October 17, 2014
>>> Happy Fall Weekend! You look like you wanna like GET INTO IT, and by “GET INTO IT,” I mean “gorge your brain on some of the wildest, headiest music Philadelphia and its people have to offer and, given our history, yo, that is SAYING SOMETHING.” Allow us to direct you to Steve Gunn/Mary Lattimore &Jeff Zeigler Duo/Spacin’ at PhilaMOCA. We’ve spoken of expat Gunn here before (as well as hosted him at AKA Music) but the guy is coming into his own in a major way with the new Way Out Weather LP, for which tonight’s show is the record release party. It’s not every day that an album full of druggy-ass, crazy American Primitive guitar music enters the Billboard Heatseekers Chart, but, um, that is exactly what just happened for Gunn. What does it mean? What can it mean? It can mean that, pierce the soup skin of this wicked nation, and you will notice that, once again, America is ready to hear what you have to say, Philadelphia. At this point, even those Chuckies and Brides Of Chuckies in the suburbs know: You cannot gaybash the cosmic truth. It is physically impossible.
>>> As noted, the Philadelphia Film Festival is underway. Likewise, John Hodgman at Underground Arts will be a goddamned hoot.
>>> Elsewhere: The 4th Annual Chestnut Hill Harry Potter Festival is a thing that is happening and is not made up; and that Philly DJ Mural Block Party at 13th & Chestnut starts at 6pm, so take off your flats and put on your Reeboks now, Center City office workers!
>>> Ooh it’s gonna be a good day for it, love: Octoberfest at Dilworth Park with Norwegian Arms, Drgn King, Dave P..
>>> And celebrating 40 years of smirking at people who think sculpture is all about that scene in Ghost, The Clay Studio Mudball at World Cafe Live rages hard with Broadzilla DJs and so much more. Just click the link, you’re gonna like the way you look, I guarantee it.
>>> Elsewhere: Rock Tits at The Dolphin; Drive-By Truckers/St. Paul and the Broken Bones at Electric Factory.
>>> Wiz Khalifa and Afrojack play this Forbes Under 30 concert at the Piazza which, to be honest, we do not quite understand. But it’s Wiz so, you know, ask questions later.
>>> And round it all out afterwards with Juston Stens & The Get Real Gang with Zeus at Ortlieb’s.
It’s a question worth asking: Where have the great art-y, moody, kind of trippy, semi-smutty films that European countries seemed to export daily in the ’60s and ’70s gone? Is there a modern equivalent? If there is, Peter Strickland‘s The Duke of Burgundy belongs in that column, and is a direct homage to that era in tone, period and apparently (see above), pervy subject matter. Sat, Oct 18, 9:30PM, and Sun, Oct 26, 7:20PM, both at Ritz East.
Love at First Fight, you had me at “French rom-com involving Doomsday preppers in the woods.”Sun, Oct 19, 7:00 PM, and Wed, Oct 22, 5:00 PM, both at Ritz East.
WILD CANARIES Clip – SXSW 2014 from Sophia Takal on Vimeo.
You’re bound to recognize a few faces in Wild Canaries: Lawrence Michael Levine directs and stars in what could be a new genre: The Bored To Death-esque modern-day Brooklyn caper film. It won’t win any awards for originality, but it will go great with that sweater. Sat, Oct 18, 4:20 PM at Ritz Bourse; Thu, Oct 23, 6:00 PM at PFS Roxy Theater.
The 23rd Philadelphia Film Festival is underway through October 26th. Check Philebrity daily for more picks and special screening offers.
NOTE: The 2014 Philadelphia Film Festival is currently underway; we’ll have picks for that in a separate post.
RECOMMENDED: Bill Murray is an inspiration to some and an annoyance to others [Ed. -- Who? Who are they? What are their names?], but no matter how you feel about him, there is no denying that he is an American original. You can put him in almost any movie with almost any premise (as evidenced by early novelties like Stripes and Caddyshack as well as more seriously undertaken explorations of character like Where the Buffalo Roam and Broken Flowers — and maybe also Space Jam) and create, if not art, then at least what critics will call, for lack of any more specific word, “screen presence.” St. Vincent is no exception, and Jaeden Lieberher, Murray’s preteen costar, is the same kind of actor. When the two are onscreen together, every line is delivered the same way, and every line is delivered right. The movie is not more creatively or powerfully written or shot than the average major motion picture, but it does offer viewers what they have been going to movies to see for as long as there have been movies: Interesting conversations between people who are interesting to watch. As it turns out, that’s more than enough.
ALSO NEW IN THEATERS THIS WEEK: The Book of Life, a new animated feature from a pretty unlikely source: Producer Guillermo del Toro and director Jorge Gutierrez, who tell a traditional traditional tale in a hackneyed medium (the usual present-day loud, wise-cracky kids’ film), and somehow make it fresh; The Best of Me, another emo adaptation from the works of Nicholas Sparks, the Taylor Swift of Men Who Write Books; and Fury, which would seem to give weight to the growing body evidence that suggests that Brad Pitt forgot that he nailed the whole “rugged military dude” thing in Inglorious Basterds and didn’t really need to do it again.
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.
Click here to see all of the current 215 Festival events on Facebook.
Longtime readers of the site will know that each October now, our whole worlds go rather enjoyably haywire as we collaborate with other folks on that venerable literary beast, the 215 Festival. Started at the dawn of man, the 215 Fest is a books-and-authors fest like no other: Each year now, we park it in a different part of town, have readings and book talks and social things in bars, bookstores and public squares, and it is some of the deepest, cleanest, brainiest fun you can have in this old town. The 215 Fest is adorably scrappy, has been since its inception, and it’s unique among literary fests in that it’s not anchored to an institution. Rather, it is anchored to the human spirit and in particular the human spirit of the Philadelphian who loves reading and writing. Next week, the 215 Festival will touch down in the Headhouse Square/South Street area, and we’ll have more (much more!) to say about why that is on Monday. But please take a gander at the events (there’s still a few more being added in the coming hours), follow the 215 Fest on Twitter, and plan to join us to see a wide array of Philly writers (and some visitors) doing what they do best. You won’t regret it.
And if you don’t believe us, hell, believe note 215 Fest alumnus/Hizzoner Judge John Hodgman:
See you next week!
Well, it’s happened: The first station in the country has done the annual “Christmas flip” to all holiday music, and now, it’s merely a waiting game until others around the country follow suit. In this case, it’s residents of the Shore who can tune into Soft AC “Easy 93.1” WEZW of Wildwood Crest, NJ right now and hear your Carpenters and your Johnny Mathis and your Grandmas getting run over by reindeer. This is not the first time WEZW has been the first in the nation to jump the gun, which now gives the station the status of that kid who wakes up on Christmas morning at 3:00 AM only to have to his parents (in this case, THE WORLD) telling him to go back to bed.
Here in Philly, all of this begs the question: When will MoreFM (Formerly B101), Philly’s number one dentist office/convenience store music provider, do its big annual switch? We actually called the station to find out. (And they say that hyperlocal journalism will never survive. HA!) A representative from the station told us, with a sort of pride, that the station never announces ahead of time when the switch will be. One day you’ll just turn it on, and Santa will have commandeered the DJ booth a la Airheads. Even so, apparently the station will begin surveying listeners next on when the switch should be. Over on their Facebook page, listeners are already clamoring for it.
Under the nom du rock The Ghost In You, local boy Billy Polard makes dreamy Sofia Coppola-esque guitar pop. “Ten Thirty One” is his brand new clip and homage to this time of year, and if it doesn’t get you into the skulls ‘n’ latte spirit of the season, man, nothing will.
