Melle Mel performed “The Message” accapella to the stunned throng of party animals as flashbulbs and corks popped in unison. (articulo en ingles)
On a bitterly cold night, star acupuncturist Susan Anton invited 500 of her best friends (including me) for a birthday party at a penthouse nightclub called 230 Fifth Ave.
Greeted by a reclining stuffed jaguar on the top floor, we soon met a cornucopia of fashion, music and art world cognoscenti like Grammy winner Grandmaster Melle Mel (there to celebrate the official release of Cricket Casey’s audiobook for children “The Portal in the Park” featuring songs by himself and Lady Gaga.)
Fortunately, the dress code was not enforced (no brightly colored shirts?) as the suavely eccentric Paul Alexander (The Ones) exchanged bon mots with David La Chappelle muse Amanda Lepore, fashion icons Sofia Lamar and Richie Rich while underground filmmaker Nick Zedd hobnobbed with Bowie shutterbug Mick Rock.
With a panoramic vision of the East Side of Manhattan, our opulent surroundings boasted a bird’s eye view of the Empire State Building which we marveled at while sipping cocktails in a red velvet booth while Ivy Supersonic and Andres Serrano glided by. Mr. Serrano’s latest project is a photo book of nudes. We knew because Ms. Anton tried to entice us into modeling for it.
Our shyness prevailed as we pondered the rumor that the racy Anthony Haden Guest might be considering exposing his family jewels in the forthcoming tome.
A circular dance floor added a clubby vibe for the boisterous dancing fools in attendance. It reminded me of the days when NYC was bright and shiny with a mix of uptown and down in an atmosphere of gritty glamour as creatures with stylish personality spoke for themselves at all times.
Melle Mel performed “The Message” accapella to the stunned throng of party animals as flashbulbs and corks popped in unison.
Later, a stairway took us to the roof where guests donned red robes and clutched blankets while the crisp cold air of Manhattan filled our lungs and Paul Alexander snapped shots of me with the Empire State Building looming behind. You can really chill out on the penthouse.
Later that week, I attended a memorial service at Saint Marks Church for the late poet Jim Carroll.
Patti Smith (with Lenny Kay on guitar) sang a new song about death that made us feel happy. Earlier, she spoke of her secret crush on Carroll when they were roommates in the early seventies, an obsession she never acted upon.
Richard Hell spoke of the friendly rivalry between himself and Carroll.
Other speakers included Sonic Youth’s Thurston Moore, Lee Renaldo and poet Ann Waldman, a riveting performer with raven hair and the eyes of one possessed.
Thurston Moore told of being invited by Carroll to view an advance tape of the movie version of The Basketball Diaries in his living room, with Lou Reed in attendance. This being his first viewing, Carroll was horrified by the distorted depiction of his life in the movie. Lou Reed, disgusted, walked out during the middle of it, leaving Moore and Carroll to sit through the rest.
“What am I going to do?” Carroll moaned. “Lou hated it.”
“Don’t take it so hard, Jim. Lou hates everything.”
By Monica Casanova