Dressed for Excess
B-level booze sponsors, pseudo red carpets in front of da club du jour, the same five “celeb” DJs over and over, useless swag … Hollywood parties are almost parodies of themselves at this point. We don’t wanna diss, mind you, but it’s always refreshing when we get to attend stuff that tweaks this formula. Last Thursday was one of those humdinger nights in which every pit stop was perfection (and the good car-ma parking spots didn’t hurt either). First, the Penguin Store on Melrose, where BPM mag and Modular Records presented a private discount shop ’n’ pop with sets by Classixx, Kid Lightning, Richie Panic and Roxy Cottontail. The latter, an NYC club diva “a.k.a. Oxy,” worked her tail off seemingly all over L.A. last week (performing sets at both Standards), and her deck hops definitely live up to the woozy-sounding moniker; no pill-poppin’ necessary. (Heads up: BPM’s next shoppy-do, featuring Sh*t Disco at De La Barracuda on Tuesday, promises more mayhem on Melrose.) Later downtown, the fashion frenzy was in fuller froth at Dress Right, the monthly runway party formerly held at Apartment 3. The boutique is still involved, as is Dress Right’s MFG, but with a bigger location in the new Cal Market Center’s courtyard, the event took on a less underground, though no-less-gleeful, groove. Fire marshals stopped letting peeps in just before the show began, but those not fashionably late got an eyeful of saucy and highly wearable looks from 442 McAdam, Alisha Trimble, Free Gold Watch, GRN Apple Tree and LAZY, and an earful from the 87 Stick Up Kids, a Beastie Boys–ish rap outfit rocking over-the-top rhymes and funky-as-fudge rhythms (thanks to DJ Rockwell’s beats). These “Kids” are way campy and not exactly innovative, but they are fun and, yes, pretty fly — kinda like the catwalk looks themselves.
Take the Club Kids Bowling
Though most Dress denizens headed to the after-party at La Cita, we flew over to Eagle Rock (gotta love that 2 freeway) for what was definitely the biggest ball of the eve, the Ladytron postshow soiree at All Star Lanes. Hosted by Filter mag and Antics (a trendster-approved Toyota marketing/events program), this one should go down in the band-bash history books. Free bowling and T-shirt screen printing, free Sparks (okay, not exactly our poison of choice) and sets by Datarock’s Fredrik Saroea and Ladytron’s Daniel Hunt kept bowlers and bashers enraptured, as did the Rock Band video-game car console near the entrance, really a hoot to watch at the end of the night. (People should not attempt “Creep” in public, especially when they’re drunk on Sparks, okay?) We’ve long loved the All Star (the rockabilly parties here were legendary) and it was nice to see that the talked-about remodel there didn’t go too far. The lanes may be techno’d out, but the lounge is still pretty divey. Seen striking and stomping about: party pros Franki Chan and Stephen Hauptfuhr, MFG’s PYT partner Gracie Cakes (a co-host) and DJ Lance Rock, a.k.a. our toddler’s favorite TV star after Elmo, thanks to his vibrant Nick Jr. show Yo Gabba Gabba!
Kid ’n’ Play
“A party girl and a good parent?” We’ve been asked, sometimes judgmentally so, about the challenges of trying to be both since we became a mama, but really, it’s the perfect occupational arrangement: We’re home by day — every day — and all over town and back before the li’l one even wakes up when we go out (okay, beeyotches?). And with so many Gen-X- and Y-ers having kids these days (you can’t hurl a dirty diaper without hitting a stroller in Silver Lake), it seems moms and dads are finding ways to combine family and fun that don’t have to involve toting the toddler to smoky house shindigs like many of our post-hippie-era parents used to do. Sometimes, we hit up obvious stuff, like Sesame Street Live at the new Nokia Theatre this past Saturday. Other times, it’s more novel gatherings catering to music-lovin’ kids and grown-ups alike. Sunday’s Lucky Brand Kidstock event benefiting the One Voice scholarship program at the gorgeous Greystone Mansion grounds in Beverly Hills was a raucous example. Children — including Reese Witherspoon’s and Jim Belushi’s offspring — got their own VIP laminates, faux Rolling Stone cover-photo shoots, drum jams and crafting that included making glitter- and sticker-covered toy guitars and shades. If that wasn’t enough to overstimulate, there was a nonstop lineup of hot kiddie acts, including Jambo, the Raymies and the Ohmies. Kooky costumes and names aside, all these groups had real hooks. It seems toddler rock is quite the trend for struggling musicians these days, especially in L.A. And why not? Many of ’em are wiggling all the way to the bank.
A papa of two himself, Perry Farrell is throwing his beat blocks into the toy-box market too, with Kidzapalooza, a Lolla-like family event to take place in Chicago and L.A. this summer. The fest’s lineup and attractions were announced at a play-date-like happening at the Paul Frank store on Melrose a couple of weeks ago, where Farrell did a miniset for the tots featuring Jane’s hits “Stop” and “Mountain Song” (surprisingly kid-friendly numbers) with the tweens from the Paul Green School of Rock Music as backing band. Julius the Monkey in the flesh, eh, fur, had even more fans, though. Kidza comes to the Hollywood Bowl in mid-September, and the band lineup includes Farrell’s former Porno for Pyros bandmate Peter DiStefano and his band Tor, G. Love (minus the sauce), pintsize punks Tiny Masters of Today, bubblegum bouncers the Jimmies and more. The array of amusements (video games, hip-hop workshops, rock & roll hairdooz) sounds so jolly and jammin’, you’ll wanna go even if ya don’t have your own mini-me. Take your nephew/niece/godchild/friend’s kid and gain cool-adult cred forever after.