This past Friday, Colorform, a band I play cello in, performed at the Greenpoint Gallery in Brooklyn. It’s a great space – a two-story warehouse in the industrial fringes of Greenpoint – A ton of rooms to explore, great exhibits, friendly people, a great vibe, and 10 local bands on two stages.
A great time. The gallery does these parties at least once a month, and they are definitely worth checking out. We’ll be back to perform on April 20.
Shakefist Magazine was at the event and had this to say about Colorform:
“All this was set amongst a backdrop of about 10 local musical acts who suited the event well. The stand out was Colorform, a simple act featuring a female singer with band including an excellent cellist, who sang catchy songs whilst a friend of their’s created a piece from scratch in front of the stage using pastels. A creative and inventive idea that suited the event to a tee.”
For music, and live art, (and to find out about future events and recordings) check out:
Of course, one of the best things about the city is stumbling upon the unexpected. Brooklyn is rife with random finds. Among many other chance encounters, I’ve ran into raging warehouse parties, and even costumed “headless” horsemen trotting down dark residential streets.
This past Saturday, on an afternoon wander through Park Slope, we came upon an open garage on 17th Street that was adorned with the art of James Leonard, an exhibition entitled “927 Days at Sea”
Later on, in the refreshingly clear early-autumn night, there was a dance performance, “if you look up”, by Anna Azrieli. A modest audience gathered on the sidewalk in front of the garage, which was a beacon of light along an otherwise dark block overlooking the Prospect Expressway. The piece was serene and silent, focused on exploring the relationship between the subtle and strong energies of movement. Most of the performers moved softly and expectantly while a lone dancer became increasingly drawn into confident and broad motion.
There is something rare and amazing that sometimes happens in these moments. Everyone was completely quiet, from the kids sitting on the ground to the rest of us drinking beer, and in this humble garage on this dark street, with the hum of the nearby highway, there was a certain unspoken coming-together.
The Open Source Gallery hosts a multitude of performances and exhibitions and has been on the Brooklyn scene since 2008. Remarkably, the community surrounding the gallery has rebounded from a fire which last November completely destroyed their original home.
Check them out here: http://open-source-gallery.org/
There’s a story to this –
A friend of mine owned a great place called Stain Bar on Grand Street in Williamsburg. I drank there, had amazing conversations there, saw the night come to morning there, sang and played guitar there, had many shows there, barbecued there – saw summer and winter pass there. beneath the steeple of the nearby church.
One day in March, 2005, I met a singer/banjoplayer/accordionist with whom I collaborated and played – warehouse parties in the industrial backwaters of Brooklyn, etc. The experience re-awakened my passion for playing cello.
I played an outdoor show in the backyard, and my sister came. The next day I drove a good friend to an early JFK flight to PDX. – before the last day at a job.
I met my wife there. At an open mic night in an oppressive July.
This sculpture was in the backyard of Stain Bar. When they shut down I never knew what happened to it. I was pretty much sure I’d never see this again. But this past Saturday, I went into the backyard of a Mexican place in Greenpoint and there it was before me!
By chance, I bump into people I know about every six weeks, either on the street or the subway. But never before have I run into a sculpture at random.
I don’t know the name of the artist responsible. If you know, please let me know.
This past Saturday, one of the bands I play cello in, Colorform, performed in Hoboken, New Jersey with “Rock for Honduras“.
The event was attended by great people who graciously raised a bunch of money for the Esmirna School for the Deaf in San Pedro Sula.
Colorform consists of female vocals, cello, guitars, percussion, bass, and a visual artist who improvises an entire work of art on a blank canvas as the music plays.
Our shows are always a unique experience, but this day was particularly special. The venue, Willie McBride’s, has excellent sound (thanks Matt!) and a great warm vibe. (A characteristic, btw, which is much more rife in Hoboken than across the river in Manhattan)
The best part, though, was our impromptu “encore” on the sidewalk outside!
We play again this Friday!
May 20, 9pm
171 Avenue C (btw. 10th and 11th Streets)
East Village, NYC
For more about Colorform: