NYC Events,”Only the Best” (06/30) + 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:  “July NYC Events”
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.
OR to make your own after dinner plans TONIGHT, see the tab above;  “LiveMusic.”


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

The Music of Basie featuring Rodney Whitaker
Dizzy’s Club / 7:30PM, +9:30PM, $40
“Led by esteemed bassist Rodney Whitaker, tonight’s program will feature additional members of the all-star Band Director Academy Training faculty. When these artists aren’t busy touring or performing in Rose Theater with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, they regularly lead and sell out concerts in Dizzy’s Club, The Appel Room, and other venues around the world. It’s always a treat to have them share the stage in our most intimate venue, and when they’re playing the high-octane Kansas City Swing of Count Basie, it’s guaranteed to be a good time.”


5 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> Sondheim Unplugged
>> Reeve Carney: Encore

>> Under The Bridge: Rebecca Godfrey with Mary Gaitskill
>> Secret Science Club Presents a Rare & Riveting Screening of “The Cleaners”

You may want to look at previous days posts for events that continue through today.


Music, Dance, Performing Art

Sondheim Unplugged
Feinstein’s/54 Below / 7PM, $40+
“Talented singers from the Broadway and cabaret worlds sing side by side in this tribute to the master of musical theater that has often featured former cast members of Sondheim shows. Guests at the June 30 episode include Sondheim alums Sarah Rice, Liz McCartney and Sally Mayes as well as Karen Mack, Keira Moynahan, Megan Moynahan, Kelli Rabke, Marta Sanders, Lucia Spina and Marquee Five.” (TONY)

Reeve Carney: Encore
The Green Room 42 / 9:30PM, $30+
“After originating the web-singing title role in Broadway’s ill-fated Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, Carney has gone on to star as Dorian Gray in Penny Dreadful and has recently swung back onto Broadway as Orpheus in Hadestown. Now he brings his otherworldly tenor to the Green Room 42 with a solo show that includes some standards but focuses on original songs from his 2016 album, Youth Is Wasted.” (TONY)

at Carolines on Broadway / 7:30 p.m.; $
“This comedian and actor held court for four seasons hosting the talking-and-dining show “Four Courses With J. B. Smoove” on the MSG Network, but he’s best known as the straight-shooting Leon on HBO’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” As a stand-up comedian, Smoove shines precisely because his onstage energy and joy remain uncurbed.” (NYT-Sean L. McCarthy)


Smart Stuff / Other NYC EventS

Under The Bridge: Rebecca Godfrey with Mary Gaitskill
McNally Jackson, 52 Prince St./ 6PM, FREE
“On the occasion of a new edition of her true-crime account Under the Bridge, author Rebecca Godfrey talks about circumstances that led to seven teenage girls (and one boy) being accused of a savage murder in 1997 in British Columbia. Novelist Mary Gaitskill joins her at McNally Jackson.” (ThoughtGallery)

“In this new edition of a “tour de force of crime reportage” (Kirkus Reviews), acclaimed author Rebecca Godfrey takes us into the hidden world of seven teenage girls—and one boy—accused of a savage murder. As she follows the investigation and trials, Godfrey reveals the startling truth about the unlikely killers. Laced with lyricism and insight, Under the Bridge is an unforgettable look at a haunting modern tragedy.”

Elsewhere, but this looks worth the detour:

Secret Science Club Presents a Rare & Riveting Screening of “The Cleaners”
The Bell House, 149 7th St., Brooklyn / 2PM, $10
“Should it give us pause that there’s an entire class of people restricting what we can find on the internet? Dr. Kate Klonick, whose research is centered on law and technology, using cognitive and social psychology, will speak on the risks of policing the internet at a Secret Science Club gathering. The talk will be followed by a screening of The Cleaners, a documentary about content moderators and social media’s turn toward darkness.” (ThoughtGallery)
BEFORE & AFTER: Sunday afternoon cocktails, delicious bites, and door prizes!
Subway: F or G to 4th Ave; R to 9th St.

Continuing Events

‘Midsummer Night Swing’ (July 2-6, 9-13)
Damrosch Park, Lincoln Center
“Each summer, some of the dance at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts takes place outside, in Damrosch Park, where a variety of bands and orchestras will serve up R&B, swing, disco and other styles. Guests can dance the night away — and for those who could use a hand learning steps, group lessons are offered. ($18-$22; 6 p.m.; Damrosch Park at Lincoln Center, 60 Lincoln Center Plaza, Manhattan;” (amNY)



7/2 Midsummer Night Swing w/ Joe McGinty & Loser’s Lounge and Silent Disco w/FUV’s Rita Houston, Damrosch Park Lincoln Center
7/2 Matisyahu, City Winery
7/3 Bedouine, Brooklyn Mirage

♦ 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 65 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.

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.

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.
“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. 


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.

For a comprehensive list of the best places to hear All Types of Live Music in Manhattan see the tab above “LiveMusic.”


NYT Theater Reviews – Our theater critics on the plays and musicals currently open in New York City.


NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):


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