Flossin’

November 2, 2010

What is it about Sundays that makes me feel like I need to get my life back together…pronto. Wait, I think I know. Maybe it’s because I hang out until 4am on Friday and Saturday nights and wake up Sundays feeling like I duked it out with Iron Mike for 12 rounds. Could be it.

Listen, I brush my teeth twice a day and all that, but flossing seems to be one of the little rituals I engage in to go that extra mile (read: inch) towards being a respectable human being. Just so happens I do it most often on Sundays. That and I do my laundry. And eat a salad for dinner. And maybe even pay my credit card bill. After all that I’m feeling pretty good. So good that I almost forget that I thought it was sweet idea to crush falafel at 3:26 in the morning then walk all the way back to the West Village from Alphabet City because I thought it would be good exercise, not to mention an extra $5.30 in my pocket from saved cab fare. (On a related note, the number of times I’ve woken up on a Sunday with a single $1 dollar bill in my pocket blows my mind).

At least Johnny Cash feels my pain. This is one of my all time favorites from the Man in Black:

“Sunday Morning Coming Down”

Glasser

October 27, 2010

Psyched on Glasser’s new album Ring. Saw her at the Fader Fort during CMJ last week. She can sing her balls off. At one point during her performance, the power went off in the building. Wouldn’t be surprised if she conjured some crazy spirits to make it happen. I’ve never tried acid, but I’m thinking she may have given it a whirl once or twice. Either way, check her out and take a trip.

36 Chambers of Chambers St.

November 4, 2009

It was on Chambers St. of all places, the street that I call home, on which my Wu-Tang knowledge was tested. I had seen this day coming for a while now, I just hadn’t expected it to come in such a drunken verbal delivery. I own a Wu-Tang t-shirt, you see, and given the warm weather last Saturday, I decided to wear it to brunch. I am, it should also be noted, by virtue of my dear mom and dad, a skinny, pasty white dude. On the way home, as me and my group of friends stopped obediently at the crosswalk on Church & Chambers, I overheard someone say, “Watchuknowaboutwutang?” Naturally assuming I was being called out, I searched the crowd for my inquisitor. Standing in front of me was a guy who looked to be in pretty rough shape. He held a brown-bagged brew and as my buddy later noted, the film on his teeth made it look as though he had one big horizontal tooth. He had those funky ass finger nails too.

“What?” I said.

“Watchuknowaboutwutang? Namefivemembasfuhmerighnow.”

The funny thing is, I welcomed the challenge to my fandom. I wanted to prove that despite by goofy white-ness, I have every right to be a fan and wear a sweet t-shirt as the next dude.

So I said, “RZA, GZA, ODB, Masta Killah and U-God. Want me to keep going?” I surprised myself with Masta Killah and even second guessed that he was, in fact, a member. Not just some affiliate like Cappadonna or Killah Priest. But it didn’t matter. Dude was immediately taken aback, looking like he even sobered up for a second.

“Hahathasscoolman. Thasscool. You from the Isle?”

“Nah, not from Staten man, just a fan.”

He then proceeded to tell me that ODB has a new record of unreleased material coming out soon. Which appears to be true. Turns out A Son Unique, which was supposed to be released in 2005, is now set for release next week. I traded info about the new ODB doc that screens in Harlem next Tuesday.

As we neared my apartment, I could tell he wanted to keep talking. But I had to go.

“Okman. MaybeIseeyouaround.”

“Yea man,” I said. “Maybe.”

Then we gave each other dap and went on our separate ways. Wu-Tang forever.

100% American…Apparel

August 13, 2009

picture-18So I walked by my local American Apparel (AA) today on the way to work, and noticed a sign outside saying “Made in the USA.” I think it’s been there for awhile, but today was the first day I noticed. At first I cringed, then chuckled, and finally walked away shaking my head. To me, that sign together with American Apparel epitomes the current set of American values.

Cut corners to make $: American Apparel mass produces low quality clothing for pennies, but in neon colors and see-thru thin fabric, and label and sell them as fashionable and overpriced. I own one white shirt that looked and fit fine before I washed it. Now it looks and feels like a baby’s cloth diaper. If you gave a homeless person American Apparel to stay warm, he/she should probably spit in your face. The thing is, I can’t be the only who realizes this, but people still wait outside the door for these stores to open.

SEX SEX SEX, got your attention now: American Apparel either has the most brilliant marketing strategists or the laziest. All their advertisements consists of young, innocent looking girls barely wearing their wispy clothing posing provocatively. It’s genius. And these girls aren’t your Penthouse, Hustler looking pornstars, but the brown-eyed cute girls living next door who are secretly wearing see-thru bra and panties. Then American Apparel provides an easy way for girls, and guys, to look and feel sexy like their ads. Brilliant or lazy?

Tell me how to dress, how to think: Every few weeks American Apparel updates their window front with new combinations of clothing based on the latest fashion trends. And walking down the street in NYC is basically an imitation of last week’s mannequins. Why put thought into what you’re wearing when they do it completely for you. At AA, you can buy the latest fashionable jeans, jackets, shirts, pants, skirts, socks, shoes, belts, hats, panties, bras, shorts, accessories…I can go on. You can even buy baby clothing. How lazy does a parent have to be to buy baby clothes at AA? This behavior parallel’s the average American’s desire to be spoon-fed everything. Why think about what to wear when someone will do it for you? Why read books when people rehash the facts for you? Why do research on important discussion topics, such as global warming, foreign affairs, economics, health care, when the internet, TV, and newspapers will do it for you?

Anyways, I’m exhausted. This post might be my longest yet. Don’t worry, we’ll hit back with some more of the usual music, art, and culture posts in the future.

BNE

July 28, 2009

A little late to the game, but I recently noticed the prevalence of BNE stickers around the city. Apparently these stickers have covered major cities around the world including Hong Kong, San Fran, and Tokyo. For a better explanation, let’s turn to ABC’s Nancy Weiner:


And I always find Japanese television hilarious, so:

Deathbowl to Downtown

February 7, 2009

I still cannot wait for this to come on DVD. COME ON already.

Arthur Russell

December 10, 2008

arthur-russellSo many artists find more recognition poshumously than they do during their lifetimes. Arthur Russell is one of the more recent additions to this list. A member of New York’s downtown dance and disco scenes in the mid-70s and 80s, Russell was a pioneer in the realms of ambient electronic music and minimal disco. Relatively obscure in his lifetime, Russell collaborated with the likes of David Byrne and Philip Glass before dying of AIDS in 1992. Without his contributions to electronic and dance music, current artists like Erlend Øye, the Rapture and LCD Soundsystem wouldn’t experience nearly the success they enjoy today.

With the recent release of Love Is Overtaking Me, a compilation of unreleased folk and country tracks and the recent biopic Wild Combination: A Portrait of Arthur Russell, Russell’s profile has risen significantly as of late. But it’s his earlier work that is most compelling to me. A great introduction to Arthur Russell is Calling Out of Context, a collection of some of Russell’s best dance tracks. Amazing song below, his voice is so subtle, yet piercing:

“That’s Us/Wild Combination”