Bret and Jemaine of Flight of the Conchords fame have worked with kids to create a song, “Feel Inside (And Stuff Like That),” completely to benefit Cure Kids in New Zealand. I was just going to post the song here, but I actually really enjoyed watching their whole process, which includes some fun references, tangents, and brilliant fundraising ideas from kids. Purchase the song on iTunes today.
I was mesmerized staring at this fountain outside of the Brooklyn Museum last Friday. Its patterns were in perfect symphony with the rest of the environment - the people, the traffic, the ice cream vending - that it felt as though the water were moving in agreement instead of on a pre-programmed track.
My friend Greg is an incredible musician. Give it a listen and, if you’re a fan too, like him on Facebook to hear about his latest releases and performances.
With My Own Two Hands, Ben Harper
Love this song. Did you get your LIFT Benefit ticket yet for his exclusive performance?
Free Concerts and Beer hosted by the New York Historical Society
I couldn’t be more psyched to invite you to this event celebrating LIFT. This year, the annual NYC event will feature a (donated!) performance by our newest board member, the very talented Ben Harper! The event will include a tapas-style dinner, open bar, and concert. Tickets will certainly sell out this year, so I strongly encourage you to buy early if you’d like to attend!
I’ve been on the host committee for this event for the last four years and have been deeply invested in LIFT as a client advocate, leader, fundraiser, and supporter since 2004. LIFT is a nonprofit combating poverty by filling in the gaps of the social services system and advocating for change through education, leadership development, and relationship-building in communities and among individuals. You can read more about their approach here. There was also a phenomenal article in the New York Times featuring LIFT just a few months ago, which I encourage you to read and share as well. The LIFT brand has certainly gained prestige and backs it up through increasingly incredible client service numbers and engagement of volunteers; I couldn’t be more proud to LIFT.
If you’d like to hear more about what LIFT means to me and why I support it, please let me know and I will continue to gush. I hope you can make the event… sign up today! If you know others who are interested in attending, certainly share this post as well. Finally, if you can’t attend, but would consider making a donation in any amount, that would be absolutely incredible and so sincerely appreciated. I can coordinate that or you can give directly online here.
With much gratitude for your friendship and support,
Exclusive Interview with John Solo from the new film Love Magical
I had the pleasure of interviewing John Solo, who plays Stan Klock in the new film Love Magical by babywolf productions. The film, shot in NYC, is the story of David Justice, an overly passionate man whose fear of love is standing in the way of his dream of becoming the greatest R&B songwriter in the history of the world.
Jen Bokoff: In Love Magical, you play an ‘alternative’ elementary school principal. What was it about the role that attracted you?
John Solo: What attracted me to Stan was his passionate battle for the woman he loves. Even though his heart is broken, he pushes past his feelings of betrayal to fight for Barbara. His ‘alternative’ elementary school abides by the mantra “Find your truth so you can find yourself.” Stan knows his truth and that allows him to battle like no other, storming the castle, and going balls deep in the name of love.
JB: Babywolf productions creates content that is “comedic and truthful.” How do you think Love Magical conveys that idea in the film?
JS: It’s truthful in that we all know and feel what the characters are going through. It’s comedic because the characters leap into very aggressive areas that the most people wouldn’t. Breaking into my ex-girlfriend’s house while she is having dinner with friends and presenting my case for love is a pretty risky thing to do. I know I’ve thought about doing it, but to actually do that is hysterical.
JB: The directors of Love Magical are on Kickstarter raising money to score the film with orginal music. How important is the music to the film and to the director’s focus on rising artists from the NYC music scene?
JS: The story is about a guy wanting to be an R&B songwriter, so music is very important. I think the directors are thinking they have two masters to serve here. One is the R&B side, the sexual and passionate aspect of the film and the other is the independent and quirky nature of the film. The film is a bit off. So between Keith Sweat and Sophia Urista, the R&B side should be covered and with independent artists like Marnie Stern and My Pet Dragon, the fun and independent side should be covered.
JB: Can you give us any hints on who wins the great janitorial showdown at the end?
JS: It’s really a close call. All I can say is that political correctness is thrown out the window!!!
JB: In addition to Love Magical, you were recently in Ed Burn’s new film Newlyweds, which was also shot on location in and around NYC. What was it like shooting both of these films there?
JS: It was fun filming in NYC. We had one day shooting Love Magical down in Tribeca and it was on the same block as this cool little restaurant where a few months before I’d shot a scene for Newlyweds. I actually went in and had lunch there that day. It’s great when two different film worlds collide.
Love Magical is currently in post-production and raising a final round of funds for original music, which you can support through Kickstarter. You can also get a sneak peak at some footage and more behind the scenes info here.
The dynamic Megan Mullally and Nick Offerman perform Wings of a Dragon. It’s hilarious and adorable, and I was lucky to see it live (albiet sans costumes and fun effects) last week at Largo.
I was recording a podcast with Jay the other day and I missed a lot of cultural references from the 80s because, well, I don’t remember the 80s and I didn’t ever watch MTV. He sent me this Michelle Shocked video to partially remedy, and I rather enjoyed it.
Now, to understand shoulder pads, leg warmers, and excessive hairspray…
The Maccabeats present Candlelight.
A cappella is funny. How they filmed this is funny. The lyrics are cheesy and funny. Don’t read into it more than you should, and you’ll (hopefully) enjoy.
Happy Hanukkah, everyone!
Have you ever been to Extra Place?
It’s just like Platform 9 3/4 - hidden in plain sight. See?
Right now, there’s some really cool art and Oaxaca, so I’m all for this hidden gem. Check it out!
Situated between the Bowery and 2nd Avenue, Extra Place is a former thru street that once connected East 1st Street to East 2nd Street. In the 1800s, Philip Minthorne divided his farmland between his sons and daughters. The land that was left over from the segmentation of land was an “Extra” street. Around the 1900s, Extra became a Place, where metal shops, garages, and speakeasies could be found. During the late 70s through the 90s, Hilly Kristal’s Country, Blue Grass and Blues venue (CBGB) on the Bowery had a backdoor that led to the alley where the club’s musicians, performers, poets and artists hung out. This graffiti filled backstage was an insider’s hangout for New York City’s Punk, No Wave, video, pop, and feminist art and activism sphere. Two decades later, AvalonBay Communities, Inc., attracted by the neighborhood’s history and culture, began to developAvalon Bowery Place, a mix of apartments and boutique retailers along the Bowery from East Houston Street to East 2nd Street. Being an integral part of Extra Place is an important aspect of Avalon Bowery Place’s identity.
(Reference: Forgotten New York, Kevin Walsh)
In memory of the most upstanding guy who was respectful and sincere, goofy but incredibly smart, passionate about people and culture, thoughtful without measure, an incredible guitarist and zealous drummer, and my first love, John. RIP.