By now, you probably know all about Tom Corbett’s Photoshopped friends. (Some of his best ones are black!) But do you know where they came from? It turns out that they came from the only place they could, the curious world of stock photography. And though we’ve yet to hear from the African-American model who was overlaid into a Tom Corbett dystopia wholly different from the one the rest of us currently live in, something tells us we will. See, as we have noted before, for the model, stock photography is very double-edged sword: It’s work when you need it, but who knows what it will ever be used for, and where and in what context it will appear.
In the case of the present Corbett dust-up — which seems to grow ever more Tom Wolfe-ian daily — the model in question came from this set of photos on Shutterstock. Its copyright sources to a company called (rather unfortunately) “Monkey Business Images.” There’s nothing we can say about that the letters O, O and F do not already cover when put in sequence: Oof.
Previously: Dept. Of Even A Stopped Clock Is Right Twice A Day: Inky Accidentally Chooses Philly Face For Billboard
Sounds wild, but that is exactly what is happening: In December, the websites you don’t read for the papers you don’t read (because someone made them so you can’t read them), those of the Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News, will evaporate, and there will only be one cyclops-like Philly.com to serve all (badly). And though the failure of the Inky and DN’s paywall efforts were predicted by… everyone, really, the wholesale shuttering of both sites does come as a surprise, as well as an omen of sorts.
Meanwhile, the proposed sale of Finnegan’s Wake is now off the table, with its present owner considering a soft re-opening, making it one more political/douchebar cockroach in a city full of them. And if we’re gonna go heavy meta, Philebrity quietly turned 10 years old earlier this month. “It wasn’t supposed to be this way!,” cried… again, everyone.
Don’t worry, we’re still gonna throw a party.
As news breaks that Obama has chosen an “Ebola czar” (with sexy connects to the Biden party squad, hollllerrrr), you may rightly be wondering who’s minding the Ebola store in Philly. Sure, we hosted some groundbreaking (and probably totally gnarly) discussions on the subject among America’s top infectious disease experts earlier this month, but those experts are now long gone. (Did anyone here in Philly go to these talks? Anyone?)
Well, rest easy: Dr. James Buehler, the city’s new health commissioner, gave the region an “A to A+” when it comes to the city’s level of Ebola readiness. (Granted, this was before City Council, so who knows, but still. But still!) According to NBC, the buck will stop with Buehler, and this is a big proving ground in terms of his new post. But with the likelihood of Ebola coming to CHOP at some point, something tells us it might be wise to keep the “SARS mask” Emoji handy.
October 16, 2014
>>> Time is always a sure bet for quality background music, but once in a while, they actually treat their customers to some real live jazz. Tonight is sure to be one of those times at Time with credit due entirely to Chelsea Reed and the Fair Weather Five, who are one of the few revivalist jazz acts we know of that actually play the stuff. With smoky vocals, driving swing feels and bop vocabulary fresh from the woodshed, these guys have it all. The group are throwing the release party for the above record tonight at 8, but try to get there early. That place fills up when it gets loud.
>>> Elsewhere: Guitar Army at The Barbary Upstairs, a Folkadelphia showcase featuring Joan Shelley, Vio/Miré, and Jonathan Glen Wood at the Random Tea Room, Red Baraat with the West Philadelphia Orchestra at Underground Arts, and, whether you won free tickets or not, Julian Casablancas and The Voidz at Electric Factory.
For the next week and a half, the Philadelphia Film Festival will be premiering and screening some of the most talked about movies of the season all over the city, including Bill Murray’s new dramedy St. Vincent, about which we’ll have some good stuff for you in the coming days. We’ll also be posting an update tomorrow that’ll help you get the best out of this year’s schedule. Keep checking back for more coverage of the events!
That’s right, folks. This installment of CVS Bangers is subtitled “Kicking Down The Doors of Valhalla Looking For Elian Gonzalez!” and includes classic machine gun (or is that a chopper?) and airhorn sound effects and an announcer interjecting with quips like “White people shit” and “Where you at Elian?” We still highly recommend you check out Easternsports at ICA, but if for some reason or another you can’t make it to a free museum on your day off, here’s some more of Jayson Musson’s best work.
