Monday, December 31, 2012

12/31: Global Midnight Party Guide

An old ball...
In case the party is starting early, here is a repost of a "Global Midnight Party Guide" where you can see where it's midnight in relation to Boston (aka Eastern Standard Time). And, yes, some places have a "half-hour" time zone.

Don't let any gaps in your geography knowledge stop you from toasting on the hour -- or half-hour in some cases...

And there are a few Boston ideas below.



Kuwait City
Rio de Janeiro
Sao Paulo
Buenos Aires
Santo Domingo
La Paz
San Juan

12/31: Some NYE Cheapness

The cheapest good time is to stock up on cava or prosecco and party with friends at someone's home.

Otherwise, Allston is a good place to be for NYE if you're going out with a couple good options below and fancy places like the Silhouette...

Remember that the T is free after 8pm, and there is extended trolley and commuter rail service until 2am.

Happy New Year!


MON 12/31

Various Times
First Night
at Various Locations around Boston
FREE / $18

With a discreetly deployed flask one could be entertained outdoors for a little while without buying the button, but there is so much worth the $18 like Magnetic Fields, Tanya Donelly, John Scofield, Walter Sickert & the Army of Broken Toys, Ellis Paul, and more.

MON 12/31

Jason Anderson
at PA's Lounge, 345 Somerville Ave, Somerville (Union Sq)
$10 / 18+

I can only assume Jason Anderson used to live here, because this guy has been coming to Boston for quite a few consecutive 12/31 gigs to spread the folk-rock positivity. Take a look at a clip from a couple years ago.

As they say, "...Semi-formal attire is strongly encouraged."

MON 12/31

You Can Be a Wesley, Creaturos, The Migs, BoyToy
at Regina's Pizzeria, 353 Cambridge St, Allston
FREE / Donations appreciated

If I didn't already have plans (and generally eschew bars on NYE), I'd probably go to Regina's. (I didn't know if I would like the remodel of the former Sports Depot, but I do.)

There will be plenty of great rock along with $1 pizza slices after 9pm, and $2 tallboys.

MON 12/31

Sidewalk Driver, Eldridge Rodriguez
at Radio, 379 Somerville Ave, Somerville (Union Sq)

The New Year's Eve Party is going on upstairs and down, but the main attraction is two sets by the fantastically glam Sidewalk Driver.

MON 12/31

"Fuck New Year's"
at Bukowski Tavern, 1281 Cambridge St, Cambridge (Inman Sq)
at Bukowski Tavern, 50 Dalton St, Boston (Back Bay)
$1 to you!

Just like Charles Bukowski would want it, both establishments that bear his name are acting like it's any other night of the year.

They're even going to give you a buck for showing up, which you should spend on booze -- or a burger if you're going to fight someone later. (You'll need your strength.)

A PBR toast might happen around midnight.

MON 12/31

Beware The Dangers of A Ghost Scorpion!, Thick Shakes, Ladybones
at O'Brien's, 3 Harvard St, Allston
$10 / 21+

Didn't I say Allston is happening tonight? There is some serious surf- and garage-rock to welcome 2013.

MON 12/31

Dan Webb & the Spiders, Lube, Ex-Magicians, Secret Hearts
at Charlie's Kitchen, 10 Eliot St, Cambridge (Harvard Sq)
$5 / 21+

There's lots of loud rock and punk almost every Monday at Charlie's, so tonight is no different.

MON 12/31

The Four Legged Faithful
at Toad, 1912 Mass Ave, Cambridge (Porter Sq)
FREE / 21+

It's probably going to be a full house for this bluegrass-y blend. Mainly because you can't fit many people in Toad.

MON 12/31

Haley Jane & The Primates
at Plough & Stars, 912 Mass Ave, Cambridge (Central Sq)
$10-ish / 21+

If you can get in this other relatively small joint, it should be a good time and live rock 'n roll.

