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Tyler Wetherall

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The Reverend shuffles on stage bare foot, bearded, and resplendent in a paisley kaftan embroidered with glittering thread, a leather vest, and a white wide-brimmed hat. The hat remains in place throughout the rhapsodic head shaking to come. He places a glass of whiskey on the floor by the piano and begins to play, his fingers fervently crossing the keys, and within minutes the crowd—previously retiring and shy as befitting a Monday night—are dancing,...
Amongst Brooklyn’s famed bars, Sunny’s has achieved almost mythic status: a magical den of bluegrass and whisky, hidden down by the harbor in Red Hook, where long nights roll into pink-hued mornings looking over cobblestone streets, as the last of the musicians leave for the night, their instruments tucked under their arm and a skip in their step. But while many of the bar’s disciples recognize its charismatic namesake—the late Antonio “Sunny” Balzano, with his...

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