To New Adventures: 54 Below

I’ve said this before and I’ll say this forever: one of the greatest, greatest benefits of growing up and living in New York City is the access to the arts. I would be a vastly different person without the museums, plays, musicals, and tours of historical landmarks I was taken to at a very young age.

My friend Jess drags me out of the house quite a lot–thank God, or else I would be a babbling, anti-social idiot–to go see things. We have similar enough taste when it comes to entertainment. Last summer, we saw Once The Musical. We loved it. We loved the leading man, Steve Kazee. We loved the jeans he wore in the show.

So, tonight (July 11th) we ventured off to 54 Below, a small venue under 54th Street in the city. It seems like 54 Below has a variety of acts, largely of the theater community, since it’s in the theater district. Steve Kazee and his band, The Shiny Liars, had a run of shows this week.

54 Below is a bit, um, classier than the usual places my friends and I go to. We looked over the cocktail menu (there is a minimum spending amount per person) and were perplexed by the alcohol. We’re not big drinkers in the first place and our taste in alcohol runs to rum and coke and beer.

So we chose cocktails (I can’t even remember what was in mine, but it was yummy) and ordered our entrees, split a side dish and munched.

The set-up is interesting. It’s not a very large room, so the bulk of seating is at long tables. It was a little cramped, but we made it work, and our server was AMAZING.

The stage area. 

By the time dessert was in front of us, Steve was on stage and began his set. He wrote songs that he wrote, singer/songwriter style, with lots of hilarious banter in between.

At one point, at the end of a string of banter, he threw in, “Blue Ivy!” To which some of the room cracked up. He explained that that is how he gauges the age of the room.

Other things I remember about tonight’s outing:

-Jess and I both saying, “I feel like a grown up!” as we were seated.
-Man from Kentucky.
-“I’m not this cool off-stage.”
“Monday night…I thought there was a dead body in here. It was like playing a wake!”
-Jess, about our neighbors, who were trying to think of a status update for Facebook: “Does EVERYTHING have to be on Facebook?”

6 thoughts on “To New Adventures: 54 Below

  1. Sounds fun! I pop down to the city every now and then, though not as often as I used to due to getting older and more boring. 😀 I still wouldn't want to live anywhere else in the world, as I love having NYC right in my backyard!


  2. *cough* Blue Ivy! I'm not really sure where Sacagawenis came from. Or what kind of position it could be. I heart random stage banter. Better keep our eye on future acts there, Jess.


  3. This was an utterly indulgent post, but hey, I said that I would chronicle it. This blog is part journal sometimes. You know, I think I actually saw more shows when I was in college in Boston, but most of those shows were on campus and or at student discount rates. I'm thrilled that I did not get carded last night! Finally looked my age!


  4. That sounds like a lot of fun. I went to a comedy club in Long Beach once that had a drink & food minimum. It was fun. I tend to be the lame person who laughs at all the jokes no one else thinks is funny. I've yet to explore NYC. It's on me and my sister's wish list. Soon! I've only been in the airport and in a taxi cab (which was quite the frightening experience. Lol!)


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