MON 12/31

Fireworks Cruise
at Gate C (Mass Bay Lines), 60 Rowes Wharf, Boston (Waterfront)

You can put your name on the waitlist, but I suspect most of the 300 people that reserved spots will show up.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

SUN 12/30: Sunday Night Off-Topic Video

While the holiday season is a time for merriment, some people can feel a bit more down than usual. I can understand that feeling.

I do hope that all of us find joy in the upcoming year. The video has a few suggestions.

There's a mention of "G.O.D." at the end (whatever that means)...

Some NYE cheapness is on the calendar.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

12/29: Almost Back from my 'Fishing Trip'

I can imagine that most are not expecting much from me lately, but I still want to do something helpful here.

The last week has been a blur -- and not what I'd call a relaxing vacation. I've realized that I can't get much done at the Chili's before I get on my flight, so it's Bloody Mary time. Happy Saturday!

If I was in town, I'd probably go see Andrea Gillis at Toad (Free) or Mieka Pauley at Johnny D's ($10). (Two great singers, and my heart is in Camberville...)

Cross your fingers for me, so I can uncross them to type faster. Let's do a last-minute NYE post or two in the next day for those who feel like venturing out, then have a kick-ass 2013.

Monday, December 24, 2012

12/24: Free CTB Xmas Mix

Hey, are you having people over tonight or tomorrow? Throw some of these tunes on for some background.

I can't remember where I found all of these tunes. The best holiday mash-ups are from DJBC and his Santastic crew... The Phoenix has given free mixes the past two years... A slew of holiday music posts can be found on Can You See the Sunset and AM Then FM.

The zip file [SendSpace or Mediafire] includes the songs, and I've titled them with my sequence:
1 - "Xmas Party, Part 1" -- Bob & Ray
2 - "Everybody Christmastime" -- Tralalas
3 - "Frosty The Snowman" -- Kay Hanley
4 - "Just Like Christmas" -- Aberdeen City
5 - "James Brown Died on Christmas Day" -- Hands and Knees
6 - "Xmasploitation (Santa's Baddass Revenge)" -- mojochronic
7 - "Happy Christmas" --The Toasters
8 - "Snow Day" -- Bleu
9 - "Christmas Wrapping" -- The Waitresses
10- "Xmas Party, Part 6" -- Bob & Ray
11- "Christmas Is The Time To Say I Love You" -- Billy Squier
12- "Feliz Navidad" -- El Vez
13- "Jingle Bells" -- Reverend Horton Heat
14- "This Christmas" -- The Organ Beats & Friends
15- "O Holy Night" -- South Park
16- "Last Christmas" -- The xx
17- "Xmas Message" -- Barry White
18- "Rocknroll Christmas" -- Quichenight
19- "Everything's Gonna Be Cool This Christmas" -- Eels
20- "Christmas Comes But Once a Year" -- Amos Milburn
21- "Chiron Beta Prime" -- Jonathan Coulton
22- "Hanukkah" -- The Beatlesandlers
23- "Santa Claus" -- The Sonics
24- "A Wicked Hardcore Christmas" -- Big D and the Kids Table
25- "This Time Of Year" -- Mighty Mighty Bosstones
26- Santa Claus is Comin' to Town" -- The Jackson 5
27- "Santa Claus And His Old Lady" -- Cheech & Chong
28- "A Very Whiskey New Year" -- Three Day Threshold & Summer Villains
29- "Christmas Time is Here" -- Vince Guaraldi Trio
30- "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" -- Los Straitjackets
There's a lot of Boston-centric artists, because Boston is awesome.

It sucks to blog from the West Coast, but I will try to update the CTB calendar soon.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

SUN 12/23: Sunday Night Off-Topic Video

As I limp into the new year, I think it will be a good one. I hope it will be for all of us.

Happy Festivus!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Monday & Tuesday Calendar

Cheap fun is out there.

