Saturday, April 30, 2022

Saturday's parting shots

The Abracadabra bus made a stop along Tompkins Square Park on Avenue A late this afternoon... photos by Derek Berg...

6 posts from April

A mini month in review... 

• Farewells: Rev. Anne Sawyer has left St. Mark's Church-in-the-Bowery (April 19

• Closing day at Panya on Stuyvesant Street (April 18

• Suspect in Sunset Park subway shooting arrested in the East Village (April 13

• Remembering International Bar owner Molly Fitch (April 10

• Standoff on 9th Street (April 6

• A last look at the now-closed East Village institution Sunrise Mart (April 5)

Have a seat outside [plant-baked] on 7th Street

Photos by Stacie Joy

Earlier this month, [plant-baked] added two benches — made from some discarded plywood — outside the small to-go bakery at 117 E. Seventh St. between Avenue A and First Avenue... 
East Village residents Yunsu and Parker opened [plant-baked] in January 2021. (Read our interview with them here.)

Current hours: Wednesday-Thursday, 8 a.m. to noon; Friday-Saturday, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sunday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.  

A 'March Against Gun Violence' today on the Lower East Side

Neighborhood police precincts (the 7th, 9th and PSA 4) and local community groups are coming together today (April 30) for a "March Against Gun Violence." 

Anyone who wants to take part can meet up at 10:45 a.m. at Delancey and Columbia on the Lower East Side. The march ends at P.S. 34, 730 E. 12th St. between Avenue C and Avenue D. 

The NYPD's crime statistics for March in NYC showed "an overall crime index increase of 36.5% compared to the same time last year, but a dip in homicides," NBC 4 reported

Friday, April 29, 2022

'Anti-glory' days


The debut album from the Chicago-based trio Horsegirl is due out on June 3 via Matador Records. The video here is for a single from the LP, "Anti-glory."

A look at 'Mush Arcana' at CLLCTV.NYC on 3rd Street

CLLCTV.NYC is hosting "Mush Arcana," an exhibit of new work by local artist-activist Andrea Acevedo, aka ButterflyMush

And this marks her first solo show... EVG contributor Stacie Joy stopped by the space for the opening last night...
"Mush Arcana" is up through the weekend at CLLCTV.NYC at 209 E. Third St. between Avenue B and Avenue C. Hours: today, 4 to 10 p.m. ... Saturday, noon to 8 p.m. ... Sunday, 4 to 8 p.m. with an artist Q&A at 5 p.m.

 Previously on EV Grieve

Man dead in shooting this morning outside Mariana Bracetti Plaza on 4th Street

Photos by Stacie Joy

Updated 4/30 11:30 a.m.

Police sources tell us that they have "a person of interest" in custody. More details to follow...


Police are investigating a fatal shooting this morning outside the Mariana Bracetti Plaza public housing development on Fourth Street at Avenue C.
The victim, described by ABC 7 as a 42-year-old male, was shot twice on Fourth Street following an argument around 9 a.m., sources at the scene said.

EMTs transported him to Bellevue, where officials said he died. 

According to the Citizen app, the suspect fled westbound on Fourth Street on a bicycle.

There are also unconfirmed reports of gunfire last night at the Mariana Bracetti Plaza related to a "beef in the building."

Sources said that the victim, whose identity has not yet been released by police, pending family notification, used to live in Mariana Bracetti Plaza.


CBS 2 identified the victim as Anthony Ramon.

This post's for you: The East Village connection behind Neil Young's new box set

Photo by Daniel Root

Today, Neil Young delivers Official Release Series #4 as a box set. 

And there's an East Village connection to this four-LP/CD collection of Young's music from the 1980s.

Gracing the cover is a photo of Young that East Village-based photographer Daniel Root shot in 1988 at the long-gone venue The World on Avenue C and Second Street. (Read more about The World in this article.) 

How did this selection happen? 

"Neil picked it from their files," Root told me. "I suggested alternatives, but they said once he picked it, that was it." 

I asked Root a few questions about all this, starting with the night he took the photos. 
What I remember about the night was the packed house and the decrepit state of the place. It looked like the balcony and/or the chandelier could come down at any minute. Don’t remember much about the music except for the taping horn section and Neil’s wonderfully unhinged solos, but that’s usual for me when I shoot live shows and music videos. I’m listening for the "form of the music" more than the music itself. When I say form I mean I listening for "here comes a solo, here comes the big finish, group interaction, last song of the encore is about done and get ready for the big group hug/wave/smile." 
And on the selection process... 
The amount of luck and happenstance that got all this together is somewhat amazing. Shot in 1988, the stock photo house that represented my music photos sent them to him. They sent back most of them but kept some. The Neil Young Archives found them in the drawer when they decided to put out a 1980s collection and he picked that one. 

Thankfully the slide was still stamped with my name and phone, and thankfully none of that had changed. They had to clean it because it was in a drawer for 35 years but they did a great job. 

The release date was pushed back three times over two years. I started thinking it wasn't going to happen.
Previously on EV Grieve:

FULL reveal at 141 E. Houston St.; Yonah Schimmel can breathe again

Workers have finally removed the sidewalk bridge and construction attire from outside the new 9-floor office building at 141 E. Houston St. ... providing a full view of the 65,000-square-foot structure between Eldridge and Forsyth.

Someone already welcomed the structure with a few tags on the future retail spaces...
To recap. East End Capital and K Property Group bought the property for $31.5 million in early 2017. The links below provide more background on what has transpired on the site of the former Sunshine Cinema (RIP January 2018).

The red entrance you see out reveals a narrow alleyway/courtyard that separates the new building and No. 137 to the west — the longtime home of Yonah Schimmel. According to the listing for the two retail spaces at 141 E. Houston St., this corridor is Sunshine Alley, perhaps a lame nod to the Sunshine Cinema. (Previous marketing materials called the courtyard Houston Alley.) 

The listing notes a "built-in capacity for a commercial kitchen with venting to the roof," so a food-drinks operation is within the realm of possibilities for a new tenant. 

In some positive news, the circa-1910 Yonah Schimmel (revisit our post on them here) with its classic storefront is now in full view again after two years of obscurity thanks to the neighboring construction... 
And from Twitter yesterday...
Previously on EV Grieve: 

Thursday, April 28, 2022

Thursday's parting shot

Photo on Second Avenue today by Derek Berg...

I l❤️ve New York

A recent arrival at First Street Green Art Park ... mural by @m1keraz x @smetskyart...

RIP Paul Adrian Davies

Paul Adrian Davies, an East Village mainstay since his arrival in 1978, passed away on the weekend of April 15. He was 69.

Originally from Cardiff, Wales, the affable "self-taught photographer" lived on Seventh Street between Avenue C and Avenue D. 

Davies is known for documenting and publishing a book around Rolando Politi's installation of the Winter Flowers at La Plaza Cultural Community Garden on the SW corner of Avenue C and Ninth Street. In 2000, Politi began decorating the fence top with sculptures of flower-like whimsical (movable) assemblies created using packaging waste. 

Davies also captured East Village-based scenes from the COVID pandemic in a series of photographs titled "Six Feet Apart But Still Together," featured at the Tompkins Square Library branch. 

Here's described his approach to photography on his website
I am particularly drawn to the "street" in the widest context of that word. The "street" could be a temple in India, a marketplace in Mexico, a protest in Barcelona or the New York subway.

I like to observe the activities that take place in these settings and look closely at how people present themselves and interact with one another. I also enjoy the random events which happen in these environments and create unique moments and images. 

I am very interested in the dialogue which takes place on the "street" via graffiti, murals, scribblings, stickers and posters. I view this as a strong and important alternative to traditional communication channels such as print, television and even the internet. 

Friends are planning a celebration of his life next month. 


The memorial is Tuesday, May 10 at 5:45 p.m. ... at the Green Oasis Community Garden on Eighth Street between Avenue C and Avenue D.

Openings: Little Myanmar brings Burmese cuisine to 2nd Street

Photos by Stacie Joy

Little Myanmar, serving Burmese cuisine, is now open at 150 Second St. at Avenue A. 

Eater had the scoop about Little Myanmar's arrival:
The lauded underground Burmese spot Yun Cafe — famously wedged among a row of shoebox-sized businesses inside the Roosevelt Avenue/74th Street subway station in Jackson Heights — is expanding aboveground. 

The family behind the operation — married couple Thidar Kyaw and Tin Ko Naing handle the cooking, while their daughter Yun Naing is the business manager — is opening a rare Manhattan Burmese establishment called Little Myanmar ... with a full-blown kitchen that expands on Yun Cafe's existing repertoire with tangy noodle soups, steaming hot curries, mala skewers, and baked cassava cakes.
Eater has more on the family here, including the fact that their convenience store burned down in March 2021 in a fire that destroyed six businesses in Jackson Heights.

