Saturday, March 26, 2011

Dateline, December 30, 1942

The BobbySoxers came out in droves to the Paramount Theatre that night in ’42, hoping for a glimpse of a skinny, upcoming crooner named Frank Sinatra.

The Beatles, Buddy Holly, Elvis Presley...Times Square has a long and storied history hosting musical legend.

Last night it was StereoCrowd’s turn, broadcast from the NASDAQ, musical guest on the AllNightwithJoeyRenolds Show.

“StereoCrowd was incubated on the rooftops of South Harlem. With its undeniable stage presence and renowned nurturing of audience participation, it has quickly created a diverse and loyal following.”

“Becoming known as New York City’s Ambassadors of Urban Alternative, Stereo Crowd’s sound is a Black Eyed Peas style hip-hop combined with the soul of Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, all packaged together within the amped up angst of indie rock.”

I’ve been out to hear them play live at the People’s Lounge,

And at BarNINE,
And even a killer, rooftop gig last Summer in Bushwick.

It’s been fun watching this “sick talented line-up” of diverse musicians gather momentum and burst out on the New York indie, music scene.

The show is airing on NBC New York Non-Stop this Monday night, March 28th at 11:59pm. Find your channel below:

If you haven’t heard of them yet, you will. 
Remember, nobody had ever heard of that skinny kid from Hoboken this early in his career, either.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Becker Fagen, 1978

You call me a fool
You say it’s a crazy scheme
This one’s for real
I already bought the dream

I’ll learn to work the saxophone
I’ll play just what I feel
Drink scotch whiskey all night long
And die behind the wheel

I cried when I wrote this song
Sue me if I play too long
This brother is free
I’ll be what I want to be

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Think your business has it tough?

of mice and men

From the BBC:
A chemical in the brain controls sexual preference in mice, according to scientists in China.

“The research team first bred male mice whose brains were not receptive to serotonin. When presented with a choice of partners, they showed no overall preference for either males or females.”

“When just a male was introduced into the cage, the modified males were far more likely to mount the male and emit a "mating call" normally given off when encountering females than unmodified males were.”

“However, a preference for females could be "restored" by injecting serotonin into the brain.”

“Experts have warned about the dangers of drawing conclusions about human sexuality.” 
Unless, y’know...

not your grandparent’s America

The greater the distance between the have’s and the have not’s, the more unstable our economy becomes. It’s certainly in the news these days so let’s imagine America’s 400 wealthiest families.

For a sense of scale, picture a Manhattan hi-rise about 30 stories, maybe four or five families per floor, averaging about 135 families per building... so three average New York hi-rises will house those families. Got that? Our four hundred wealthiest families in three apartment buildings.

Okay, now think of our 13 most populous states: California, Texas, New York, Florida, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Georgia, North Carolina, New Jersey, Virginia and Washington, totaling about 186 million people. That’s roughly 60% of the United States population. Got that too? 60% of America, 186 million people.

Now imagine this: The wealth currently possessed and controlled by just those four hundred wealthiest families is the same total amount of wealth presently possessed and controlled in 2011 by our 13 most populated states combined, spread across 60% of our people. 

It’s mindboggling, I know, but it’s a fact so if you didn’t understand that, read it again.

When I was a kid, “banana republic” was a pejorative term now abandoned in our politically correct culture but it still means the same thing: a tiny, powerful, self-elected economic plutocracy controlling all the wealth while the rest of the people do all the work.

This not your grandparent’s America 
and this trend will not end well.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

It’s snowing again


don't ride with a mad woman

Singer-songwriter-dancer Chris Brown has had so much success in his young life it’s easy to forget this mega-talented young man is still only a tender 21 years old.

But he also has a felony assault conviction for rearranging a certain beautiful ex-girl friend’s face and yesterday, a bit of a mix up at Good Morning America where his temper sent shards of broken glass crashing onto 43rd street before rampaging Times Square, shirtless.

If he keeps this up, he’s gonna get his ass kicked by the police.
Chris? Take a tip from Chris!

photos, Sony Music and ABC News

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

C-ya, nice knowin' ya.

