Adam Green Remembers His Hotel Drug Binges

Using his iPhone, 30-year-old musician Adam Green (formerly one half of the Moldy Peaches) made The Wrong Ferrari, a ketamine-fueled, 80-minute movie starring his famous friends – Macaulay Culkin, Alia Shawkat, and Devendra Banhart among them. “I thought this would be like Dante’s Inferno—if I subjected myself to enough embarrassment on camera it would cleanse my soul,” he says of the project.

As it happens, the New York–based singer-songwriter is no stranger to the contours of Hades. Discussing his favorite crash pads around the world, he says, “I’d just started filming and doing lots of ketamine, and I swear to god that my room in the Backstage Hotel in Amsterdam turned into all the different layers of Hell. For two hours, I thought I was listening to this awful ’90s radio station playing the worst Pearl Jam–type stuff, but it turned out to be the sound the heater was making. I also love the generic-ness of Travelodge Kings Cross in London. I’ve heard that Bob Dylan always stays in a Travelodge, too. This hotel is memorable because it’s where I tried to kill my bandmate, Steven Mertens. We were wrestling in front of some girls after a show, and he pinned me and then took the contents of my suitcase and poured them over my head. In a psychotic rage, I picked him up and threw him into the window. Luckily it didn’t break. Finally, there’s the Hotel Adlon Kempinski in Berlin, a city where, for a very brief period, there was ‘Green Mania.’ The staff was always blushing whenever I was around, I was always on national TV, and my bed had a canopy. It only lasted for three months, and it was in Berlin so nobody really believes it happened, but for a time I felt like Prince Harry.”

David Hyde Pierce on the Time He Made a Mess in Paul Newman’s Kitchen

In his deliciously twisted new thriller, The Perfect Host, actor David Hyde Pierce plays a crazy—okay, crazier—version of his beloved Frasier character, Dr. Niles Crane. Hyde Pierce, a four-time Emmy winner (he’s been nominated 11 times in as many years), is Warwick Wilson, an intelligent, affluent man who’s preparing to host a dinner party when a stranger named John (Clayne Crawford) arrives at his front door.

Although John, a dangerous criminal on the lam, pretends to be a family friend, the truth soon comes out—as does Warwick’s violent streak. Of his unexpected role in Nick Tomnay’s directorial debut, Hyde Pierce, 52, says, “It was fun to hear people gasp at seeing this character—who’s quite similar to the one I played on TV for so long—go in very different, very dark places. Surprising people was one of the reasons I did the film. That and working with Clayne, who, if I’m the ‘perfect host,’ played the perfect guest. In real life, I’m far from the perfect host. I was assisting my partner Brian Hargrove [the couple married in 2008] while he hosted a brunch for Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward in their apartment. Due to a misunderstanding about how some glass cookware works with heat, the eggs exploded all over their beautiful kitchen. Glass shards were everywhere, and we had to start cooking all over again without all of Paul’s famous guests knowing what had happened. He’d stick his head in and ask, ‘How are the eggs coming?’ and we’d yell back, ‘Almost ready!’ as we scraped our messes into the wastebasket.” Maybe that explains why the venerable stage actor can often be found at thespian hangout Sardi’s, where his caricature hangs on the wall.

MMA Star Gina Carano on Her First Acting Gig for Steven Soderbergh

In the summer of 2009, a er losing the first fight of her career, Gina Carano, a professional mixed martial artist, considered throwing in the towel. But at her agent’s insistence, the 29-year-old Texan agreed to meet with a director named Steven Soderbergh. “I had a black eye, and I didn’t want to see anyone,” she says. “Especially not a director who, I’m embarrassed to say, I hadn’t heard of before. He wanted to make a movie based on a female action person—‘star’ feels too weird to say—who would make these Hollywood stage fights look believable.”

Two days after their first meeting, Soderbergh, the Oscar-winning director of films like Erin Brockovich, Ocean’s Eleven, and Traffic, asked the first-time actor to star in Haywire alongside Michael Fassbender, Channing Tatum, and Ewan McGregor. In the film, which Soderbergh wrote with Carano in mind, she plays a black-ops super-soldier seeking vengeance after she’s betrayed during one of her missions. “When I’m training for a fight, I beat myself up all day long,” she says. “Filming a movie was draining in such a different way. Every day I woke up and was on some sort of adrenaline rush—I always felt high.” After the film wrapped, Carano had a hard time coming down. “I got home after this incredible, life-changing experience, and had to think about who I was,” she says. “I knew I had to go back to fighting.” MMA enthusiasts, you’ve got Soderbergh to thank: Carano will reenter the ring on June 18.

Making Moves: The Dream Downtown, Bunker, & Cayte Grieve

On Wednesday, anybody who is anybody will be dressing up and having fun at Dream Downtown. The Meatpacking District continues to evolve, and with three colossal hotels—Dream plus Standard plus Gansevoort—it’s flush with hospitality complexes. The lines defining day and night for the jet set/party set are obscuring rapidly. In fact, the lines between clubs, restaurants, and hotels are nearly completely blurred, and no amount of prescription bifocals will clear it up.

These hospitality giants strive to fulfill all one’s need on a 24/7/365 schedule. I may have to change my title from BlackBook “Nightlife Correspondent” to “Hospitality Correspondent,” seeing as things don’t only start at night anymore. There are pools, brunches, and daytime events equal to anything that hides under the cover of darkness. This is the future, as stand-alone clubs in residential neighborhoods will soon be difficult to sustain. I’ve seen Dream Downtown, told you it was a game changer — and it is.

Either before or after I hop, skip, and maybe jump to Dream to pay respects (and ogle the place when it’s full of people who aren’t the usual crowd of construction workers or training staff), I will be at 1920 Bunker Club. Do people actually call it that? I thought it was Bunker. Anyway, on Wednesday 1920 Bunker Club and some very nice people with hearts of gold will be raising money for unfortunate children in the Dominican Republic. The event, mtipforKids (Make the Impossible Possible for Kids) and Dream Project (a co-linked project/event), starts at 8pm and goes on until 11pm, thus answering the question of what to do when you’re all dressed up with both the Dream Downtown hotel soiree and the Bunker charity to go to. The event at 1920 Bunker will raise much-needed funding, “breaking the cycle of poverty through sustainable education programs that allow the opportunity for every child’s gifts and challenges to be met with your support.” Celebrities and industry leaders are slated to attend and you should as well. My pal, new mother Suki Sohn, told me about this group and how brilliant their efforts are. Help this dream before the Dream.

This week my favorite editor Cayte Grieve will move on from BlackBook to greener pastures (or maybe the same green pastures, just to a different green acre—we’re not 100% sure yet). Cayte has kept me in line, stopped me from crossing the line, and from doing lines again. She has held my hand, rewritten my inane ramblings, and made me look good for years now—not an easy task. She has put up with my breakdowns, tantrums, foibles, and freak-outs. She has done what no other women (except for Mom) has ever been able to do: she has soothed this savage beast and gotten me to print everyday. If you think that what I write is sometimes unfocused or insane, you should see it before she edits me. Cayte will be heard from again. She is brilliant, beautiful, and a dear friend. [Editor’s Note: Aw, thank you Uncle Steve. You weren’t as bad as you imagine].

Hanging in Suburbia with MTV’s ‘Teen Wolf’ Star Tyler Posey

For a teenager who claims to be largely oblivious to mainstream media, Tyler Posey has managed to surround himself with a coterie of pop culture icons. At age 11, the now 19-year-old actor appeared alongside his father John—who was cast as Danny Tanner, a part that eventually went to Bob Saget, in the original Full House pilot—and Arnold Schwarzenegger in Collateral Damage. Posey quickly replaced the Governator with Jenny from the Block, when, in 2002, he played Jennifer Lopez’s son in Maid in Manhattan. “I’m not very up-to-date with celebrity or TV,” he says. “I don’t really know what’s going on with vampires or anything like that, but who doesn’t know J-Lo and Ahnuld?”

It’s also worth noting that his first girlfriend was a pre-salvia Miley Cyrus. “We dated when we were 9,” he says. “I hadn’t seen her in a really long time, but I recently went to one of her shows and she was really excited to see me. She gave me her number but I lost it.”

This summer, Posey will trade basking in other celebrities’ auras for a recognizable role of his own, taking the lead in the MTV remake of the 1985 film Teen Wolf. But the California native is quick to admit he’s no Michael J. Fox—who played the lupine original, Scott Howard. “There are a lot of homages to the original,” he says. “My character, Scott McCall, plays sports, but he plays lacrosse instead of basketball. He still deals with feeling like an outsider.” Ties to the classic, however, end there. “This Teen Wolf is actually a lot darker,” he says. “All the guts and gore really freaked me out while we were filming. But at the same time, it has great comedy, romance, and drama—I still can’t believe I’m a part of it!”

