Monday, September 17, 2012

Case Study No. 0527: Lost in the Stacks

Brooklyn Public Library - Lost in the Stacks - March 2008
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Tags: Brooklyn Public Library Maletzky Media Brooklyn Library
Added: 3 years ago
From: maletzkymedia
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[scene opens with a male news anchor speaking directly to the camera, with a graphic reading "Library Rockers" in the background]
KEVIN MCCABE: Not all librarians are keeping it down. One group is actually rocking their way to a record deal.
[cut to footage of the librarians recording some music]
KEVIN MCCABE: [in voice over] News 12 is continuing to follow the career of "Lost in the Stacks," a group of library workers who can jam with the best of them. Thursday night, the band took to Brooklyn's own Royal Blue Studios in Bed-Stuy, to record their first professional album. They spent several hours perfecting their beats. The band tells us there's still plenty to be done, but they're pleased with the progress.
[cut to Robert Honablue ("Director of Engineering") being interviewed]
ROBERT HONABLUE: Basically, what they'll do is they'll probably press a few hundred copies and they'll start selling them at various gigs and what have you, which is the better way to get yourself started in the industry.
[cut back to Kevin in studio, speaking directly to the camera]
KEVIN MCCABE: No word yet on when "Lost in the Stacks"' first album will be finished ...



Lost in the Stacks
Brooklyn Public Library's own Band of Wild Librarians!

Born in 2004 as a 7-piece with a different rhythm section, Brooklyn Public Library's own Lost In The Stacks now plays all over Brooklyn and beyond as a dynamic 10-piece unit. In addition to an expanding number of originals, LITS plays many rock, pop, and jazz standards in their own unique style.

LITS has played at numerous library functions, including the Coney Island Blues Festival, Service for the Aging (at the Saratoga, Dyker, New Utrecht, and Brooklyn Heights neighborhood libraries), the annual Book Drive, and has made several appearances at the Literacy Banquet at the Central Branch at Grand Army Plaza. Additionally, LITS has played a pair of gigs at Coney Island's KeySpan Park, as part of a pre-game show before the Cyclones' crowd and also at the annual art fair there. Other recent live shows include a gig as the featured band for the Senior Senior Prom at the Midwood Senior Center and a very well-received performance at 2011's National Library Week rally at New York's City Hall Park; this was their fourth straight year performing at said event.

In September of 2007, LITS was featured live on Brooklyn's Channel 12 as part of the gala opening of the new Dr. S. Stevan Dweck Center for Contemporary Culture at the Central Branch of BPL.

Over the past couple of years, LITS has been recording a full-length CD of originals and covers at Royal Blue Studios in Brooklyn; and the CD is now OUT!!! You can get a copy either at one of our shows, or from one of the band members (if you can't get to either, contact one of us and we can make arrangements to mail you one); and you can hear some of the tracks on our myspace page: . Stay tuned for our upcoming bandcamp page, as well.

Rita Meade: vocals
Clyde Kerlew: vocals, bass, tenor sax, harmonica, random instruments
Richie Araldi: vocals, drums, percussion
Jack McCleland: guitar, backing vocals
Sharon Tidwell: flute, percussion
Matt Cole: alto and bari sax, percussion
Harold Stern: trombone, percussion
Kid Java: bass, blues harp
Larry Videlago: keyboards



Shush! Brooklyn librarians form band and rock out
Lost in the Stacks is name of band
Wednesday, July 11, 2012, 3:42 PM

These Brooklyn librarians have gone from shelving books to rocking out in a band.

The six librarians have formed a roving band called Lost in the Stacks - a jazz and blues band that plays at book festivals and branches all over the city.

The group is a far cry from the stern stereotypes of librarians.

"This gives the people another image of librarians," said the band's founding member, Jack McCleland, 65, the head librarian at the main branch at Grand Army Plaza.

"There's this stereotype of librarians being this older woman with her hair in a bun shushing everyone. We're not like that. We have a lot of very hip and very cool people."

McCleland formed the band eight years ago after he was asked to perform for a longtime staffer who died.

The lifelong guitarist quickly scraped together a group of seven other librarians who had musical chops to play the impromptu gig and have performed ever since.

Lead singer Rita Meade, 31, - who works as a librarian out of the New Utrecht branch on 86th St. - said librarians are more artistic than people think.

"When people are surprised that we're librarians I think we're surprised," said Meade. "There are a lot of us out there with hidden talents."

Last year, the band released an album with original music currently going for $10 a copy on Facebook. The group also plays covers of jazz and blues standards like "All of Me," "Stormy Monday," and "Someone to Watch Over Me."

The band has now grown to nine members - including a Queens librarian.

Matt Cole, 41 - the alto and baritone saxophone player who works at the Kensington branch on Ditmas Ave. - said the band shows how times have changed.

"We're not your father's and mother's librarians," said Cole. "A lot of us are the really creative types."

The band of bookworms regularly play at a slew of promotional library events all over the city, including The Coney Island Blues Festival, the Literacy Banquet at the Central Library and in City Hall Park during National Library Week.

For now, the band is scraping together the cash to produce their next album. McCleland said he's hoping audiences will grow beyond other bookworms.

"We're expanding," said McCleland. "Our reach is going beyond the library. It's very satisfying."

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