Little Myanmar, which includes five tables for in-person dining, is open daily from 3-9 p.m. for now. You can follow them on Instagram via this link or call them at (917) 475-1183.  

A break-in at Lucky on Avenue B

A man broke into Lucky at 168 Avenue B after close on Sunday night. 

Owner Abby Ehmann told EVG contributor Stacie Joy that the break-in occurred just after 4 a.m. The bar has a rolldown gate. However, the burglar got into the residential part of the building and into the back garden, where he picked the lock to the back door.

Surveillance video shows that the man spent nearly 30 minutes inside the bar here between 10th Street and 11th Street. (Don't worry — this clip isn't 30 minutes long!)


He took all the cash left in the drawer ... as well as a $5 bill that someone had signed for Abby to staple to the wall.
The burglar didn't steal anything else — and even locked the door behind him.

Police sources also said the same suspect robbed an unnamed business early that morning on St. Mark's Place.

Captain Cookie & the Milk Man will be taking orders soon on Astor Place

From the EVG tipline: An outpost of Captain Cookie & the Milk Man is opening on Broadway at Astor Place — next door to the Famous Cozy Soup 'n' Burger.

The Washinton, D.C.-based business "is a mobile bakery and dairy bar serving fresh-baked cookies, local milk, and made-to-order ice cream sandwiches." 

Per the Captain's Facebook page: "In addition to the greatest chocolate chip cookie in the world, Captain Cookie serves flavors like Ginger Molasses, Peanut Butter, Cardamom Snickerdoodle, Oatmeal Raisin, Cocoa Cayenne Espresso, Pumpkin Muffaroons, and more! Plus the excellent Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie!" 

The Astor Place location is opening tomorrow. 

Updated 1 p.m.

A rep for the Captain shared this info:
The new Captain Cookie is operated by Neil Hershman, a 27-year-old entrepreneur who is no stranger to the NYC food scene. Hershman successfully runs seven other dessert stores throughout New York, including his debut last year of the city's first Dippin' Dots store. A frequent customer of Captain Cookie during his college days in Washington, D.C., Hershman and his friends often reminisce about the craveable late-night, warm cookies. Realizing nothing could compare to Captain Cookie's quality and service, Hershman says introducing the brand to New York City is a no-brainer. He is currently building an additional Captain Cookie store in Times Square that's expected to open this summer.

Wednesday, April 27, 2022

Seeing sun spots today

A dispatch today from Felton Davis of the Second Avenue Star Watchers:
For about an hour this afternoon, while the bright sun was still in the sky, and before the cloud banks covered it over, there was an unobstructed view of the active sunspot regions that have appeared this month.
... and a safe view of the sun...  
And please note ... "Word of caution for serious fans: do not look directly at the sun, and do not set up a telescope unless it is fitted with a 99% solar filter."

Your season 2 'Russian Doll' reader

Photo from March 2021 on 3rd Street by Stacie Joy 

As you may have heard, season 2 of "Russian Doll" premiered on Netflix last Wednesday. (Maybe you've already binged!)

This time around, like Marty McFly (and Huey Lewis & the News), Nadia (Natasha Lyonne) heads back to the 80s — and further! 

As we noted last spring with the filming (here and here), the East Village serves as a backdrop for part of the season. Until Budapest. (Spoiler!) 

Anyway! Here are some articles to read if you're interested in more about all this... 

• Horseshoe Bar Is the Center of NYC's "Russian Doll" Multiverse (Thrillist)

• NYC Filming Locations for "Russian Doll" on Netflix (Untapped New York)

• In "Russian Doll," Natasha Lyonne Barrels Into the Past (The New Yorker)

About the 'explosion' in Tompkins Square Park this morning

Just before 9 this morning, there was what sounded like an explosion coming from Tompkins Square Park.

The Citizen app described it as a "loud power loss," sorta like the Nets getting swept by the Celtics. 

EVG correspondent Steven was in the Park ... and reported that it was some kind of compressor backfire from a Park vehicle parked by the field office along the Ninth Street walkway...
All this prompted visits by the FDNY and NYPD...
Anyway, if you were in the vicinity and wondered what that was all about...

The Charlie Parker Jazz Festival returns to Tompkins Square Park for the 1st time since 2019

The Charlie Parker Jazz Festival is returning this summer to the place where it all began — Tompkins Square Park. 

The City Parks Foundation announced the lineup for SummerStage 2022 yesterday (read the full rundown here; Gothamist has a story here). 