If you don't have any plans for tomorrow night, you could RSVP for WFNX's "Mistletoe, Music & Misfits Holiday Party". It's likely one of those 'everyone can RSVP, because we'll let people in until we're at capacity' kind of parties with good music.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

SUN 12/16: Sunday Night Off-Topic Video

It was a bad news week for kids, so here is a video that I saw a while ago about a kid who used his imagination and created something positive.

Caine's Arcade from Nirvan Mullick on Vimeo.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Friday & Saturday in Brief

Hey, it's the second Friday of the month, so you could go to the MIT Museum fof free tonight... Or laugh your arse off at Great Scott ($5)...

The Figgs are playing two nights at Church in celebration of their 25th anniversary as one of America's great rock bands ($10)....

The Lights Out have 2 nights at Radio with different rock friends on Friday & Saturday ($10).

And there's an "Americana Christmas" show at Johnny D's ($10).

As for Saturday, some highlights include:

-- Some tix may be left for the annual Somerville Illuminations Tour ($10)

-- The Cover-Up is celebrating Prince ($10 advance)

-- Free ice skating in Kendall Square

-- There's a punk-rock Hurricane Sandy fundraiser at the Midway Cafe ($8)

-- Probably not as good as last week's Santacon, but... Bad Santa Bar Crawl ($10)

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Thursday Calendar

Okay, let's hope we can get the weekend (maybe more) up tonight...

If you're a Tolkien fan, you may want to go on a quest to Malden for a night of 'Middle Earth' pub triva...

Or you could do late-night shopping in Inman Square...

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Tuesday & Wednesday Calendar

Not a vast variety of cheapness tonight, but there might be something to tickle your fancy...

Sunday, December 09, 2012

SUN 12/9: Sunday Night Off-Topic Video

If you are tired of auto-tuned clips, think twice about playing this one.

On the other hand, I think I will be singing "Bring on the roasted potatoes" this holiday season...

SUN 12/9: Shop, Draw, Listen

I'm in a vague sense of denial about the encroaching holiday season, but there are topical events below.


SUN 12/9

10am to 4pm
Holiday Flea Market & Bloody Mary Bash
at TT the Bear's Place, 10 Brookline St, Cambridge (Central Sq)
* Whatever you buy

It may say more about my personality, but I love the idea of browsing arts-craftsy/vintage stuff while drinking a bloody mary. I didn't know TT's had 'world famous Mega Monster Bloody Mary'. (In a plastic cup maybe?)

They're even calling it Santa's Hot Dog Village where you get a Narragansett tall boy and a hot dog for $5.

A 'Bad Santa' will be there, and you can bring something for the food drive to benefit Rosie's Place.

Or there's a holiday market in the South End too where you can find a branchy place with Bloody Marys.

SUN 12/9

2:30pm to 5:30pm
Dr. Sketchy's Anti-Art School Cabaret: Life Drawing Class
at Great Scott, 1222 Comm Ave, Allston
$8 drawing / $10 ogling / 18+

Models: Johnny Blazes & Madge of Honor

There are few times when hanging out at a bar is considered creative or artistic beyond napkin origami...

At Dr Sketchy's, drawing and drinking are combined at whatever ratio you desire as the usually wild models put provocative twist on traditional posing.

A couple of tips that I cribbed from the organizer a while ago:

Come on time to get a seat up front. Keep it small so others can crowd in around you. Bring your stuff in a milk crate so you have something to sit on or put your stuff on. (we have lots of seats, but more is helpful) There will be some fancy paper for you to buy if you want.
No one is going to criticize your drawing, so don't worry about your skills. You gotta start some time, and you're not going to find a cheaper life-drawing class... with a bar...

