March 7, 2014
>>> It’s First Friday, so go ahead and get yer art on.
>>> Or kick off your weekend with OMG FIRESIDE S’MORES AT FIRESIDE CAMP SUPPLY, 6-8PM.
>>> The fun and funk will be unstoppable when Johnny Showcase and The Mystic Ticket take to Connie’s Ric Rac.
>>> Headlong Dance Theater’s First Friday party returns, with Kate Watson-Wallace, DJ Babtoue, and many more.
>>> As you would see if you went digging in those art listings, the Alien She Opening Night music show is going down at Johnny Brenda’s — the art opening is at Vox Populi — with Mannequin Pussy, Trophy Wife, The Pretty Greens, Pushin’ It 2 The Limit, and Avalon Clare of New Radio DJing Between Sets. Oh, and there’s no cover.
>>> And if we’re lucky, that Paul Simon and Sting show (while Art Garfunkel plays the Art Museum) turns into a Simon and Garfunkel show, and Sting has no choice but to go to PMA.
>>> A bunch of local bands are getting ready to make the trek down to Austin for South by Southwest. Join Far Out Fangtooth at The Station, with support from Psychic Teens and Moon Women, and wish them well.
>>> If you’ve got tickets already, enjoy Lorde. If you don’t, you will not be there. Additionally, if you’ve got tickets, enjoy Broken Bells. If not, you will not be there.
>>> In shows you can attend, there’s a full bill at Johnny Brenda’s with sets from Cold Fronts, Cult Fever, Cruiser, and Weekender; and at Milkboy, Peter Matthew Bauer of the Walkmen takes the stage with some other people.
>>> And, yes! Baby, spring them clocks forward! You WILL live again!
>>> Sample the area’s best brews and grub as Fair Food’s Brewers’ Plate returns, this time at the Kimmel Center.
>>> Or, you can pop on in to Boot and Saddle to catch sets from Brooklyn’s Cuddle Magic, our own Birdie Busch, and Rachel Ries.
RECOMMENDED: There’s a lot to be said about stage and screen legend Elaine Stritch. That’s probably why the documentary about her life and career, Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me, was made. Over her 89 years, Stritch has cemented her reputation as a ballsy, powerful woman who does and says whatever she wants. And if you’re wondering if this is a woman worth spending 81 minutes getting to know, just remind yourself that she recently said “fuck” right in Kathie Lee’s face. Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me opens today at Ritz at the Bourse.
ALSO NEW IN THEATERS: Mr. Peabody & Sherman, which we swear has been advertised for like four months now; 300: Rise of an Empire, in case you didn’t hate it the first time around, they promise they’ll do it this time; and Bag Man, in which someone asked John Cusack and Robert DeNiro, “Yeah, but how much do we really need to pay you to make a movie?” at AMC Neshaminy.
For more recommendations on films currently in theaters, visit Philebrity’s Film Sweat archive. And click here for movie times. Need repertory film? Try Cinedelphia.
We could use this screengrab for so many things.
Daniel Muessig is a Temple Grad and defense lawyer based in Pittsburgh. He is also formerly (but also, currently) a rapper known as Dos Noun who is behind an ad for his criminal defense business that is causing a bit of a stir online. The dramatization-filled ad shows actors playing criminals, who in the midst of committing crimes, look at the camera and say “Thanks, Dan,” in response to Muessig getting them off of their charges.
It serves it’s purpose (since we are talking about it), and someone’s gotta defend people no matter what they’ve done, so at least he’s being honest and having some fun with it. Muessig spoke to Noisey about the ad and his rapping, where he was asked about his commerical’s pro-criminal stance:
I wouldn’t call my approach pro-criminal per se… I would deem it be realistic in terms of who I am trying to speak with and what my potential client would need. That said, I came to it because I saw there was a dearth of criminal defense attorneys who understood what their client would actually be looking for and needing in an attorney.”
Makes sense to us, and if we ever needed a guy in his position, there are worst places to go than a battle-rapping viral-video maker.
Get out there and look at some goddamn art, will ya? It’s not early as nice as it’s gonna be tomorrow, but it’s a lot nicer than it’s been for much of this winter. Shake it off, walk around, and take it all in.
The second hour of yesterday’s Radio Times on WHYY was a real treat: Linguist Mark Liberman and speech coach Joanne Joella joined host Marty Moss-Coane for what quickly became a blistering scientific takedown of pretty much every speech tic that drives you up a wall. Thrill as vocal fry and upspeak are cataloged and prodded at great length! (Using Shoshanna from Girls, natch!) Listen on in amazement as Joella decries hoagiemouth as “the most heinous accent in the business!” And fumph (yes, fumph) in sad recognition as both surmise that, recent reports to the contrary, hoagiemouth isn’t going anywhere.
