Friday, November 30, 2012

Berlin From Above (Tallest Building's View) - In A Berlin Minute (Week 135)


Berlin seen from the tallest building, the Park Inn Hotel (not the tallest structure, which would be the TV Tower).

This was filmed on a day and two nights in August. This is breaking one of my rules of always publishing something that I shot that week. But, hey, now that YouTube wiped out my channel where I meticulously uploaded these videos every week as a sort of weekly record of what I saw in Berlin and Brooklyn, who is really going to get worked up over such details.

It may have been a bold choice, to use such a melancholy song instead of something celebratory for these views of Berlin. But I really love this song "This Old Town" by Jason Matherne and Hollie Greer, and frankly, I was in the mood for this song. Check out the song on Soundcloud. 

And please subscribe again on YouTube to my two channels GNYBerlin and LuciWest or if you're annoyed by what YouTube has done this week to so many of us content providers, please feel free to connect with me on Vimeo.

Berliner Dom seen from the tallest building in Berlin

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Wiped Out! - Where to watch now...

In A Berlin Minute - web series

The channels GNYBerlin and LuciWest have been reactivated. But all videos, subscribers and comments are unfortunately gone. Please re-subscribe. I will reupload all videos over the next few weeks. 


Still shocked and heartbroken I have to announce that YouTube (aka Google) have shut down my channels GNYBerlin and LuciWest without any warning or explanation. 

I am currently trying to figure out what happened and appeal to them to reinstate these channels that I have not only put a lot of daily work into for several years - but also through which you, the community, have built a social work of art by connecting and communicating with me and each other. 

I remain hopeful that the suspension can be undone because the community is the most important aspect of the videos I share online. 

For now however, I would like to point you to the other places where you can watch the In A Berlin Minute (aka In A Brooklyn Minute) web series. 

Perpetual Explorer:

Unfortunately my vlogs and the extended minutes (Moving Postcards) don't live on any other platforms.

Until now my company's channel GHWP is still online, where you can watch my documentaries All God's Children and All's Well and Fair for free. 

In A Brooklyn Minute - web series

I am in the process of replacing all embedded videos here and on the Facebook and Google+ page with the Vimeo versions. The next step will be to replace all the links on sites like Flickr, Pinterest, tumblr, Chill etc. THAT is something that had taken me years to build - so I'm not sure if it will be physically possible to do. 

So I remain hopeful that YouTube will restore the channels so that the links will be live again. 

Until then, please watch on the other platforms. 

I will try to have a new video online by tonight as I do every Thursday, but frankly it's a bit overwhelming right now just to update all sites and appeal to YouTube/Google.

FYI, as far as I know, I did not do anything that was offensive, broke copyright laws or went against the specific rules of YouTube. However, I believe that this is about using an automated service to share videos, which I was assured followed the strict rules of YouTube. In addition, I included in every email the polite request to let me know if the recipient does not want to get anymore videos. About a dozen people asked me not to send videos, which was far outweighed by the people who let me know they appreciated getting the videos directly in their inbox. 

Monday, November 26, 2012

R.E.M. + Patti Smith + James Franco + Lindsay Lohan - "Blue" (MusicMonday)

Patti Smith and Michael Stipe

R.E.M. just released a quite mesmerizing video directed by James Franco (and featuring some shots of his hotness and also Lindsay Lohan) for the atmospheric song collaboration with the phenomenal Patti Smith "Blue" from their 2011 album Collapse Into Now. It happens to fit my mood.

"Blue" by R.E.M. featuring Patti Smith 

Feels circus left the stakes a broken ropes useless mud
The ties that bind, ha ha
I can be bad poet
Street poet
Shit poet
Kind poet too

Almost 4AM
Halloween night
I've had enough to drink to make my own party
All my fellow riders in half costume, half asleep
Half silly, gone to seed

I don't mark my time with dates, holidays, faded wisdom, locked karma, whatever's

I am made by my times
I am a creation of now
Shaken with the cracks and crevices
I'm not giving up easy
I will not fold
I don't have much
But what I have is gold

(I saw your face
You drift in snow
And I drift in snow)

I sing in platinum
I dress in brass
I eat in zinc
Let it pass

Compare a toast
I like that
I understand courage
I still roll with the shout of a character I was married to today
I try to see outside myself
I understand the eyes
Excuse all the highs
I am sorry
Ha ha

(What have we learned
I like your face)

I like you, love you, every coast of you.
I've seen your eddies and tides and hurricanes and cyclones.
Low ebb tide and high, full moon.
Up close and distant.
I read you like the sky, the sea, the ocean, the sun, the moon.
Blue, blue, blue, blue, blue, blue, blue blue, blue, blue, blue, blue.
Naked and blue.