Rocco Avallone has come up with a pretty intriguing idea here: pair drone footage with ragtime piano. The result is kind of like the opening credits to the first sci-fi gangland caper.
Or, as we like to call it, “Inkybola.”
Seeing something around town of note? Cameraphone it to: tips[at]philebrity[dot]com.
As promised, Vice President Joe Biden was in Philadelphia today visiting Penn’s Landing in support of the Rebuild America initiative to develop infrastructure across the country. US Army Corps of Engineers Lt. Col. Michael Bliss briefed Biden on the 100-mile dredging project currently underway between the Ben Franklin Bridge and the mouth of the Delaware Bay. The project aims to deepen the ship channel in the Delaware River from 40 to 45 feet. Before offering his address, Biden boarded a dredge and entered the control cab of a crane that hauls a bucket capable of lifting 21 cubic yards, upon seeing which he said the only thing that we would ever expect or want Joe Biden to say: “That’s a hell of a bucket.”
John Hodgman is one of the few personalities orbiting the pop culture megasphere who truly deserves the title “renaissance man,” although perhaps “jack of all trades” suits him better. You may not know him by name, but if you’ve seen The Daily Show With Jon Stewart, Bored To Death, or an Apple TV spot, you probably know him by his other name, “guy with glasses.” He also frequently appears as “guy with mustache.” He’s also an accomplished writer, editor, and stage comedian. We’re not sure what he’ll be doing tomorrow night at Underground Arts, but we’re pretty sure it’ll be exciting enough that you’ll want to ENTER TO WIN FREE TICKETS TO THE SHOW!
To enter to win tickets, email ihopeiwin[at]philebrity[dot]com with “HODGE ME” 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.
Oh dear. Things did not go well, they did not go well at all, last night at a screening of the crazy-to-exist film Won’t Back Down starring Viola Davis and Maggie Gyllenhaal (it’s like Left Behind for union-busters) at the School District of Philadelphia’s headquarters. Members of Philadelphia Student Union crashed the screening, leading chants of “Save our schools!,” “Philly is a union town!,” and the like. In response, School Reform Commissioner Sylvia Simms reportedly went ham, berating protestors with various taunts such as “You must go to failing schools” and “You belong in jail.” A resourceful reader has turned this magic moment into a GIF.
Last week, the SRC cancelled teachers’ contracts in an ongoing display of bad faith and worse priority management.
Video after the jump. (more…)
The homegrown Philly Sports Hall of Fame, which celebrates the legends of Philly sports both pro and collegiate, has announced its next round of inductees:
The Hall of Fame’s 11th class includes: Brian Propp, Chet Walker, Curt Schilling. Ellie Daniel, Eric Allen, Geoff Petrie, Marvin Harrison, Meldrick Taylor, Mike Richter, Bobby Walston, By Saam, Frank Dolson, Herb Pennock, Jean Shiley, Paul Costello and The Mighty Macs – Immaculata’s 1972-74 Championship Teams.
They’ll be celebrated and properly inducted on Thursday November 13 at the Sheraton Society Hill for the Philadelphia Sports Hall of Fame’s Class XI Induction Ceremony and Reception.
Thanks to our good friends at Okayplayer for this exclusive “Street Hustle Experiment.” This is the kind of project we can get behind. We don’t want to get no real job neither.
This year’s One Book, One Philadelphia program will run from January 22nd to March 19th, and the one book selected for this year’s celebration is Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline, a Midwestern odyssey that leaps across several American generations to tell the story of one of the more uncertain eras of our history. As always, One Book, One Philadelphia will celebrate this selection and Philadelphia’s reading culture with workshops, screenings, discussions, and more, and, as always, we will sound our voices in support, because no matter who you are, no matter what, it’s just good to read. So far, we don’t have any specifics on the events included in the three month schedule, but be sure to continue to check back in on the Free Library of Philadelphia website for details. Given the recent developments over at the FLP, this year’s fest should be a good one.