STYLE SCOOP: $10k Bounty for Unretouched Vogue Photos, Victoria Beckham Moves

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Jezebel is offering a $10,000 reward to anyone who can retrieve the unretouched photos from Lena Dunham’s Vogue cover shoot. (Underpaid assistants of the art department… time to put your heads together.)

Important: Fashionista has put together a history of Leonardo DiCaprio’s supermodel ex girlfriends.

Victoria Beckham is on the move and about to open up shops in NYC and London (Chelsea and Dover Street Market, respectively).

Why DJ Michael T. Takes No Requests

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After a couple of decades in the club biz, labels make way for legendary status. I am often described as “a legend” when someone is introducing me to someone. I always find it to be embarrassing and I always check my pulse to see if I’m still kicking. For some reason I find it a bit insulting. It discounts my "now" and concentrates or wallows in my past. Michael T. is still kicking it, so much so that this Sunday, he’s launching his second New Romantic Ball at Le Poisson Rouge. He is one of my favorite DJs. Just don’t ask him to play your favorite track.

For those who just stepped off the boat, tell us who you are… and do get into “Motherfucker” and that old shit.
I’m Michael T., performer/DJ and producer of "rock n roll" events/parties for over 20 years. My parties attract both gay and straight. The ones that are truly mixed are always the best parties. I’ve been going to clubs regularly since 1985. I started working in them on and off from ‘86 on. I’ve worked in clubs consistently since 1989.

The first party I ever "produced" was called "New York Nights." It was held at The Pyramid Club on Avenue A…when it was still dangerous.
It was on a Monday and it ran for two years. [‘91-‘93] It was an "alternative" party, both musically and people-wise.

After that, I had a band called Killer Lipstick [‘93-‘95]. Before/during and after this period I did what a lot of people do in clubs to secure a gig and survive, be it door/guest list, go-go dancer, performer etc. Eventually, this lead to DJing, which seemed to be one of the more "stable" of jobs as far as clubland goes.

Anyway, my first "real" DJ gig was at the now-shuttered The Tunnel at a party called "Kurfew" in the Kenny Scharf room aka “the fuzzy room.”
This was 1998-99. At this time, I also had a monthly party “Heroes” at a club called Mother called "Heroes.” I was also the emcee and DJ at the now-closed S&M restaurant "La Maison De Sade.”

Halloween Night, 1998: While DJing at “Kurfew,”-I took ecstasy for the first time. It was a mind-blowing experience.
The second time I took it: Jan 18th on my birthday [again, I was DJing] I had an "epiphany" of sorts. I thought how amazing it would be if I somehow managed to get the right group of creative people together in order to create the ultimate, outrageous "Rock N Roll Fantasy" party. Thus, the seed to "Motherfucker" was planted that evening.

Fast forward a year and a half later and Motherfucker was born at Mother. Chi Chi Valenti gave us the name, who in turn was given the name
by Clark Render. Apparently, Clark would often ask her why they [Johnny and Chi Chi] never did a party called "Motherfucker" at Mother.
Needless to say, we all thought it was a great name.

At any rate, Motherfucker grew and grew and grew and it became the biggest roving rock n roll party in NYC. We sold out the Roxy, Limelight, Spirit, Eugene, Rebel [with three to four rooms] for the next seven years.

Two moments that I will cherish forever was when I booked Willie Ninja & The House of Ninja and The Cramps [not on the same bill].
The other "infamous" party I did was "Rated X/The Panty Party" with Theo Kogan, singer of The Lunachicks.” It ran for six years, and every week we had naked people on stage competing in our 3am "Hot Body Contest" to win a whopping $100.

This is your second New Romantic Ball. In fact, it is called Romantic Ball II. What’s the difference between a ball and a party? What can people expect at the Ball and what is expected from them besides just showing up with a $20 bill?
Well, they’ll walk into a real club with proper lights, sound, a great dance floor, and CLEAN bathrooms!!
They’ll also see four bands, two burlesque shows, and hear three DJs, and hangout with a bunch of colorful hosts.