(Naked and blue
Breathing with you)

Breathing with you. Touch. Change. Shift. Allow air. Window open. Drift. Drift away. Into now.

I want Whitman proud. Patti Lee proud. My brothers proud. My sisters proud. I want me. I want it all. I want sensational. Irresistible.

This is my time and I am thrilled to be alive.

I understand
Twentieth century
Collapse Into Now

PATTI: Cinderella boy
You've lost your shoe

Cinderella boy (Blue, blue, blue, blue...)
Your coach awaits (Blue, blue, blue, blue...)
I saw its shadow (Blue, blue, blue, blue...)
All over your face (Blue, blue, blue, blue...)
As you sit (Blue, blue, blue, blue...)
Naked and blue (Blue, blue, blue, blue...)
Into me



Sunday, November 25, 2012

Airport Berlin Tegel (TXL) - 2012 (Photos)

A few photos from the shoot of this week's video "Tegel "Otto Lilienthal" Airport (TXL) - In A Berlin Minute (Week 134)". 

WATCH my 1-minute video "Tegel "Otto Lilienthal" Airport (TXL) - In A Berlin Minute (Week 134)".

READ blog post about the actual video to find out more.

The future of Tegel Airport?
Die Zukunft von Flughafen Tegel?

Between New York and Bangkok
Zwischen New York und Bangkok
Flughafen Tegel Airport

Flughafen Tegel Airport

"Before the start to Calais for the Europe flight of 1911" by Karlheinz Biederbick
"Vor dem Start nach Calais zum Europa-Flug von 1911" von Karlheinz Biederbick
Flughafen Tegel Airport

Take-off - Abflug
Flughafen Tegel Airport

Birds of a feather flock together - "The fall of Daedalus and Icarus" by Rolf Scholz reminds of Otto Lilienthal
Voegel der gleichen Feder fliegen zusammen - Der Fall Daidalos und Ikaros" von Rolf Scholz erinnnert and Otto Lilienthal
Flughafen Tegel Airport

Bird and Planes
Vogel und Flugzeuge
Flughafen Tegel Airport

A few photos from the shoot of this week's video "Tegel "Otto Lilienthal" Airport (TXL) - In A Berlin Minute (Week 134)". 

WATCH my 1-minute video "Tegel "Otto Lilienthal" Airport (TXL) - In A Berlin Minute (Week 134)".

READ blog post about the actual video to find out more.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Airport Berlin Tegel "Otto Lilienthal" Airport (TXL) - In A Berlin Minute (Week 134)

Airport Berlin Tegel "Otto Lilienthal" (TXL) - In A Berlin Minute (Week 134) from Luci Westphal on Vimeo.

Tegel aka Otto Lilienthal Airport (TXL) is currently the main airport in Berlin, but it will soon be shut down in favor of the new Berlin-Brandenburg airport that is being built (with much delay) in the area of the Schoenefeld Airport.

There has been some sort of airport in Tegel since 1914. It's noted for its hexagonal shape. To me the airport is special because every gate has its own security check, which makes catching your flight a lot more relaxed.

On hazy Wednesday I went to Tegel to pick up my friend Ginger, who is visiting from Brooklyn for Thanksgiving weekend.

I love travel and seeing my friends, so I thought this would be a perfect video idea for this week.

The song is a newer version of Jason Matherne's "New Adventure" featuring Matt Foskey.

You can look at more photos from this video shoot here: Airport Berlin Tegel (TXL) – 2012 (Photos)

Plane taking off at Tegel Airport

Monday, November 19, 2012

Tilly and The Wall: "Thicker Than Thieves" (MusicMonday)

Today's Music Monday song I just discovered this week and it will surely be one of my favorite songs for the rest of my life: "Thicker Than Thieves" by Tilly & The Wall from Omaha, Nebraska.

Tilly & The Wall
Now I promptly bought the entire album Heavy Mood - after I had already posted "Love Riot", another song from the record, a few weeks ago.

I'd like to dedicated this song to my girls: Elke Holzapfel, Judith Hecktor, Katherine Guttman, Jessica Gould, Ginger Albertson, Erica Stoltz, Steph Gerber, Debbie Foreman, Caitlin Mia Cassaro, Amanda Doss, Meghan Scibona, Katie Ainslie, Hollie Greer, Margaret Briggs and Rachel Iannelli. Thank you for having been here for me through all the years and especially through these days.

you and me got something they can't touch
you and me connect the dots, uh huh
you're the one i call when things get tough
you can tell when i need you, oh oh
you and me would fuck some bitches up
like they'd ever dare to step to us
girl, you know i could never get enough
and i'm there if push comes to shove.

you are my sister, it's never gonna change
a constant fixture, it's always gonna be this way
i'm here forever, we're thicker than thieves, okay
in this together, no matter where the bad

i'll stand up for you, i always got your back
when you're mad at your boyfriend, i hope this makes you happy
i hope this song reminds you of all the times we laughed and laughed

Can't wait to see them live one day. But right now I'm going to run off and see Evan Dando and Juliana Hatfield in Berlin... 

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Strasse des 17. Juni (Photos)

A few photos from the shoot of this week's video "Strasse des 17. Juni - In A Berlin Minute (Week 133)". 

WATCH my 1-minute video "Strasse des 17. Juni - In A Berlin Minute (Week 133)".

READ blog post about the actual video to find out more.

Brandenburg Gate - Start of Strasse des 17. Juni

Der Rufer by Gerhard Marcks on Strasse des 17. Juni

Strasse des 17. Juni
Soviet War Memorial

View from Strasse des 17. Juni into Tiergarten

View from Strasse des 17. Juni into Tiergarten

Strasse des 17. Juni
View to the East

Strasse des 17. Juni
View to the West

Strasse des 17. Juni
Charlottenburg Gate

A few photos from the shoot of this week's video "Strasse des 17. Juni - In A Berlin Minute (Week 133)". 

WATCH my 1-minute video "Strasse des 17. Juni - In A Berlin Minute (Week 133)".

READ blog post about the actual video to find out more.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Strasse des 17. Juni - In A Berlin Minute (Week 133)

Strasse des 17. Juni - In A Berlin Minute (Week 133) [HD] from Luci Westphal on Vimeo.

Strasse des 17. Juni (17th of June Street) is a large avenue through the heart of Berlin.

It starts in the East at the Brandenburger Tor (Brandenburg Gate), runs through Tiergarten (animal park), passing the Sowjetisches Ehrenmal (Soviet War Memorial), circling around the Siegessaeule aka Goldelse (Victory Column), going under the Tiergarten S-Bahn train station, crossing over the Charlottenburger Tor (Charlottenburg Gate), cutting through the campus of Technische Universitaet (Technical University), where I once studied Psychology for 2 days before I dropped out to move to America and study film, and ends at Ernst-Reuter-Platz.

East of Brandenburger Tor the street is called Unter den Linden, west of Ernst-Reuter-Platz it is called Bismarckstrasse. 

The street was named after the workers' uprising in East Germany on June 17th, 1953.

The music is a slightly sped up instrumental version of the song "Hell Came For Breakfast" by Jason Matherne. Check out his music on Soundcloud (free downloads)

Looking east on Strasse des 17. Juni with the Siegessaeule in the center and the Fernsehturm just off to the left
If you want to see more from this area, check out my videos about Tiergarten, Siegessaeule and Fernsehturm.  

You can look at more photos from this video shoot on my personal blog: Strasse des 17. Juni (Photos)

Monday, November 12, 2012

The New Pornographers - "Think About Me" (MusicMonday)

Today's Music Monday song is a cover of the Fleetwood Mac song "Think About Me" by the Canadian super group The New Pornographers. It's part of the Fleetwood Mac tribute album Just Tell Me That You Want Me released by the Starbucks. 

I never was particularly fond of Fleetwood Mac or of Starbucks for that matter, however this compilation has quite a few gems, e.g. from Best Coast, MGMT and Lykke Li.