Previously: Today In Hoagiemouth: Not Bad, Nick Kroll
What a week it has been for your (impressive, bearded, salty) Captain Freeshit: First, dude laid some Nick Cave/Kurt Vile at the Mann on you. Then, it was Morrissey at Revel. (Both of those contests are still open, by the way.) And now, we conclude this week by giving away a whole bunch of passes to see The Grand Budapest Hotel, the new one from Wes Anderson, based on the writings of Stefan Zweig. We have seen this in its entirety — full review here next week — and suffice it to say, it’s a beauty, and features pretty much every Wes Anderson trope and weirdo actor you could ever hope for, and more. And next Tuesday evening (March 11), we’d like you to check it out with us. Would you like that? To enter to win tickets, email ihopeiwin[at]philebrity[dot]com with “I KNOW YOU, ASSHOLE!” in the subject header. You’ll automatically be subscribed to the forthcoming new Philebrity Reader weekly newsletter and win chances for other exclusive free stuff. (Pardon the profane subject header, we just wanna see what an inbox full of that looks like.) We’ll pick winners first thing Monday morning. Bon chance!
Nevertheless, SheriffRosco is here to help you suss out all (some, maybe) of your Philly Sheriff’s Sale needs. Just don’t go complaining to Rosco when the whole thing goes tits up because the Philadelphia Sheriff’s Office is a banana republic where its own wild logic and mores obey the laws of no man.
Two stories broke this week that made us want to don ghost costumes and shackles, hop on the Broad Street line and stand on Passyunk Avenue, intoning, “OHHHH SOUTH PHILLY, I AM THE GHOST OF BROLIBS PRESENT, WITH A MESSAGE FROM THE FUUUTURE: Be careful what you wish for. For you may get it!”
At issue: Two projects pulled straight from the fever dreams of Bart Blatstein — one literal, one figurative. The first of these concerns what is now the tumbleweave lot at Broad and Washington, which has been a subject of discussion for some time. After some rumblings that it might could be, in the short term, an urban flea of sorts, Blatstein’s long-term wishes for the property were made evident this week: He wants it to be a grocery store/movie theater/retail multiplex. Like so:
To which we say: That NoLibs SuperFresh, sure, but also: The UA Riverview. Which is to say, this could really go either way. Meanwhile, HEY SOUTH PHILLY! You’re getting your own Piazza!
That would be the East Passyunk Gateway, opening next fall, right around Broad and Passyunk. (Hey, do you wonder if these people know these people?) This Gateway thing actually looks pretty great — and yes, we’d never complain about having another movie theater or supermarket in town. (Who are we kidding, of course we would, this is the essence of the Philadelphia being.) But surveying both at once, can you blame us if we worry that the douche chill that ate NoLibs could cast its pall over South Philly/East Passyunk, whose redevelopment up until now has been a lesson in doing this stuff right? OK, go ahead and blame us. You’ll see.
You are familiar with this (fundamentally flawed, but that is a discussion for another time) worldview: The enemy of my enemy is my friend. And it could be said that the comments section of Philly.com — actually, that’s not fair to the act of commenting, so let’s say the ridiculous mouth-breathers who populate the comments section of Philly.com — is the enemy of all mankind. For it is here where racists and homophobes retreat daily to chew on their filthy gristle; it is here where one can witness daily the mass Baby Boomer psychosis that plays out in the guise of Tea Party talking points; here, here, here is the full ugliness of humanity on display, benefiting no one, just spilling more hatred out into the world like an undersea oil leak that cannot be stopped.
So if the Philly.com comments section is the enemy of man himself, who is the enemy of the Philly.com comments section? Funny you should ask: Turns out, it’s electricians union leader John Dougherty, known better to the people of Philadelphia as Johnny Doc (pictured). Doc (he’s not a real doctor) is in the process of suing a Philly.com commenter for defamation; because this is the nature of modern cowardice, of course that commenter has been anonymous up until now. However, this week, a judge ordered that Philly.com hand over his identity so that the case may proceed. And though this is a new-ish law, it is the law, which gets to the heart of nature of toxic anonymous comment on the Internet: It turns out, this is a nice thing that people just can’t handle. And it would seem that Philly.com is no position to balk: One, they’ve got problems of their own to deal with right now, and two, the suit could go a long way into cleaning up their comments section, which has long been an issue (and likely cause of PTSD) for all who toil there. And in case you are wondering, if we here at Philebrity are ever subpoenaed for your commenter info, we will hand it over quicker than you can say “LULZ.” After all, when it comes to these matters, we strongly adhere to an office-wide dictum: What kind of asshole comments on a blog?
