try for this event earlier next week)
Smart Stuff / Other
(Lectures, Discussions, Book Talks, Literary Readings, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)
> NYC Restaurant Week Summer 2015 (LAST WEEK-through Aug 14)
Various locations and times; $25 for lunch, $38 for dinner
Enjoy the summer edition of Restaurant Week (actually three weeks) of prix-fixe three course meals at many of the city’s best restaurants. Mangia!
ELSEWHERE, but for photography buffs this looks worth the detour:
> “The Fence” in Brooklyn Bridge Park
Begin at Jane’s Carousel, Brooklyn Bridge Park / FREE
a 1,250-foot outdoor photo installation, this exhibit features work from 40 professional photographers from around the world. a unique site-specific exhibition aimed at fostering conversations and exploring new thematic directions in photography. best of all, it is in Brooklyn Bridge Park, NYCity’s newest park and a small gem of an oasis.
“Grand Illusions” Staged Photography from the Met Collection (thru Jan. 18)
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1000 5th Ave. / 10AM-5:30PM, pay what you wish
The Met is opening its new installation of staged photography from over the first 170 years of the medium.
In the digital age, we know that there’s a vast chasm between reality and what a picture depicts. But the art of staging photos for dramatic effect dates back to the very birth of the art form. A new exhibit opening at the Met this weekend shows 40 famously staged photographs to examine their purpose.
Bonus – Jazz Picks:
Many consider NYCity the Jazz capital of the world. Here are my favorite Jazz clubs, all on Manhattan’s WestSide. Check out who is playing tonight:
Village Vanguard – 178 7th Ave. South — villagevanguard.com / 212-255-4037
Blue Note – 131 W3rd St., nr 6th ave. — bluenotejazz.com / 212-475-8592
55 Bar – 55 Christopher St., nr 7th ave. S. — 55bar.com / 212-929-9883
Outside Greenwich Village:
Dizzy’s Club – Broadway @ 60th St. — jazz.org/dizzys / 212-258-9595
Birdland – 315 W44th St. (btw 8/9 ave) — birdlandjazz.com / 212-581-3080
Smoke Jazz Club – 2751 Broadway, nr.106th St. — smokejazz.com / 212-864-6662
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 enjoyment and discovery.
♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of 8.5 million, had a record 56 million visitors last year and is TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2015. Quality shows draw crowds. Try to reserve seats in advance, even if just on day of performance.
A PremierPub + 3 Good Eating places
Jimmy’s Corner / 140 W 44th St (btw B’way & 7th ave)
Jimmy’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 (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 –
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.
3 Good Eating places
It’s not difficult finding 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:
Patzeria Perfect Pizza – 231 W46 St. (Btw 7th/8th ave)
Perfect name for a pizza joint. On a street filled with Broadway theaters, this is a real hole in the wall, but don’t let the dive look scare you away. You can never go wrong with a slice of NYCity pizza, and this one is a classic thin crust. Only a few seats here, but pizza was made to eat standing up.
Shake Shack – 691 8th Ave. (Btw 43rd/44th st)
Danny Meyer has revolutionized the high quality burger in this town. Now he has a branch on the West Side that was desperately needed, with a bit less of the insane lines that you find at the Madison Sq. Park location. Worth the wait.
Xi’an Famous Foods – 24 W45th St. (Btw 5th/6th ave)
Try to avoid long lunch lines. Order lamb hand ripped noodles and warm your insides at one of the tables in the back. You’ll return, just remember that even mild is pretty spicy.
“3 Good Eating places” focuses on a quick bite, what I call “Fine Fast Food – NYCity Style”
This covers a wide range of food – the traditional pizza, burgers, & hot dogs; but also food trucks & carts, soup & sandwiches, picnic fixins’, raw bars & lobster rolls, bbq, vegetarian / falafel, ramen, chopped salad & salad bars. No reservations needed.
◊ 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 2015).
◊ Order before Oct. 31, 2015 and receive a bonus – 27 of my favorite casual dining places with free Wi-Fi.