May 28, 2004

Inna dancehall

Little clip for dancehall fans. Click da mouse, boomba clat!
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It's Friiiiiday!

Capturing the feeling you get as you triumphantly close out of Outlook with one hand and grab your folded up NY Post with the other as you run out of that cubicle farm at 5:01PM on a Friday...especially on Memorial Day Weekend, Murray Saul's timeless tirades rip down the button downs and render a gaping hole into the khaki pleat that is corporate malaise.

They are indeed something to behold. Saul knows a thing or two about drab employment, cutting his teeth as a carnie, Macy's jewelry counter clerk and salesman for Brown Business Machines (mechanical calculators!). All of this came before his stint at WMMS in Ohio in the seventies where his GET DOWNS were drive time radio gospel. Take five minutes and tune into this manic, true energy.

Get Down!

Support Murray his CD.

And remember, as Murray says, the winnner of a rat race is still a rat.
Posted by Neil at 12:05 AM | Comments (18) | TrackBack

May 27, 2004

Get out of your house to get Bush out of his...

Concerts for Kerry
is an organization that is getting right to the source. Putting together great shows, motivating the youth vote and bringing music to the people. Every dollar of ticket sales goes directly to John Kerry's campaign. This movement is building momentum. Hell, even Slate thinks this is a good path to victory.

Next show is June 1st at Pianos on the Lower East...some hip-hop niceness with Jean Grae and Roosevelt Franklin.

As a side note, how many of the truly old school Muppet headz will remember the original Roosevelt Franklin?

Get your tix now for the June 1st show.

Posted by Neil at 12:26 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

May 24, 2004

Liquid Boy

Remember the Spike Jonze Fatboy Slim video where with the dance class in front of a strip mall movie theater...interpretive dance? Now, check out my man. Leave the wardrobe, but this time add a pinch of ridiculous liquid styles.

Best part about it is he is performing as part of Kollaboration, an annual talent show to showcase the best and brightest in the Korean community.

View the clip
Posted by Neil at 01:25 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

May 12, 2004

Two Videos I Dig

Liam Lynch's United States of Whatever
TV On the Radio's Staring at the Sun (directed by a guy from my high school, Elliot Jokelson)
Read more about Elliot and the making of the video
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A Moment of Joy

Click the pic below
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Automated Culture - Speed Stacking


Remember activities that you did in elementary school to train yourself for more "adult" skills? Making dioramas, presenting current events, cutting circles...

A new movement is afoot in our progressively automated culture. In Speedstacking, kids take plastic cups and grab and re-arrange them in varying patterns going for the quickest times. See demonstrations here and here.

Speedstacking. According to the, speedstacking

Cup stacking promotes many skills used in a number of other sports. Increasing bilateral proficiency (equal performance on both sides of the body) develops a greater percentage of the right side of the brain which houses awareness, focus, creativity and rhythm.
Looks to be great training to be a short-order cook or motherboard assembler...

Posted by Neil at 11:41 AM | Comments (15) | TrackBack

May 10, 2004

Steal this Idea - Citydog Consultants


How do you pick out a dog in New York City? A lot of people look on the Internet and find breeders and cute puppies in West Virginia and Canada. Some talk to friends. But who's the expert?

I ran into a friend of mine who is a dogwalker. He knows everything about dogs in NYC...which ones are nervous, are sociable at the dog run, pee in the house, are hyper, lie at your feet...

Why not put this expertise to use?

Enter Citydog Consultants. This group would be formed of a network of dogwalkers from around the city. The consultants would come to your apartment for a consultation. They would assess your dog compatibility based on how much time you would have to spend, your neighborhood and what you are looking for in furry friend.

Then, you would take a trip with your consultant to meet other dogs in your neighborhood at the dog run. There, you could see them interact, meet their owners, get introduced, ask questions etc...

The consultants would maintain a network of breeders with referrals to owners who have dogs in NYC you can speak with and ask specific questions and even meet up with other owners and dogs to see what the dogs are like, rather than going directly to the breeders which is often far and less than objective.

Dog Connections

A centralized posting (dating?) service for dog play dates in the city where you could post a profile of your dogs and arrange to meet up with other dog owners to meet and socialize.

Note: All ideas expressed on Vestacrest are protected under a Non-Commercial, Share Alike Creative Commons License

Posted by Neil at 06:34 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Texture Project - Take 12

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May 08, 2004

Community Builders for Media Obsessed Yuppies

Two ideas for you to get in touch with your peoples, get esoteric, enjoy company, and feed your brain while nourishing a healthy obsession with image, pop culture and the arts.