Michelle Sheffer of the Free Library gets her game face on with that guy from the TV.
When the news came last year that Philadelphia’s venerable Rosenbach Museum & Library – you know, the place where they keep the original manuscript for James Joyce’s Ulysesses, all of Maurice Sendak’s papers and the love letters of Greta Garbo — would be merging with the Free Library of Philadelphia, anyone could have told you: Here, then, were the makings of a world class nerd rivalry. In one corner, you have the mighty librarians and other brainiacs who power one of the largest city library systems in America; in the other, you have the academics that preserve and protect what is basically the literary version of the Ark of the Covenant.
And in an unlikely (but OMG so perfect) twist of fate, that new rivalry will play out very soon… on the television screens of America! “Within weeks we’ve discovered that our institutions are sympatico in ways not immediately obvious,” Alice Emerson at the Rosenbach told us. “We each have a recent Jeopardy contender in our employ!” It’s true: Michelle Sheffer (senior writer and editor at the FLP Foundation, pictured above) and Kathy Haas (assistant curator at the Rosenbach) have each recently filmed episodes as Jeopardy contestants. Neither show has aired yet; Sheffer is up first, with an air date of March 10th, with Haas appearing on June 6th. Neither contestant is allowed to say how they did, but if Haas wins, it’ll make for a banner spring: her most recent curated exhibition, “Networking Before the Net: Sharing Information in the Pre-Digital Age,” just opened.
March 6, 2014
>>> Like the season finale of True Detective, everything that is happening tonight has been hinted at before: TJ Kong and the Atomic Bomb takes the stage at Kungfu Necktie with Purples and Ron Gallo; and over at Underground Arts, it’s Communion time again, with Bear’s Den, Pearl And The Beard, Vacationer, Worshyper, Drone Ranger, Dustin Tebbutt, and The Ghost in You.
>>> Additionally, if you’re really in the mood for a good old fashioned Skeeve-Out: Robin Thicke is playing in Camden. But really, just watch that video above, and realize that song is better than anything the Junior Thicke has ever done.
Yesterday, the United States Department of Justice filed suit in U.S. District Court against the School District of Philadelphia for religious discrimination because they “[demanded] that a veteran Muslim police officer trim his beard.” The current rule — under the district’s 2010 grooming policy — states beards on police and security officers can be no longer than one-quarter of an inch, a length likely known to the Philadelphia Beard and Mustache Club as “you call that a beard?“.
The man whose beard is causing so much trouble is Siddiq Abu-Bakr, a 27-year veteran of the district who keeps an untrimmed beard in adherence to his Islamic faith. Abu-Bakr told his supervisor that he could not cut his beard, and was issued a written reprimand in response. In response to that, Abu-Bakr got in touch with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and now the lawsuit, which was filed by the government, is “seeking an injunction that would force the district to develop new, non-discriminatory grooming policies.” We suggest everyone who sides with Abu-Bakr here starts growing their solidarity beard right now. Just focus on it, it’ll come in.
I’m not sure what I expected. I guess I was thinking I’d come here, watch a little bit, and then just head out — either with nothing in my mind or some great, Rick-Reilly-before-he-was-terrible kinda musing on life and the game. But there I was, a single empty bottle of Labatt Blue in my hands, neck jerking left and right and back again like someone watching a tennis match that is actually happening very slowly. At one point I actually thought, “Man, maybe I should go buy that cowbell in the lobby.” But I didn’t, and as one particularly well-thrown stone came to its final, perfect resting place in the house, I let out an audible, Dice Clay-ian, “OH!” I wasn’t the only one.
Meet us after the jump, as our own Jim Adair talks more about curling than he thought he ever would. (more…)
The Inky broke the news yesterday that the Wilma Theater, ever mindful of the widening gap between what they used to call the “high arts” and, well, everyone else, is seeing fit to reduce the bulk of its tickets to around 25 bucks, for the forseeable future. How do they do it? Rich guys! Philanthropist/actor Leonard Haas, through his Wyncote Foundations, will subsidize reduced ticket prices with a $750,000 grant doled out over three years. Will that be enough time to make a new generation of devout theatergoers? Maybe, maybe not. But either way, this is a cool and classy move in a week where Philly’s theater community could really use one (see below).
