Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Taking you to the Apollo

Now I figured for most of you, a tour through Harlem is something you have not really considered, or indeed, considered and figured it a little too nerve wracking. So, in case you can't afford the airfare or are simply a big scardy cat, I've decided to take you on a little tour. Starting first at Harlem's most photographed and famous landmark the Apollo..

You may have seen the images broadcast throughout the world of people dancing on the streets outside the Apollo to celebrate the life of the late, great King of Pop, Michael Jackson. While tressle tables of merchandise appeared seemingly out of nowhere, (I swear that stuff was printed in an hour!), the vendours set up outside this famous landmark to do a roaring trade.

You see, the Apollo has always been one of the big draw cards of 125th Street which is the official hub of Harlem. This iconic theatre has launched the careers of greats such Stevie Wonder, James, Brown, Billie Holliday, Lauryn Hill and many others. It still hosts Amateur Night on a Wednesday night and is listed as Manhattan’s third largest tourist destination. It's now defined as a historic landmark and for good reason, for tourists and locals alike the Apollo is a huge part of the history of Harlem and although, most days I walk past it non-chalantly there are times when I have a 'Harlem moment' to stop and go 'that's pretty damn cool!'. I strongly suggest you go and find out for yourself. They hold tours where you can go backstage, select concerts and of course, amateur night is Wednesday nights.

ApolloTheater.Org. 253 West 125th Street, between Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. Blvd & Frederick Douglass Blvd (also known as 7th Avenue & 8th Avenue ) New York, New York, USA 10027. P: (212) 531-5300.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Book gets thumbs up from Plopculture.Blogspot.com

Most people rarely, if ever, read the acknowledgements page of the novel they're reading. I do. Mainly because I know how much the people around you mean when you are doing something as time/energy and emotionally consuming as writing a book.

As my little pile of freebies gets smaller and smaller, I have to write lists to make sure the appropriate people finally get a copy of the book I have been talking about, crying about, having a mental breakdown about for the last two/three years.

Mr. Meyerson (as he's known in the acknowledgements) certainly helped me get through the worst of it. Being signed on to instant messanger can be quite a burden as he was soon to find out. I tested everything out on him from funny bits to serious stuff. ie. This is funny right? Isn't it? Or is it just me? Have I been writing this crap for too long? By myself? Do you think it's funny? Do I need to get out more? No, really you can tell me.

Patiently he told me when it was funny and when it wasn't. He stopped work momentarily to tell me I should take a break. I am forever grateful. Check out what he had to say on his fabulour blog: