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Pin Drop: New York – visionaries forge epicentres of culture and expression within the iconic skyline. 

New York

New York, the big apple, a concreate jungle – where towering skyscrapers have long served as beacons for the creatively inclined, offering sanctuary for outcasts and a foundation for artistic exploration. This city, endlessly dissected and reimagined by media, continues to captivate the collective imagination. For what is New York but a culmination of a deep diversity pool that breathes, creates and designs a core part of modern media.  

UNCLE has identified three quintessential New York institutions that uphold the essence of the streets. These establishments have left an indelible mark by reflecting the character of the boroughs they call home. Whilst each has its own ambiance, they collectively pay homage to the mosaic of cultures that defines the city. Community fosters progression, as is evident by the following. 

THE YES HONEY COLLECTIVE

A refreshing addition to the city’s landscape, The Yes Honey Collective is a blend of femme and non-binary DJs of colour creating a space for musical expression. They themselves are evidence of how New York is not defined by one genre or aesthetic. The essence of the collective lies in the fluidity of music, it cannot be easily defined, guided or predicted and as such is an optimal playground for the collective to experiment within.  

In its burgeoning stage, the collective’s footprint is already marked by a flurry of activities – from regular nights, radio shows and workshops to strategic partnerships and global activations. Central to their mission is the elevation of voices and opportunities for non-binary and women of colour within the industry, fostering a supportive hive-like community through networking and exposure. The Yes Honey Collective isn’t just shaping the city’s nightlife; it’s catalysing a movement, amplifying diverse voices and reshaping the sonic landscape one electrifying beat at a time. 

MARIO’S 

Located in the heart of The Bronx, Italian restaurant Mario’s has a legacy that spans over a century. Far from the touristy hub of Manhattan’s Little Italy, Mario’s is now in its fifth generation of ownership, and serves as a guardian of heritage whilst offering a glimpse into the neighbourhood’s storied past. The Migliucci family and their dedicated staff line the establishment with a sense of warmth, greeting guests with a welcoming embrace of tradition and familiarity.  

Led by master chef Massimo, every dish is crafted with meticulous attention to detail, authenticity and high-quality ingredients. But it is not just the food and drink that make Mario’s a cultural landmark, it’s the sense of community and camaraderie. Here locals and visitors alike gather to savour the spirit of tradition and hospitality. As the years pass and trends come and go, Marios remains a steadfast reminder of the power of food to unite, making it an indispensable part of New York City’s cultural landscape. 

HUMAN HEAD RECORDS 

Human Head Records is a somewhat undiscovered gem that still flies under the radar on an unassuming street in the heart of Bushwick, Brooklyn. Founded by Travis Klein and Steve Smith in 2013 at an Art Brut concert, the duo ran with their love for music to create something special. Klein himself was unemployed at the time selling records on the side, so was naturally able to upscale what he already had a passion for. The interior is a treasure trove of used records, laid out to encourages serendipitous discoveries rather than strict order. The founder’s own taste are reflected in the genre offering spanning the likes of rock, punk, metal, soul, jazz, reggae, hip-hop, and Latin. 

Human Heads succeeds because it is more than just a record store, it’s a community hub where music lovers converge to unearth hidden gems and share stories. Despite being newcomers to the neighbourhood, Klein and Smith are keenly aware of their place within Bushwick’s history. They’ve fostered connections with long-time residents, sourcing music from personal collections steeped in the area’s musical history. They are committed to honouring the neighbourhood’s legacy and this has been the driving factor behind the buzz of the store.

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