August 27, 2015

This Weekend: Get Closer


>>> Meg Baird is at Johnny Brenda’s tonight, so yeah, this is pretty much a must-do. Joining her for an evening of music that will help heal your late-summer weary soul will be Samara Lubelski and Mary Lattimore. God, could it just be showtime already?

>>> Over at Tattooed Mom, there will be an End of Summer Reading of fiction and poetry that will include Scottish author Helen McClory (whose in town to promote her new book, On the Edges of Vision), as well as Philly’s own Asali Solomon, P.E. Garcia, Ras Mashramani, and Jasmine Combs. Let their words wash over you.

>>> Safety Not Guaranteed is tonight’s free movie at the Schuylkill Banks, and it’s a good one.

>>> The Led Zeppelin tribute act ZOSO plays the TLA. And it makes me wonder…


>>> Raiders of the Lost Ark is this week’s midnight movie at the Ritz at the Bourse. When was the last time you checked it out? The flick is still PERFECT.

>>> Yo La Tengo is doing a free WXPN concert. Why wouldn’t you go to this? Oh work? Blow it off. RSVP here.

>>> As we mentioned earlier today, it’s Michael Jackson Night at the Blue Cross RiverRink. Insert “Don’t Stop Til You Get Enough” joke here.

>>> Brucccceeeee! BRUUUUUCCCCCCEEEE! Bruce in the U.S.A. is at the Keswick for all of your tribute band needs.

>>> Underground Arts has Earth, Holy Sons, and A DJ set from Sean from Pissed Jeans, which is about as diverse of a lineup as we could hope for.

>>> CUTE BAND ALERT: London’s Life in Film bring their jaunty If This Were 1995 These Dudes Would Be Massive jams to Milkboy.


>>> Screaming Females bring their ferocity and general wonderfulness to Union Transfer.

>>> Reggae In The Park Presents: The Catch A Fire Tour at The Mann. Features Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley, Stephen “Ragga” Marley, Morgan Heritage, Tarrus Riley and endless vibes.

>>> The Sun Ra Arkestra is playing a free gig as part of the 40th Street Summer Series.


>>> Pro tip: Avoid all the mega comic cons and head to South Jersey for Comics Here Under A Dollar, the annual back issue bonanza in which, you guessed it, every book on sale costs a buck or less.

>>> The spirit of the ’90s is alive at the Rotunda, where the Philly Zine Fest will feature DIY creations dedicated to everything from riot grrls to 120 Minutes.

R.I.P. Sixers Legend Darryl Dawkins

We’re saddened to learn of the passing of larger-than-life former 76ers great Darryl Dawkins at the age of 58. During his 14-year NBA career — with 1975-1982 spent with the Sixers — Dawkins became best known for his peerless dunking skills — ones with a tendency towards breaking backboards caused the NBA to ban the stunt. Nicknamed “Chocolate Thunder,” Dawkins retired from the NBA in 1989, although he spent the rest of his life affiliated with the sport in one capacity or another (including a stint in the Harlem Globetrotters). He leaves behind a wife, three children, and countless fans who realize we won’t see the likes of him on the court again.

Film Sweat: There She Is, Mistress America

RECOMMENDED: Mistress America once again has writer/director Noah Baumbach and co-writer/star Greta Gerwig revisiting themes initially explored in their 2012 gem Frances Ha. This time around, Gerwig is a free-spirit whose befriending of her soon-to-be stepsister (Lola Kirke) makes both of the women take stock of what’s going on in their lives. Being a Baumbach jam, the film is can be goofy and surprisingly impactful…which is exactly what you keep coming back for.

ALSO NEW IN THEATERS THIS WEEK: No Escape is a ripped from the headlines thriller with a very serious Owen Wilson, so in other words, a hard pass. With Lake Bell (who is terrific in Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp), Pierce Brosnan; Digging For Fire explores adulthood ennui in the latest from director Joe Swanberg. Jake Johnson, Rosemarie DeWitt star; and Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet is a beautifully animated tale based on the novel from the acclaimed Lebanese writer that chronicles the attempts by an exiled writer, his housekeeper, and his daughter to return home. Features music by Glen Hansard and Damien Rice.

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.


Dept. Of Dreams Never End: Philly Shoegazers The Morelings Cover New Order

Earlier this month, The Blog That Celebrates Itself released Dreams Never End: A Tribute to New Order that features a variety of contemporary shoegaze, nugaze and dream pop acts. Amongst the bands included are Philly’s very own The Morelings, who present their swirling, magnificent take on Thieves Like Us‘ “Lonesome Tonight.” You can hear the results above but be warned, you’ll never settle for the original version again.

Let’s Check Back In With Jayson Musson’s Jamel, The Time Traveling B-Boy Webseries

Fresh off of a Buzzfeed profile (congratulations?) Jayson Musson has returned with the just-released third installment of his hilarious webseries The Adventures of Jamel: The Time-Traveling B-Boy. This time around, James III‘s temporal logic-defying character encounters brutality at the hands of Spain’s King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella I, and accidentally prevents Christopher Columbus from “discovering” America. See, this is exactly why Doc Brown wanted the DeLorean destroyed in Back to the Future Part III. Time travel is way too unpredictable.


And Now, Today’s GOOD NEWS: You Can Uber Yourself A Puppy Play Date Today And Help The SPCA

It’s the last Thursday in August and you have already emotionally checked out of your job, humming “Echo Beach” to yourself and trying to figure out how to squeeze one final adventure into your summer before we are collectively forced to crash into the bleak, cool days ahead. So you may as well do something positive with your time — like PLAYING WITH A PUPPY. Today until 3pm, Philly Uber users can arrange for a puppy to be delivered to their office for a 15-minute playdate. (We call dibs on any French bulldogs). The cost of this animal therapy? A mere $20, with all of the proceeds benefiting the Pennsylvania SPCA. Unfortunately, the deal is for today only in the Center City area, so if that’s where your workplace is, get it on the belly-rubbing, snuggling action. Full details can be found here. D’awwwww.

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.

Noontime Nuggetz: Van Halen Hit The Spectrum In This 1981 Radio Ad

While we neither no nor care what the Van Halen lineup of 2015 that is playing the Susquehanna Bank Center tonight is like, we will admit to enjoying a few of their classic songs — featured in the above radio ad for a 1981 show the band did at the Spectrum. (Can you even comprehend the Heavy Metal Parking Lot tailgating scene that concert must have been?) As for the Tom Petty/Split Enz show referenced at the end of the commercial, there is nothing we would rather do than be at that right now.

Today’s Moment Of Philly Zen: The Ashley Madison Hack Comes To The University Of Pennsylvania

Penn people. Deep down they’re just like the rest of us!

Previously: Dept. Of Your Cheatin’ Heart: The Ashley Madison Hack Exposes Nine City Employees

Stay Gold, Gold Club: Porn Star Claims That Josh Duggar Had Sex With Her In Philly

The highly publicized woes of 19 Kids and Counting co-star Josh Duggar have seemingly just taken a Philly turn with statements made by local stripper/porn star Danica Dillon to In Touch Weekly claiming that she had sex with Duggar twice, once at Philly’s Gold Club in March, and another time a month later at a club in Colmar, PA. From the article:

After watching her show and “eyeballing me,” Danica says he bought $600 in private dances and then “asked me how would he be able to spend the evening with me.” She reveals to In Touch that Josh was violent with her when they had sex, he did not use protection and gave her thousands of dollars after their encounters.

Meanwhile, Gawker scrutinizes Dillon’s claims here. So congrats Philly, you once again made it into the TMZ fodder mill. Hooray?

#PopeWatch2015: The Official Pope Francis Pizza Box Has Arrived


Finally, some Popesploitation merchandise we can get behind. After all, the Pope does enjoy a pizza from time to time.

(Image via Pizza Brain)

Things We Wholeheartedly Endorse: Blue Cross RiverRink’s Michael Jackson Night

Believe it or not, for a period in the mid-1980s you could not tear your Philebs crew away from their local roller rink. Many a Friday and Saturday night was spent playing Paperboy, eating those delicious slices of pizza that had the consistency of cardboard and, of course, skating. Our favorite jams to circle endlessly to? J. Geils Band’s “Freeze Frame,” Naked Eyes’ “There’s Always Something There to Remind Me,” and absolutely anything by Michael Jackson. (Related: We are old). Whenever the DJ turned on the sounds of a say “Wanna Be Startin’ Something” or “Beat It” you could hear a collective gasp go through the room, as if we were all a part of a very special happening. That’s the power that MJ held back then. So when we heard that the Blue Cross RiverRink will be having a Michael Jackson night tomorrow, we damn near lost our minds. The event promises a Jackson impersonator, the requisite prizes — including fedoras and single gloves — and a set from DJ Touchtone. Really though, what we are most excited about is the time travel back to our idle youth, when our biggest problem was wondering how many times we’d get to hear “Thriller” in a night.

August 26, 2015

This Evening: She’s Like The Wind

>>> The mind-bending hip-hop of Dälek comes to Johnny Brenda’s tonight. A mixture of deeply layered beats and melodies accompanied by peerless vocals, this is going to be intense in the best possible way. Also on the bill: Publicist UK and Psychic Teens.

>>> Tonight’s free movie at FringeArts? Dirty Dancing. Don’t act like you’re not excited.

>>> It’s Yappy Hour at Dilworth Park! Bring your own pet or, better still, learn about adopting one from the Philadelphia Animal Welfare Society.

