Selected NYC Events (11/22) + 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 be sure to check the tab above: “Annual NYC Events / Nov.”

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

JASON MORAN AND THE BANDWAGON (through Nov. 27)
Village Vanguard, 178 7th Avenue South, at 11th St./ 8:30PM, +10:30PM, $30
“Mr. Moran, the pianist and composer, is coming to the close of another banner year — as a concert programmer, an interdisciplinary collaborator and the force behind his own label. The Bandwagon, his trio with the bassist Tarus Mateen and the drummer Nasheet Waits, still represents his baseline, and this engagement at the Vanguard has become a cherished staple of this time of year.” (Chinen-NYT)

5 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY

ELLE KING
Dorrance Dance
KIIARA
Crashing the Party: An American Reporter in China
Jazz 101: Fusions: Latin Jazz, Third Stream, and Jazz-Rock Fusion
bonus: Chick Corea 75th Birthday Celebration

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Music, Dance, Performing Arts

ELLE KING
Beacon Theater, 2124 Broadway, at 74th St./ 8PM, $35-$45
“After wrapping up a fall tour opening for the Dixie Chicks, the brassy, bluesy, tougher-than-Teflon singer Elle King is taking center stage with her own headlining tour. She’ll perform fiery barnburners from her debut album, “Love Stuff,” which includes her Grammy-nominated single, “Ex’s & Oh’s,” while also turning the room into a Chapel of Love, of sorts. For each date of this tour, Ms. King has officiated at a fan wedding or vows renewal before the crowd. With Paul Cauthen.”
(O’Donnell-NYT)

Dorrance Dance (through Nov. 27)
Joyce Theater, 175 8th Ave. @ 19th St./ $
“Michelle Dorrance, the MacArthur award-winning tap choreographer, brings her tightly constructed, spirit-lifting 2013 show “The Blues Project” back to the Joyce. Driven by the raucous live music of Toshi Reagon and her band, BIGLovely, Dorrance’s crew of affable, expert hoofers—including the virtuosic co-choreographers Derick K. Grant and Dormeshia Sumbry-Edwards—entertain greatly while more subtly hinting at the racially mixed roots of tap and the pain within the joy.” (NewYorker)
Tuesday and Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.; Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 2 and 8 p.m., Sunday 2 p.m.(no performance on Thanksgiving Day)

KIIARA
Le Poisson Rouge, 158 Bleecker St. near Thompson St./ 8PM, $
“Kiara Saulters, the singer and songwriter who goes by the name Kiiara, has proved to be one of this year’s quietest new breakouts. Her single “Gold” has hovered in the Top 20 of the Billboard Hot 100 in recent weeks, and it has earned an impressive 315 million streams on Spotify. Despite Ms. Saulters’s success, her live show is refreshingly subdued. Dressed in everyday street clothes, she’ll perform dreamy electro-pop songs from her debut EP, “low kii savage,” with little more than a backing track. With Cruel Youth and Lil Aaron.” (O’Donnell-NYT)

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

Author Talk | Crashing the Party: An American Reporter in China
with Scott Savitt and Jerome A. Cohen
China Institute, 100 Washington St./ 6:30PM, FREE
“Scott Savitt was one of the first Americans in post-Mao China, arriving in Beijing in 1983. He’ll relate his experiences (including a stint in prison) at a China Institute conversation.

Mr. Savitt will tell stories of his experiences living through and reporting on China’s historic transformation, including his founding of Beijing Scene, China’s first independent weekly newspaper; befriending and working with a legendary group of Chinese artists, writers, and musicians; interactions with Chinese and American politics; and his time in prison.” (ThoughtGallery.org)

Jazz 101: Fusions: Latin Jazz, Third Stream, and Jazz-Rock Fusion
Jazz at Lincoln Center, Rose Hall/Time Warner Center, 5th Floor / 6:30PM, $35
“Join us for an interactive and lively introduction to the nation’s greatest art form lead by Seton Hawkins, Director of Public Programs and Education Resources at Jazz at Lincoln Center. Hawkins, producer, manager, publicist, radio DJ, and advocate in Jazz for more than a decade will help you to develop your ears to hear the many details and intricacies that make this music so endlessly fascinating, and guide you through the history and development of the styles.

From its very beginnings, Jazz was always a fusion of musical styles. However, as the century progressed, Jazz began to work even more closely with other genres, giving birth to many new and exciting styles. Latin Jazz emerged, fusing Jazz vocabulary with Afro-Cuban musical traditions. Third Stream sought to marry Jazz and Classical music, while Fusion looked to the burgeoning rock scene for inspiration. In this class, we’ll cover how these styles emerged, and how they came to reshape Jazz.”

HOT TICKET

Chick Corea 75th Birthday Celebration
“Four decades on from practically founding electric-jazz, Corea continues to innovate with his distinctive blend of fusionista technical flash and subtle introspection. He celebrates his 75th birthday this year with a two-month stay at Blue Note, winding through a number of different combo and duet configurations, with such key players as electric bass wunderkin Victor Wooten, studio drumming icon Steve Gadd and saxophone nobility Ravi Coltrane. In the grand finale (12/8), Corea teams up with groundbreaking guitarist John McLaughlin for what the two call “Return to Forever meets Mahavishnu Orchestra”—a hybrid of the two’s quintessential chops-forward, dizzyingly notey fusion groups.” (TONY)

On Tuesday and Wednesday he’ll team up with a longtime collaborator, the vibraphonist Gary Burton, and the Harlem String Quartet.
Blue Note, 131 W3rd St./ 8PM, +10:30PM, $55 bar; $85 table
late shows are best bet to find a ticket.

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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. Check out who’s playing tonight:

City Winery – 155 Varick St., citywinery.com, 212-608-0555
Feinstein’s/54 Below – 254 W54th St., 54below.com, 646-476-3551
Joe’s Pub @ Public Theater – 425 Lafayette St., joespub.com, 212-967-7555
Metropolitan Room – 34W22ndSt., metropolitan room.com, 212-206-0440
Beacon Theatre – 2124 Broadway @ 74th St., beacontheatre.com, 212-465-6500
Town Hall – 123 W43rd St., thetownhall.org, 212-997-6661
B.B. King’s Blues Bar – 237W42nd St., bbkingblues.com, 212-997-2144
Bowery Ballroom – 6 Delancey St. boweryballroom.com,
Le Poisson Rouge – 158 Bleecker St., lepoissonrouge.com, 212-505-3474

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 enjoyment and discovery.
See Below.

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♦ 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 for these top NYC events in advance, even if just on day of performance.
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.

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:

Fish280 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 thousand 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 Spring 2017).
◊ Order before Mar.31, 2017 and receive a bonus – 27 of my favorite casual dining places with free Wi-Fi.
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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.

OpenTable
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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