Dylan The Biography
You can immediately tell fans from foes by what they call him. It’s Dylan to those who appreciate the genius of the man. (Big hint there as to this writer’s colors.) This latest effort to dissect him is better researched and more objective than many of the many previous attempts but still misses the point (a point that Dylan himself denies) that the whole is far greater than the sum of the parts.
A Fighting Chance
Not quite a household name yet the author (a first choice for this year’s Moves Power Woman) is the senior senator for Massachusetts and some say the best bet to become the first female U S President. Harvard professor, Wall Street reformer, architect of the Consumer Financial Protection Agency and defender of the middle class, the book takes off when her dander is up about the failure of the system to deliver fairness to the American People. A great read.
The Bright Continent
It’s so easy for the West to shrug at the chaos and corruption of Africa, forgetting the devastating effect of their 19th century land grab and subsequent overfunding of “Independence”. Olopade gives us a much needed perspective on how, much to its credit, the dark continent is helping itself and slowly rising above post colonial monetary oppression. Citing real examples the book gives us hope for the human race from this most unlikely source.
The Science of Shakespeare
Respected science journalist and writer Dan Falk gives us a timely (it’s the Bard’s 450th birthday) insight into the scientific influences and developments that were prevalent when Shakespeare was writing his canon. While most of the connections and interpretations he makes between the poetry and prose and the science of the time are obviously speculation, it’s hard not to keep nodding your head when he introduces yet another interpretation of a famous line. Fascinating.
The Future for Curious People
Although seemingly aimed at twenty-somethings and a little naïve in places, the juice and sheer warmth of this first novel gives it something for us all even the most cynical. The story is set in the future when software enables us to see into our romantic future and potential partners. Its alive, funny and asks some surprisingly awkward questions that keeps the reader laughing yet alert with some often very moving scenes.
War and Gold
Don’t be put off by the subject matter of this in-depth but surprisingly accessible history of how we arrived at our current global financial system. The author, a British politician, takes great care in historical detail and accuracy but achieves an end result that leaves no doubt as to why we are up to our collective armpits in our global monetary morass. In a word, and not so surprisingly, greed. So not so good after all then.
Tony Bennett & Lady Gaga
Cheek to Cheek
In what seems to be an amazingly random duo, classic standards icon Tony Bennett teams up
with the outrageously atypical Lady Gaga in their new release this fall. In their Cheek to Cheek, vintage meets contemporary when Bennett and Gaga cover a myriad of classics ranging from Gerswhin to Cole Porter and even Irving Berlin. On the classic “Anything Goes”, Bennett’s well- established soft warbles are accentuated by Gaga’s cheeky musicality: a theme that continues throughout the entire album. At the crossroads of different musical ages and styles, Cheek to Cheek is the epitome of jazz’s timelessness in any era.
My Life Starts Now
You may be familiar with drummer Mark Guiliana’s through his signature flair on collaborations with Matisyahu, vocalist Gretchen Parlato, or pianist Jason Lindner. While often being featured on various styles of music, My Life Stars Now brings Guiliana to the forefront of the genre with his novel quirks on quintessential jazz. Capitalizing on vocalization and even electric guitars, Guiliana’s drum solos are the backbone of My Life Starts Now which earns Guiliana recognition on his own merits and originality.
The Big Picture
While Houston native Kat Edmonson’s latest release is not her first, Edmonson has mastered her unique vocals on The Big Picture. Citing film studies and musical scores as her inspiration, Edmonson’s newest album holds a range of vocalization on different tracks that have earned the music scene’s attention. In between tracks that are heavy on Edmonson’s distinct voice, The Big Picture harnesses jazz styles that are sure to dominate the industry for some time.
Grammy Award-winning pianist and songwriter Diana Krall continues to grace the jazz genre with her low, ephemeral vocals on her newest release. Wallflower is full of the husky singing that Krall has mastered throughout her career and serves as a record of her inspiration for her work beginning with the 1960’s. Produced by David Foster, Krall’s Wallflower spans the greatest hits from the late sixties to current smashes, including titles from The Eagles, Mamas & the Papas, Elton John, Bob Dylan and even a new piece by Paul McCartney entitled “If I Take You Home Tonight” all in the jazz style that Krall is known for.