The New Pornographers at some point

Since you scrolled all the way down, HERE is the link for the original Fleetwood Mac recording.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Insel der Jugend / Island of Youth - Photos

A few photos from the shoot of this week's video "Insel der Jugend (Island of Youth) - In A Berlin Minute (Week 132)". 

WATCH my 1-minute video "Insel der Jugend (Island of Youth) - In A Berlin Minute (Week 132)". 

READ blog post about the actual video to find out more.

Bridge to Island of Youth
Bruecke zur Insel der Jugend

Pier on Island of Youth with Stralau Island in the back
Pier auf der Insel der Jugend mit der Insel Stralau dahinter

Pier on Island of Youth
Pier auf der Insel der Jugend

Chestnut Autumn Foliage

Sun - Sonne

Autumn Trees and Long Shadows
Herbstbaeume und Lange Schatten

Instagram Teaser Photo for Island of Youth Video

A few photos from the shoot of this week's video "Insel der Jugend (Island of Youth) - In A Berlin Minute (Week 132)". 

WATCH my 1-minute video "Insel der Jugend (Island of Youth) - In A Berlin Minute (Week 132)". 

READ blog post about the actual video to find out more.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Insel der Jugend (Island of Youth) - In A Berlin Minute (Week 132)

Insel der Jugend (Island of Youth) - In A Berlin Minute (Week 132) [HD] from Luci Westphal on Vimeo.

The Insel der Jugend (Island of Youth) located in the Spree River section of Alt-Treptow, actually changed its name to Insel Berlin (Island Berlin) in 2010. But I prefer the more poetic name.

The first time I came to this island was for some goth, punk or rave party (who really remembers the details?) with my friend Elke when I briefly lived in Berlin in the early 90s. Last year Scott, Judith, Simone and Julia rode our bikes to the island, met Arturo and spent the best Easter under the blooming trees. To film this video I returned to the island with Elke. It was a very difficult and sad day for me and it strikes me now, how beautiful and serene the island comes across in the images on a beautiful, colorful autumn day.

It's comforting to think that no matter how difficult your day or your life is, nature goes on living and showing you its beauty.

The song is "I'm Givin' Up" by Jason Matherne. Download "I'm Givin' Up" for free via Soundcloud. Check out his Facebook page for links to more (free) music.

This video is the first one I've uploaded in 1080p. Let me know what you think about the picture quality. Still playing around with some settings.

Also for the first time I allowed the video to be 1 second longer to let the song play out a bit better. Btw, YouTube always ads 1 second into the count. Not sure why.

Insel der Jugend - Island of Youth - Insel Berlin
You can look at more photos from this video shoot on my personal blog: Insel der Jugend / Island of Youth - Photos

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Clouds - Wolken - In A Berlin Minute (Week 131) [In Memory of Franc Tausch]

Clouds - Wolken - In A Berlin Minute (Week 131) [HD] from Luci Westphal on Vimeo.

Clouds moving across the sky. A rather unusual and simple video for this series. It is a special video I made in memory of Franc Tausch (aka FilmKritikTV on YouTube). He was a special friend to "In A Berlin Minute" and a wonderful friend, mentor, inspiration and brother-in-spirit to me.

He passed away two months ago. But for various reasons we weren't allowed to make it public until his birthday last week, Thursday October 25th. That day I posted "Charlottenburg Palace (Inside)", which wasn't the right video to dedicate to him. So this week I went out to the Insel der Jugend (Island of Youth) and filmed these clouds. If you look closely you can see two birds fly across the sky.

Franc Tausch
Franc was a very spiritual man who taught me a lot and who was loved and admired by many. He was one to appreciate nature, harmony and a deeper meaning in life. When my beloved cats died he talked me through the grief and reminded me how all spirits are important and equal and that it is not up to us to keep those we love alive, but we have to let them go. Their spirits will remain with us.

With this in mind, I know Franc's spirit will continue to be with me and everyone. But I really did want to have more time with him in this realm. There was still so much I wanted to do with him, talk to him about and learn from him.

Appreciate those that are with you. And always, try to be brave and kind. Life is short.

Franc's German Film Review YouTube channel:

The song is "Finally" by Cassis and Boxerin. Check out Cassis' music website: