Jan 10, 2012 Russ Tarby Uncategorized
Is there anything quite as satisfying as being able to say “I told you so”? I don’t think so.
In my Dec. 28 Livin’ in Liverpool column for the Eagle Star-Review I wrote, “You’re a jerk if you go to First Night.” The Dec. 31 bash at Onondaga Lake Park was headlined by New Boyz, a couple rappers from SoCal who muddied up the celebration with putrid patter, misguided misogyny and obscene gestures. The Boyz specialize in a new dance style called “jerkin.”
All this at an event heavily hyped as “family-friendly.”
After all, booze was banned!
But cocktails are civilized compared to the litany of four-letter words pouring from the speakers when these 20-year-old “pop stars” took the stage. In fact, they’re so immature that they refused to tone down their explicit performance even after First Night producers from Galaxy Communications politely asked them to keep it clean.
Crawling out of the Mojave Desert town of Hesperia, Calif., the New Boyz are two 20-year-olds named Earl “Ben J” Benjamin and Dominic “Legacy” Thomas. In 2009, the duo scored its first hit with a track titled “You’re a Jerk.”
Visitor Brenda Newkirk was shocked by the group’s “absolutely appalling vulgarity.” Newkirk — who drove her family from Weedsport and paid the First Night adult ticket price of $8 each — deduced that Ben J and Legacy “have no self-respect, nor respect for anyone else.” Well said.
Since New Year’s Day, Galaxy and sponsors AmeriCU Credit Union and Burdick Family of Dealerships at Driver’s Village have all been busy wiping egg from their faces. And the yolk’s on Onondaga County Parks & Recreation, where the outrage was staged.
Before booking the New Boyz, “family-friendly” First Night organizers should’ve had second thoughts about performers whose hits include titles like “Tie Me Down,” “Backseat” and “Better with the Lights Off.”
Controversy hit Galaxy Communications like a ton of bricks last week. First the First Night flap, then they heard complaints galore after firing longtime disc jockey Dave Frisina. The entire local music community is bemoaning the loss of one of its few friends in the Syracuse radio market. Since 1979, Frisina has hosted “Soundcheck,” a Sunday-night radio show featuring the artistry of local musicians. If there’s any justice in the music world, “Soundcheck” will soon find a new home.
Dana & Carl on air 20 years
Radio listeners still seeking the sounds of Syracuse should tune in via computer at westcottradio.org, from 9 p.m. to midnight Sunday, Jan. 15, for a commemorative show called “We’re Your Friends For Now: 20 Years Of Dana & Carl” hosted by power pop fanatics Dana Bonn and Carl Cafarelli.
Dana and Carl regularly host “This Is Rock‘n’Roll Radio” which just began its 14th year as the little mutant radio show that could. Before that the determined duo spun discs for WMNA, WXXE and helped to establish Syracuse Community Radio.
“We specialized in theme shows,” Cafarelli said. “British Invasion, Beatles Rarities, The Monkees, Rock’n’Roll Soundtracks, 45s Only, The Sounds Of Summer — with sporadic themeless shows too.”
Mighty oysters at bc
After two weeks of minor renovations, one of the anchor restaurants in Armory Square — bc, at 247 West Fayette St. — will reopen at 5 p.m. Friday, Jan. 13. I’ll be there to order up a plate of Island Creek Oysters from Duxbury Bay in Massachusetts. And I’ll gladly nibble on the complimentary small bites they’ll serve in the bar all night.
The chef at bc, Wayne Cafariella, creates high-quality meals for reasonable prices. His idea of modern dining is that “You can go out and have a four-star meal in jeans and T-shirt and not break the bank.”
The downtown eatery and bar is celebrating its eighth year with a more casual approach under the guidance of managing partner Ellen Leahy and general manager Shaun Preble, who are both committed to reviving downtown.
“We like to go out and eat delicious fresh food, but we also want to feel relaxed and let our hair down,” Leahy said. Me too.
Check out bcrestaurant.com; 701-0636.
‘Soft and White’
Syracuse poet Elinor Cramer has a new collection out. It’s called “She Is a Pupa, Soft and White,” published by Cincinnati’s Word Press. Downtown readers will especially appreciate the long-titled poem, “Canal Walls Engineered So Carefully They Still Hold Water,” which is a paean to the Erie Canal Museum on Water Street.
Written in a conversational prose style without difficult meters and sing-song rhymes, Cramer’s poems also pay tribute to our area with “The Crows of Auburn” and seasonal verses such as “Walking on Snow.”
Cramer will read her poetry at 7 p.m. Jan. 20, at the Downtown Writers’ Center at the YMCA on Montgomery Street. Jessica Cuello, author of the chapbook “Curie,” will also read that evening.