November 21, 2014

This Weekend: Philly ’63 Revisited


>>> As we tipped you off about back in September, Bob Dylan will be making up all weekend long at the Academy of Music for his failure to play Center City for the 50 years that have passed since the above video originally aired.

>>> Moon Hooch, the totally insane fusion ensemble that skyrocketed in no time from a Brooklyn subway station to a tour with They Might Be Giants, will be getting holy and modal at The Abbey Bar.

>>> The Wytches, who, unlike way too many other bands, have actually earned the right to a band name that sounds like a random pull from the Nurse With Wound list, will be at Boot & Saddle with Drone Ranger and Dirt Queen.


>>> For the second of six weekends this season, the Franklin Flea Holiday Market at the old Strawbridge’s space will be accepting and offering their promised “Vintage. Handmades. Great Food.”

>>> Freeshit winners and losers and ignorers alike are welcome to run face-first into the wall of sound that is Natural Child at Underground Arts with Dirty Fences and Killer Bangs.

>>> SO FAR it looks like the Interpol show at Union Transfer is still on, so until we hear otherwise we’re picking it, but over the past few nights, they ain’t been goin’ to the town or the city, so plan accordingly.

>>> All of you who were too stubborn to see The Replacements without Bob Stinson can still check out one-time Tommy Stinson backing band The Figgs with It’s a King Thing at Boot & Saddle guilt free.


>>> Despite the fact that it’s sponsored by Gore-Tex, the Philadelphia Marathon, or CITY OF BROTHERLY RUN & SISTERLY ENDURANCE, is nothing to sneeze at. Especially while running. Keep that breath steady.

>>> The Allah-Lahs, whose music expresses a hip delight in pun and pastiche even more than their name does, will be at Boot & Saddle with Tashaki Miyaki, Residuels.

>>> The Huffamoose show at the Ardmore Music Hall we plugged earlier also includes The Fractals, Ben Arnold, and Jim Boggia.

Film Sweat: Being John du Pont

RECOMMENDED: The intersection of two trails successfully blazed off the beaten path, star Steve Carell‘s from The Daily Show to Despicable Me and director Bennet Miller‘s from The Cruise to Moneyball, is, unsurprisingly, Philadelphia. Foxcatcher is the story of John du Pont, Philadelphia-born millionaire philanthropist, natural scientist, and heir to the du Pont chemical fortune, and his foray into wrestling that ended in 1996 with his senseless murder of Olympic freestyle wresting champion Dave Schultz, played in the film by Mark Ruffalo. Carell’s performance as the notoriously alienated and eccentric du Pont is already generating Oscar buzz, and critics are saying that whether or not he wins, Carell will be getting attention as a dramatic actor that he has never received before. Channing Tatum also stars as Mark Schultz, brother and fellow olympiad of Dave Schultz.


The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1, which you should know about by now, The Better Angels, the black-and-white period drama about Abraham Lincoln that is produced but somehow not directed by Terrence Malick, The Homesman, the Tommy Lee Jones movie to end all Tommy Lee Jones movies, and Keep On Keepin’ On a documentary about jazz trumpeter Clark Terry’s mentorship of a young blind pianist.

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.

Obsession Of The Moment: Funeral For A Home, The Book


Earlier this year, Tyler School of Art’s Temple Contemporary staged an art project/event called Funeral For A Home which was a loving (if melancholy) meditation on the nature of blight. Aided by artists Steven and Billy Dufala, the project worked with community members in Mantua to tell the story, from “birth” to demise, of a property at 3711 Melon Street, capped off by a proper “funeral”-type event. At the heart of the project was a mournful telling of numbers and realities that, in their own way, are nearly as difficult to process as a human death: At the turn of the 20th Century, Philly was building ten new rowhomes per day — today, the City tears down 600 per year. And though in recent years, both historical preservation and gentrification in various neighborhoods has saved an untold number of homes from blight, efforts like that have yet to come to neighborhoods like Mantua, which are as rich (if not richer) in history than anywhere else.