  1. Get 12 people together.
  2. Assign one person (you) to collect contact information for everyone including complete mailing addresses.
  3. Aggregate this information on a website or just send everyone an email.
  4. At the beginning of each month, one club-member burns 11 CD’s and sends to everyone else with a letter about what’s up in their lives.
CD’s can be mixes, entire CD’s, great speeches of the 20th century. A great chance to share inspiration/information and keep in touch with your wayward network. Works well with dispersed college buddies.

  1. Get a group of friends who like to read and drink.
  2. Aggregate contact info. Yahoo! Groups works well
  3. Once a month someone hosts the club at their house. Each month has a different wine theme. We have done themes such as Spanish, sake, tequila, big reds…The person who hosts the event gets to choose the next book and the person who will host the coming event chooses the wine.
Virtual Book Club
Golden State Warriors center and political activist Adonal Foyle hosts a virtual book club on his blog. From Adonal's website:
At the beginning of each month, I will post the month’s book choice and the date by which club members should have finished reading the book (usually the third week of the month). By that date, I would like all of my online club members to have e-mailed me their questions and thoughts on the book. Then my original book club will meet and discuss your questions and comments, and I will post yours and our responses on the website.
Posted by Neil at 09:48 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Tupac comes out of hiding (kind of)

Tupac has a new video out...under an assumed identity. Scared for his life and bi-coastal hip-hop struggles, Pac makes it happen on the DL.

On a related note, anyone notice the hip-hop audience getting younger and younger by the day. Unbelievable.
Posted by Neil at 09:37 PM | Comments (674) | TrackBack

Art, Protest and Pragmatism

How can you really effect some change in this world? How powerful is your protest, smashing Starbucks windows and holding up signs? Yes, it is good PR, but are you really making a difference by showing and telling? Is there something you should be doing?

I recently attended a salon hosted by the Wooster Collective. Genius culture jammer Ange Taggart presented her own work and some of her colleagues. The work was visually stunning, wry and moving. In "Cleaning up After Capitalism", her colleague Richard goes to Wall Street with a vacuum and Virgin Records and makes a show of tidying the area. Ange and ex-political prisoner Mark Barnsley do a number called "Insecurity Guard" filling a market void in our uncertain times.

All of this was well done and impactful. It raised considerations about the efficacy and role of art in raising awareness and driving systematic societal shifts. The culture jamming campaigns raised my awareness and made me smile and consider. But they are different from action that will make change.

After Taggart had spoken about the dangers and crimes of capitalism, I asked her if she had an alternative that worked better. She said that with enough smart people thinking together, we could come up with an alternative. So what happens after the revolution? Radical and immediate change is imperative, but change to what? What do you want to be the system post-facto? Hmmm....

Abe posed an interesting question about the conflation the "evils" of Wal-Mart and Starbucks, citing that in his experience, Starbucks provides a pretty decent service to his community. He grew up in NYC, where, before Starbucks it was pretty difficult to find a decent cup of coffee. Further, he talked about Starbucks commitment to its employees manifested through diversity and benefits to part-time workers. Here's a good take on the issue: The Starbucks Paradox. Wal-Mart...well that's a different story.

Which brings me to my make real change, it ultimately takes dedication of resources and more tangible action to make change. One example that blew me away was a group of environmentalists who are using funds to buy up excess emissions of sulfur dioxide on the open market and then not using that allocation to pollute. Brilliant, effective and action oriented...admirable.

Symbiotically, the artist and culture jammer have raised awareness, gotten the message out...but the pragmatist has executed and made the change happen. The beauty of art is it can stimulate, move to action.

Suggested Reading: Anti-Americanism by Jean Francois Revel. Exploring the roots of anti-Americanism delving into the roots of the anti-globalization movement and what the author sees as the true motives of such movements. Will most likely anger you but should also open you to viewpoints that you don't find in the NY Times, The Guardian etc... For me, a valuable exercise to force myself out of a reading comfort zone, where I am only engaging in left wing material that is easy to stomach, get behind and agree with.
Posted by Neil at 01:38 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Link Freestyle

This boy's got the latest freestyle biznis straight outta Westchester
Hey, Crackhead!
Beat the Velvet Underground to get to your Bar Mitzvah on time
Short Temper
Sour Grapes: Winners never cheat and cheaters never win.
Posted by Neil at 12:56 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack