28 April

Joan Baez, the queen of folk returns to Melbourne

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Joan Baez was on the forefront of the civil rights movement and galvanised a generation with her songs of freedom. While her former lover Bob Dylan gave her some of her best known hits (eg. ‘It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue’), she’s probably even more famous for the iconic performance of ‘We Shall Overcome’ at Woodstock. After touring to rave reviews in 2013/2014, it’s a privilege to have her back so soon.

Joan Baez Hamer Hall, Thu Sep 24

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24 April

The Palace Theatre’s last items available in garage sale this weekend

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I feel like a bit of a vulture at the moment, but it’s not stopping me.

Last weekend I queued early for the Astor’s garage sale and took a lot of delight in sifting through 30 years of cinematic treasures (and trying to justify the purchase of a giant pressed-brass palm tree – I couldn’t). In the end, I left with a lurid pink poster advertising John Water’s movies (Cry Baby and Pink Flamingoes) and a square of the Astor’s carpet, which I’ll fashion into a purse at some stage.

It was entirely worth the 40-minute wait to get through the doors one more time and admire the Astor in all of its art deco glory. I know it’s re-opening in June under the Palace’s umbrellas, but without George Florence in the helm, it’ll never be the same, so my small purchases are a function of securing its memory.… Read more

22 April

Winter is coming, and so is Game of Rhônes

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It’s back. In 2013, Dan Sims of Bottle Shop Concepts – the company that champions wine as a drink of the masses through events that exchange all the wank for fun – decided to throw a medieval-style wine tasting event, filling Ormond Hall with a bunch of guys and gals in leathers and furs and bidding wine fans to sample more varietals of the Rhône Valley than Cersei on a bender. It was a right old knees-up (repeated in 2014, bigger and better), replete with whole spit-roasted beasts courtesy of Casey Wall of Rockwell and Sons.

This year, this event is going beyond the Wall (to Sydney and Auckland); it’s also moving to the Art House’s Meat Market in North Melbourne. There will be more than 40 producers, bringing the shiraz, grenache, mourvedre, carignan, cinsault, viognier, marsanne, roussanne and other grape varietals native to the Rhône Valley in France.

As to which producer wins this much hyped wine-based fight for supremacy, we’ve been pushing for an actual battle (to arms, wine people!), but they’re taking the democratic route and getting you the people to vote for your favourite through the iPhone app, which you can download from their site.… Read more

15 April

Jerome Borazio to open a luxury glamping hotel on top of Melbourne Central

Jerome Borazio’s a goddamn genius – when he’s not opening bars (1000 Pound Bend, Ponyfish Island, Sister Bella etc), pizza shops (Slice Girls), cool wedding venues (The Church of Bang Bang Boogaloo), or overseeing the now international St Jerome’s Laneway Festival, he’s opening a hotel. Clearly, the man never sleeps and, let’s face it, he can’t help himself when it comes to revitalising an unclaimed space.

St Jerome’s: The Hotel is high glamour and one of a kind. It’s perched on the top of Melbourne Central for a start, allowing patrons unparalleled access to Melbourne’s city-line vistas. Plus, rather than your ordinary hotel rooms, it’s got suites and standard rooms in high-class bell tents, that are decked out with all of the luxury comforts of any other luxury hotel. Borazio’s taken glamping (glamour camping) to a whole new level (quite literally too, given that it overlooks the city).

There’s a 24-hour concierge service, a bar and normal deluxe hotel services (fleet cars and the like) but it’s the other touches that make it super special – eg.… Read more

13 April

Tomorrow is Ben & Jerry’s Free Cone Day

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How’s this for a scoop: Ben & Jerry’s have an annual tradition that we wish other providers of sweet treats would emulate. Once a year, Ben & Jerry’s stores globally give away a free scoop of their famous ice-cream to all comers. Now that’s the kind of marketing exercise we can get behind.

So on Tuesday April 14, be sure to celebrate what’s left of the warmer months by sampling the selection of flavours at the Ben & Jerry’s Scoop Shop on Chapel Street and in Hoyts Cinemas at Highpoint shopping centre in Maribyrnong.

The only thing left is to decide which flavour takes your fancy – Chocolate Fudge Brownie; Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough; Phish Food? Our tip: bring buddies and share the love.

Ben & Jerry’s Free Cone Day. Tuesday April 14.Read more