Nightlife is as good as it ever was and it continues to expand in every direction. Like our universe, it started with a Big Bang just a couple of years ago, when bottle service got out of the way of having a good time, and clubs, bars, lounges and restaurants got over the depression – both economic and social – of the post 9/11 disaster. Some peeps talk of the good old days as if there once was a Camelot or nirvana. I’ve been around for a long time and I firmly believe that nightlife today is more vibrant than any time in the last 30 years. I’m sure this statement will be refuted by many, especially those who thought having a good time meant waking up on a floor, but I’m standing by it. The drugs aren’t as important a driving force as in "the day." High rents and aspirations mean that people must be functional when the sun is up. There are less or different types of after-hour opportunities. The 4am to noon spots have given way to parties at lofts and hotel suites. I have been saying for a couple years now that there are few great clubs but many great nights. This is changing as clubs refine their nightly programming and offer more than just one evening a week of nocturnal bliss. Westway is fabulous and getting more so as time goes on. It’s a bit under-the-radar and to the left of things – dirty, fun, and daring. A friend of mine, Frankie Sharp is offering up a new Tuesday soirèe, "Westgay at Westway," and it seems undeniably fun.
This Tuesday, it’s Lady Miss Kier of DeeLite fame and a veteran of a thousand and one club wars, Jon Jon Battles, DJing to the gays, the trendies, and the in-the-know. There is a live performance from buzz act House of Ladosha and delicious hosts and hussies MR. MICKEY BOARDMAN OF PAPER MAGAZINE, DAVID MASON OF WWW.SLICKITUP.COM, QUENTIN BELT , LADY PEACH SPENCER ,MICHELLE SALEM, AMY CAKES, DANKY DANK, and SHIT THAT FASHION GIRLS SAY. I asked Westgay honcho Frankie Sharp, who describes himself as a Promoter and DJ, why this is going to be so scorching hot.
Carlos Quirarte and Matt Kleigman
, the owners of Jane
, The Smile
, and other great venues are such great people and believe in FUN and having a good time! Plain and simple. They reached out to me after my recent feature
in Paper Magazine and the other great press I got from my successful weekly night at Bedlam
. So we had the mutual desire to work with one another even before meeting. Also, I wanted a space that was big enough to build a big gay dance party and playground for the downtown kids that these big westside clubs get all the time. Westway is huge! It’s perfect! So I’m going to rent bouncy castles.
Is nightlife experiencing an era of global warming?
Well, I think bottle service is killing the polar bears and ruining nightlife. It’s too segregated. Also, "cooler than cool" just really isn’t cool anymore. There’s nowhere that’s just FUN and boozy, to just nerd out and feel and look amazing. It’s been quite stuffy at the places I used to frequent. At Westway, I’m getting the right people from all the different pockets of New York City together to get the pot stirring again. Upper Manhattan to Lower Manhattan, East to West, Downtown to Uptown. Everyone’s welcome!!!
Lady Miss Kier…what does she mean to you…why the booking ?
She was the first album I bought with my own money as a kid. She was my first inspiration when it came to style, music, and had a great frivolous but polished thing about her that spoke to me. I think she’s a great exclamation point to this new fun baby of mine. I love working with my idols and when it comes to music, she’s all about FUN.
Is this a Fashion Week extravaganza special or what we should expect every week?
No, every week you should expect more great DJs, artists, and performers from Jake Shears of the Scissor Sisters
, Santigold, Lady Bunny, JD Samson, Casey Spooner… they’re all acheduled to play. I’m trying REALLY hard to get Kristen Wiig
from SNL to "DJ"… fingers crossed!
There’s a buzz on House of Ladosha. Tell me who they are and what all the hype is about.
House of Ladosha are two great visual artists who have banded together to become this amazing gender-bending rap group. They’re songs are catchy, topical, fun, and they look incredible. They just look and sound like New York to me. They kinda look like the Fly Girls from In Living Color,
but with facial hair. They’re quite the show. Theyve opened up for SSION and have performed everywhere from MoMA PS1
to Webster Hall
Who are you and what else have you done? What’s your day job career? Tell me about DJing.
Im a full-time wardrobe stylist. I work in editorial and commercial and mainly work with musicians and recording artists to expand on their image and brand. I find great joy interpreting designers art and making a story out of them and pushing the fantasy even further. It’s literally getting paid to play dress-up and it’s constantly inspiring and exciting. As cheesy as it sounds, I love the work and I work hard at it.
As for DJing… I just like hearing the music I play when I’m drunk at home cause that’s what I want to hear when I’m drunk and out and about. I throw these weekly events mainly because I love a good time and I love getting my friends together and making fantastic memories that will last. There’s an odd joy I get out of curating a roster of people and building a dream team of performers, DJs, hosts, and personalities. It’s like hosting dinner parties with your favorite 300 people and it’s fueled by vodka, the night, and the energy of New York City. I get inspired by this in my styling and vice versa. Constantly. Seems like the perfect balance.