In an email sent to its list today, R5 Productions announced it is seriously cutting back on shows in the basement of the First Unitarian Church at 22nd and Chestnut. The Church basement had been hosting all-ages shows promoted by R5 for 18 years.
R5 Productions’ Sean Agnew previously held shows at a club called 4040 at 4040 Locust Street, until overblown spats with neighbors forced its closure, and at the Rotunda at 40th and Walnut on Penn’s campus. Eventually, most of the R5 shows migrated to the basement of the First Unitarian Church.
But now R5 is pretty much ceasing to book shows in the basement. Agnew now co-owns Boot & Saddle, a bar and small venue in South Philadelphia, and Union Transfer, a 1,300-seat venue with a three separate bars in the former Spaghetti Warehouse on Spring Garden. “With these new venues and a slew of other that have opened up around Philadelphia,” R5’s email read, “it’s become increasingly difficult to book bands who want to play the church.” The Church was a victim of its own success. With fewer R5 shows, the church needed a regular tenant to keep revenue up. An after-school group will start booking the venue in a few weeks. R5 will cease doing weekday shows soon, and hopes to book on Saturdays and Sundays.
Shows in the sanctuary or side chapel will continue as usual.
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We are very excited about the announcement that we just received from the folks at the Wells Fargo Center… Read more »
Bounce Music Festival, with Patti LaBelle, Ruben Studdard, and Maze featuring Frankie Beverly, took place last night at the Mann Music Center in Fairmount Park.
At one point Miss Patti dedicated a song to her friend Joan Rivers, the comedian who died last week at the age of 81. It began with a rift of "You Are My Friend," and ended in a prayer. The 70-year-old diva thanked Philly for supporting her for the past 52 years of her career.
Patti has the energy of women half her age, and legs that go on for days. She ended the set with "Over the Rainbow." At one point she kicked off her heels, with one flying into the audience as often happens in her show. (Once I actually caught one, but gave it to a friend who probably still has it on his shelf at home). But these days she's wearing Louboutins, so she sent her shoe guy into the audience to retrieve that baby. She left the stage to thunderous applause, and returned to sing an encore of "You Are My Friend" to the appreciative audience.
After a brief break Maze featuring Frankie Beverly took the stage and the audience began to dance, holler and party it up as Beverly sang all his big hits. It was a gigantic party for the next hour or so as the audience, many dressed in white to pay homage to Beverly, put down their video devices and seemed to get into the groove.
Jay Z, Kanye West and Frank Ocean are being sued over a song they collaborated on that got it’s name from Jay Z’s Philly-derived Labor Day weekend Made in America Festival. The song in question is, you guessed it, “Made in America.” More from AV Club:
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Temple alum and Mad Decent Block Party creator Diplo gets the cover story treatment in the latest issue of Billboard magazine. The article is a quick retrospective of his career thus far, touching on his time in Philly at the helm of the Hooked on Hollertronix parties. He also talks about what’s in store for his career, including working on a few new tracks with the Queen of Pop:
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Will Smith’s oldest son Trey (aka DJ AcE) was performing in Las Vegas this weekend with DJ Jazzy Jeff, when his dad came on stage to surprise the audience with a performance of his and Jazzy Jeff’s 1991 hit “Summertime.”
“We haven’t been on stage in forever,” Smith told DJ Jazzy Jeff, before he pulls up his shirt to show the fans his abs and tears into the song. Eventually he just takes his shirt completely off, and he doesn’t look too bad for a 45-year-old pops.
Check out the video above (song starts around 2:10), and one from later in the day, when he dances to Sugarhill Gang’s “Apache (Jump On It), below.