NYC Events, “Only the Best” (07/18) + Today’s Featured Pub (Tribeca)

“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.”

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

TOOTIE HEATH TRIO
at Birdland Theater / 7 and 9:45 p.m.; $20-$30
“It’s a pleasure to watch the eighty-four-year-old veteran drummer Albert (Tootie) Heath do his splendidly crafted thing, which he makes look as easy as tying his shoes. That’s what a lifetime of playing with such giants as John Coltrane, Dexter Gordon, and Nina Simone will do—there’s not much that anyone can throw that Heath can’t catch. This week, he leads a quick-witted trio at Birdland.” (Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

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7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> Steve Turre
>> BélO
>>Sherie Rene Scott and Norbert Leo Butz
>> CARLY RAE JEPSEN
>> The Magic Flute

>> Maria Kochetkova
>> Steve Smith’s Groove Blue Organ Trio

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

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Music, Dance, Performing Art

Steve Turre (July 18-20)
Smoke, 2751 Broadway / 7, 9, 10:30PM, $38
When the music calls for it, the eminent trombonist (and seemingly singular jazz-conch-shell player) Steve Turre instinctively responds with a nasty-edged spark that cements his reputation as a master of Latin-tinged hard bop. Yet his warm and fuzzy side—displayed on the ballad-heavy album “The Very Thought of You,” from last year—is equally compelling. In the company of a sharp quintet featuring the saxophonist James Carter, Turre has the perfect platform to strut his multifarious stuff.
(Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

BélO
Atrium @ Lincoln Center / 7:30PM, FREE
“With five critically acclaimed albums under his belt, the singer-songwriter BélO has been hailed as Haiti’s musical ambassador to the world. BélO is a visionary practitioner of ragganga—a sublime mixture of jazz, worldbeat, rock, reggae, and Afro-Haitian traditional rhythms. Come experience a master songsmith who transforms roots music into a global phenomenon, blending Caribbean and West African rhythms with melodies that soar when sung in his native language, Haitian Creole.”

Sherie Rene Scott and Norbert Leo Butz (also July 18-20)
Feinstein’s/54 Below / 7PM, $70+
“The stars of the original Off Broadway production of The Last Five Years, having gone on to major Broadway careers, reunite for a nightclub set. Scott is a blond bombshell with a paradoxical flair for understatement, a reticent power that reached its apex in her 2010 Broadway showcase, Everyday Rapture; Butz has an unlikely but winning combination of everyday guyness and star magnetism. In addition to The Last Five Years, the two have also shared the stage in Rent and Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, and both are highly accomplished nightclub performers, so this should be a doozy. Todd Almond is the musical director.” (TONY)

CARLY RAE JEPSEN (July 17-18)
at the Hammerstein Ballroom / 8 p.m.; $36+
“In an age of maximalism and overexposure, Carly Rae Jepsen oozes earnestness and small-grain sentimentality. These qualities are not the stock in trade for your average star these days, but they have made her one of the most versatile — and seemingly guileless — figures in pop music. At the Hammerstein she celebrates the release of “Dedicated,” her fourth album, which shows that she’s only broadened her scope since its widely acclaimed predecessor, “Emotion” (2015). On the new record, she ranges from lovesick electro-soul (“Julien”) to singalong, reverb-drenched splendor (“Want You in My Room”).” (NYT-Giovanni Russonello)

The Magic Flute (July 17-20)
(New York production premiere)
NYS Theater, Lincoln Center / 7PM, $55
“Mozart’s beloved comedic opera is richly reimagined by director Barrie Kosky and British theater group 1927, resulting in a spectacular kaleidoscope of 1920s silent films, Weimar cabaret, and the dark whimsy of fairy tales. A stellar cast from Komische Oper Berlin interacts with vividly rendered animated projections in a live fantasia that pays audaciously delightful homage to the power of love, the birth of the movies, and the pioneering genius of Mozart.”

Maria Kochetkova (July 16-21)
at the Joyce Theater / 7:30 p.m.; $55+ (may need to try another night)
“Maria Kochetkova is one of those can-do ballerinas with limitless technical capacities and boundless energy. In her eleven-year career at San Francisco Ballet, she danced everything from Petipa to William Forsythe and Wayne McGregor—always with rigor and style. For the past year, she has been freelancing. Now she has a project of her own, a program of new and recent works, called “Catch Her if You Can,” by a cluster of big names such as Forsythe, David Dawson, and Marco Goecke, which she will perform along with friends and colleagues, including Drew Jacoby and Sebastian Kloborg. In addition, the French dance-theatre choreographer Jérôme Bel has created a sort of mini-portrait of Kochetkova, the title of which, “Masha Machine,” references the nickname by which she is best known to dancers and fans alike.” (Marina Harss, NewYorker)

Steve Smith’s Groove Blue Organ Trio (July16-19)
Birdland / 8:30PM, +11PM, $30-$40
“The former drummer for arena-rock monolith Journey has traipsed through all varieties of funky music over the course of his storied career, playing with the likes of Allan Holdsworth, Frank Gambale, Stanley Clarke and even Mariah Carey. Here Smith turns up with a hard-grooving trio to demonstrate his muscular chops in jazz-rock workouts and Buddy Rich–inspired jazz blasts.” (TONY)

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Smart Stuff / Other NYC EventS

More smart stuff coming soon.