As a lasting document of the project, Funeral For A Home, the book, tells this story and more. Collecting archival materials, original artwork, lots of history, and essays by those close to the project, it is a deeply mournful art book that is both completely unique on the art level while also being necessary reading for any Philly history geek. And we can’t stop looking at it. We were lucky enough to snag a copy at Brickbat Books, but it’s also available directly from Temple Contemporary, for $15 with $3 for shipping/handling, in person at the gallery or ordered from Temple Contemporary, Tyler School of Art, 2001 North 13th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19122. To order a copy, call 215-777-9138 or email us robert.blackson[at]


Scope This Mixtape: DJ Apt One’s 90 Minutes Of Sweet Italo-Electro-Disco Open Shirt & Sunglasses Music

Back in October, Philly DJ and sometimes Philebrity contributor DJ Apt One was asked to participate in WKDU’s annual Electronic Music Marathon, which is both a fundraiser for the station as well as a tribute to the vast history (and ever-present future) of electronic music — a genre to which WKDU in particular has a deep, decades-long devotion to. For his part, Apt One delved into a funky little corner of the electronic music story referred to as Italo — for the uninitiated, that’s the stuff that’s disco-y but also very synthy, kind of like the soundtrack music in Scarface; it is delightfully scuzzy, weird, funny and oddly compelling stuff. Above, DJ Apt One lays down 90 minutes of the stuff and luckily, the WKDU folks captured it and put it up on Soundcloud. A better Friday afternoon vibe we cannot think of. Click through for a track listing should your interest be piqued.

Philadelphia Has Already Planned Its Response To The Announcement Of The Grand Jury Decision On Darren Wilson

The grand jury decision on whether or not to indict Darren Wilson for the shooting of Michael Brown could be announced today, and groups in Philadelphia — more than twenty — are planning to protest, whichever way it goes. Police commissioner Charles Ramsay is already aware of and prepared for the protests, which will include gatherings at City Hall, Cecil B. Moore Avenue and Broad Street and the Unitarian Universalist Church of the Restoration. The discussion leading up to the decision has been impassioned to say the least, but Ramsay and activist Daryle Lamont Jenkins of both anticipate that the protests will be civil. “The majority of people who are concerned about what is going on there, simply want to excercise their first amendment rights,” says Ramsay, “and our job is to see to it that they have the ability to do so in a very peaceful way.”


All Apologists: Temple Will Keep Bill Cosby On As Trustee

Maybe they were swayed by this horseshit daily news op-ed, maybe they’re just spineless in their own rights, but numerous representatives of the Temple University Board of Trustees have stated that they would be unwilling to move to remove Bill Cosby from their ranks. Quotes like “I personally do not have enough information to conclude that a decision to change things would be appropriate,” and “They are just allegations. There’s nothing proven. There are no charges made,” are par for the course for those whose comments inspired this sick burn from The Onion.

This kind of argument is, obviously, not new or unique. Bill is “Innocent until proven guilty,” as everyone says who has no idea what that quote really means to our society. Due process is a right worth defending, but while it’s often an awful truth that institutions of higher education don’t have to follow the same rules as US courts of law, in this case, it should be a relief. Cosby is not being robbed of the right to due process. No one’s thrown him in jail. But there’s no law or convention that states that if everyone is pretty sure you did some really fucked up shit, you get to keep everything you have until someone can prove it.

Here Is A Video That’s Supposed To Be About Raising Minimum Wage But Is Really About Ori Feibush’s Own Self-Regard

This guy. It’s like, yeah, Kenyatta stands squarely in a pile of doo-doo, and yeah, Ori’s not wrong about the minimum wage thing, it’s just…


BBC Spreads Teachings Of Philly Jesus

Philly Jesus/PJ/Michael Grant/Opal Weaver can’t walk on water, but his message can cross the Atlantic. PJ’s popularity has been growing steadily over the past months, but since his arrest for soliciting in LOVE Park and the emergence of the #FreePhillyJesus hashtag, his fame has reached a new level. This segment on BBC News is just one indication that Mike is on his way to becoming an international symbol of peace and love, along with a number of other bearded guys with long hair.

