BLACKBOOK PREMIERE: Swedish Songstress Clara Mae’s ‘I’m Not Her’ (KillaGraham Remix)

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She’s co-written tracks for David Guetta and Tiesto. But it was her guest vocal on 2016’s “Taped Up Heart” (which she also co-wrote) by Norwegian production duo KREAM, that first garnered Clara Mae global acclaim – as it racked up more than 80 million streams worldwide.

Now signed to Big Beat, the young Swedish songstress is ready to break out on her own. She released a debut single and video, “I’m Not Her,” last month – a stunning meditation on romantic uncertainty. And BlackBook premieres here the first remix, by US producer KillaGraham (who has also worked with Drake and Kid Cudi).

Rather than choosing – as so many remixers do – to totally deconstruct the tune, he instead plays with the atmospherics, infusing it with a bit more melodrama…without at all diminishing its visceral impact.

“KillaGraham did an amazing job with this remix,” Clara Mae enthuses. “He put a darker, cinematic spin on the track. I love that it’s not the traditional remix you would expect for this song.”

And KillaGraham himself adds, “The moment I first heard Clara’s voice I immediately fell in love with it – and just knew had to work with her on a project. I was excited when I was chosen to be the first to remix ‘I’m Not Her’ and happy about how it turned out.”

Expect to hear much more from Clara Mae in the coming months.

 

 

alexa BlackBook: Alison Mosshart, Don Lemon, Matthew Modine, Nia Vardalos, Leslie Odom Jr. & More Tell Us Their Christmas Wish Lists

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WISH LIST: ALISON MOSSHART

The musician, artist and sometime-model serves as lead vocalist for indie-rock band the Kills, as well as for Jack White’s supergroup, the Dead Weather.

 

Maria Tash 18-k rose-gold diamond earring, $975 at Net-A-Porter.com

 

“Maria Tash earrings are 
all beautiful, tiny 
and shiny.”

 

 

 

WISH LIST: DON LEMON
New York-based journalist Lemon — who’s won both an Emmy and an Edward R. Murrow Award for his reporting — currently anchors the primetime cable news show CNN Tonight.

 

Ali: A Life by Jonathan Eig, $30 at Amazon.com

 

“As a kid, I saw Ali as this iconic figure — this black man who would have people hanging on his every word. 
But I didn’t get just how huge a figure he was until 
I was an adult. Everyone thinks taking a knee is a 
big deal, but think about being Muslim and saying 
you’re not going to fight in a war — jeopardizing 
your career. That took real courage.”

 

 

 

WISH LIST: MATTHEW MODINE
“Scientists estimate that by 2050 there will be more tons of plastic in the ocean than fish,” says Modine, who appears on Stranger Things, streaming now on Netflix. “We have to be responsible consumers. Gifts like this will make your friends eco-warriors and demonstrate how you are hip, cool and a part of the solution.”

 

Bee’s Wrap (three pack), $20 at PatagoniaProvisions.com

 

“These food wraps are the perfect solution for eliminating plastic wrap. The anti-bacterial properties of the beeswax and jojoba oil help to keep food fresh and allow you to use the wrap again and again.”

 

 

 

WISH LIST: NIA VARDALOS
Vardalos is now working on a play called Tiny Beautiful Things in New York. “As holiday shopping season approaches, I’ve eyeballed many corneapopping tiny beautiful things,” she says. “While many of us can’t exactly splurge on fanciful items, we can always drop loud and obvious hints!”

 

“Royal Strass” Swarovski-crystal adorned pumps, $3,995 at ChristianLouboutin.com

 

“If you’re like me and never want disco to die, then we can wear these redbottomed glittery shoes to every office meeting, to every rave and then to church the next day.”

 

 

 

WISH LIST: LESLIE ODOM JR.

Odom Jr., who won the Best Actor Tony for his scene-stealing performance as Aaron Burr in Broadway’s Hamilton, now appears on the big screen in Murder on the Orient Express.

 

Get Out movie poster, $20 at 
Amazon.com

 

“I want a limited-edition Get Out poster framed — and signed by Jordan Peele, please — for my office. I haven’t gone to the theater to see a movie three times in 
… ever. I was entertained and inspired more than I can say. “

 

 

 

WISH LIST: AERIN LAUDER
Lauder is the image director for her family’s Estée Lauder brand, while also running her own popular beauty and home lifestyle company, AERIN.

 

Aspen Style, 
$85 at Assouline.com

 

“This book is high on my wish list. Not only because Aspen is such a special place to me, but also because the cover is so beautiful and will look amazing on any coffee table.”

 

 

 

WISH LIST: ELIZA COUPE
Actress Eliza Coupe, best known for her roles on Happy Endings, Scrubs and The Mindy Project, just returned to screens on the new Hulu series Future Man, directed by Seth Rogen.

 

Luxe gym bag, 
$165 at SweatyBetty.com

 

“I work out like a maniac and go through gym clothes and gym bags like crazy — Sweaty Betty makes the best workout gear!”

 

Illustrations by John Kenzie

10 Events You Can’t Miss at Art Basel Miami

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While the holidays are certainly on everyone’s minds, Miami Beach is gearing up for a different kind of celebration. Art Basel kicks off this week, drawing influencers, fashionistas, and art power players to the beach-cum-cultural hotspot.

With a weekend full of a-lister parties and events, it’s important to have a plan of attack. Here’s how to do it right.

 

Patricia Field Art/Fashion
Friday, December 1- Sunday, December 31
White Dot Gallery

New York fashion icon Patricia Field brings her own brand of style to Art Basel once again – and the Art/Fashion exhibit and pop-up shop actually takes place all month long. There’s also an opening night party on Thursday, December 7, and a runway show on Saturday, December 9, both invite-only. Find more info here.

 

Bombay Sapphire Artisan Series 2017
Tuesday, December 5- Saturday, December 9
Scope Miami Beach

For the eighth year Bombay Sapphire celebrates some of the art scene’s most promising undiscovered talents with this series, on display at Scope. If you can get on the list, the finale party is Friday, December 8 at the Villa Casa Casuarina (formerly the Versace mansion), hosted by Issa Rae of HBO’s Insecure. Find more info here.

 

NADA x PAOM
Thursday, December 7- Sunday, December 10
Ice Palace Studios

This limited line features the work of three artists of the New Art Dealers Alliance, printed on clothing and other products. Proceeds go to Pérez Art Museum Miami and the NADA International Gallery Prize. An opening preview takes place Thursday, December 7, by invite only. Find more info here.

 

Bareback Follies
Thursday, December 7
7:30pm
El Tucán

The mother of New York nightlife, Susanne Bartsch, brings her iconic brand of downtown decadence to Art Basel. With performances by Amanda Lepore, Joey Arias, Leonid The Magnificent, and more, it’s an event to behold. Find more info here.

 

Andy Warhol: The Impossible Collection
Thursday, December 7
11pm
W South Beach

Assouline and Sotheby’s celebrate this new book of Andy Warhol’s work. The Factory party takes place at the Surf Lodge pop-up in the W Hotel. This event is by invite only.

 

David LaChapelle Book Signing
Friday, December 8
6-10pm
Taschen

Known for photographing the likes of Amanda Lepore, Naomi Campbell, Björk, and many of today’s biggest names, the iconic fashion photographer will be present to sign two new books. Both feature his surreal, fairytale-like fashion photography. Find more info here.

 

Look Alive Fest
Friday, December 8
8pm
Churchill’s Pub

This night of experimental music and performances is sure to be an experience to remember. The sixth annual event celebrates artists with a focus on deconstruction of popular music. Find more info here.

 

Catwalk: A Night of Vogue
Friday, December 8
11pm-4am
7450 Ocean Terrace

With a live performance by CupcakKe, this promises a night of voguing in classic ball fashion. Nic Nac Mizrahi hosts with DJs MikeQ, Quest?onmarc, Gooddroid and Bonnie Beats. Find more info here.

 

Little Dreams Foundation Benefit Gala
Saturday, December 9
8pm
Fillmore Miami Beach

Founded by Phil Collins, this foundation has sought to foster the development of young artists, with and without disabilities. The third annual gala and concert features performances by Collins, Laura Pausini, KT Turnstall, Pitingo and Fifty Eight Hundred. Find more info here.

 

Sounds by Paris Hilton
Saturday, December 9
11pm
Wall Lounge

Everyone’s favorite socialite and social media sweetheart returns for her annual Art Basel event. Paris will DJ at Wall Lounge, with general admission starting at $150 and VIP tables starting at $800. Find more info here.

Sunrise Ruffalo’s Upstate Adventure

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Something happened this summer on the Western edge of the Catskills: the once thriving river towns that got rich in the 19th century on logging and the bordellos that served the lumberjacks have stirred back to life, thanks to an influx of New Yorkers looking for an escape plan in these testing times. Having lost their Main Street businesses to Walmart and Dollar General, a tangle of towns along Route 97 from Port Jervis are emerging as prime destinations, thanks to a mix of ambitious new restaurants, specialist boutique stores, and a wealth of river activities that bring the corridor to life in summer.

