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The Essential Weekend CMJ FREE Party List: Criterion Selection

Updated: Oct 18, 2012 14:53
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If you’re not going to these parties, you might as well board the next slow bus to Cincinnati. I don’t care how infuriatingly sexy all of it is going to be. I don’t care how insecure all the insouciance is going to make you feel. Did I mention that it’s free? And there is sometimes free booze too? Yeah.

The CMJs can be a bit of a nightmare. If you get stuck in a venue with a crappy line up you’re pretty screwed for the evening unless you want to pay another cover charge. All in all, the cost can put a serious damper on discovering decent bands. Because you can’t always tell from the names. I mean Harmonica Lewinski might be awesome, but then there does seem to be a rather large focus on harmonicas and unless they’re referring to the bass harmonica that could be a bad situation.

So without further ado, allow me to key you in on the must-see FREE events of the CMJs.


(all shows are FREE)

Bowery Electric: Cantora Records presents Zulu Pearls, Cruiser, and many more. 8pm

Villain BK: Pitchfork presents Death Grips, DIIV, Joey Bada$$, and more. 8pm

Cacao Prieto Distillery: Widow Jane Whiskey Launch Party – there’s FREE BOOZE with RSVP (RSVP HERE). 7pm


Day Parties:

Rockwood Music Hall: FREE BRUNCH! Plus performers such as Barcelona, Aunt Martha, and more. 12pm

Knitting Factory: FREE FOOD & BOOZE with RSVP! Plus The Denzels, Free Energy, Gold Fields, and more. 1pm RSVP HERE

Public Assembly: Brooklyn Vegan presents FREE FOOD & BOOZE! Check with them tonight for the lineup. 12pm

Night Parties:

Pianos (yeah… sigh… but it’ll be a good party crowd though): Cult Jams with Hunters, Trap Avoid, Roxy Cottontail, and more. 7pm

St Vitus (great space): Brooklyn Vegan presents Yakuza, Royal Thunder, Fight Amp, and more. Okay so it’s $5 to get in BUT there’s FREE BOOZE on the inside so good deal. 7:30pm

Music Hall of Williamsburg: Fool’s Gold 5 Year Anniversary ft. Ghostface Killah, A-track, Flosstradamus, Nick Catchdubs, and more. 10pm


The Paper Box: Do or Die Bk presents music and FREE BOOZE with RSVP. RSVP HERE today! 2pm

285 Kent: Hilly Eye, Heaven’s Gate, Potty Mouth, Ava Luna, and more. 12pm

*** You’ll notice that I have not included every party. That would defeat the point of my concise and definitive criterion selection. I have also left out parties at certain venues, because I hate them. You’ll also notice that I have neglected the Meatpacking and Tribeca. They’re for squares. Good things cannot happen there.

Photo Credit: Brooklyn Vegan


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Jules Owen - Wandering Wastrel

Jules Owen - Wandering Wastrel

Going to a rich kid school when you aren't even given an allowance certainly trains you to live large on the cheap. Armed with such expertise, Jules travelled the globe, surviving off of 50 cent beers and 2 dollar meals everywhere from Buenos Aires to Mumbai. Three years ago he returned to the United States, living first in Baltimore while he settled a debt with the IRS, then in Brooklyn where he plays music and writes. He aspires to one day live in a van on N.15th and Kent.