Craig Elkins Looks Back On Huffamoose Days Before Upcoming Reunion Show

We’ve always had a soft spot for Huffamoose here on Philebrity, and only partially because of our larger soft spot for all things 90s rock. That’s why we were particularly moved by this guest post for CityPaper from Huffamoose frontman Craig Elkins about the Huffamoose reunion show this Sunday at Ardmore Music Hall. With a charming blend of disaffected wit and humble wisdom, Elkins remembers a last gasp of carefree partying that the millennium finally stifled. Jazzed about the chance to relive a good time, but just as jazzed to be programming websites and jamming on “Jessie’s Girl” with his daughter, Craig seems to have exactly the right attitude about reuniting with the band that defined his youth. We can only hope to be so present-minded at 52.

November 20, 2014

This Evening: Mo’ Betta Movember

photo (11)

>>> Are you Movember-ing? Well, if so, get into the spirit at Bourbon & Beards at Jerry’s Bar tonight. There will be the raising of money for a good cause, the judging of beards, and of course, bourbon. DJ Bearbait (aka Chris Ward) spins.

Lynne Abraham & Tony Williams Both Thought It Was OK To Launch Campaigns Without Websites, Social Media And Platforms

Guys, really? C’mon.

As the field finally officially populates for the absolute shitshow that is going to be the 2015 Mayoral Race in Philadelphia, predictable stump speech topics for all candidates will be issues such as the city’s vibrant tech scene, and how the candidates themselves will invariably claim to strive towards both transparency and accessibility. And yet, with two of the race’s perceived heavy hitters “officially” joining the race over the last 24 hours, we were a but surprised to find that, at this moment, if you want to find out what either Lynne Abraham or Tony Williams want their campaigns to be about, you’re going to have to hope to run into them on the street. And even that is a crap shoot: Abraham’s launch event was more a study in absurdity than anything else, and Williams’ opening shot was a fully Seinfeld-ian dose of, well, nothing.

So of course, at some point — preferably upon launch — you’re going to want to go online and find out, straight from the candidates, what they’re about: Their platforms, their interests, their hopes and dreams, pictures of themselves Photoshopped next to people they have not actually met. Well, good luck with that. To the best of our knowledge, there is currently no Facebook profile, no Twitter feed, and no standalone website for either Abraham or Williams’ respective campaigns for Mayor. (Williams has a website and Twitter feed that speak to his constituents as state senator, but nothing else, and neither of those mention his mayoral campaign. And though it appears that has been registered, the Who-Is query tracks back to nothing/no one immediately traceable to Abraham herself.) Meanwhile, the perceived underdogs among the thus far declared, Terry Gillen and Ken Trujillo, would seem to have their online ducks in a row and show awareness that in 2014, this is important. One can only surmise that in the antiquated time and space where Abraham and Williams are running — let’s call it Nineteen Hundred-And-Philly Shrug — being online isn’t.

Update: Well, will wonders never cease: Say hi to the brand spankin’ new @LynneForMayor and @JoinTeamTony, each with websites to match. If you guys could handle this, something tells us you’ll do great at… well, let’s not get ahead of ourselves here.

Got $389K And A Fine Sense Of Humor? Then The Most South Philly-Lookin’ House Of All Time Could Indeed Be Yours

You really kinda have to see this one to believe it.

Watch This Video Of Lion Cubs Being Reunited With Their Lion Dad At The Philly Zoo And OMG

Here’s lion dude Makini joining lion lady Tajiri and their cubs over at the Zoo, you know, just chillin’, thinking about maybe having some GoGurt later.

Captain Freeshit: Win Tickets To See Natural Child On Saturday Night At Underground Arts!

In this great little neo-grungy micro-era of Ty Segalls and King Tuffs, it must be said here that Natural Child is our favorite of the bunch. It might be that Nashville twang, it might be that beneath it all there’s a great, classicist pop sensibility here, or it might just be that maybe these guys give the least shits of all of the gang thus instantly becoming the most lovable. Whatever it is, they’re a goddamned American treasure and we hope that they become the new Grateful Dead and do what they’re doing now straight into their 60s. Natty Chile is in Philly on Saturday night at Underground Arts, and it’s pretty much a guarantee that this is gonna be a real cool time. And you deserve a break today. So you know the deal: To enter to win tickets, email ihopeiwin[at]philebrity[dot]com with “NATTY YO!” 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. In the meantime, check out their latest record above and accept it as a digital hug from us to you.