SUN 12/9

Noon to 6pm
Holiday Arts & Crafts Fair
at The Loft, 438 Somerville Ave, Somerville (next to Market Basket)

Performance Schedule:
1pm -- Amy Alvey
2pm -- Mike Crockett
3pm -- Kristen Ford
4pm -- Patrick Coman
5pm -- Dan Blakeslee
Another shopping experience for the day is right next to Market Basket in that building with the Indian market. While you look at the locally-produced goods, local musicians will share their tunes. They say free wine and coffee for guests so you better not cry, better not shout, and better buy something.

SUN 12/9

3pm to 5pm
"Music of the Silk Road"
at Yenching Auditorium, Peabody Museum, 2 Divinity Ave, Cambridge (Harvard campus)
FREE / Donations welcome

How often do you listen to music from Tibet, Turkey, China, and Japan? If never, then this is your chance. If it's often, then you probably don't go to many concerts.

SUN 12/9

Marc Pinansky & The Bored Of Health
at Toad, 1912 Mass Ave, Cambridge (Porter Sq)

Most of Marc Pinansky's Sundays have been spent at Precinct in Union Square, so he and the Bored of Health are headed to Porter Square. Unlike Marc's hard-rockin' Township, I believe the BoH consists of a steel guitarist and a stand-up bassist.

Saturday, December 08, 2012

SAT 12/8: Santas, Dance, Theatre, Music

Wow, it's the last month of year! Where did the time go?


SAT 12/8

Noon to 11pm
Boston Santacon 2012
meet at Game On!, 82 Lansdowne St, Boston

From Kenmore Square to North Station, a horde of drunken Santas will be trouncing bar to tavern to pub before their busy night on the 25th.

If you have the right suit, join in. If not, sit back and watch hundreds of jolly old lushes overtake any number of watering holes.

SAT 12/8

1pm & 4pm
MIT DanceTroupe: "Fifty Shades of PliƩ"
at Little Kresge Theatre, 48 Mass Ave, Cambridge (MIT campus)

Give these guys credit for dancing on the coattails of a major pop culture phenomenon of the past year. ONe hopes there might be some wit and sass in the show that will feature "dance pieces in contemporary, hip hop, ballet pointe, and tap."

SAT 12/8

2pm & 8pm
"The Last Days of Judas Iscariot"
at Agganis Student Theater, 925 Comm Ave, Boston (BU campus)

This play seems more appropriate for the Easter season when the Biblical snitch Judas is brought into a metaphysical court to be judged for his actions and the consequences.

When originally produced Off-Broadway in 2005, it attracted such talents as Philip Seymour Hoffman, Eric Bogosian, and Sam Rockwell. Let's hope the humor and philosophical points hold up when performed by college students.

SAT 12/8

3pm to 5pm
5th Annual Holiday Prelude Tour
at Gore Place, 52 Gore Street, Waltham

When I would pass by Gore Place, I often wondered what the mansion of a Revolution-era politician looked like on the inside. The way I see it, a limited $5 tour might satisfy me as much as the usual $12 tour.

SAT 12/8

Elephant Stone (8pm), Air Traffic Controller (7pm), Guillermo Sexo (6:15pm)
at TT the Bear's Place, 10 Brookline St, Cambridge (Central Sq)
$10 / 18+

Having played with Brian Jonestown Massacre, The Horrors, The Soundtrack of Our Lives, and others, bassist/sitarist Rishi Dhir is doing his own psych-rock thin in Elephant Stone.

The early show includes the masterful folk-rock of Air Traffic Controller and Guillermo Sexo's own fuzzy goodness.

SAT 12/8

"Boston Workmen's Circle Radical Hanukkah Party"
at Johnny D's, 17 Holland St, Somerville (Davis Sq)
$10 advance / $12 door

Amazing music of the Michael Winograd Klezmer Ensemble anchors a party on the first night of Hanukkah, and people of all beliefs and non-beliefs are welcome.

You don't need to care about the miraculous 8 days that the oil lasted to light the menorah to dance and enjoy potato pancakes & doughnuts. (And how many deeply religious Jewish people do you know?)

SAT 12/8

7pm to 8pm
Winter Opera Series
at CFA Concert Hall, 855 Comm Ave, Boston (BU campus)

Maybe an hour of opera is just right for the beginning of your evening -- a perfect prelude to a basement kegger. (Or whatever you want to do...)

SAT 12/8

Tunefoolery's Holiday Concert
at The Lily Pad, 1353 Cambridge St, Cambridge (Inman Sq)
$10 suggested donation

If you think the holiday season is making you crazy, then you might want to sit back for a while and listen to the Tunefoolery concert. It's a program for musicians in mental health recovery, so you can might be able to relate to these folks.

I imagine the funds go to the non-profit organization or the performers -- a good cause either way.

SAT 12/8

Greg Klyma
at Arts at the Armory Cafe, 191 Highland Ave, Somerville (Central Hill)

I'll repeat my blurb about Greg Klyma once more:

Greg Klyma seems like one of those lovable drifters. He's charming and you might even start thinking that he's a Boston guy or a [your town] guy, but he mainly roams. I doubt that he's dangerous except for his clever songs. I could be totally wrong about the charming-drifter thing, but the music is good.

(I have a feeling he is a Somerville resident.) The songwriter/storyteller extraordinaire will be joined by a few musical friends backing him up.

SAT 12/8

The Barley Hoppers, The Fearless Leaders, Easy Ed’s Record Hop
at The Midway Cafe, 3496 Washington St, Jamaica Plain
$8 / 21+

It's a winter's night of hot rockabilly & honky-tonk.

SAT 12/8

"Strummer 10 Anniversary Show"
at Radio, 379 Somerville Ave, Somerville (Union Sq)

Feat: Last Stand, The Unstables, The Hired Men, Cerebral Ballsy

It sucks to think that Joe Strummer rocked off the mortal coil 10 years ago. Expect hear a bunch of songs from The Clash and his solo days. When I last noticed Cerebral Ballsy play, they were basically an acoustic version of 007 Hundred Club.

SAT 12/8

Dead Cats Dead Rats, Zip-Tie Handcuffs, Amoroso, Ask the Dead
at O'Brien's, 3 Harvard St, Allston
$7 / 21+

Keep in mind that Dead Cats Dead Rats were the best punk band in last year's Phoenix poll, and I dig them too. There are three the kick-ass bands on the bill. If you're not getting into it, the problem might be you.

SAT 12/8

The Afro D All-Starz
at Tommy Doyle's, 96 Winthrop St, Cambridge (Harvard Sq)

I think I saw MC Afro D Z Ak on the Red Line this week, and his big hair looks pretty cool offstage as well. It should be a soulful blend of funk and hip-hop as he leads a big, horn-laden band.

Friday, December 07, 2012

Weekend Calendar

I'm not writing about weekend chepness, however getting my wisdom teeth removed did not get me in a writing mood last night. Stay tuned...

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Wednesday thru Sunday Calendar

Well, the 'Tuesday to Thursday Highlights' post didn't happen... Why don't we aim for an early 'Weekend Cheapness' report, shall we?

Lot's of fun tonight. I listed Boston Nightlife Awards, because there are free tickets available (but I wouldn't pay to get in).

Monday, December 03, 2012

Monday thru Friday Calendar

Okay, folks. The plan is to post a 'Tuesday to Thursday Highlights' tonight, then get the 'Weekend Cheapness' up before the actual weekend.

That will hopefully get us ahead of schedule to move forward. Stay tuned...

Sunday, December 02, 2012

SUN 12/2: Sunday Night Off-Topic Video

If you haven't seen the kid from "Two and a Half Men" slag his show, you might want to start here.

Otherwise, I love the expressions on Craig Robinson's face.

12/2: Sunday in Brief

And there's cheapness through Wednesday on the calendar.


