Wednesday, September 5, 2007


Philadelphia-born and -breed singer Jill Scott is the September covergirl for Essence magazine. Jill talks about her new album, The Real Thing, her divorce, her new role in the upcoming Tyler Perry movie and weight in an industry that worships the "skinny girls".
Jill, who still resides in the Philly area, said that "I didn’t allow myself to know whatever misgivings or sadness or separation there was between my husband and me. I just wanted to stay positive. I learned a lot, and some of that I’ve tried to convey in this project."

She recently shot the video for her singles "Hate On Me" and continues with several film and music projects in the works.


The Family Diamond by Edward Schwarzschild is about something all of us are familiar with, though no one wants to cop to: family dysfunction. With a collection of stories all set in Philly, Schwarzchild depicts the world of a Jewish Philadelphian family and their rollercoaster of father/son relationships, pregnancy, divorce and love.
The Family Diamond available at Borders 1 S. Broad St. and

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

HUMP DAY: Recharging your batteries

We don't about you, but Aroundphilly gets pretty tired right around the middle of the week. We know the week is half over and the weekend is right over the horizon, but two more work days give us a headache. We're in need of some serious refueling to blast out the last days and make it to the end of the month. But what, you might ask, is there to do on Hump Day?


What: The Walnut Room

Where: 1709 Walnut St.

When: Each and every Wednesday, 'till 2am

Why: Because shaking your money maker will keep you dancing the rest of the week through


What: Karoke Night Wednesdays

Where: Coffee Connection, 6441 Frankford Ave. (Just above Levick St.)

Why: It's karoke for pete's sake! Who doesn't love karoke?!


What's the perfect gift for a dad, a fashion-forward chica and a S & M lover? Give up?

The quirky ties at Prep & Pauper, a Philadelphia-based tie company, is ushering in a new take on the old suit and...well you know the rest. The half-sheared-sheep-covered design will help any executive hottie stand out from the cubicle crowd. And the skull and bones design is enough to give your tight-wad boss a heartache. And best of all, they're homegrown.

Prep & Pauper, 1147 N. Fourth St., 646.705.3050,


Dear U.O.,

You have always been the go-to shopping destination to get a look that's part vintage, part indie, part crafty. With skinny jeans, an array of rock band tees and enough knit caps and scarves to get any girl through winter, you seem to have a handle on what the hipsters want. Where you loose us is with the prices (and we're not the only ones thinking this). Street-smart and unique Urban has reached new highs in overpriced-dom. ($58 for a pair of jeans turned into a tote bag? C'mon!)

While we love the whole made-to-look-vintage appeal, we prefer our vintage authentic and on the cheap. We don't mind the high-end designer stuff you carry, but the in-house lines have got to come down, Urban, if we must continue loving you.

Our Summer Soundtrack

Tired of hearing the same eight songs playing every time you get into your car? ("Ella, ella. . .") We thought so. Thankfully, we're sharing our summer playlist that's sure to be music to your ears. Listen to the songs individually as you lay on the beach to mellow out and relive the lazy days of summer or collectively to make the perfect cocktail party soundtrack.

1.) Aqua De Beber - Montefiori Cocktail
2.) Is You Is (Rae & Christian remix) - Dinah Washington
3.) Breathless - Corinne Bailey Rae
4.) Let It Ride (Jimpster Remix) - Lisa Shaw
5.) Is This Love - Groove Da Praia
6.) Mas Que Nada - Sergio Mendes

7.) One, Two, Three, Four - Feist
8.) Tell Me - Wax Poetic featuring Norah Jones

No Bones About It...Philly's Going to the Dogs

Dogs have long been man's best friend"and Philly understands that better than anywhere else. Many hotels in the area are accomodating guests (and their furry friends) by offering walking paths, loaner collars and accessories, pet walking and pet sitting services and even posh rooms with TV and DVD players for Fifi's viewing pleasure (the latter courtesy of Mazzu's Canine and Feline Hotel).

Philadelphia Fish & Co. as well as the Continental are many Old City establishments with pet-friendly environments. In University City the appropriately named White Dog Cafe, encourages diners to eat al fresco with their canine companions. In Manayunk, Le Bus and Derek's also provide complimentary water bowls while dining outside.

If grooming and pampering is what you're looking for, stop at Bonejour in Old City, which features canine couture as well as beds, leashes etc. Chic Petique , located just off of South Street, is fully stocked with the everday items as well as treats shaped like human food and objects. For a place to play, try The Center City Dog Park so your mutt can mix and mingle with the rest of the canine population.

Mix It Up

You love everyone else's iPod playlist, but reserve disgusted ruefulness for your own. We know you're just lazy to look for new music that's not on the Top 20. We've got your solution: Mixmaster. This site is designed specifically for creating playlists with music too cool for you to find on your own. All you have to do is go to the site and instantly choose from a variety of genres, add to an existing playlist or create your own.With more than 30,000 singles on the site, there really is something for everyone and obtaining the songs is simple. All you have to do is click on the provided link to either iTunes or Amazon.

This site is perfect if you're stuck in a rut and ready to expand your musical tastes or if you're simply looking for a good playlist with the fuss of sorting through your collection.

Try it!

Amy Winehouse Tour --- NO, NO, NO

British singer Amy Winehouse, who was set to kick off her first US tour (September 13 at the Tower Theatre in Upper Darby, Pa.) has cancelled her U.S. shows due to medical reasons. Reps for Winehouse are saying that "due to the rigors of touring she has been advised to postpone her upcoming September U.S. and Candanian tour dates."

Anyone who knows music has heard about the debauchery and antics of British singer Amy Winehouse. And if you really know music you've listened to her album Back to Black and vibed to her 60s soul sound and oft-crash but telling lyrics. "They tried to make me go to rehab, I said no, no, no..." The singer has recieved critical acclaim and a loyal fan base for her candor about her past (and maybe present) with drugs, alcohol and relationships.

We're pretty bummed as we were looking forward to putting all the headline grabbing news with an actual live in person picture. Would she drink on stage, yell profanities and wow us with her brand of 60s blues? And the question everyone wants to know... how high is the beehive?