Terri Girvin has been serving alcoholic beverages to New Yorkers for twenty years. In Last Call, her one-woman show that starts this Thursday at IRT theater, Girvin tells the story of all your nights out from the other side of the bar.
Though a lot of material from Last Call was drawn from her time at WXOU Radio, The Magician, and Tile Bar in Manhattan, I got to know Terri at The Brooklyn Inn. In a neighborhood that is increasingly precious, the Brooklyn Inn is a timeless enigma. Its dark rich wood was reclaimed from a bar in Germany before the rest of Brooklyn started reclaiming wood; old panel mirrors stretch to the ceiling and span an entire wall. In the back room, a juke box is stocked with good music (though David Bowie’s “Heroes” plays more often than not), and you can usually work your way into a game of pool. Also, I have never seen a real-life lineup of regulars that more closely resembles the cast of Cheers (laconic, mildly misanthropic but ultimately winning neighbors). (more…)
Dustin Guy Defa, currently of Greenpoint, has one feature to his name, the burrowing, wintry indie Bad Fevert from 2011, so at first glance it’s incongruous to see that the Film Society of Lincoln Center is mounting what’s effectively a career-spanning retrospective of his work. But the program of his short films which runs from the 14th to the 20th showcases a protean sensibility and wicked humor over the course of five shorts, none longer than twenty minutes.
Tonight, the 35th annual Hunger GamesCMJ Music Marathon takes over most clubs in Manhattan and Brooklyn, the start of an eardrum overload that brings hundreds of national and international bands to join our city’s already overstuffed music scene for five days of untamable excess. Though its been a consistent point of focus for decades, there’s been a perception that the festival has been in recent trouble. College radio’s primacy has been challenged by online streaming services, like Spotify or now Apple Music, not to mention searchable treasure troves like YouTube. The 2013 festival made as many headlines for a financing lawsuit as it did for breaking bands. As Adam Klein, president and CEO of new CMJ owners Abaculi Media Inc., enters his second year helming the festival, he thinks those old struggles are behind them. (more…)
The last time we saw Black Tree, they were serving sustainably sourced sandwiches in Crown Heights, many with a veggie-focused bent. They decamped to the Lower East Side in 2013, nipping and tweaking their local/seasonal concept, and as of last week, they’re back in a big way in Williamsburg, with a menu that’s both farm-to-table and nose-to-tail. (more…)
Directed by Lenny Abrahamson
Opens October 16
The first time we see the woman (Brie Larson) and her son Jack (Jacob Tremblay), it is not immediately clear that something is wrong. The evidence quickly accumulates, but for a few moments, the mother-son bonding obscures the terrifying situation: The woman was abducted at seventeen, stuck in a locked, modified, and soundproofed shed, and kept as a sexual slave with what appears to be an air of domestication, as if Old Nick (Sean Bridgers), as she refers to him, is simply playing extended host, bringing her groceries in between rapes. Seven years after her abduction, she has a five-year-old son by this man, with matching long brown hair, who knows only her and Room, which he uses the way a normal child might say “home,” without a definite article. It’s an awfully small space to hold such a catch-all.
“What kids need…” starts Jordan Michael Iannucci, before a wave of deep dread immediately derails him. “‘Kids?’ Oh my God, fuck me. I’m an Italian guy wearing rosary beads and a track suit, saying what kids need.” That we were sitting at an outdoor bar in the last, lingering Italian section of Williamsburg, about a block from a pork store in every direction, did not help the sudden onset identity crisis. The rosary and track suit were not metaphorical. “Fuck my life,” he says. “Jesus Christ take me now.”
Iannucci, just 26 himself, is a young veteran of Brooklyn’s independent music scene. After getting kicked out of Bennington College in the mid-2000s (the school Bret Easton Ellis based his debauched collegiate novels on in the 80s, so no small feat) he spent a few years as “a very aggressive yuppie” before devoting himself fully to the city’s various interconnected art scenes. He was a co-founder of, and key booker for the Silent Barn as both versions of that concert space and community center became a trusted refuge for new, unknown bands in the city. He’s the former editorial director and concert listings compiler of beloved, but defunct, all-ages events and art publication Showpaper. Currently, he’s an alternative comic book publisher, cassette label head, beer koozie designer, non-stop show promoter, enthusiastic champion of new talent, and an all-around restlessly creative guy. (more…)
The older we get, the more we tend to rely on happy hours—not as a reduced-price way to pregame before a hardcore evening of drinking, but as a time and cost efficient method of lining our stomachs and working up a decent buzz, before committing to some serious binge-watching on Netflix.
Thankfully, happy hours have come a long way since our barely legal days, evolving past PBR cans, well drinks and Chex Mix, to include dollar oysters, thoughtful bar snacks, and perfectly passable glasses of wine. In fact, if you play your cards right, you can spin early bird forays into completely legitimate, utterly economical meals, especially if your destination is Williamsburg, which—despite being almost exclusively populated by inexhaustible under-30s—is brimming with establishments that gamely pull out all the stops from 4-7 each day. (more…)
Was it only just last week that I sucked it up and shelled out a hundred bucks in order to subscribe to The New Yorker for another year, an annual decision which leaves me a little poorer but much richer in quality reading material for the bathroom, the subway, and… yeah, mostly those two places? Yes! Yes, it was. And already I’m congratulating myself on this financial decision because this week’s Adrian Tomine cover, titled “Recognition,” is one of the funniest comments on Brooklyn, writers, dads, and Brooklyn writers who are dads in a very long time. (more…)