03/22/17 12:41pm
"Shea Stadium: lifting people up since 2009." Photo by Seth Applebaum

“Shea Stadium: lifting people up since 2009.” Photo by Seth Applebaum

Bushwick’s Shea Stadium has had a rough year, having announced their second temporary closure back at the beginning of this month. Instead of throwing in the towel and caving to the bureaucratic, corporate regime that has successfully killed so many of the small DIY institutions shut since the turn of the century, Shea is continuing to fight the good fight and has now launched a Kickstarter to raise $50,000 and re-open, “legally for a more sustainable future.”

This is an especially feasable goal seeing as Shea states the issues with the space are not structural but a matter of racking up more fines than they could pay for as, “the city’s increased regulation and inflated rents have made running these types of spaces an uphill climb.” According to a diagram showing where funds will go on the Kickstarter page, the majority of money will be for Department of Health, Department of Buildings, and FDNY renovations, with architecture fees in second most expensive place. (more…)

02/08/17 12:44pm
Bushwick Market Hotel Coworking Space

Market Hotel in party mode (photo via Market Hotel), Market Hotel in under-construction mode (photo via Twitter).

Bushwick’s Market Hotel, temple of all that is good and indie, has officially become one with Nu Brooklyn: it is now a daytime coworking space.

For those who don’t know, the Market Hotel is a beloved DIY venue off the Myrtle-Broadway stop by the Bed Stuy border. A former squat that went legal and became a music venue, seeing performances by the likes of Sleater-Kinney and Ava Luna before turning out to not actually have gone legal at all when cops raided it in 2010 during a Smith Westerns show.  Now, in need of income as they continue to get their act, and a liquor license, together, the Market has added a 8am to 7pm coworking space to their roster of community offerings, according to Bushwick Daily. (more…)

09/21/16 11:34am
No bike lane? No problem. One bike dad in Park Slope is here to fix that

No bike lane? No problem. One bike dad in Park Slope is here to fix that.

It’s hard out there for a bike.

New York cyclist deaths are up 25% this year, according to the Mayor’s 2016 management report. Earlier this summer, the Times reported Brooklyn as the most dangerous borough for cycling in the city, and Vision Zero doesn’t seem to be helping people not die at the hands of reckless drivers.

And yesterday, one cyclist enthusiast in Park Slope was so exhausted with the dangers of the city that he painted his own damn bike lane in his neighborhood. (more…)

07/15/16 9:57am
Heliotropes has gone through several lineup changes. Apparently this one involves a lizard. Photo by Matthew Cylinder, courtesy of Facebook.

Heliotropes has gone through several lineup changes, always with Jessica Numsuwankijkul at the helm. Apparently this one involves a lizard. Photo by Matthew Cylinder via Facebook.

Inspiration can come from anywhere. For Jessica Numsuwankijkul, 33, of Bushwick’s Heliotropes, it came in the form of the WWI and WWII documentaries she found herself watching during the winter of 2014, a time when she felt too depressed to do much else. This resulted in a softer, gentler Heliotropes than we’ve maybe seen before on their last album, 2013’s A Constant Sea. The record is really rad, and features some snippets of bizarre, forgotten history, plucked from those documentaries and hidden in the guise of a sweet duet.

“I took inspiration from pieces that are not musical,”Numsuwankijkul said. “I think that’s really important, because it means you’re not rehashing all these tropes that are used in songs all the time.”

Plus, I know from personal experience that Heliotropes also does a mean Weezer cover set, and they’re preparing to take their music on the road (quite literally) as the travelling band for a Record Store Crawl, a bus tour of NYC record shops. So basically, Heliotropes is very Brooklyn, and their new album Over There That Way drops today. (more…)

07/13/16 10:00am
Technology has come a long way since this, though this is still a pretty baller rig. Via Flickr user macq.

Technology has come a long way since this, though this is still a pretty baller rig. Via Flickr user macq.

Ever have something that should be played at high volume, preferably in a residential area? Not that we here at Brokelyn would advocate disturbing the peace, but New York is (quite literally) a loud city, and why should automobiles have all the fun on the run when it comes to mobile sound? Radio Raheem bore the burden of the boombox, but you don’t have to!

Technology’s progressed even if society in many ways hasn’t (the racism and police brutality featured in the climax of Do the Right Thing rings truer than ever today), and your options for mobile sound compound when you bring your bicycle into the mix. The question remains: how exactly do you deck out your draisienne with dope audio? We’ll demonstrate four different ways, from shamelessly storebought to solidly soldered, depending upon whether you prefer taking it easy and taking your tunes with you indoors and out or prefer getting your hands dirty and riding around on a permanent party machine. (more…)

06/14/16 4:08pm
Photo by Hope Morawa/Brokelyn.

Photo by Hope Morawa/Brokelyn.

I always hated the smell of DEET. Mosquitoes and I have never been BFFs, and as a semi-popular band/theater/show choir socialite in high school, my social life over the summers was shrouded in a dark cloud of bug spray. It was a bite or be bitten way of life, and being slightly allergic to such bites, I wasn’t one to risk walking out of the house without a can in my backpack/fanny pack.

But I’m a part-time adult in my 20s now, and recently, when on a date at King Tai with a handsome 6ft-something ginger, this boy had the privilege and horror of seeing me in my truest form as I smashed a mosquito to smithereens, smearing it’s/my blood over my face while maniacally cackling. I knew better: it was a warm night, the doors of the bar were propped open, but Date Hope opted to smell like sexy coconuts rather than bug spray, making Date Hope a stupid, sitting duck who gained a bunch of bug bites in under a hour and no boyfriend. Enough was enough. Hence, my search for a more natural alternative to getting mosquitoes to bug-OFF had begun. (more…)

05/06/16 12:00pm
Sunshine Gun Club is actually a four piece. I was told this photo was cropped due to a "drummer situation." I'm pretty sure that means he got murdered by Teletubbies.

Sunshine Gun Club is actually a four piece. I was told this photo was cropped due to a “drummer situation.” I’m pretty sure that means he got murdered by Teletubbies.

If you’ve been in New York City for a couple of years, you’ve probably heard someone talk about how things have changed. You’ve probably noticed it yourself: rent goes up, places close, people move away. Nowhere are these changes more apparent than in Brooklyn’s DIY music scene: bands get together, bands break up, venues close. But then new venues open, and new bands form: bands like Bushwick’s Sunshine Gun Club, whose new album Heaven is out today via Weiner Records.

It’s being released on both cassette tape and digital download, which is pretty cool. I got to talk with Dan Walker, singer, songwriter and mastermind of the skuzzy, melodic punk rock quartet. Sunshine Gun Club is recommended for fans of lo-fi, DIY and deranged Teletubbies on a drug-induced murder rampage— read to the end to make sense of that last one. (more…)

03/09/16 8:22am
vagabon hay

Vagabon’s Laetitia Tamko.

Vagabon‘s Laetitia Tamko has only been writing her own music since January of 2014, but she’s been playing rad shows at rad venues and making a bevy of cool musical friends since then. Vagabon was actually recommended to me by fellow Musicians Talk Making It interviewee Katie Capri of Fern Mayo; when I first saw Vagabon, they were playing at this amazing Planned Parenthood benefit at Silent Barn. Tamko, a native of Cameroon, is a great person to talk to about successfully making music because she started out without any fancy equipment: her first instrument happened to be a very cheap guitar.

“I was reluctantly gifted an acoustic guitar from my parents for my 17th birthday,” she said. “It was like the equivalent of those First Act guitars they make for kids … they got it from Costco. I learned the open chords then never touched it again until January 2014 when I began writing songs that would eventually be performed as Vagabon.” (more…)

03/02/16 9:21am
Shake it off: You can make this delicious Shake Shack burger right at home. Photos by Lauren Page Richeson.

Shake it off: You can make this delicious Shake Shack burger right at home. Photos by Lauren Paige.

Burgers: Everyone love them … some of us (me) more than others. When I lie awake at night, I dream of beef.

This glorious city has so many burger options, however nothing quite fills my carnivorous cravings like a hot and juicy double ShackBurger. For just under $8, you can’t beat it. But what about those late nights when they’re closed? (Shake Shack closes at 11pm.) Or let’s say, you just don’t want to wait in line with tourists? While Shake Shack has opened many locations throughout the city since the OG in 2004, you won’t always be near one when the craving strikes. But why should that stop you from complete burger satisfaction? Here’s how to create your own ShackBurger, #lpfedme style. Get ready to hack the shack. (more…)

10/28/15 2:24pm
And on the 7th day God said, 'leather be light.' Just kidding, he actually said, take these Coursehorse classes.

On the 7th day God said, ‘leather be light.’ Kidding, he actually said ‘take these Coursehorse classes.’ via BK Shoe Space

Okay, guys, it’s almost November. This is the big leagues; late fall isn’t for sissies. This is the time where you either nut up and lean into the season, or crawl into your bed and try to hibernate until May. Spoiler alert: the second one doesn’t work. In order to help you survive the madness, we’re bringing you a roundup of fall-core activities that are sure to raise you up as the crafty, autumn-savvy demigod you are.

Besides learning a new skill, signing up for classes through Brokelyn helps us keep the lights on. Lucky for you, we have good taste. This week, we’ve got crafts, crafts and more crafts.  (more…)