When we met on a warm afternoon in late April, Posey was soaking up the sun in his native Santa Clarita, California, which he lovingly calls “suburbia.” When he’s not acting or playing gigs with his band, Lost in Kostko, he can be found scooting around in a bumper car at the local amusement park. “I know I’m technically a teenager,” he says with an impish grin, “but I’ve got a couple more years of little kid left in me.”

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Mountasia Family Fun Center – 21516 Golden Triangle Road, 661-253-4386 I used to come here a lot when I was a little kid. They had this huge skating rink that they’ve since replaced with a giant arcade area. It was the first place I ever freaked out about feeling lost. I was around 4 years old, and I started bawling my eyes out because I thought I got separated from my dad, who was actually right behind me. So now this place is really ingrained in my memory. I recently hung out here with Dylan O’Brien, my costar from Teen Wolf. We became best friends when we were shooting the pilot, and we hang out all the time now, so I had to show him this place. We have a lot in common: we’re both in bands, and we’re the same age.

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Wahoo’s Fish Taco – 24230 Valencia Boulevard, 661-255-5138 I don’t think you realize how much I love this place. I could come here every day and eat a Maui Bowl. It’s teriyaki steak on a pile of rice and beans, and it’s the best thing I’ve ever eaten. Plus, I’m pretty sure Travis Barker owns Wahoo’s [he opened a franchise in Norco, California], and Blink-182 has been my favorite band of all time since I was 7 years old.

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Keyboard Galleria Music Center – 21515 Soledad Canyon Road, 661-259-5397 This place is just across the street from Mountasia, which is probably one of the only good things about living in suburbia. I take my guitars here to get tuned before I rehearse with Lost in Kostko. They have this awesome soundproof room that I just discovered. Bands can come and practice in it, so it’s a great place for us to escape. I’ve been jamming with the drummer, my best friend, for two or three years now, and we formed Lost in Kostko about a year ago. We just play gigs around town, but I want to tour so bad.

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Skate Park – 20880 Centre Pointe Parkway Okay, again, this park is just around the corner from my house. It was rebuilt a few years ago, and it’s now insane. I’ve been told it’s one of the best skate parks in Southern California. They had a huge opening with a ton of professional skaters. People come from all over to skate this park—I met some kids from, well I forget where they were from, but it was, like, really far away. It’s where I first learned how to skate when I was 7 years old. I was so little, but whenever I’d fall I just bounced right back up. It hurts so much more when I fall now. I’m still a little kid though now, aren’t I?

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Val Surf – 24140 Valencia Boulevard, 661-222-7288 My friend’s little sister used to work here and she gave me discounts, so I would come in all the time. Then they moved locations, and now my friend works here. It’s really a perfect situation for me because I wear a lot of skate clothes. I can stop by, pick up clothes and stuff for my skateboard, and I get to say hello—all at the same time. A new Val shop is moving right across the street from where I live now, so basically everything I love is, like, right around the corner from me.

Photography by Ben Cope.

W Hotels Have New Concierge Robots & DJs

People are really taking advantage of their hotel concierges these days. Take the W Hotel. Not only does their concierge team suggest the best places to eat, drink, and shop in the area, and order up room service at the drop of a hat, but they are also personal DJs who help you plan your itinerary with tips on local happenings—and they Tweet for their guests. That’s because in addition to old-school human concierges, W Hotels now have robots—otherwise known as iPhone apps.

W Hotels recently released the W Hotels Worldwide app, a free application that provides information like photos, maps, booking capabilities, and mini travel guides surrounding each of the Starwood brand’s hotels. The apps also ups the ante by providing users with unique music content, curated by Michaelangelo L’Aqua, W Hotel’s music director. Through a collaboration with Coca Cola’s energy drink Burn, emerging DJs will be showcased via the ‘W Hotels and burn DJ Lab.’ There will be an offline component, too, a global tour featuring these DJs, which will also be streamed via the app.

You might be wondering what this has to do with your hotel stay—especially if you have no desire to listen to music (to which we ask: what’s wrong with you?). The app gives you access to room service at just a swipe of a screen, saving you from calling the front desk, or figuring out what extension to dial for towels versus tuna tar tar. Even if you aren’t staying in the hotel, you can order anything from their store and send it anywhere in the world.

TripAdvisor released the results of a US survey that said 60 percent of Americans have downloaded travel apps, and a further 38 percent have used them to plan a trip. To which we say: Download the BlackBook travel guides here! After you figure out what nabe you want to stay in, download the W Hotel app here.