Continuing Events

“Lincoln Center’s Mostly Mozart Festival will run from July 10 through August 10, 2019. Harnessing Mozart’s innovative spirit as its inspiration, this edition will feature groundbreaking, multidisciplinary, international productions and acclaimed artists from a variety of genres, introducing the audience to emerging creative voices, commissions and premieres.  The program will include performances from Mark Morris Dance Company, a panel discussion on Mozart’s Magic Flute, a screening of the film The Great Buster: A Celebration, and much more. For a full festival lineup, visit the Mostly Mozart Festival event page.” (nyc-arts.org)

NYC Restaurant Week 2019:
Start making your reservations.

“The more than three-week-long promotion featuring two-course lunches ($26) and three-course dinners ($42) at some of the city’s best restaurants is back for its summer edition starting July 22. This time around, the celebration features prix-fixe meals at more than 380 eateries, with deals through Aug. 16.

You can find links to menus and the restaurants involved here, but check out our picks for some of the most enticing deals below.” (amNY)

JAPAN CUTS: Festival of New Japanese Film
Japan Society, 333 East 47th St./ various times, $15 individual films
“From July 19 – 28, the Japan Society will present JAPAN CUTS: Festival of New Japanese Film. Premiering 26 features and 16 short films, the festival offers a deep dive into one of the world’s most vital film cultures with a diverse selection across its Feature Slate, Classics: Rediscoveries and Restorations, Documentary Focus, Experimental Spotlight and Shorts Showcase sections. This year’s lineup features 19 first-time filmmakers and 14 female directors (the most in the festival’s history), including 10 International Premieres, 16 North American Premieres, 4 U.S. Premieres, 4 East Coast Premieres and 6 New York Premieres. In addition, over 20 guest filmmakers and talent from Japan will join the festival to participate in post-screening Q&As and parties.”
(NYC-ARTS.ORG)

The Best of Contemporary Japanese Cinema – some films already sold out.

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COMING SOON (WFUV)

7/18 Low Cut Connie, River & Blues Fest, Wagner Park, Battery Park City
7/18 I’m With Her, BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival
7/20 “Weird Al” Yankovic w/Queens Symphony Orchestra, Forest Hills Stadium
7/21 Dave Alvin, City Winery
7/22 Jesca Hoop, Rough Trade
7/23 Taj Mahal, City Winery
7/24 Elvis Costello & The Imposters and Blondie, Forest Hills Stadium
7/24 Steve Miller Band & Marty Stuart, Rooftop at Pier 17
7/24 Caroline Rose, Rocks Off Concert Cruises

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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 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.
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A PremierPub / Tribeca

B-Flat / 277 Church St. (btw Franklin/White St)

b_flat4There are some places that are tough to find, then add a layer of mystery when you do find them. B-Flat has a nondescript, almost unmarked door at street level – today’s speakeasy vibe. Open this door and you face a dimly lit stairway down to their basement location. It almost takes a leap of faith to follow the stairs down to their interior door.
But open that door and a pleasant surprise awaits you.

It’s a basement jazz spot all right, but not like any traditional jazz joint you may have been to before. This place looks as fresh as today, probably because it’s only been open for 6 years. Even though it hasn’t had a chance to age gracefully, the cherry wood accents and low lighting make this small space very inviting.

There is always jazz, often progressive jazz, playing over their very discrete, stylish bose speakers, setting just the right tone as you find a seat at the bar, or one of the small tables. There is wine and beer available, but this place has some expert mixologists making some very creative cocktails, which I’m told change seasonally, a nice touch.

Come at happy hour and tasty cocktails like the el Diablo or the lychee martini are $8 – not bad. I am a sucker for any drink made with lychee and how can you not try a tequila drink named el Diablo. There is also nice selection of small bites available at happy hour and a food menu that is as innovative as the cocktail menu, so this does not have to be a happy hour only stop.

It wasn’t surprising to find a tasty prosciutto and arugula salad with yuzu dressing, but I did not expect to find such a good version of fried chicken breast on the apps menu. Here it’s called “Tatsuta.” Best bet is to sample happy hour, then dinner on a Monday or Wednesday night, when you can finish with no cover live jazz that starts around 8.

This place is tough to find (look for a small slate sandwich board on the sidewalk out front advertising happy hour) and on some nights when there is no live music it may be a little too quiet for some. But I think it’s worth searching out if you want a place with good music, food, and especially drinks, away from the maddening crowd.

Website: http://http://www.bflat.info/index.html
Phone #: 212-219-2970
Hours: Mo-Wed 5pm-2am; Th-Sat 5pm-3am; no Sun
Happy Hour: 5-7pm every day; $8 cocktails + special prices on apps
Music: Mon/Wed 8pm
Subway: #1 to Franklin; walk E 1 blk to Church; N 1 blk to bFlat

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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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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.”

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

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NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):
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