What’s the difference between a ball and a party? A ball usually pertains to an event that is held once or twice a year; they’re special events and, therefore, you make that distinction. Besides, everyone these days throws a “party.”

That stated, the main attractions of the night are the tribute shows we put on.They’re done with a full, six to seven-piece band. That’s just my band.
My partner, Ben Ickies, has a 20-piece orchestra. Where can one go today and see a rock show with a 20-piece orchestra?!?

All of our shows are rehearsed. Plus, we always have guest singers. However, let me state that we have REAL performers on stage. This is NOT a glorified "scaryoke" night. The artist[s] or genre we pay homage to is done with the utmost respect. We really love that artist or time period in music that’s being reinterpreted for the evening. We don’t do these shows to be "ironic.”

If you’re wondering what bands fall under "new romantic,” they’re all bands from the U.K. that flourished in the late ‘70s/early ‘80s, roughly ‘79-‘82. Just about all these bands were heavily inspired by Bowie or Roxy Music.
ie;Duran Duran, ABC, Visage, Gary Numan, Adam Ant, etc.

In short, you get to see a great show for your $20.

Le Poisson Rouge is a very artsy, creative friendly environment. Talk about the joint.
Well, it’s one of the last "legit" clubs in NYC. It has an incredible stage, excellent sound/lights a greenroom, a big DANCE FLOOR! Plus, it has a very professional and courteous staff.

It’s such a delight throwing parties or balls there. It’s a venue that really helps you achieve your artistic vision and isn’t just concerned with the bottom-line – what a rarity in this day and age. In all my years working in various clubs, I don’t think I’ve ever met a more pro-active staff…from busboy all the way to the GM.

You and I have DJd over the centuries. You are adamant about not taking requests. Explain that and your take on your job as a DJ.
I don’t take requests for the most part because either A) people have shitty taste in music; B) They’re rude; and also C) I’m not a juke-box.

The main reason, however, is very simple: I know what I’m doing. I’ve been DJing since 1998. Whatever venue I’m working at has hired me for that reason. I just find it outrageous that people feel it’s their "right" to make requests and get "offended" if you don’t comply.

Here are just a few lovely examples of the crap you hear from people: "I like what you’re playing…but.” Or, if I was DJing, I’d play this next" etc.
Can you imagine, if I walked into an office and told someone I’ve never met that they should do their job "like so"!?!! I’m sorry, I simply don’t stand for any of that nonsense. If you don’t like what I play, fine, go somewhere else. You won’t be missed. Believe me.

What is your overview of nightlife in the terrible 2010s?
It’s tragic. I don’t really need to say much…you pretty much answered your own question. The state of nightlife is at an all-time low.

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I disagree with Michael and find fun everywhere…but then again, I take requests. Something on my hmmmm list is Yiddish Cabaret going on at The Box tonight at 10pm. It’s somehow a gig anticipating the opening of Soho’s new kosher restaurant Jezebel. You can buy tickets here. I have been told to look out for a Ms. Jonas’ rendition of "If I Were a Rich Man." Oy vey, I’m leaving Brooklyn…for this?

The Best Ever: Lady Gaga & The Dirty Pearls, Twinkies, & EVR

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It’s that time of year again. The judging for the 2013 Nightclub & Bar Awards have arrived and I am humbled to be part of it all once again. The award winners will be honored at the Nightclub & Bar Convention and Trade Show on March 19-21 in Las Vegas. I will be there. I write four columns a month for Nightclub & Bar Magazine and therefore get to judge categories that are relevant to my expertise. I will be a judge for Small Nightclub of the Year, New Club/Lounge of the Year, and Mega-Club of the Year. I cannot discuss the process with any of the nominees and they should not discuss this with me. I take this very seriously and will spend a great deal of time analyzing and agonizing about my choices.

In the "it couldn’t happen to nicer guys" competition (not part of the above mentioned awards, but should be), I vote for the band The Dirty Pearls who are currently on tour with Lady Gaga. Tommy London, Marty Concussion, and the fellows are providing the entertainment at her after parties. Tommy and Marty are fixtures at the Thursday night Wild Generation parties at Hotel Chantelle where I DJ with Samuel Valentine and Luc Carl, who’s famous for being Gaga’s ex.

Luc, for his credit, has a show on Sirius Radio and a book and tons of things going on. He is a wonderful human being and I enjoy DJing with him. He wins the "DJ I am most likely to Shazam " award (also a non-category at above, but should be). Anyway, The Dirty Pearls ended up on Page Six of the New York Post last Friday. The Post put up a wonderful, candid picture of The Pearls and a half-naked Gaga taken by my "photographer of the decade" Terry Richardson.

First prize in the "if you don’t RSVP to my birthday party or I will keep bugging you" competition goes to Jezebel owner and bon vivant Henry Stimler. Henry will celebrate tonight at Jezebel, 323 W. Broadway. Alex Bilu will be having a solo art show tonight at the "best-named gallery on Houston Street" winner White Rabbit Gallery. I love the place and love the curation. White Rabbit is at 145 E. Houston at Forsyth and Eldridge.

I am so happy to hear that the "greatest non-baked snack ever" Twinkies may have a buyer and I’ll be able to buy them again. For those old enough to remember, I served thousands of Twinkies at my wedding back in the last century at the Palladium. Twinkies are my favorites. 

On the subject of "ever," I will DJ tonight from 6pm to 10pm at EVR54 W. 39th St. off 6th Ave. That early slot allows you old timers, maybe some who even attended my wedding, to get off your old rumps and catch my wave. I’m never, ever going to win any awards for DJing, but I am true to my rock roots and enthusiastic, WhatEVR.

Get my column in your inbox before anyone else by signing up for the biweekly Good Night Mr. Lewis email blast. 

Christmas Gets Kosher & X-Rated This Year

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As I am a 4AM Management DJ I will attend the 4AM Holiday Party at Artichoke Pizza17th and 10th Avenue, tonight. I assume  that’s the one and not their place on E. 14th St. They never tell me these things. I’m the runt of the litter at 4AM. The after-party features 4AM pedigrees Dalton and The Chainsmokers and is at Avenue.

On Christmas Day, Jezebel, that wonderful restaurant that happens to be kosher, is teaming up with BaoHaus chef Eddie Huang. Jezebel claims that Jewish folks love to eat Chinese food on Christmas, but they never have the opportunity to have the real-deal, bonafide fare. Chef Huang will take you there. Jezebel is located at 323 W. Broadway. OK, I’m going to handle all my weird Christmas pitches in one paragraph; there’s this dude Shea who calls himself "The Prince Of Christmas" who has this #1-on-Cashbox hit "The Christmas I Met You." Apparently, he is phenomenal. He’s performing at Steven Colucci’s benefit at the National Arts Club this Thursday, and then he heads up to Harlem to do it again at the Hale House. The Steven Colucci party is a tough ticket. From the release:

"Steven Colucci’s ‘Sounds of Color’ exhibition will showcase at the National Arts Club in New York City on December 20th, 2012 for a very special benefit holiday party. In addition, the National Arts club will present a premiere exhibition of 49 drawings by legendary artist Andy Warhol.The rare collection, created from 1955 to 1967, features the artist’s unique, free-form expressions inspired by dance, performance, and esoteric influences."

I really want to go to Westgay tonight at Westway, 75 Clarkson St. There will be an XXXMAS party featuring the incredible Joey Arias and go-go elves and everything. If you don’t know of Joey, then Google him and start getting a life. He has performed with Bowie, Cirque du Soleil and more etceteras than I have time for.

When I was first discovering Manhattan and the queens I didn’t see in Queens, it was Joey and Klaus Nomi who spent a little time answering some big questions for me. I had never met anyone quite like them and, at the time, I didn’t realize that I actually never would again. My world was opened up and I never was the same. Joey, like some wines and leather jackets, gets better with age. We have been friends across generations of club kids and parties and cultural shifts and I am devastated I cannot attend. Alas, I am leaving at 5am to drive four hours to visit Michael Alig up in the clink. Michael is also quite unique. I may not post tomorrow but I am sure Thursday I will have a lot to say.

Your Manicure Could Give You Cancer

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Look, I have a penis, but I read Jezebel, too, so I do keep up on the latest health and beauty fads that women subscribe to in between getting excited about Kate Middleton’s baby and learning about which senators think rape is A-OK. So when I read that gel manicures could possibly cause cancer, I was alarmed. Fingernail cancer? Is it seeping in through the polish? That is terrifying. But then I realized that it’s actually the UV light that dries the gel polish that could be a potential health risk, and that, somehow, seemed a bit less upsetting. There’s still a lot of controversy over whether even weekly manicures involving UV rays could cause cancer—that’s a tiny amount of exposure, even at a regular rate—but, I dunno, maybe put some sunscreen on your hands just in case. A cancer-free manicured hand is a cute manicured hand!

[via Jezebel]

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The Tooth Fairy Is Just Throwing Lots of Money at Kids These Days

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I lost my first tooth in first grade, and was so excited to get a quarter for the thing from the Tooth Fairy. I remember how ecstatic I was to go to school that morning, brandishing my shiny new quarter. I’m pretty sure my mother did not know that I took the quarter to school to show off to my classmates, but I did! I was quite a braggart. And you can imagine my shock when I arrived in Mrs. Walker’s classroom to discover that my classmate Sherry Bauer (not her real name) had also gotten a visit from the Tooth Fairy the night before. And the Tooth Fairy gave her books. BOOKS! All I got was a goddamn quarter! The lesson, here, is that there should be some STANDARD PAYMENT for teeth, parents, and we need to figure it out, especially since the economy is so up and down. Did you know kids are getting, on average, two dollars per tooth? That is insane. 

[via Jezebel / LA Times]

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The Ten Most Awkward Chapters of ‘How to Be’ to Read on the Subway

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I remember reading something by Michael Musto a few years ago about taking the Jitney to the Hamptons that made me chuckle. He had been annoyed that the passenger sitting next to him was rudely spreading his legs out and taking up more than his own seat width, so Musto got back at him by opening the Village Voice to the prostitution massage ad pages in the back and lingering on them for a long time, just to make his seatmate uncomfortable. I was reminded of this story as I read Tracie Egan Morrissey and Rich Juzwiak‘s book Pot Psychology’s How to Be: Lowbrow Advice from High People (Illustrations by Lindsay Mound). I read every word of it while on the subway traveling to and from the office, and I have no doubt that a few straphangers close enough to read over my shoulder felt the urge to inch away from me when they saw some of the chapter titles.

At first I tried to conceal what I was reading, holding the book close and only opening it a crack. I’m weird enough naturally, I don’t want to go out of my way to seem a freak. But by the third chapter I was interested and entertained enough not to care, and almost enjoyed the double takes I got on the F train–when I noticed them. For a book spun out of a series of video advice columns on Jezebel, it’s surprisingly tight, funny, and well-written, while maintaining that wry, insouciant tone employed by successful bloggers who make it look like wit just flows from their fingers, and they never even need to re-read what they’ve written, let alone edit it, before publishing.

But I’m sure Morrissey and Juzwiak made at least a few tweaks along the way. I mean, they wrote this thing while high (or not), and the first rule of highdom is to check your work in the sober light of morning (before the wake-and-bake, of course). I actually enjoyed this book markedly more than the one I had just finished, and that was a humorous and kooky bestseller by a well-known hipster-ish comedian who I won’t name because I may wish to interview him someday. How to Be is an advice book, but I’m not sure how many life lessons I’ll take from it beyond how to be cool ("instead of taking your retro cues from things that happened ten years ago, take them from things that happened seven years ago") and how to be able to talk again after sticking your foot in your mouth ("talking too much > talking too stupid > talking too mean").

The rest is an amusing peek into the minds of people in weird situations that you may or may not ever find yourself in. But one weird situation you should find yourself is reading this book in public, as I did. To wit, here’s a list of the ten most awkward chapter titles, in ascending order of subway cringeworthiness.

  1. How to Be Around Religious Weirdos
  2. How to Be in a Public Bathroom
  3. How to Be Cool With Your Dealer Without Having To Be Friends With Him
  4. How to Be Gassy in Public
  5. How to Be the Owner of an Uncircumcised Penis
  6. How to Be Okay with Your Abortion
  7. How to Be a Sideline Ho
  8. How to Be Prepared for Anal Sex
  9. How to Be When You Queef During Sex
  10. How to Be Honest About the Penis Your Boyfriend Doesn’t Know You Have

 

So buy the book, and the next time someone on the subway leans just a little too far into your personal space, turn to "How to Be Honest About the Penis Your Boyfriend Doesn’t Know You Have" and read intently, occasionally twitching and adjusting yourself. You’ll either get the personal space you seek, or a date. Either way, you win. 

I Wish I Loved Something as Much as Gay Guys Love Posing in Front of the Berlin Holocaust Memorial

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A couple of days ago, Jezebel posted about fashion blogger Pelayo Diaz, who shared his personal meditation on looking fly while visiting Berlin’s Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe. The monument, spanning over four acres and featuring 2,711 concrete slabs, is a popular tourist spot, even for those rocking Balenciaga and a hot-pink Céline bag. More surprising: the growing number of gay guys who post pictures of themselves at the monument on Grindr. 

Thankfully, there’s Totem and Taboo: Grindr Remembers (via Heeb), a blog that collects the images of young men in deep thought about the horrors of the human existence while keeping the always-frustrating search for sex at the front of their mind. The mission statement for the site is as follows:

In an age when ignorance is prevalent than ever, Grindr, the latest most addictive gay obsession, has wowed its members in relentlessly promoting the memory of the holocaust. While the gay community is being under scrutiny for promoting hedonism and alienation, this tribute seems all the more compelling.

Totem and Taboo, our new blog, asks nothing more but to harness the vibrant blogosphere to Grindr users’ innovative maneuvers to keep the memory alive, fresh and attractive. Now, you gals don’t just stand and watch! Be the change you want to see in the world. We kindly urge you to join our team: Help us collecting pics of the spreading new trend. (NSA)

While I generally don’t advocate the publishing of Grindr photos (can’t these dudes look for fun in peace and without shame?), it’s somewhat nice to see so many people considering making tribute to the millions of lost Jewish souls. (Perhaps unsurprisingly, gay guys have been doing this for years!) Bless their hearts. Especially sexmusclebtm.

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Ad Geniuses Figure Out How to Sell Diet Coke: By Spraying Diet Coke on Hot Guys

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I’m all for the objectification of hot dudes for two reasons. One, let’s give women a break, OK? And two: it’s rare for gay guys to be able to enjoy a Super Bowl commercial. Thankfully, Diet Coke has revamped its classic TV spot with a new one in which a chiseled gardener conveniently gets Diet Coke all over his face, which means he has to remove his shirt to wipe off the mess. I like to imagine that, in the casting call, the guy who finally got the part eventually said, "Fine, I’ll do it, but don’t get any in my eye, OK?" I don’t really get it, but maybe because I’m not well versed in the ins and outs of heterosexual sex. Do guys usually get sprayed in the face with something?

Take a look at the clip below:

Of course, here’s the classic version of the spot featuring a window washer (but with a woeful lack of a Diet Coke facial):

Also, I’m forever indebted to the ladies at Jezebel for these animated gifs:

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