These Days: Sunday, May 28th. 2017
Theatre: The Oslo Accords from 1993 between the PLO and the Israelis had at least one last result. Izhak Rabin was assassinated (a lone gunman -needless to add) for signing it. The accord lasted six months before fighting broke out. “Oslo,” at the Vivian Beaumont, is the story of how a married Norwegian couple, one a diplomat and the other a social scientist, opened backdoor negotiations, where Israel and the PLO could meet in private half an hour out of Islo. Within nine months there was a peace treaty. Written by J.T. Rogers -who has written about war and politics before, including “The Overwhelming” about Rwanda and “Blood and Gifts” about Afghanistan, is certainly capable of putting blood and heart to the story. Jennifer Ehle as the official in Norway’s Foreign Ministry Mona Juul remains the luminous actress she was in “The Real Thing,” and in a career defining performance, Michael Aronov gives rock star cool to the Director-General of the Israeli Foreign Ministry. The nearly three hours flew by, the dialogue was sparkling, the humanity undoubtable, the diplomacy genius. On the other hand, the conclusions are not supported by history and there is another way to look at it: Arafat had to get out of Tunisia by any means necessary. Grade: A-
Death: People of good faith may disagree but the Allman Brothers were the greatest jam band of all time. I didn’t see them that often, reviewed them here four times and saw them two times before that, by ABB freaks standards I am a novice. I went to the penultimate ABB show in October 2014 (my review) and while it wasn’t the greatest I’d seen him, Greg sounded great. The best I ever saw them, and one of the best shows I’ve ever seen, was just another evening at the Beacon in 2013 (my review) But I really loved them, I hated jam bands before ABB and they opened my ears to other jam bands, none of whom came close. After they disbanded I went in search of another one and couldn’t find it anyway. Phish? Pompous assholes. Dead? No Jerry. Tedeschi-Trucks, Gov’t Mule? The closest I got was Dickey Betts Band, and if he toured more often he might have done the job… Gregg Allman died yesterday of liver cancer at the of 69. So his stupid lifestyle didn’t get him, it only made his last decade very uncomfortable. And now it is over, we can place Gregg next to Duane as the legendary Brothers Allman.
New Music: Lil Yachty’s Teenage Emotions is receiving mixed review and sure, anyone who disses Biggie imma have beef with. But this is the most vibrant teenage kicks I’ve heard in years, since Care Bears On Fire come to think of it. At an overwhelming 21 songs and at over an hour in length, it is like Goblin on prozac. Grade: A
Old Music: Obviously, all Allman Brothers all the time.
Sports: Arsenal beats Chelsea for the F.A. Cup, Yanks play small ball, Mets lose in ten innings. Yanks are in first place and two lengths ahead of the Red Sox, who they face on June 6th, 7th and 8th at the Stadium… Finally, the rivalry is meaningful once more and I just bought a nosebleed for Thursda’s game.
Concerts: I just bought a ticket for Lil Yachty at T5 August 25th -VIP2 so I passed on the meet and greet and got early entry. This is important because T5 has the worst sightlines on earth and if you can’t get in early you can’t see a thing. I haven’t been back since it destroyed Sleater Kinney’s gig February 2015 (here): “(but) venue was so terrible, such a disgracefully viewer unfriendly venue (the designer should be shot), it ruined the experience for me and not just me, T5 is the most restless place on earth, people are constantly moving backwards and forwards trying to see something, anything, except other people’s head.”. I swore I’d never be back.