SUN 12/2

10am to 5pm
Artists Group of Charlestown Open Studios
at Stove Factory Building, 523 Medford St, Charlestown (near Schrafts Center)

Noon to 6pm
Vernon Street Open Studios
at Vernon Street Studios, 6 & 20 Vernon St, Somerville (Winter Hill)

Noon to 6pm
Karen Aqua: Studio Show & Sale
at 11 Miller Street Studios, Somerville (near Porter Sq)

There are a couple chances to see art, talk to the artists in person, and maybe buy some art. It's a win-win for supporting local creative people and not worrying about the recipient already having whatever you give them.

There's also a "Holiday Vintage Market" behind the Indo in Union Square today and next weekend.

SUN 12/2

6pm to 9pm
Annual Harvard Humanist Holiday Party
at Community Center, 3rd Fl, 12 Eliot St, Cambridge (Harvard Sq)
FREE -- Bring Cereal

The good thing about this party is that you don't need to wonder if someone celebrates any variation of ChrismaHanuKwanzaa -- just say "Happy Holidays!"

Swing by the market and grab a box or two of cereal, because the Humanist Community are on a month-long drive to donate their collection to the Pine Street Inn.

SUN 12/2

"A Little Calm before the Storm": Staged Reading and Q&A
at Goethe-Institut Boston, 170 Beacon St, Boston (Back Bay)
$10 / $5 students

This German play is about centers on stage actors portraying Hitler. It will be in English, and playwright Theresia Walser will be present for the Q&A.

SUN 12/2 (and MON 12/3)

"Aurora Borealis: A Festival of Light & Dance"
at Dance Theatre, 915 Comm Ave, Boston (BU campus)

This is the open dress rehearsal of BU's annual program from theatre and dance groups. Students and faculty will perform dances and "movement pieces" with probably more emphasis on how to use lighting for maximum effect. (See a clip.)

There are 2 performances tomorrow at 7pm & 9pm.

SUN 12/2

Boston Music Awards Simulcast
at Redstar Union, Building 400, One Kendall Sq, Cambridge

Feat: Mean Creek, Gem Club, Yale MA

You can almost be at the Boston Music Awards tonight by watching it in Kendall Square. Simulcast praters even get live performances from some top Boston bands.

(You can still RSVP, and I think it's a first-come first-serve admission system.)

SUN 12/2

Poetry Jam: Lizard King/Queen Finals & Douglas Bishop
at Lizard Lounge/Cambridge Common, 1667 Mass Ave, Cambridge (between Harvard Sq & Porter Sq)
$5 / 18+

Feat: Rudy Cabrera, Taqua the Edutainer, Erik, Neiel Israel, Marlon Carey, Porsha Olayiwola, Bobby Crawford, Art Collins

As the PJ site says:
Eight poets will compete to be the 2013 Lizard Queen or King and potentially represent the Lizard Lounge in the 2013 Individual World Poetry Slam. Three rounds of poetry from some of the best performance poets in the greater Boston area.
Exclamation points were removed for poetry coolness...

Saturday, December 01, 2012

SAT 12/1: Medicine Wheel & Calendar

Photo from last year's Medicine Wheel

Since it's "World AIDS Day", you could visit the annual Medicine Wheel exhibit or go to open studios or buy stuff or listen to music. It's on the CTB calendar.


SAT 12/1

All Day until Midnight
Medicine Wheel
at Cyclorama, Boston Center for the Arts, 539 Tremont St, Boston (South End)

The Medicine Wheel is annual installation in remembrance of those who've lived and died with AIDS, and it centers around 36 shrine-like pedestals arranged in a circle with different designs and various items left by visitors over the years.

I've been there once before, and it's a heavy experience. It's dimly lit, and most people are respectfully quiet, and there are periodic performances (on the hour). One can reflect in a quiet, safe, and beautiful place; it's a quite a special experience.

Every year, it changes slightly with a different theme.

Note: Anyone is free to "leave an offering (personal object, letter, picture, jewelry, poem...) for the healing and remembrance of all affected by HIV and AIDS."