Don’t Orb Me, Bro! Say No To “Urban Experiential Displays” In Philadelphia

Urban Experiential Display from RASHSEAG on Vimeo.

Last week, City Council heard some legislation regarding the installation of three “Urban Experiential Displays” in Center City. If you don’t know what that is, that’s because that name is basically designed to confuse you and hide the fact that what it is is a giant glowing edifice that is actually just a billboard. Some pie charts appear partway through this video that supposedly break down why these things aren’t billboards, but they show their hand when they try to differentiate between “advertising” and “infotainment.” The narrator describes “UEDs” as “the convergence of art, architecture and advertising,” but here’s the thing: advertising doesn’t “converge” with art, it just kills it, eats it, and shits it out.

PSA/Dept. Of Dawwwwww: There Is No Part Of You That Doesn’t Want Foal-Sit This Winter

sitting1Over at Penn Vet’s new Bolton Center, they’re getting ready for the season. Not the holiday season, silly! It’s nearly FOAL SEASON, when mares (lady horsies) squeeze out foals (puppy horses). This happens from January through June, and Bolton Center could use your help. And I mean, LOOKIT! “Possible duties for foal sitters include: holding foals upright when they are lying down, assisting staff as they stand and turn foals, milking mares and storing the milk, monitoring equipment for alarms, changing bedding, restocking treatment areas, and cleaning equipment and hospital areas.”DAWWWWWWWWW. If you’re interested in taking on some shifts, click on the link above, which has more info and email contact. OMG.


3 Uncomfortable Facts About The Radical Right Wing Extremist Group That’s Bringing The Pope To Philly

Everybody’s pretty excited about the fact that the Pope is coming to Philly. We can’t lie, we were all about throwing a Pope party — at first. Then we did a little digging into the World Meeting of Families, and, well, Jesus Christ:

1. The website for the 2015 WMF Program provides lesson plans for “preparatory catechesis” for elementary and high school classes that “Define family as a man and a woman united in marriage and their children.”

2. In the runup to the event, Pope Francis, the Pope we once lovingly deemed the Cool Pope, is now backtracking on his LGBT-friendly comments in an attempt to shore up his support from the conservative Catholic base.

3. The official host of the event is Archbishop Charles J. Chaput. Enough said.

November 19, 2014

This Evening: Favorite Sons

>>> As noted below, tonight’s the release party for Nic Esposito’s Kensington Homestead at Johnny Brenda’s.

>>> Meanwhile, one of Philly’s favorite sons of comedy (as-yet-undisgraced division), Chip Chantry headlines at Helium.

>>> Elsewhere, for those roots-rockers among you locked outta the sold-out Ryan Adams show tonight, there’s other great choices: Bobby Bare Jr. checks in to Milkboy, and Chris Smither plays World Cafe Live.

This Moment In UGH PENN KIDS: “Dual-Chamber Shot Glass” “Inspired” After Watching Jimmy Kimmel Live

Vodka Snapshotr

Guys, this is some piece of shit called “The Snapshotr.” It’s a piece of shit. And this is its shitty origin story:

The inventors, two childhood friends, graduated in May 2014, one as a physics major from Colgate University, and the other as a communications major from the University of Pennsylvania. Their invention was sparked by Kimmel after watching him drink a shot of hand sanitizer with John Cusack back in an April 2012 airing of Jimmy Kimmel Live.

“It took Kimmel fourteen perilous seconds to find a chaser for the hand sanitizer. Nobody should have to experience that,” says Andrew Levin, co-founder of the startup. The YouTube video released in late October demonstrating the Snapshotr, has already garnered nearly 400,000 views.

Nice work, guys. Please go away now.

Lynne Abraham’s Umpteenth Mayoral Announcement Included Rocky, Frank Rizzo, Julius Caesar, Mummers

Because it’s only fitting that the Queen of Death/Philly political dinosaur would make her Special Day all about AN IDEA-LESS VOID WHERE ONLY DEAD THINGS LURK. From our bud Brian Hickey on the Tweet machine:

This is pretty much the only post you’ll ever need to read about this. But alas, we will make more. Fuck. This fuckin’ city, man.