Recorded live in late 1965, Charles Lloyd leads a quartet featuring guitarist Gábor Szabó along with percussionist Pete La Roca and bassist Ron Carter. Remastered in its highest quality, Manhattan Stories celebrates the history of jazz with over eighty minutes of lost recordings from two separate concerts at NYC’s landmarked Judson Hall. Live performances include Lloyd’s own “Sweet Georgia Bright” and Szabó’s “Lady Gabor”, where Manhattan Stories serves as a living piece of jazz infusion history that can be enjoyed in our modern age.
Tahliah Debrett Barnett, stage name FKA Twigs (short for: Formerly Known as Twigs), is an English singer-songwriter based out of London. She originally self-released her first EP, EP1, in 2012, and has since made a name for herself, in the words of The Guardian, as “the UK’s best example to date of ethereal, twisted R&B.” The description ’ethereal and twisted’ also transcends to the music videos FKA Twigs releases to pair with most of her songs. All of them are very edgy and beautiful–an example being the video for her track ‘Papi Pacify’ that is described by Pitchfork as a, “mesmerizing clip [that] walks a fine line between being gorgeous and gag-reflex-inducing.” Her latest album, LP1 (Young Turks), was released in August 2014 and explores topics of gender dynamics, unrealistic beauty standards, romantic power struggles, and crude sexuality. Definitely going down as one of the best albums of 2014.
Good Morning, Vietnam
The late Robin Williams stars in this 1987 comedy that revolutionized the war genre in film as a whole. Along with Forest Whitaker, Williams portrays a quirky discjockey who is assigned to the US Armed Services Radio station overseas during the Vietnam War. Hilarity ensues, yet Good Morning, Vietnam also emphasizes the harsh reality of violence and peril that comes with war - even for a funny DJ, perfectly internalized by Williams
Saving Private Ryan
A classic among classics, Tom Hanks stars in this WW2 chronicle alongside Matt Damon and Vin Diesel on brotherhood and camaraderie. Directed by Stephen Spielberg, Saving Private Ryan is a testament to the war genre as a tale of fictitious fellowship and realistic conflict that influenced humankind in our shared history.
The Hurt Locker
Another modern triumph for the genre, The Hurt Locker illustrates modern warfare’s most dangerous job: disarming explosives. Jeremy Renner comes to life in his portrayal of a dauntless Sergeant who unsettles his agitated bomb squad with a selfish, rebellious attitude. Winning six Oscars, The Hurt Locker serves as a testament to the reality of Americans who are in service in the Middle East today.
From Marlon Brando to Martin Sheen, this 1979 Oscar winning film remains the epitome of war films in style and content. Set during the Vietnam War, one Captain is assigned a top secret mission to execute a colonel who has transformed a rural Vietnamese village into a violent cult. Francis Ford Coppola’s esteemed film continues to serve as an authority for the genre with timeless themes that translate into modern society.
(Katie Holmes) is a demure, pretty, and well-mannered elementary school teacher who just moved into town. Everyone has been taken by her charm. And the locals can’t help but notice that the town has been changing since her arrival, and Meadows would say ‘for the better’. That is because she is doing more than teaching kids their ABC’s. Behind that innocent face lies a merciless gun-slinging vigilante, who is on a personal mission to purge this world of wickedness. Things get complicated however, when the sheriff (James Badge Dale) gets on the case, and he struggles between his infatuation with Miss Meadows and investigating who has committed the recent killings of certain morally corrupt individuals.
“Daughters of the Sexual Revolution”
WorkShop Theater Company, 312 W. 36th St.
Opens September 20th, 2014
1976 was an important year for American history: more than just our bicentennial, 1976 was a revolution in itself. “Daughters of the Sexual Revolution” emphasizes the unconventional celebration of a nation that was born out of revolt by focusing on the lives of three different American women. The notion of ethics arises when these women participate in their own revolution as members of society. Contrasted against the tumultuous Nixon America of 1976, “Daughters of the Sexual Revolution” considers the idea of identity for individuals and American society as a whole.
