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Mike Shaffer talks Mondo Trasho, a new queer party at The Barbary

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I used to go to Stash often. Like every week. It was so fun: Up in the suite (no cover), you and a dozen friends, $5 citywides with Jameson, and practically no one there until midnight, when everyone packed it in to get down with electroclash jams, riot grrrl anthems and ratchet radio pop. It was an oasis for folks like me, who fear the weekend crowd at Philly’s gay “clubs” because they became overly populated with college kids, muscleheads and meth daddies. Well, Mike Shaffer, who DJ’d Stash and kept his pulse on grit glam in our little queer universe, has picked up where Stash left off (lifeless at Rosewood), taken it to Fishtown and expanded the scope. Mondo Trasho is coming! Hide ya wife, hide ya kids, and shake all your tailfeathers tomorrow night.

So, what’s the idea behind the party, and how’d this process get started? How long have you been waiting for this?
Corey Griffith met John Redden through making his coffee at Rocket Cat Cafe and also by frequenting The Barbary. They discussed the lack of queer nights or queer bars in Fishtown. Corey just recently met Jake (Skull†Kid) [Nuxoll], and Jake and I have been friends for a long time and have DJ’d together for a year and some change. Corey asked us to come together to come up with a party. We met with John back in November to create the party. We want to embody an edgier side of queer culture without taking it too seriously. We got some help to work on a logo, flyer design, drink tickets, pins, visuals, and we’re going to have Pretty Girl perform at our first party this Wednesday. It’s been a process, but it’s been really fun.

MT2Why Mondo Trasho, and what do you think it, and the accompanying iconography, communicates to party-goers?
Mondo Trasho was John Waters’ first feature film. Corey told me that it loosely means “remarkable trash.” While we don’t intend the party to be complete trash, per se, we definitely have an edge and don’t mind a little sloppiness. We’re intending to create a space where a crowd of artsy, diverse queers and their friends can party to an open format of music and talk about how exciting it was the next day. The iconography is meant to be eye-catching and sexy, as sexiness is definitely a theme of this party. We shouldn’t be afraid to be a little sexy while on the dance floor, right?

Can you say a little about that hour-long mix folks can be listening to in anticipation of this party? Is this meant to be an indication of what will get spun there?
The mix is really just a small sample of what an hour at the party could feel like. We wanted it to flow so people could get a feel of it at the gym, at work, on the bus, while dancing in their underwear or whatever. We’re going to also be playing a lot of rock ‘n roll and punk rock anthems, but those genres don’t quite translate into a mix with dancier house and electro beats.

MT3Will this have a different feel from Stash by not being weekly and not being in the Gayborhood?
It didn’t help that Stash was on a Tuesday, but for two years, Stash made Tuesdays the shit. We still get people telling us that they miss that party. Mondo Trasho will have a different feel, but we have the opportunity to have a larger space with a potentially larger draw. Stash was amazing, and it’s where I got into DJing, but Mondo Trasho will bring more to the plate. We queers don’t just party in the Gayborhood! Also, this party will be bi-weekly, so the space between the parties will give us time to prepare new music and performances.

What kind of special events will you try to make happen, and are you lining up live performances, as well? Pretty Girl’s gonna be at the premiere? Her stock is on the rise!
Pretty Girl is a friend of ours and is definitely one to watch out for. We’re excited to have her perform for our opening night and in the future. We’re going to be having performers, guest hosts and a rotating line-up of guest DJs from all over. We’re just beginning.

Who do you think are the avant garde dance music artists that the gays should be squealing for when the beat hits ‘em at 1 a.m., instead of the run-of-the-mill pop divas that get gays to take their shirts off at Woody’s?
While we intend to throw in some interesting takes on pop music and throwback jams for sure, you should be excited to hear Cakes Da Killa, Roxy Cottontail, Mykki Blanco, Mt. Sims, Nicky Da B, Lords Of Acid, Miss Kittin, The Knife, Kid Sister, X-Ray Spex, Le Youth, Disclosure, Deee-Lite. We have a lot of surprises.

Anything else?
The debut party is free. We also have Pretty Hate Machine upstairs, which is a really awesome darker music dance party. Mondo Trasho will be the second and fourth Wednesday of every month, starting this Wednesday. While this is “our” party, as in the LGBTQ community’s, we want everyone to come and have a crazy time.



Dita Von Teese brings “Strip Strip Hooray” to the Tower this week

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Betty Grable. Sahji Pearl. Jane Russell. Lili St. Cyr. These names elicit visions of what glamour used to look like, from a time when lingerie was more than just seductive nighttime attire. While an assortment of gorgeous dolls (and drag queens) do their best to uphold that classic vibe, no one manages to illustrate or embody the beauty of burlesque like Dita Von Teese.

The former Mrs. Marilyn Manson credits her mother for her infatuation with vintage 1940s glam. That fascination with elegant hosiery and intricate undergarments together with childhood ballet training fueled Von Teese’s ascension as the modern queen of burlesque, famous worldwide for her stunning curves and elaborate shows. But the smoldering starlet stresses that glamour is undefinable, declaring that every size and shape can be glamorous, even on a thrift-store budget. (”I was making minimum wage when I first started doing burlesque,” she notes.) The best way to develop that allure, she says, is to find what makes you comfortable, embellish upon your best features and, most importantly, dare to be different.

