I wanna get back to Brooklyn

A little off topic for the blog since it’s not Gilded Age Brooklyn, but nonetheless, I love finding little bits of history from different eras, especially adorable songs like this that have “Brooklyn” in the lyrics.

I’m always nostalgic for a Brooklyn that belonged to my parents, grandparents, great grandparents and great, great grandparents!

From the blog Brooklyn Butch 

You can also join in Facebook Discussions with Brooklyn Butch for Pre-1960 Brooklyn Nostalgia! 

Old New York Winter Slideshow

This is my old slideshow from nearly 10 years ago. I’d felt like collecting snowy images and putting them together. The Youtube quality back then was so low, unfortunately the video is grainy. But still enjoyable with the music. The music is called “Love is blue” by Paul Muriat.

I’m trying anything to keep cool in this stuffy place with no A/C!

Here’s a one minute video of a 2 ft. New York Blizzard from 2010.

2 Brooklyn Songs from the 20th – 21st Century

I get very interested whenever I find new songs that relate to Brooklyn. Everyone’s experience is very unique and diverse. These songs of course represent the borough between the 20th and 21st century. The first, by singer/songwriter Woodkid (Who has a terrific song called “I love you” btw!) features a simple bus ride across town with the camera on the people passing by. A nice diorama of the Real Brooklyn of today.

 

The second song, by local singer/songwriter Richard Levoi has nostalgic bent with a slideshow of famous and cozy hotspots, particularly from neighborhoods in what’s known as Southern Brooklyn. It’s a mellow, retrospective song, and his breezy style is reminiscent of Billy Joel. Have a listen. He’s close to a major record deal, and is trying to make 1,00,000 views! Let’s give him some of that Brooklyn show of support!

Brooklyn: A State of mind – 125 original stories from America’s most colorful City.

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Brooklyn: A State of Mind is a terrific book. It features an eclectic smorgasbord of essays, articles, interviews, art and photographs about the most beloved and often misunderstood City in America. Maybe even the world? Unfortunately, most stories are not centered on 19th Century Brooklyn, but there are a smattering of facts, images, and points of interest in different chapters which point to that era.

The consensus of many baby boomers seems to be that Brooklyn had its “heyday” in the early to mid-Twentieth Century. For more on that, read this cool book: When Brooklyn was the world: 1920-1957. A book that cleverly argues that the ‘real’ Brooklyn kinda, sorta, ceased to exist once the suburbs of Jersey and Long Island started popping up.

Brooklyn, A state of mind…boasts stories from actors, novelists, journalists, politicians, photographers, and artists. Their witty, gritty, and fun memories can evoke homesickness and nostalgia in a non-native Brooklynite. Their stories touch on everything from food, big hair, Coney Island, music, gangsters, ethnic communities and culture, children’s games, summer days and nights, wise guys, tough guys, and everyone in between. Memories, whether they are fond or foul, are jammed into each story. I highly recommend it for any Brooklyn lover’s collection.

Oppulent Brooklyn Theater to be reborn in 2015!

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Oppulent Brooklyn Theater to be reborn in 2015!

Like the haunting restoration scene from 2004’s Phantom of the Opera, The Lowe’s Kings Theater will rise from the ruins to showcase Brooklyn talent at its finest. The Theater, which caused a splash in the roaring twenties, was shut down and abandoned after the 1977 blackouts. It became a City Landmark and was pretty much an untouched testament to the splendor that was once Flatbush Avenue. A venue like this smack in the middle of Flatbush Ave. today is sure to enhance the neighborhood in many ways and bring back the glamour and excitement of famous ‘Strip’ once again.

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A ditty about the Brooklyn Theater Fire

When I posted my Green Wood Cemetery photos a few months back I expressed interest in writing about the tragic Brooklyn Theater Fire which claimed the lives of over 300 theatergoers and actors on December 5th, 1876. As I researched, I realized there are many blogs online with mounds of information on the event. Popular Brooklyn blog site Brownstowner.com posted a fascinating 2 part article with an inside-out history of the theater and what occurred that tragic night. It also includes 2 slideshows of images.

Read both parts here:

Walkabout: The Brooklyn Theater Fire (Part 1)

Walkabout: The Brooklyn Theater Fire (Part 2)

We can always count on the arts to provide us with a colorful, or in this case, musical, backdrop of the era and event. After a little digging I came up with this!

Folk Song

Listen to a quick midi version of the Tune

The Brooklyn Theater Fire Lyrics

In the evening bright stars they were shining,
And the moon it shone clear on the land.
Our city in peace and in quiet;
The hour of midnight at hand.

Hark, do you hear the cry, “Fire”?
How dismal the bells they do sound.
The Brooklyn Theater is burning,
It’s fast burning down to the ground.

We never can forget those two orphans.
Bad luck seemed to stand in their way.
It seems they were brought to our city,
The lives of our dear friends to take.

The doors they were open at seven.
The curtains were rolled up at eight.
And those that had seats, they were happy.
Outsiders were mad they were late.

The play it went on very smoothly
‘Til sparks from the curtain did fly
It was then the women and chlldren,
“Oh God, save our lives,” they did cry.

Next morning among the black ruins,
Oh God, what a sight met our eyes!
The dead they were lying in heaps
And some could not be recognized.

Mothers were weeping and crying
For sons who were out on that night.
Oh God, may their souls rest in heaven,
All those who were innocent and bright.

What means this large gathering of people
Upon such a cold winter day?
What means this long line of hearses
That gather in their mournful array?

It’s away to the cemetery of Greenwood
Where the winds of the cold winter blow
It’s there where the funeral is going
The dead and unknown for to lie.

From Folk Songs Out of Wisconson, Peters
Collected from Lester Coffee, Harvard, IL, 1946.