Tag: New York

Vampire Weekend starts here

Saturday, 11 May, 2013 0 Comments

Their new album, Modern Vampires of the City, will be officially released on Monday and the expectations are that with it Vampire Weekend will transcend the novelties of the noughties and establish themselves as a band of some considerable sophistication and endurance. As next week here on Rainy Day will be devoted to The Great Gatsby, there’s no better way to warm up than with Step, which is all about words and feelings plus imagery of the place that’s central to F. Scott Fitzgerald’s masterpiece: “The city seen from the Queensboro Bridge is always the city seen for the first time, in its first wild promise of all the mystery and beauty in the world.”

[iframe src=”http://player.vimeo.com/video/62777463″ width=”100%” height=”480″]


Taxi stories from near and far

Thursday, 20 December, 2012 0 Comments

“I got a call late at night the other week,” said Paddy the taxi driver. “The boys said there was a woman looking for a lift to Limerick. I told her it would be fifty euro at that hour. She was a fine-lookin’ woman. When we got to Limerick she asked me to drop her […]

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The Fairytale Of New York nightmare

Thursday, 29 November, 2012 1 Comment

Oh, no! The Fairytale Of New York, the Christmas song by The Pogues and Kirsty MacColl, is back in the charts 25 years after its release. According to the NME: The Pogues’ ‘Fairytale Of New York’ bookies favourite for Christmas Number One. The terrifying thing about this song is that unimaginative radio DJs have been playing it ad nauseam for a quarter of a century and any emotional value that it had has been erased through overexposure. For those who hate the tacky side of Christmas, life has become even more horrid.

The nightmarish lachrymosity of Fairytale is discussed with passion at Mumsnet. “Hate it. Crappy cliches about drunken Irish people in prison singing songs from the auld country and gambling. Crappy video, crappy singing, crappy message,” writes SuePurblybiltbyElves. “And the boys of the NYPD choir still singing Galway Bay…”


The ageing, tiring Li-on in the machine

Friday, 2 November, 2012 0 Comments

Apple’s iPad Mini goes on sale today and lots of early-bird geeks are busily tearing down the device in one of those weird rituals that has become associated with product launches. Regardless of the hype about how magical these products are, however, all portable electronic devices have a battery and batteries do wear out over […]

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Hymn to a Great City

Saturday, 20 October, 2012

The Estonian composer Arvo Pärt wrote Hymn to a Great City in 1984 as a gift to his friends Mirjam and William Miesse. The name of the city in the title is not explicitly stated, but is is thought to be New York. This exquisite work is performed here by Marjan Peternel and Primož Urban?

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Ten years ago today on Rainy Day

Tuesday, 25 September, 2012

Originally posted on 25 September 2002: Lit a candle last night in one of Europe’s most majestic cathedrals and said a prayer for Mick Upton, my father’s first cousin, who gazed in wonder at the same building 57 years ago, but under dramatically different circumstances. Back then, he was a solider in the 1st US […]

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Shake those hips with Joan Osborne

Saturday, 22 September, 2012

She was born in Anchorage, but not the Anchorage of Alaska. There’s an Anchorage in Kentucky, too, and that’s where Joan Osborne comes from. She moved to New York City in the late 1980s and formed her own record label, Womanly Hips. Here she blends rock, country, blues and folk in an infectiously danceable cocktail. […]

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We are fighting barbarism

Tuesday, 11 September, 2012

What happened on 11 September 2001 was a barbaric attack on civilization. It was carried out by people who hated modernity and it was ordered by those who pined for a return to a barbarous social order. The resulting wars against Islamic terrorism, as personified by Said al-Shihri, and against a perverse Middle Eastern political […]

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Prodding a man-shaped Assange bag with a pitchfork

Thursday, 23 August, 2012

After nearly three decades in the UK’s Diplomatic Service, Charles Crawford retired from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office at the end of 2007. So, when it comes to matters consular and tactful, he knows the score. In his blog post, “Diplomatic Bags (Assange)“, Crawford points out that, “… if a man-shaped diplomatic bag is seen […]

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Summer in the Gatsby city

Wednesday, 18 July, 2012

Much of the greatness of Edward Hopper resided in his ability to paint silent spaces. His 1949 canvas “Summer in the City” reveals the solitude of two people sharing a hotel bedroom by suggesting that presence can sometime equal absence. Its presence here today heralds the start of the annual Rainy Day Great Gatsby reading, […]

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Now: crowdsourcing crowds

Monday, 28 May, 2012

Launched last week, the Now iPhone app detects hot events taking place in four major cities: New York, Paris, London and San Francisco. Other metropolises will follow, no doubt. Berlin, Sydney and Vancouver are three on the Rainy Day list. The nifty thing is that the app rates “hotness” by analyzing the number of photos […]

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