NYC Events,”Only the Best” (07/19) + Today’s Featured Pub (Upper West Side)

“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:

River & Blues: John Hammond
Wagner Park / 7PM, FREE
‘A River & Blues favorite, legendary bluesman, Grammy winner and Blues Hall of Fame inductee John Hammond has shared the stage with a who’s who of blues greats, from Jimi Hendrix to Eric Clapton, Muddy Waters and more. Witness this master conjure the Delta Blues and transform his guitar and harmonica into an orchestra steaming forward with the power of a runaway train.”

Great music and you can’t beat the view at sunset. I’ll be there.

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7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> Los Gaiteros de San Jacinto
>> Mostly Mozart Festival: “The Creation”
>> SAMORA PINDERHUGHES’S ‘VENUS’
>> Freddy Cole Quartet
>> ERTEGUN HALL OF FAME FESTIVAL
>> Dispatch
>>  MUMMENSCHANZ
>> The Taste of Grand Central Market
Continuing Events
>> New York Television Festival

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Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Los Gaiteros de San Jacinto
Atrium at Lincoln Center / 7:30PM, FREE
“Masters of the gaita and traditional cumbia music of Colombia’s Caribbean region, Los Gaiteros de San Jacinto has been the driving force behind bringing this traditional music to larger audiences across the world since the group’s first tour in the mid-1950s. Featuring the gaita, the oldest Caribbean flute, the music is mixture of the indigenous Colombian, Spanish, and Afro-Colombian heritage. They bring this essential musical legacy to Lincoln Center for a free performance.”

Mostly Mozart Festival: “The Creation”
Rose Theatre, 60th St. at Broadway / 7:30PM, $
“La Fura dels Baus, a Catalan company known for glittering productions involving puppetry, aerialists, and digital dazzlement, stages Haydn’s sublime oratorio “The Creation” at Lincoln Center’s Rose Theatre, on July 19 and 20. The work, first performed in 1798 and given its public première the following year, draws from the Book of Genesis, the Psalms, and Milton’s “Paradise Lost,” and reflects its composer’s essentially optimistic morality: devotion and awe are emphasized over pious reprimand. Laurence Equilbey conducts performers including the extraordinary choir accentus and the period-instrument group Insula Orchestra in some of Haydn’s most profound and exhilarating music.” (Steve Smith, NewYorker)

SAMORA PINDERHUGHES’S ‘VENUS’
at Le Poisson Rouge / 8 p.m., $20
“Mr. Pinderhughes, a pianist and vocalist, grabbed attention in 2016 with his politically incisive “Transformations Suite.” At Le Poisson Rouge he returns with a new set of material, “Venus,” which like “Transformations” speaks in personal, openhearted tones while insisting on wholesale social change. The new music, which he teased in April on WBGO’s “The Checkout,” has the brooding interiority of a singer-songwriter confessional and the frothy abundance of improvised music. He’ll perform “Venus” with Elena Pinderhughes on flute, Maya Kronfeld on keyboards, Andrew Renfroe on guitar, Josh Hari on electric bass and Jack DeBoe on drums and electronics. The concert, which is presented by “The Checkout,” will also feature D.J. sets from J.Period.” (NYT – GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

Freddy Cole Quartet
Dizzy’s Club, Broadway at 60th St./
“There was once a time when the mellow-toned vocalist Freddy Cole felt the need to title an album “I’m Not My Brother, I’m Me,” in order to differentiate himself from his iconic sibling, Nat King Cole. In the years since that 1990 project, Cole has proved himself such a singular singer and pianist that loving tributes to his late brother can now be executed with assurance and pride.” (Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

Dispatch with special guests Nahko and Medicine for the People and Raye Zaragoza
Central Park, Rumsey Playfield / 6PM, $45
“For over two decades, jam band juggernaut Dispatch has consistently sold-out arenas across the country and with help from their devoted fan-base, supported an array of humanitarian efforts in the process. Known for their upbeat, funk-folk rock, the trio (Brad Corrigan, Chad Stokes and Pete Francis) recently released their sixth full-length album (and their first in five years), 2017’s America, Location 12, which hit #4 on Billboard’s Top 200 Albums. This summer, the group hits the road alongside world music collective Nahko and Medicine for the People, led by Nahko Bear, and singer-songwriter Raye Zaragoza.“

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)

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)

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

The Taste of Grand Central Market
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 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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A PremierPub / Upper West Side

Dinosaur Bar-B-Que 700 W125th St. @ 12th ave.

Walk only five minutes from the 125th St. station on the #1 line to find this authentic honky-tonk barbecue joint. Some folks think Dinosaur is just a place to eat ribs. Au contraire. With 24 carefully selected taps, this is a place to drink beer, and eat ribs.

HarlHostStandNo food goes better with American craft ales than American barbecue. Dinosaur may be the best combo of good beer drinking and hearty eating in town, which makes the trip uptown to West Harlem totally worthwhile.

This second incarnation of Dinosaur in Harlem is in a two story, old brick warehouse near the Hudson River. Don’t let that run down exterior fool you. Inside it’s a large space with huge, rough wooden columns and unfinished wooden floors and brick walls – just right for a bbq joint. As soon as you open the front door you are hit with that tantalizing aroma of barbecue coming from the large open kitchen. Reminds me of those great rib joints I frequented when stationed in North Carolina all those years ago. If your stomach wasn’t grumbling before, it is now.

Head to the bar, sit down and try to decide on a beer. It’s not an easy decision – a good problem to have. This is a pretty damn good beer list to choose from, one that most beer bars should be jealous of. I love that they feature NY craft beers. You may want to try the four beer sampler, which is always fun, and in this place may be necessary.

The blues music playing in the background will get you in the mood for their North Carolina style barbecue, and even when it’s a full house your order shouldn’t take too long (assuming you snagged a table). The food is all slow smoked, so it’s already mostly done and ready to go. I always start with an order of their giant, spice rubbed wings, so good they may make you give up Buffalo wings.

Unfortunately, a place this good does not fly under the radar. There can be some long waits for a table at dinnertime. So you need a strategy – avoid prime time, and try not to arrive with your entire posse, which will limit your seating options.

A seat at the bar, a small table in the bar area, or in the summer, an outside table underneath what’s left of the elevated West Side Highway, all may open before a table inside the main dining room. Otherwise, try Dinosaur for lunch, or come very late for dinner, maybe after a show at the nearby Cotton Club nightclub.

Website: http://www.dinosaurbarbque.com/
Phone #: 212-694-1777
Hours: Mo-Th 11:30am-11:00pm; Fr-Sa 11:30am-12:00am;
Su 12:00pm-10:00pm
Happy Hour: 4-7pm every day; $1 off all drinks
Music: Fri / Sat 10:30pm
Subway: #1 to 125th St.
Walk 2 blk W on 125th St. to Dinosaur Bar-B-Q,
just past the elevated highway.
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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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