Prospect Park, Brooklyn
May 9 2005
sponsored by
WWWhatsup Online Pinstand
with thanks to Todd P and Prospect Park

'Toddstock I'

The original inspiration for this event came from BJ Rubin, of Puttin' On The Ritz, as a celebration of that combo's completing a year of their classic-wrecking existence. BJ got Todd P and Tianna Kennedy involved, and that tri managed to, as well as performing themselves, to round up a remarkable cross-section of local talent. The site was an idyllic corner of Brooklyn's Prospect Park, the peninsula that juts out into the Prospect Lake, with a view of Duck Island as a backdrop. A nearby log was pressed into duty as an impromptu stage. The weather was pleasantly cool, and a slight wind dropped as the afternoon wore on. Proceedings kicked off with Todd P himself singing what he claims is the only song he knows. Katrina Rudmin of Mahogany sang one quiet sweet song. Dave Deporis sang one about adulthood. Then Ezekiel aka Zeke Healy let off on his national steel with a couple of blues improvs, before duetting with Tianna on cello. He finished with a song by Casio for The Painfully Alone and his trademark, an upbeat 'Sunny Side Of The Street'. Kevin Barker aka Currituck Co., looking very much the high plains drifter, was next, treating us to 4 songs and an instrumental. With his unusual atmospheric vocal style, Mike Wexler enchanted with 4 songs. Improvisational duo This Invitation did two numbers, one another collaboration with Tianna's cello, the other where they were the only ones to break the unamplofied rule, but with the tiniest Fender amp I've ever seen. Trevor Healy, with some precision guitar picking, gave 3 pleasant pastoral tunes. Joel Saladino, former drummie with Parts and Labor, and now with Narchitect, played 3 personal ditties on a red & white paint-daubed guitar. Then Benji Cossa, who sings in a beautiful high tenor, came up with 5 well received songs. Miguel Mendez, eschewing the log for the shade of the trees, certainly made the fashion statement of the day, with the plaid shirt worn over the hoodie, and the matching headband. His 5 'stoner folk' songs were wryly amusing as well as catchy. Then it was time for the main attraction - birthday boys Puttin' On The Ritz- snazzily dressed in matching shirts. BJ, in his blog claims he was sober, but if so he certainly did a good job of appearing semi-blotto, as per usual. After peripatetic versions of 'Girl From Ipanema' and 'Fly Me To The Moon', with Kevin's drumstick tosses being carried on the breeze almost into the lake, the marital counseling number 'If You Want To Be Happy' ended with the two of them wrestling, and teetering on the water's edge. The crowd held its breath, but they stabilized and remained on dry land. Called back for an encore they performed an epic 'Let's Call The Whole Thing Off' where, at one point, BJ disappeared in the direction of the bamboo grove with Kevin in pursuit, still drumming. They returned to the log and finished the song up, BJ curled up fetally on the ground while Kevin beat out the rhythm on the guitar case upon which BJ's head rested. The focus then moved back over to the trees, where Hisham Bharoocha, ex-Black Dice, and Andy McLeod, ex-White Magic, performed a bluesy ragalike improvisation. Alice Cohen - something of a legend from her stints The Vels, Shag Motor Pony, and Die Monster Die - quietly did 3 songs. Joe Bradley, from Cheeseburger, with exquisite harmonies from Benji Cossa, did a stone sober take on Jimmy Buffet's 'Margaritaville', before giving Johnny Thunders' 'Chinese Rocks' the same treatment. TK Webb gave us 3 songs of the raw blues for which he is known. Finally Necking, the last - and certainly the loudest - performers of the day - set up their twin drumkits. Their first number, the Carl Douglas classic 'Kung Fu Fighting', led into 'Kissy Slap' an extensive drum battle. Before the next piece one of them, overcome by the call of nature, tried to add to the Prospect Lake - but, and we all know how that goes, with the whole crowd watching, failed. To much mirth. He buckled up and they went into another bashing duet - 'Dog Eggs' - before finishing off the event with a heartfelt version of the Dead Milkmen's anthem 'Life Is Shit'.

I've put one tune from each of the artists below. Clicking here will play the whole lot in realplayer. Clicking on any songs image will take you to that song on YouTube.

And yes, there is a DVD of the whole thing - 54 tunes. You can get a copy from orders@pinstand.com (paypal $5 USA $6 Foreign inc mail).Ask for DVD738. You might also find a copy at the Cake Shop. If you are one of the performers, write in for a free copy.

capture captain: joly
date posted: 7/12/06

Todd Patrick - toddpnyc.com
Katrina Rudmin - myspace mahogany
Dave Deporis - myspace davedeporis
Tianna Kennedy friendster
Currituck Co. - myspace currituckco
Mike Wexler - myspace mikewexler
This Invitation - myspace thisinvitation
Trevor Healy - heat retention records
Joel Saladino - myspace narchitect
Benji Cossa benjicossa.com
Miguel Mendez - myspace miguelmendezmusic
Puttin' On The Ritz - myspace puttinontheritz
Hisham Bharoocha - myspace friendid=4226648
Joe Bradley - myspace cheeseburger
Necking - - myspace necking

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