Included in the lineup of free and benefit shows: The Charlie Parker Jazz Festival on Aug. 26-28. The first two dates are in Marcus Garvey Park in Harlem. On Aug. 28, the festival makes its way to Tompkins Square Park from 3-7 p.m. (This show is free.) 

Here's what to expect here via the SummerStage 2022 program
Archie Shepp and Jason Moran are two avant-garde jazz musicians from different generations that nonetheless share a penchant for pushing the envelope. Shepp is a veteran saxophonist who has been called both a musical firebrand and a cultural radical, standing out even amongst myriad talents in the free jazz generation. Moran is pianist 37 years Shepp’s junior, with an equal respect for tradition and trailblazing. Their 2021 collaboration Let My People Go is a warm and intimate collection of duets recorded live in 2017-2018, a pristine portrait of two masters at work. 

The bill also includes the Grammy-nominated Chilean tenor saxophonist Melissa Aldana, who plays with a ferocious energy and deft musicality; Bria Skonberg, a Canadian jazz trumpeter and bandleader once described by The Wall Street Journal as one of the most versatile and imposing musicians of her generation; and Pasquale Grasso, a master be-bop guitarist known for elevating the instrument through his pianistic approach, showing the influence of Bud Powell and Art Tatum in a revolutionary hard-swinging way. 
An abbreviated version of the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival took place last year in Harlem; the 2020 slate was cancelled with the pandemic. 

The festival started in Tompkins Square Park in 1993 ... taking place near or on Parker's birthday on Aug. 29. Additional dates were added in Harlem in 2000. 

Parker, who died in 1955 at age 34, lived at 151 Avenue B from 1950-1954. That residential building between Ninth Street and 10th Street is landmarked. 

Photo from 2019 by Steven

Strings Ramen shutters on 2nd Avenue

Photos by Steven 

Strings Ramen has closed at 188 Second Ave. on the SE corner of 12th Street.

Last night was the grand finale for the Chicago-based ramen chainlet.
The sign for patrons states, in part: "Due to COVID, we have experienced extremely tough time for running the business... We are truly sorry and sad to see this happen." 

Strings, a regular on the best-of ramen lists in its home turf of Chicago, never had much of a chance here... opening in early February 2020, with about six weeks of business before the pandemic-era PAUSE of March 2020. (And it also doesn't help that the neighborhood has a lot of ramen options.)

As previously noted, the restaurants at 188 Second Ave. haven't fared well in recent years (at least since old-timer Shima got rent-hiked out of here in January 2014). Lumos Kitchen lasted three months in 2018. Others to make quick departures in the past five years were Hot Pot Central, DumplingGuo and Dumpling Go.

Thai Direct has closed on Avenue A

We're closing the book on Thai Direct at 131 Avenue A between St. Mark's Place and Ninth Street.

Management for Thai Direct announced on Instagram that the last day was March 27. (They also announced a closure in February due to a COVID-related rent dispute with the landlord only to reopen for what turned out to be another seven weeks.)

We still thought they might find a way to return. Now, though, someone has cleared out the space...
The quick-serve establishment, which billed itself as offering a healthy take on Thai street food, opened here in September 2018. It was a nice spot. 

Thanks to Steven for the photos

Updated 5/1

The for-rent sign is now on the storefront...

Pouring Ribbons replacement 11 Tigers announces itself on Avenue B

Coming soon signage recently arrived at 225 Avenue B between 13th Street and 14th Street for 11 Tigers. (H/T Jake Bowling!)

As previously reported, the bar-restaurant serving an omakase menu is in the works for the second-floor space. (The questionnaire for the CB3-SLA meeting mentioned the occasional jazz musician or two for entertainment.) There's an Instagram account for the establishment, which describes itself as a "Speakeasy bar & Restaurant."

The cocktail lounge Pouring Ribbons closed here last month after 10 years in service. 

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

At the hardcore matinee in Tompkins Square Park

Tompkins Square Park played host to a hardcore matinee Saturday afternoon with a 6-band bill: Wisdom in Chains, Burn, the Capturers, Cro-Mags, Murphy's Law and Madball...
As the photos show, there was a large crowd gathered (not quite as many people as the 2021 edition, and without the controversy)...
And it was an active day on and off the stage... EVG contributor Stacie Joy was on the stage and shared the view from this vantage...
... and Blair, the lead singer of Girl Dick, was also in the audience ... before taking the stage for a bow and jump...