Selected Events (05/17) + GallerySpecialExhibits: Chelsea

Today’s Sweet 6 > TUESDAY / MAY 17, 2016

“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 more complete event info.)

Have time for only one event today? Do This:

Murray, Allen & Carrington Power Trio (through May 21)
Birdland, 315 West 44th St./ 8:30PM +11PM, $
“Perfection” is the assured new debut album by this all-star trio, with David Murray on tenor saxophone and bass clarinet, Geri Allen on piano and Terri Lyne Carrington on drums. Stout in its purpose, ringing with expedition, it’s a statement of tribute to the avant-garde hero Ornette Coleman, but also a straightforward celebration of the bonds between these players.” (Chinen-NYT)

Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Cage the Elephant
Rumsey Playfield, Central Park, mid-Park at 69th St./ 5PM, $45
“This year’s SummerStage concert series kicks off with a set from these Kentucky rockers, who’ve taken many shapes. Since its start, in 2007, Cage the Elephant has jumped between jazz-punk funk and loud-quiet-loud shredding, before “Come a Little Closer,” off of its Grammy-nominated album, “Melophobia,” took on the noblest cause in rock: embarrassing honesty.

The group’s latest release, “Tell Me I’m Pretty,” takes the best of its disparate sounds and molds them into perfect pop forms. The excellent single “Trouble” lands somewhere between dewy surf punk and whiskey-stained rockabilly. “You know what they say, the wicked get no rest,” Matthew Shultz sings, in winking reference to a Cage jam from 2008. There will be little downtime at this opener for a long summer of events on the Great Lawn.” (NewYorker)

Bill Stewart Quartet (through May 22)
Village Vanguard, 178 Seventh Ave South,/ 8:30PM +10:30PM, $
“Bill Stewart is a drummer of deep creative resources, and a composer drawn to crooked logic and low-key surprise. His engaging new album, “Space Squid,” spotlights the same longtime band joining him at the Village Vanguard next week, with the tenor and soprano saxophonist Seamus Blake, the pianist Bill Carrothers and the bassist Ben Street.” (Chinen-NYT)

Elsewhere, but this looks worth the detour:
The Kills
Music Hall of Williamsburg, 66 North Sixth Street, Brooklyn/ 9PM, $
“The most reliably great and sexually charged duo in blues-rock thrive onstage, stalking each other in a heady whirl of guttural screams and sharp cheekbones. In June, amid a packed tour schedule that stops at festivals in Spain and France, they will release a new album, “Ash & Ice.” With L.A. Witch.” (Anderson-NYT)

Smart Stuff / Other
(Lectures, Discussions, Book Talks, Literary Readings, Classes, Food & Drink, Other

American Rhapsody | Claudia Roth Pierpont, Jonathan Galassi
New York Public Library—Main Building, 5th Ave & 42nd St./ 6PM, FREE
“From the shattered gentility of Edith Wharton’s heroines to racial confrontation in the songs of Nina Simone, American Rhapsody presents a kaleidoscopic story of the creation of a culture, and raises fascinating questions all along the way. Was Orson Welles the twentieth century’s greatest interpreter of Shakespeare? What inspired the Chrysler Building’s glorious crown? How did the failure of Porgy and Bess affect George Gershwin?

The arc of our racial history from Bert Williams’s blackface performances to James Baldwin’s prophetic thoughts about a black presidency are also part of this event with authors Claudia Roth Pierpont and Jonathan Galassi discussing American problems and American genius.

This new book American Rhapsody presents a series of deeply involving portraits of American artists and innovators who have helped to shape the country in the modern age.” (

The Gene: An Intimate History | Siddhartha Mukherjee & David Remnick
New York Public Library—Main Building, 5th Ave & 42nd St./ 7PM, $40
“In his new book The Gene: An Intimate History, Siddhartha Mukherjee chronicles our understanding of human heredity and its influence on our personalities, fates, and choices. To launch his book, Mukherjee is joined by The New Yorker’s David Remnick for a conversation about medicine, writing and personal narrative.”


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

City Winery – 155 Varick St.,, 212-608-0555
Feinstein’s/54 Below – 254 W54th St.,, 646-476-3551
Joe’s Pub @ Public Theater – 425 Lafayette St.,, 212-967-7555
Metropolitan Room – 34W22ndSt., metropolitan, 212-206-0440
Beacon Theatre – 2124 Broadway @ 74th St.,, 212-465-6500
B.B. King’s Blues Bar – 237W42nd St.,, 212-997-2144
Le Poisson Rouge – 158 Bleecker St.,, 212-505-3474

Special Mention:
Caffe Vivaldi – 32 Jones St. nr Bleecker St., 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 58 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2016.  Quality shows draw crowds.
Try to reserve seats in advance, even if it’s  just on the day of performance.

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.

One exhibition the NewYorkTimes likes:

 Robert Ryman (through July 29)
“For nearly 60s years, the Minimalist painter Robert Ryman has had few equals when it comes to doing more with less. White has been his primary, if not quite his only, color, the square his typical format. And yet within these seeming limitations a remarkably fecund and resonant body of work has evolved as demonstrated with unusual clarity (and in natural light) by this small but comprehensive exhibition. Dia: Chelsea, 535 West 22nd Street, 212-989-5566,” (Smith)

Here is one that The Observer likes:
“Steven Baldi: Branded Light” (through May 28)
Koenig & Clinton, 459 West 19 Street
“Steven Baldi is currently featured in an acclaimed group show about the use of stock photography in fine art, on view at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis. Here, he presents black-and-white photomontages of industry logos, such as those for Kodak and Nikon, abstracted with prismatic camera effects. The resulting Constructivist-inspired imagery is contrasted with the Los Angeles conceptualist’s monochromatic paintings that he makes by stretching green book cloth over aluminum panels.”

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 ( 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 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).

For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see recent posts in right sidebar dated 05/15 and 05/13.

This week’s fave and FREE NYCity AppS: 
Trip Advisor
An enormous base of NYCity user reviews (2.1 million) provides the widest coverage of hotels (468), restaurants (12,645) and things to do (yes, 3,246). Have a specific question? Then try one of Trip Advisor’s forums. Just remember that with all those reviews you have to try to find the consistency among the comments, and ignore the outliers.

Instantly locate restaurants near you with open reservations and then place a reservation right from your iOS device. A great interface and the ability to see a menu from the restaurant you’re interested in makes this my go to restaurant reservation app.

Subway Time 
Need to catch your #1,2,3 subway to attend an event? Use the Subway Time app from the MTA to find out when the next train arrives at your station. The MTA also has Bus Time info available on their mobile website.

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