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Blog Posts by Subject: Popular Culture

Fantasy of Power and Betrayal: "Game of Thrones" Readalikes for Teens

A recent trend in YA Lit is the fantasy sub-genre: court and political intrigue fantasy. It’s full of all the stuff that makes for great high stakes drama: power, family, politics, love, betrayal, swords, treachery, corruption, duplicity, vengeance, manipulation, secrets, nefarious plots, fighting, revenge, occasionally some dragons and usually, a good healthy dose of flirtation and swoon. Read More ›

Waiting for "Downton Abbey" 2015!

It’s going to be rough wait, but we will do it together and somehow find other books and films to fill the Downton-sized hole in our hearts.Read More ›

Podcast #53: RuPaul on Fantasy, Identity, and Diana Ross

RuPaul was crowned the “Queen of Manhattan” in 1989 and has since published two books and released hit songs over the course of eleven studio albums. We were lucky to hear our LIVE from the NYPL guest discuss the dualistic nature of identity, the great Diana Ross, and fantasy.Read More ›

Waiting for "Outlander"

Way way back, in 1990, I wandered into a Portland, Oregon bookstore and found a romance novel, set in Scotland, involving time travel and I was hooked! Since then, it’s been a 25 year odyssey of reading and waiting. Outlander finally returns to TV on April 4.Read More ›

The Legacy of Kurt Cobain and Nirvana in YA Fiction

In the rain soaked Seattle of the early '90s, grunge rock was the soundtrack to our lives and Kurt and Nirvana were at its center. Twenty one years on, his legacy continues in two recent YA books Carnival at Bray and Love Letters to the Dead. Both books examine the power of music and words to bring people together, inspire us and give us hope.Read More ›

More Nordic Noir

With the bleakest part of the winter now upon us, some readers may be craving a feast of Scandinavian noir. Here are a few more contemporary Swedes (and one Norwegian) I've enjoyed.Read More ›

Sesame Street and the People In Your Neighborhood

Beyond the animation cels, drawings, media and the amazing experience of seeing the Muppets up close, the exhibition, "Somebody Come and Play,” lets us see and hear the way that research and entertainment/production values inform each other to create memorable moments. And, since the 1970-1971 season, those moments have include Jeffrey Moss’ song “Who are the People in Your Neighborhood?”Read More ›

Best Books for Teens 2014!

The list includes a selection of 25 novels, non-fiction books, and graphic novels chosen by a committee of Young Adult librarians who work with teens in NYPL’s neighborhood branches. Read More ›

Four by One Direction: A Track by Track (Sort of) Review

A track by track review of their new album, by a “1D AF.”Read More ›

From the Rodgers and Hammerstein Archives: Blood, Rats, and Scream Queens!

We love Halloween and want to celebrate it by sharing some great Halloween themed recordings we have in our holdings. Read More ›

Song and Dance: The Power Of Black Music

American music is largely influenced by African American music, so concluded eminent musicologists just before the 20th century.Read More ›

Guitars, Gigs, Girls (& Guys): Four Lists of Teen Books that Rock!

Books and plots involving music, musicians, fans and bands go together like peanut butter and jelly. In other words, perfectly! They’re pretty much a top 10 sub-genre of YA fiction for me and here’s why.Read More ›

Punk and the [Anti-]Prom

Every year, my interns and I have the pleasure of working with the students at the High School for Fashion Industries in conjunction with the Library’s wonderful Anti-Prom projects, managed by our colleagues in Teen services. Past themes have included Goth, Monsters, Super Heroes, and Glam. This year was Punk.Read More ›

New York Punk Rock: A Basic History

The theme for Anti-Prom 2014 is New York Punk Rock. The golden age of punk rock in NYC was from 1974 to 1981. When clubs like CBGBs and Max's Kansas City ruled the scene and bands like Television, The Ramones, Blondie, Suicide and Patti Smith were its kings and queens. Read More ›

The Beatles as Fashion Gurus

Last week, LPA hosted a public program on The Beatles and their circle as an influence on fashion in England and here. Phyllis Magidson, Curator of Costume and Textiles for the Museum of the City of New York, and I developed an illustrated conversation on their transitions from Rockers to Mods to Hippies with an occasional visit to Teddy Boys. The black, needle-nose ankle boots stuck around until the trips to India.Read More ›

Beatles Overload? 5 Beatlesque Bands You Should Hear

You can't help it, you are just so jazzed that it is The Beatles' 50th Anniversary of their appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show that you've grown your moptop, dusted off your Hofner Bass and even broke out your 

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"She Loves You" b/w "I'll Get You" by The Beatles, Swan S-4152

Recorded July 1, 1963 in London, UK.Read More ›

The Road to Wrestlemania

Wrestlemania 30 is only 41 days away. Wrestling fans are currently in the thick of what is commonly referred to as "the Road to Wrestlemania." This is hands down the most exciting time of the year for us. Were you aware of the large collection of WWE DVDs the library carries? NYPL has the tools you need to properly celebrate the season, and here are some highlights:Read More ›

The Most Significant Drum Head in Popular Music, Part 2

Upon taking physical possession of the piece, my mind was set on two objectives. The first was to prove to myself that the drum head really was what it appeared to be. And number two, proving to the collecting world in general that this was, in fact, the Sullivan show drum head. Read More ›

The Holy Grail of the Percussion World, Part 1

William F. Ludwig himself put it best when he said, “On February 9th, 1964, a new musical event burst from the TV screens across America. The Beatles had arrived, featuring Ringo Starr and his Ludwig Black Oyster drums. Literally overnight everyone wanted a drum set like Ringo’s. The drum boom was born!”Read More ›
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