That Time We Got Our Portrait Taken by Rankin

The morning started like any other. Actually no, no it did not. I woke up and freaked out, examined my pores in one of those magnifying mirrors, debated whether or not to wash my hair while standing in the shower for nearly an hour, and actually called Nick Haramis to see what he would be wearing to work today, the day that we would be getting our portraits taken by the renowned photographer Rankin. Just so we’re clear, it’s the same Rankin that has shot The Rolling Stones, Queen Elizabeth II, Tony Blair, and was commissioned by Nike and Bono for their R.E.D campaign in the fight against HIV/AIDS. That Rankin.

image My portrait on the screen while being photographed.

The shoot was for Rankin Live!, the New York version of his successful 2009 London show, in which he brought a museum-scale retrospective of his photographic life, together with a live shoot of over 1,500 Brits. Rankin invited people over thirteen years old who had a distinctive style, sense of British eccentricity, and enthusiasm to have their portrait taken. The portraits produced on the day were hung as part of the ever-changing exhibition and uploaded to the Rankin Live! website.

Rankin and his team have taken up residence at Milk Gallery, where they will be for five days photographing a series of portraits of New Yorkers in the gallery. The images will then be retouched and exhibited on each shoot day. Obviously, getting your photo taken by someone who has shot Kate Moss can be unnerving (especially when said portrait of Kate Moss is hanging on the wall nearby), but I had nothing to worry about. I slipped into my favorite beat-up leather jacket (and brought a change of clothes in case Nick showed up dressed to the nines) and went to Milk with damp hair. The hair and makeup team worked some magic on each of us (Nick didn’t need as much magic as I), and Rankin photographed us as if he were photographing a friend. He has a fantastic manner about him—funny and flattering—and he can make anyone feel absolutely comfortable, perhaps to the point where they start to believe they’re pretty good at getting their picture taken. The info I’m sharing here can be considered helpful since he is still looking for New Yorkers to photograph for the series.

The photographer is looking for people aged 16 and over who can bring their unique personalities and style to his set. If you’d like to be considered, you can submit a photo of yourself, and a brief explanation of your intention to rankinliveusa@rankin.co.uk. The most original applicants will be selected and invited to the Milk Gallery to have their personal shoot. The high volume of portraits will be rotated and hung each day, as part of this original exhibition, and it will be streamed online. Each portrait will cost $100, with all profits from the print sales going to the charity, Oxfam.

Rankin Open Exhibition: May 24th—June 10th Rankin Live! Shoot: June 1st—5th Opening Reception: May 24th, 7pm – 10pm Conversation w the Artist: June 1st, 2011

MAC Surf Baby Collection Not Really for Surf Babies

Promotional shots of the new Surf Baby collection from MAC feature Hanne Gabby Odiele trying pull off goopy burgundy lipstick and shimmery, rust-colored eyeshadow at the beach. We get it: MAC is edgy. Still, who wears such nonsense sur la plage? Dressed in retro-surf packaging, I pretty much expected that the collection would try to hawk patently un-beachy hues by calling them names like “Ocean Breeze Eyeshadow” or “Sand in Your Suit Lipgloss.” And, they did. But the collection also features my new favorite product obsession.

Hits: Surf, Baby! Cheek Powder (Retail $28.00) in My Paradise — a peachy pressed powder with gold hibiscus flower overspray. The right pigment for a flushed overlay of your bronzer. Misses: Crushed Metallic Pigment Stacks ($32.50) in Surf the Ocean Frosty: colors include platinum, light yellow green, gold bronze, dirty graphite with silver pearl; Eyeshadow ($15.50) in Saffron Deep— a tawny caramel. Sorry, where are you going with these colors? Hopefully to the Whiskey A-Go-Go, but certainly not to catch a wave. City:Bronzing Powder (Retail $24.00) in Solar Riche (deep orange brown shade) and Refined Golden (gold with soft pearl finish). Beach: Skinsheen Bronzer Stick (Retail $29.50) in Tan, Billionaire Bronze, and Gilty Bronze. These sticks are perfect if you feel like you need to wear makeup to the beach. Has a clean, dewy finish, and wont streak/run when you do get in the water (or sweat). What I’ll be wearing all summer: image My choice pick from the collection is the Hibiscus Cremesheen Lipstick ($15.50). It’s the perfect color to complement a bit of a tan. The pigment is strong, but seems sheer at the same time, with great coverage. It’s limited edition, so I’ll be stocking up when the collection launches at MAC counters on May 26.

Hibiscus, shown with Naturally Eccentric image from XSparkage.