From Narrowsburg’s excellent The Laundrette with its inventive wood-fired pizzas and salads (think Brussels sprouts with a yuzu jalapeno aioli) and newly-opened Narrowsburg Proper (44 Main Street), a foodie’s emporium of gourmet imports from Europe as well as local farmers and bakers, to oenophile Robin Mailey’s new tapas-style wine store and bar in Callicoon (the soft opening is this weekend), the region is showing a flair for entrepreneurs priced out of New York or jaded by Hudson Valley’s twee vibe. The growing buzz is a credit to pioneers like The Heron restaurant (40 Main Street, Narrowsburg), River Gallery (8 Main Street, Narrowsburg) and clothing boutique Mayer Wasner (57 Main Street, Narrowsburg). They saw the potential before others, and toughed it out through leaner years.

A few weeks ago, the designer Sunrise Ruffalo – wife of Mark – brought her impeccable eye for design and art to a newly-vacant space next to Mayer Wasner, opening Sunny’s Pop just in time for the holiday season. One of several stores in the town specializing in home goods and décor (also check out The Nest, The Mildred Complex(ity) and The Velvet Maple, as well as Dyberry Weaver, which specializes in gorgeous hand-woven and dyed rugs), Ruffalo’s spare, clean aesthetic results in some excellent gift ideas for the Holidays. We invited her to choose her five top gift items:

 

Concrete Candle Shrine: $70

“Simple design, yet highly attractive in its use of materials and shape. The copper base exaggerates the candle’s flame to add extra flare.”


 

Maple Peg w/ Leather Strap Wall Hooks, available in tan/natural maple or black/black: $34-$40

“Made of beautiful maple wood, and completely functional in any space for anyone at any age.”


 

Handcrafted Ceramic Coffee Pour-Over, available in charcoal or white: $135

“Supporting local artists in the Catskills, and a new twist on drip-coffee makes the perfect gift for these chilly months.”


 

Small Nylon Tote w/ Adjustable Strap, available in coyote brown or black: $88

“This unisex tote is designed for all of your needs with an adjustable strap, storage pouch, and waterproof material. This tote is ready to conquer any city street or country scape.”


 

Hand-Carved and Spun Porcelain Cups, available in a variety of colors: $40

“Delicately carved cups in hand-mixed glazes ensure a one-of-a-kind cup every time.”

BLACKBOOK PREMIERE: Gigi Rowe’s Impassioned Cover of Springsteen’s ‘Dancing in the Dark’

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A fresh-faced Miami-by-way-of-NJ girl who nevertheless proudly wears her Madonna influence on her sleeve, Gigi Rowe is a dayglo 80s-esque pop princess for a 21st Century in need of a serious dose of fabulousness. Her new EP, Stardust Motel, was released in late October, and the hook-laden synth-pop single “Got That” (shades of The Material Girl’s “Open Your Heart”) has already racked up more than a million plays on YouTube.

But it’s her remake of Bruce Springsteen’s visceral classic “Dancing in the Dark” (which BlackBook premieres here) that really made us sit up and listen.

It’s essentially a powerful, haunting, gospel version of a song that has always begged for such an interpretation. Indeed, here the “dancing” is of a much more languid kind, as she movingly laments, “I ain’t nothing but tired / I’m just tired and bored with myself.” (Perhaps imagine if Bruce’s original had been produced by David Lynch.)

Of course, the hopeful lyric, “You can’t start a fire worrying about your little world falling apart,” is truly one for our current times – a call to rise up from our insular little social-media-led worlds and go set the world on fire with action.

“It’s hard to write something about this song because the song says it all,” she philosophically explains. “Honestly, I had no idea what it was about until I sang it; and then realized it’s not about one thing – it’s about everything. Life, the struggle, what it means to be alive and particularly, what it feels like to be an artist. But this is a Bruce Springsteen song, so of course it’s epic. And I probably feel an extra special connection, having been born and raised in New Jersey.”

For our part, we couldn’t be more inspired.

 

Watch: Trailers for Every New ‘Black Mirror’ Episode

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Thanks to the bleak dystopias laid out in the Black Mirror series, we can always take solace in knowing that as messed up as our world is, things could be worse. Yes, some episodes of the anthology series seem to be playing out in real life lately; but overall, we haven’t gotten attacked by robotic bees yet or created theme parks to celebrate torture. Yay!

As we prepare our minds and bodies for the upcoming fourth season of the Netflix series, which the streaming service claims will drop by the end of the year, we’ve finally got previews for every upcoming episode – from the dark Star Trek riff “USS Callister” to the Jodie Foster-directed “Arkangel.”

There’s no way to tell just yet, but don’t expect any of these stories to make you cry tears of joy, like last season’s phenomenal and award-winning love story “San Junipero.” These episodes look…bleak.

Watch the preview for every episode below and then go depress yourself with the first three seasons.

 

BLACKBOOK PREMIERE: Sofi Tukker’s Groovalicious Remix of Their Hit Single ‘Best Friend’

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Image by Toma Kostygina

 

It’s been a whirlwind seventeen months for the duo of Sophie Hawley-Weld and Tucker Halpern since, as Sofi Tukker, they released their debut EP Soft Animals in July of 2016 – including a Best Dance Recording Grammy nomination for their single “Drinkee” and placement of a couple of tracks in the high-profile FIFA 17 and FIFA 18 video game releases. The latter features the song “Best Friend,” which is also currently burning up the US Pop and Alternative Charts.