Previously: Lantern Theater Company Goes Out For Julius Caesar But Comes Home With, Er, Asian-Fusion Tempest?
So there you have it: The world is not totally made of shit. Have you got some good news? If so, send it to tips[at]philebrity[dot]com with “GOOD MOTHERFUCKING NEWS!” in the subject header — we’d love to hear about it.
Click to enlarge.
Yesterday, Mayor Michael Nutter broke ground on the long-in-coming Delaware Avenue Extension Project, an ambitious effort (as you can see above) with lots of tentacles to it. All told, the City will be extending Delaware Avenue from Lewis Street to Orthodox Street, building a new bridge, the construction of a shared bicycle/pedestrian path, new sewers and water mains, street lighting, and landscaping. “We are literally building a new road here; we are forging a path that has never been travelled,” Nutter said yesterday. “The road will reduce the volume of truck traffic on residential streets, relieve overall congestion in the neighborhood and provide a vital link in the City’s bicycle and trail network.” All good things. But perhaps what we love about this the most is that this is Delaware Avenue’s sweet revenge on the preposterous creation that is “Columbus Boulevard.” Which, if you grew up here, was, is, and always will be Delaware Avenue. With the growing of Del. Ave. to the north, a further primacy is restored to this most majestic of Philadelphia streets — indeed, it is our beachfront, and the sooner we both restore all of Delaware Avenue and extend it wherever possible, the better and stronger this city will be. Yesterday, we got that much closer to righting a critical wrong.
Here at Philebrity, we basically invented the Steve Keeley beat. Among our media colleagues, it was we who first noticed this magical orange Ron Burgundy edition of the finest The Lollipop Kids ever had to offer. And ‘lo, it has been good. So you can imagine the strange form of pride we felt when Keeley went viral earlier this week after defying death by snow plow. (It was also a smaller, more perverse form of pride to learn that ex-Philadelphia Will Do blogger Dan McQuade now receives editorial credit for making animated GIFs; reach for the stars, y’all.)
But never have we presumed any sort of ownership or even editorial authority over the man that became the meme this week; indeed, all along, the real joy in covering Keeley has been the shared sense of incredulity. But nothing could have prepared us for the moment when even NPR began to cover Steve Keeley. Part of our fascination with The Orange Snow Cone in the first place was his only-in-Philadelphia-ness. But now, as the world begins to get to know Keeley, we must ask the question: Is America ready for this guy? If Keeley uses his moment to bump himself up a few rungs and lands on some sort of national broadcast, is this a good thing or a bad thing? And if we, as Philadelphia, can no longer have Steve Keeley to ourselves, what will we have instead? Whatever it is, it will probably be boring. So please, America, if you are reading this, let us keep Steve Keeley. We never even knew we needed him until just now.
As we enter the Lenten season and the Mayfair Swiss Cheese Pervert continues to flaunt convention/perhaps show us all a better way (overpopulation being what it is and all), it may be prudent to consider the metaphysical ramifications of this. For in the Kingdom of God, there are no accidents.
March 5, 2014
>>> You like new things. right? Who doesn’t like new things? Well, tonight is the start of a brand-new comedy open mic at Growlers Bar, featuring Free For All hosts Aaron Hertzog & Alison Zeidman, $1 drafts during performances, and no cover or drink minimum. It’s almost like it was organized to guarantee a good time, who would have thought of that?
>>> Also in no covers, FEVER returns to The Dolphin, spinning all of that great 60s Soul, Psych, Garage, Rock & Roll, and more. Plus, you can totally go and bust a move without having to wear your snow boots. Isn’t that a nice feeling? You’ll still need that coat thought.
>>> And at Johnny Brenda’s, that Auctioneer show we mentioned earlier — featuring support from Fenster and Hello Shark — isn’t to be missed.
Yes Larry, that sounds about right.
This video promo produced by Old City’s Tweed Video for The Fabulous International Art Extravaganza took us straight back to the days when local men shouted at you on television not out of irony but because they believed that their message of retail discount really was just that important. Sigh. The Fabulous International Art Extravaganza, by the way, is this thing that’s happening on March 15th at 26 Bridge St. in Lambertville, NJ; the deal is, you email your photos to PRINTS@TWEEDVIDEO.COM, they print them out giant and suitable for framing and then pick them up at this crazy party/show/swap meet/”art” hang. It’s a happening in the grand old tradition of people from New Hope/Lambertville doing things like this because living in New Hope/Lambertville, while nice, has also driven them batshit crazy.