Best Between-Acts Concert Entertainment - 2010
Wingate Field in Bushwick is the place to be every Monday night during the summer, when the Martin Luther King Jr. Concert Series brings through a cavalcade of old-school hip-hop, soul, gospel, and r&b stars. (This year featured Parliament/Funkadelic, BeBe & CeCe Winans, and an epic set from Salt-N-Pepa.) The free shows lure in thousands of lawn-chair-toting nostalgia enthusiasts in need of between-act cajoling, and for that, thank God, there is Marty Markowitz. We have no idea what being Brooklyn borough president actually entails other than emceeing these things (there's a weekly summer series at Coney Island, too), but we can confirm that it does involve inviting to the stage a motley crew of City Councilmen, radio DJs, preachers, wayward Applebee's employees, and assorted other yahoos. All of them have their charms, but none can compare with ol' Ramblin' Marty himself, soothing an oft-restless crowd in dulcet tones, never failing to enthrall even when he's announcing that Aretha Franklin canceled the show she was supposed to play there next week. It's infuriating at first, but eventually you come to regard it as a virtuoso performance: No one on earth kills time with more grace than Marty Markowitz. He is the Picasso of stalling. Go watch him paint sometime. Bring a chair.