So how are they celebrating the holidays? By doing their own rather fabulous remix of “Best Friend,” of course. BlackBook premieres it here, and it’s a groove monster of a version. The original was slinky and sultry; but here they fatten up the beat, crank up the BPM, and turn it into an all around riotous dance party.

“This remix is a faster and dancier version,” they tell us, “that we made for the dance floor. And the dance floor that we pictured while making it is outside in Brazil during Carnival!”

Sofi Tukker will also be finishing out the year by doing four live dates in December with Odesza, including 12/15 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. It’s sure to be one of the parties of the season.

 

First Images: Landmark Takashi Murakami Exhibition Is Coming to Vancouver in 2018

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It makes sense, culturally, that Pop Art’s two most famous progeny were American and Japanese, respectively. But as Keith Haring left this mortal world in 1990, it would be Takashi Murakami alone who would live on and realize the Warhol-like fame that was so much a “strategy” of the original movement (Warhol superstar Ultra Violet told BlackBook in 2011 that Andy’s real goal was “that when he walked down the street, he wanted people to say, ‘Here walks the most famous person down the street.’”)

Murakami is virtually that famous in Japan; but, partly by virtue of his collaborations with Marc Jacobs and Louis Vuitton (which began in 2002) he has come to enjoy such global recognition as to warrant blockbuster exhibitions of his work around the world (Paris, Bilbao, Doha). And the Vancouver Art Gallery will be the first to grant him that honor in Canada, when a spectacular, landmark survey of his oeuvre, charmingly titled The Octopus Eats its Own Leg, opens there on February 3 of next year.

The retrospective will greatly on focus on Murakami as a painter, and feature rarely seen early works from the 80s; it will also explore the influences of Japanese painting and Buddhist folklore on his work. But most excitingly for true devotees, the show will also flaunt a pair of exclusive multi-panel paintings created just for this exhibition.

The Octopus… will run through May 6, a perfect excuse to make a late-winter, early spring weekend excursion to Vancouver.

Here’s a sneak peek at what to expect.

 

BLACKBOOK PREMIERE: Absofacto X Herizen Video for ‘Done With Love’

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Image by Taj Shaikh

 

For lovers of linguistics, Absofacto, the nom de guerre of Michigan musician Jonathan Visger, is actually a pretty good one – meaning, “absolutely, in fact.” So, the absolute opposite of “definitely maybe,” in fact.

The singer-songwriter, now based in Los Angeles, is, in fact, stirring up quite a buzz. After a few years of flying under the radar, his 2015 single “Dissolve” went viral, running up several million plays/views on Spotify/YouTube. Now signed to Atlantic, Absofacto has got an excellent new EP A Thousand Peaces, and a visceral, stripped-down acoustic single and video, “Done With Love” (which BlackBook premieres here). Ethereal songstress/actress Herizen Guardiola (Netflix’ The Get Down) joins him, heartrendingly answering his “Should I wait for you to change your mind?” with her “I felt the need to run / And now I’m not so sure.” It’s an affecting meditation on the romantic uncertainty that stalks virtually every relationship at some point or another.

The accompanying video is beautifully, hauntingly shot in the California desert.

“Herizen and I both are the type to lose track of time and arrive late,” he recalls, “so when we pulled up, the sun was about to disappear behind the mountain. We hurried up and got only one quick take before we lost the light. Thankfully, we lucked out and it made the performance feel really in-the-moment and added a layer of awkward charm.”

 

 

The release coincides with our announcement here that Absofacto is hitting the road with Two Feet for a 16-date US winter tour, commencing at LA’s fabled El Rey on January 23, and wrapping up February 25 at Chicago’s Lincoln Hall.

Jan 23 – El Rey Theatre – Los Angeles
Jan 25 – Soho Music Club – Santa Barbara
Jan 26 – The Catalyst Atrium – Santa Cruz
Jan 27 – Cornerstone – Berkeley
Jan 30 – Neumos – Seattle
Jan 31 – Fortune Sound Club – Vancouver
Feb 01 – Holocene – Portland
Feb 13 – Brighton Music Hall – Boston
Feb 14 – Coda – Philadelphia
Feb 16 – Music Hall of Williamsburg – Brooklyn
Feb 18 – Rock & Roll Hotel – Washington, D.C.
Feb 20 – Terminal West – Atlanta
Feb 21 – Exit-In – Nashville
Feb 23 – The Basement – Columbus, Ohio
Feb 24 – The Hi-Fi – Indianapolis
Feb 25 – Lincoln Hall – Chicago