Dave Hill reading this week

davehillIt’s been more than a year since Cleveland native Dave Hill’s Tasteful Nudes was published, and in that time, it seems like I’ve seen the comedian’s face and name popping up more and more frequently—from hanging out with Pantera singer Phil Anselmo to appearing on the Travel Channel’s Toy Hunter. Now, he’s back to promoting the book, as it’s just been released in paperback form. He’s in the midst of a six-hour reading as we speak (or as I type) at the West Village location of Big Gay Ice Cream that goes until 7pm today. Then, he’ll be reading again this Friday in Brooklyn, at Cobble Hill’s BookCourt, at 7pm. He promises plenty of surprises for this appearance, and his band Valley Lodge, which today released its third album, Use Your Weapons, will be playing. Check out a song, “Go,” from the album below.

St. Lenox performing at Antifolk Festival tonight

Tonight, St. Lenox, the musical nom de plume taken from a misunderstood subway sign by Andy Choi, will be performing at the Sidewalk Cafe as part of the 28th annual Antifolk Festival. Choi, who moved to New York to pursue a law degree at New York University, is a native of Columbus. He studied violin at Julliard, but the music he makes as St. Lenox probably has more in common with the Magnetic Fields than his classical background. When I saw him play with Electric Grandmother earlier this summer, he belted out prosaic verses about Columbus’ Linden neighborhood in a voice reminiscent of Stevie Wonder over a keyboard-driven backing put forth from his iPad. His upcoming album, 10 Songs About Memory, is being released by Anyway Records, the Columbus-based label known for putting out records by Guided By Voices, Gaunt, and Thomas Jefferson Slave Apartments.

The Antifolk Festival is being curated this year by Ben Krieger, a Cleveland native whose Yossarian Feedback will play Sunday. Performing before St. Lenox tonight will also be Jen Kaplan, another Clevelander and a self-described antifolk comedian.

Check out the video for St. Lenox’s “I Still Dream of the ’90s” below.


This Day in Ohio Birthdays: Dave Chappelle

Comedian Dave Chappelle was born in Washington, DC, but growing up a child of divorced parents, he split his time between his birthplace, where his mother lived, and Yellow Springs, Ohio, where his father was a professor at Antioch College.

Chappelle moved to New York when he was 18 to pursue a career as a comedian, appearing in various movies and television shows throughout the ’90s. He is, of course, most famous for his weekly sketch comedy show, Chappelle’s Show, which aired on Comedy Central from 2003 to 2005. He is just as famous for quitting the show at the height of its popularity, later citing burnout, loss of creative control and an uncomfortable work environment as the reasons for putting the kibosh on the program. In the subsequent years, Chappelle has returned to stand-up comedy, making surprise appearances at clubs and announcing shows at theaters either the day before or the day of his performance.

Sometime after his father died, Chappelle returned to Yellow Springs, where he continues to live with his wife and two sons. Today he is 39 years old.