Soho Rep, 46 Walker St.
Opens September 30th
Fresh from the creative aptitude of playwright Debbie Tucker Green, “Generations” opens with a crowded South African kitchen in which a family works hard to prepare a feast. Teasing one another (as relatives tend to do) leads to serious conversation where stories are exchanged that span many years and the limits of their kitchen. “Generations” represents the soul of family life and the stories that make up ancestry and a nation itself.
La MaMa Experimental Theatre, 74A E. 4th St.
Opens September 26th
Award winning playwright Catherine Filloux celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Selma Voting March with her “Selma 65”. Encompassing the true stories of two historical figures, “Selma 65” is a testament to the civil rights movement. Filloux tells the story of Viola Liuzzo, a caucasian marcher who betrayed social connotations during her time, and FBI informant Tommy Rowe, an undercover agent with the Ku Klux Klan. “Selma 65” illustrates the growth of American society in a span of fifty years by accentuating the reality of two civil rights champions not so long ago.
“Then She Fell”
Arts@Renaissance, 2 Kingsland Ave.
Final Show December 28th
Uniquely interactive, “Then She Fell” is an innovative take on the writings of beloved Lewis Carroll and his Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. The Bessie Award-winning show by Third Rail Projects performs for only fifteen audience members at a time as they physically travel through time and into Carroll’s imagination. Embedded in an abandoned institutional facility, is a beautiful representation of Carroll’s work in every corner of The Kingsland Ward at St. Johns in Williamsburg. Patrons discover hidden elements often coming face-to-face with the performers as they invite you into Wonderland itself.
50 Shades! The Musical The Original Parody
Elektra Theatre, 300 W. 43rd Street
Directed by Al Samuels and Rob Lindley, this suggestive satire of modern eroticism is thriving in a dark, seedy corner off Broadway where audiences giggle in light of smutty humor. Based on the widely successful salacious novel by E.L. James, “50 Shades! The Musical” treats patrons to a night of music where inhibitions are set free, complete with modest nudity and outrageous lyrical stylization. Be prepared to leave “50 Shades!” in tears of laughter, of course, from the sadomasochistic image that is perfectly lampooned in just two melodic acts.
Current Caller I.D.
See who is calling you as if it were coming from the white pages.
“Perfect party game, place device on forehead and your friends will try to act out the subject on the screen. Bonus fun,
My Talking Pet
My Talking Pet which gives a voice to your pet.
Plants vs. Zombies
Don’t let the zombies get past your battlefield of plants….otherwise they will eat your brains”
Ability to make your phone into the remote. Never go searching for the remote or batteries again.
The new “Words with Friends”
Keeps movies you want to see tracked on your phone.
Bic © Concert Lighter
Hundreds of little flames in a tightly packed dark sweaty room might be a fire hazard. But not if they are virtual. So if you’re really feeling it, choose your own lighter design, and rock on.
In the age of the hipster, the mustache is king. Grow an instant mustache, no testosterone required. Choose your stache, put the phone to your mouth and the virtual mouth will move with your voice.
Human to Cat Translator
If you are a cat owner, you’ve probably added a lot of “meows” to your vocabulary. With this app, speak into the phone and it will ‘translate’ your sentence into cat meows. Note: you are not speaking actual cat.
If you feel like too much of a turd to bring one of those clunky metal detectors to the beach, this app uses the magnetometer in your phone to pick up waves from nearby metal objects.
Are your bowel movements regular? After all, having a regular stool is a sign of good intestinal health. This is the number 1 app for when you feel like you gotta go number 2.
You know that clean, satisfying feeling after a shave? For the obsessive personality, get every last hair…without the razor burn. Now including waxing and tattooing tools.
Fat-accumulating body parts get more attention than your teeth. But what is sexier than a beautiful smile? Give your teeth some love with this app, and your next dentist visit can be a less excruciating one.