All Around the World

Posted on: September 24th, 2014 by Jon Berger No Comments

As we begin to anticipate the upcoming Lachfest, it may be time to look at the wider world of AntiFolk around us.
Lach, as you may recall, is the titular founder of the AntiFolk movement, and is currently holding down the Fort in Edinborough, which narrowly avoided risking its European Union status. You can learn more about this foundling father at, the UK AntiFolk site, which is celebrating its tenth anniversary (not the website; the UK AF movement. Keep up, people)!

So, Lach is coming back to town mid-month, and will be celebrating all things Lach at a series of Sidewalk nights. More to come on them, clearly.

As he arrives back in the States and the City, he’ll come to grips with some of the ways AntiFolk has stretched out in his absence. Among them, the expansion of M. Lamar’s empire. Getting reviews in classy publications and doing shows on Houston Street show just how far this artist has gone (six blocks south, apparently). Learn more through the Times.

The world is AntiFolk’s oyster apparently. Let’s eat.

Ye Olde Guard

Posted on: September 18th, 2014 by Jon Berger No Comments

This Friday’s schedule ends with some older school AntiFolk acts, including the wizened and ancient Rebecca Florence on piano – less than a week after her band Soul Candy’s show during the esteemed Coach-ella.

Stephen Stavola follows at 9:00 pm, also playing on the piano, but perhaps for the last time. Stavola has spoken of fleeing the City of New York, so there might be few further chances to experience him again.

No so with Debe Dalton the 10:00 pm act. The banjo player has already left New York City, and has no plans to make that kind of mistake again.

These are some of the finest that AntiFolk has to offer. What possible reason could you have to miss it?

Fruity as a Nutcake

Posted on: September 17th, 2014 by Jon Berger No Comments

Nico West – that fruity songwriter – is bring a bagful of songs about fruit to the Sidewalk again. His current project is playing songs solely on topics relating to fruit – though he does stretch far enough to discuss the tomato’s role in the fruit family (including the bridge lyric, “I reject reality!”).

His opening act is Barry Bliss, who has chosen to play out less and less, so it might be in your best interests to see him perform while you can.

The Diabological Return of Eugene Ripper

Posted on: September 15th, 2014 by Jon Berger No Comments

Canadian Fast Folk Underground emigre Eugene Ripper is returning to our lands this coming Wednesday. He’s playing on a bill right after The Miele Sister’s Variety Show. He played in New York back in the 90s, seeming as representative of that early acoustic punk AntiFolk sound as any of those ‘Merican acts playing around.

You can get a sense of the style in the video at


Posted on: September 12th, 2014 by Jon Berger No Comments
Joe Yoga is encouraging everyone to go out this Saturday to Coach-ella, “a sick lineup of rocking Antifolk superstars in support of the world’s greatest rock and roll band, Coach.”
Coach  is a multi-state two piece group that sometimes plays New York, sometimes plays Philadelphia, and always entertains. Yoga things that it would be a mistake to miss the event. “It’s like Lollapalooza – except relevant.”
Featuring Kung Fu Crimewave, fresh off their own Kung Fu Palooza, as well as Gay, Walter Ego debuting a full band, and much much more. The show, according to Yoga, is “guaranteed to change your life, or your money AND your time back.”
With a promise like that, who can possibly miss it?

Open Stage Antics

Posted on: September 9th, 2014 by Jon Berger No Comments

The Monday Night Open Stage was winding down, most of the acts had performed, most of the acts had left. One more was going on before Ben Krieger, host with the most, was going to wrap things up. It was after one, so the one-song wonder round was in full effect for the rest of the night.

Some french chick hit the stage. guitar in hand, and she did her song. Then she began her second.

“Thank you,” Kriger said, “it’s just one song.”

Frenchie didn’t seem to understand, and continued with her second song.

Ben interrupted to reiterate: “It’s one song apiece.”

She played on, so the lights went down, and the volume turned off. And still she played, until Krieger put on effects, just as he had at the top of the evening, during his introduction. It stopped her cold, and, flustered, she left the stage, calling Krieger an asshole.

In the audience was the French-speaking Shelita, who explained that she’d chatted with the French girl to tell her the rules. Frenchie, apparently, understood what was expected of her, and defied it, like some latter-day resistance fighter.

It was very much like the start of the evening, where some manic Floridian did a poem, two songs, with lots of commentary in between. It was an evening rife with foreigners taking advantage.

Come back any time…

The Final Countdown

Posted on: September 9th, 2014 by Jon Berger No Comments

Jonathan Berger, who’s been toiling through a Tuesday night residency ever since this Summer’s AntiFolk Festival, is closing up that particular show this Tuesday. In his fifth consecutive Tuesday, he’ll be performing in an unnamed project where Sanjay Kaul will back him on acoustic guitar. Eagle eyed viewers might recognize Sanjay Kaul from Lunchin’, and really old eagle eyed viewers might remember him as bassist for Atoosa, Tony Hightower, Seeken, and even Berger’s first iteration of JUANBURGUESA.

After this final show, who knows when we’ll see Jonathan Berger play the Sidewalk again? Will he be at the Monday Night Open Stage, as he has been for these past 15 years? Or perhaps at his next scheduled show in October? Who can say for sure? The thing to keep in mind, though, is that Berger will be done with his residency after this Tuesday. If you miss it, it’ll be gone…

Return with Oz

Posted on: September 8th, 2014 by Jon Berger No Comments

Yesterday, Mimi Oz played her first of two shows this week (if you count Sunday as the start of the week – which really works well for the my argument) – her monthly residency show will be this Thursday. For  this Sunday show, Oz brought Rooster (or The Rooster, depending on the moment you ask Oz), her full rock ensemble to the Sunday! Super! Showcase!, while her Thursday gig is  listed as Mimi Oz & Friends, where she’ll play and swap songs with Miss Represent and April Sun.
The band was tight and powerful, impressing a surprisingly full room (also the case for Merrick Smith’s earlier EP release show)  to produce the rockingest part of the night. A tiny dance party ensued, including birthday girl Brookes McKenzie, who performed as part of Anacoustic Mind earlier during the Showcase!

Oz’s final song was her solo AntiFolk masterpiece, “Bullshit.”


First to Last

Posted on: September 7th, 2014 by Jon Berger No Comments

Two acts that first arrived on Monday are performing on Sunday (today – September 7, in case you didn’t know).

Merrick Smith played early, since his show had been scheduled. He announced his EP release, so copies should be available on the night.

Later in the evening, Shelita Burke played, and got a last minute booking at the end of the night.

In between, Brookes McKenzie will celebrate her birthday during the Super! Sunday! Showcase.

What else could you be possibly doing?


Posted on: September 6th, 2014 by Jon Berger No Comments

Ian Roure and Liza Garelick celebrate their 5th anniversary today. They are in, collectively, the Larch, Tracy Island, and the Wonderwheels. They’ve been together much longer than married, and, when they began their courtship in another century, much of it took place at the Sidewalk.

The two performers have been around much less in recent years, but they pop in to support old friends, and with certainty, keep the creative fires strong in their various projects.

Good on ‘em! Have another five more – on us!