Opera Philadelphia And The Bearded Ladies Cabaret To Debut Andy: A Popera Next Month

As part of our ongoing advance coverage of the 2015 Fringe Festival, we want to make sure that Andy: A Popera is on your radar. The work is a collaboration between Opera Philadelphia and the Bearded Ladies Cabaret that promises a “musical mélange inspired by the life, fame, and philosophy of Andy Warhol” and aims to explore “what happens when a man becomes a brand.” You can see behind-the-scenes pictures from the production over at the Bearded Ladies’ Instagram page, and they are conjuring up visions of the Factory in our minds. Art as commerce that becomes art again? Andy would most definitely approve.

#PopeWatch2015: The #OpenInPHL Campaign Rolls Out

In a press conference held at Jack’s Firehouse this afternoon, Mayor Nutter and World Meeting of Families Executive Director Donna Crilley Farrell announced the #OpenInPHL campaign. Rebranding the Pope’s visit as the more social media friendly Francis Festival (with the much debated traffic box being forevermore referred to as the Francis Festival Grounds, well, probably not) and promising that the city is ready to handle the crowds and accommodate the needs of small businesses, the presser was meant to reassure the public and business owners that the city has its ducks in a row — a savvy way to handle growing papal panic amongst Philly residents bracing for the worst or planning to flee the city come late September. While we could (and probably will) be cynical about the timing of all of this, for right now we think the so-called “I’ll Be There” kits — consisting of signage, window clings and other Pope-positive materials — are an undoubtedly clever bit of marketing whose aim to create unity for the Pope visit and to quiet the discord some feel about how the city has handled the roll out of information thus far. Will some Pope pins and signs calm people down? Will “I’ll Be There” become the next “Philadelphia, Get to Know Us?” Will October ever arrive? We can’t wait to find out the answers to all of these questions and more.

Dept. Of Back and Forth: Philly/NYC Migration Patterns Revealed


Collecting data culled from a Census Bureau American Community Survey, the Washington Post constructed the above chart showing migration patterns from major metropolitan areas. The results in relation to our area were not surprising, most people who leave Philly wind up in New York (thanks Brain Drain!) and vice versa. What does this all mean to you, the Philadelphian of right now? Nothing more than the confirmation that the Philly/NYC ouroboros is still intact. As for new transplants to the City of Brotherly Love, no, we don’t want to get a drink with you at Le Bok Fin.

(Image via The Washington Post)

Recommended Reading: Bicycle Coalition Of Greater Philadelphia’s Interview With Tattooed Mom’s Robert Perry


Tattooed Mom owner Robert Perry is one of the biggest bicycling advocates we know, so we were pleased to see him featured on the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia’s blog discussing his continued support of Philly’s thriving bike community. The piece also gave us some background on one of our favorite things about Mom’s, its bike corral:

You’ve got one of the best-known and most-used Philly bike corrals in front of your business. Why did you decide to get it in the first place?

Thanks for the kind words, we love our corral and use it daily. The Mayor’s Office of Transportation and Utilities and our neighborhood advocates at the South Street Headhouse District were looking to launch two bike corrals in the area as part of the first wave installed in 2012. Knowing our support from the bike community they reached out to us to identify possible locations for the corrals. I sent them many photos of bikes stacked four or more to a rack out front and offered our support to do whatever we could to bring a rack to our block. With the daily influx of cyclists to the neighborhood and special events we’ve done to support the cycling community, bike parking has always been at a premium here. A corral was a very welcome addition to the neighborhood.

Indeed it was Robert, indeed it was.

(Photo via

Noontime Nuggetz: Hüsker Dü Live At Love Hall In 1983

Here’s a video treasure for all you Philly old heads: A complete concert from Hüsker Dü that was recorded on December 16, 1983 at the long-gone Love Hall. This is a pretty blistering set that is highlighted by glimpses of 1980s left-of-center Philadelphians in their natural habitat. Rock and roll and cultural anthropology at the same time? You got it.

Today’s Moment Of Philly Zen: Larry Bowa Gets Ejected During Last Night’s Phillies Game

Nearly 70 and still giving ’em hell. Larry Bowa, truly a Phillie for the ages.

HiSoft Return After A Too-Long Hiatus With The Breezy “State Police”

Has it really been nearly a decade since we heard new music from Gerhardt Koerner‘s HiSoft? Because listening to the jangly, last thrust of summer that is “State Police” it feels as if no time has passed at all. We hear rumblings of a new lineup and a possible live date in the future, but nothing that has been substantiated as of yet. We will update you when we know more, because, perhaps like you, we have missed this sound terribly.

FYI: If You So Desire, You Can Run A 5K With Kevin Hart This Saturday

Running and Kevin Hart, two things we try to refrain from whenever possible, will combine this Saturday morning when the Philly-born comedian takes part in a free, open to the public 5K run at the Art Museum in advance of his comedy show at Lincoln Financial Field on Sunday. While we don’t begrudge the fitness savvy amongst you to whom this sounds like a good idea, we are barely in good enough shape to walk over for a Sizzli let alone take a run. Then again, there was that time we sprinted away from our friend who suggested we go see The Wedding Ringer, so…