Canadian cracks NYT paywall 
By William Wolfe-Wylie, QMI Agency 

Only a few days after the New York Times launched a paywall on its website for Canadian visitors, a Canadian programmer has come up with a free workaround to keep the site open to all, and it only took four lines of code.

David Hayes, a Kitchener, Ont., developer, cracked the paywall during his lunch break.
“It’s just a four-line script, plus a few more to allow me to update it,” he said in an e-mail to QMI Agency on Tuesday. “I wrote it over lunch. I’m a little surprised it took off, over 5,000 people are using it so far and it’s less than a day old.”
The code loads into a user’s browser as a button that looks like any other bookmark. When confronted with the paywall, users can click the button to reveal the full text of the article behind it.
The Times launched the Canadian paywall on March 17. It is expected to launch in the U.S. by the end of the month.

Holland Dozier, 1966

Ooh, this old heart of mine been broke a thousand times
Each time you break away I think you're gone to stay
Lonely nights that come, memories that flow
Bringing you back again, hurting me more and more
Maybe it's my mistake to show this love I feel inside
'Cause each day that passes by,
You've got me never knowin' if I'm comin' or goin' but I
I love you-ou-ou, yes I do
This old heart (ooh) darlin' is weak for you
I love you-ou-ou, yes I do
These old arms of mine miss having you around
Make these tears inside start falling down
Always with half a kiss, you remind me of what I miss
Though I try to control myself
Like a fool I start grinnin' 'cause my head starts spinnin' 'cause I
I love you-ou-ou, yes I do
This old heart (ooh) darlin' is weak for you
I love you-ou-ou, yes I do
(sax break)
Ooh, I try hard to hide my hurt inside
This old heart of mine always keeps me cryin'
The way you're treatin' me leaves me incomplete
You're here for the day, gone for the week now.
But if you leave me a hundred times
A hundred times I'll take you back
I'm yours whenever you want me
I'm not too proud to shout it, tell the world about it 'cause I
I love you-ou-ou
This old heart (this old heart) is weak for you
I love you-ou-ou
This old heart (this old heart) is weak for you
I love you-ou-ou

ready? set... hoe.

Monday, March 21, 2011

the enviable accommodations

Back on March 2nd ClockTowerTenants featured photos of the Queen Mary 2 docked at the Brooklyn Naval Yard, and more were promised.
I toured that ship in 2004. The QM2 has a “bulbous bow”, explained in Wikipedia:

“The bulb modifies the way the water flows around the hull, reducing drag and thus increasing speed, range, fuel efficiency and stability. Large ships with bulbous bows generally have a 12 to 15 percent better fuel efficiency than similar vessels without them.”

That tour was pretty cool, more like walking a huge suburban shopping mall than a ship. She boasts three and one half acres in deck space, too big for the Panama Canal. Docked in New York, there were deck chairs on the starboard side...

...but far more chairs on the port side. Know why?

Because on the way over from England, the port side is facing south where the sun would be; “port over, starboard home” are the enviable accommodations on an America-bound liner from London, hence the acronym “posh”.

That row of windows at the very top of the command bridge is where the captain calls his orders. She has five swimming pools on board, too. This shallow one is on the top deck for kids.

And this one, surrounded by liquor bars and live music, is for older kids.

There’s a hot tub on deck, too. She carries 3,056 passengers and another 1,253 in officers and crew, about the entire capacity of Radio City on the water.

At 1,132 feet her scale is just enormous, longer than the Eiffel Tower is tall. A standard North/South block in Manhattan is about 264 feet, making her over four city blocks long. Each cubical on the right is a private, furnished outdoor terrace, part of each ocean-fronting stateroom.

Yes, those are people way down there on the dock.

While on the tour I learned that nautical regulation requires that she carry several spare replacement blades for her propellors, but these take up precious interior cubic feet.

So the architects displayed them outside near the bow.

They were bolted to the deck, creating a kind of outdoor sculpture garden.

I don’t know which was more impressive, 
her sheer, gargantuan scale or the layered and cascading opulence of her accommodations.

Decide for yourself when CTT posts more photos, next month from the interior.