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Need a lesson or some quickie inspiration, sexy sisters? For the first time ever, Von Teese has taken her 90-minute spectacle, Burlesque: Strip Strip Hooray!, on the road; in fact, it’s already here. And fellas, be braced: An increasing number of women have been in attendance on the tour, Von Teese says—“embracing their own level of empowerment.”

The performer isn’t only bringing her show to her common-folk fans, but bringing more of it: Her previous gigs usually featured two acts, whereas Strip Strip Hooray! boasts four elaborate sets by Von Teese herself, plus a number of additional performers. Also, it’s important to note that Von Teese does her own hair and make-up and also designs her own costumes—a huge deal in the entertainment styling world. Garments intricately studded with Swavorski crystals are sure to be among the special on-stage features sure to dazzle attendees. The others, it’s safe to say, have precious little to do with stagewear.

Oct. 9. 7:30pm. The Tower Theater, 19 S. 69th St, Upper Darby.



Alaska Thunderfuck’s Coming To Tabu

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Yup, that’s her (drag) name. And until I accidentally tuned into this season of RuPaul’s Drag Race, which happened to be a roast of Ru, I didn’t know much about these goyles. I knew there was a new season and that the gays were gagging every Monday for a new episode. But for non-viewers, simply the name Alaska Thunderfuck is ear-catching. Then I saw her dish it. She’s got spunk. She’s got edge and she’s sharp as a tack. For Drag Race superfans? This is a pretty cool opportunity and you might as well dish out the $30 for the open-bar meet & greet.

That wild child Tammy Faymous is hosting and trying a new layout for a drag show upstairs at Tabu Sports Bar & Lounge. She’s gonna build a stage – no seats. General admission tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door and that includes one drink. She’s trying to fill this place up with advance ticket purchases because it’ll probably sell out. Thunderfuck’s Sharon Needles lover, and not for nothin’, but it’s made her and her performance on this current season just a little extra. But I will say this, watching Alaska was captivating and she is going to be such a sassy little visitor to the ‘hood next week.

DJs Xavier B (Fingerbanger/Stash) and K/ Rex (Factory Girls) will be spinning, and some serious local queens are slated to accompany Tammy on stage: The Goddess Isis, Aeryanah Von Moi, Maddy Milan, Roxxy Glamour and Luna Lavey.



Big In Japan

gallery_main-Whitney-Port-Elle-Girl-Japan-0125104For a look at red carpet looks from the SAG Awards, check out Glamour’s recap. Rachel Zoe has a guide with 20 Not-So-Basic Wardrobe pieces. The LA Times has a recap of the drama that’s gone down between Rachel Zoe and her former assistant Taylor Jacobson.

We came across this blog: Kitten Lounge. We love that they have themes for what they feature every day – last week there were posts on lemon colored accessories, and Sunday there was a post on bringing spring into your home. This post features one of our loves, Gerbera Daisies, so we were fans from first glance.

According to US Magazine, Kourtney Kardashian is calling foul in regards to OK! Magazine’s statements about her post pregnancy body, further proving that photo shopping is out of control. It reminds us of that questionable picture of Demi Moore that W Magazine had on their cover a few months back.

NY TimesBill Cunningham has spotted critters on NYC streets in the form of hats and other accessories. His observations are always so intriguing, though we haven’t run into him on his bicycle yet. We’re also big fans of NY TimesStyle Magazine’s web layout. It doesn’t even matter what they’re covering, it’s gorgeous.

Lastly, The City’s Whitney Port is big in on the other side of the globe. Pretty cool to see her on the pages of Elle Girl Japan.



Rain Rain, Go Away

800px-indian_food_setIn addition to restaurant week, there’s another reason to get pumped about dining out this week. One of our favorite restaurants, Tiffin is working to raise money for Haiti. From today until January 31st, Tiffin will donate 3% of it’s sales revenue from all of it’s restaurants will to the American Red Cross Relief for Haiti.

In case you need a refresher, the chain has restaurants in Northern Liberties, Mount Airy, and Elkins Park, as well as their Tiffin Etc. location on Girard. The owner of the Tiffin resturants, Munish Narula will also match donations dollar for dollar if you’d like to give extra cash at any of the restaurants. Glamour also has a list of items from companies that are making donations to Haiti.

On the lighter side, Glamour has a slide show on their site featuring the latest nail trends, and I Heart Daily tells us about an iPhone app that turns your pictures into photo booth like creations.



How Much is Too Much?

Courtesy of People.com

Courtesy of People.com

I’ll be honest, People Magazine’s latest cover story has gotten under my skin. As soon as I saw Heidi Montag on the cover with the headline Addicted To Plastic Surgery, I wanted to read more. People’s website doesn’t tell the whole story, but I will. It’s estimated that The Hills star had  $300,000 worth of work done, including liposuction from her hips and thighs, botox injections to fix ‘lines’ — she’s 23, so I’m not entirely sure where these lines are — as well as revisions of her nose and breast augmentations. She had a total of 10 procedures done in one day.

The article states that Heidi didn’t even inform her family that she was getting all of these adjustments made. She told them she was sick after she went under the knife, but didn’t explain that it was because of her surgeries. The photos in People are what really got me, which Samantha Chang, a blogger from The Examiner was nice enough to post on the internets. Since Heidi also states in the article that she is nowhere done with the surgeries, Chang wonders if Heidi will turn out looking like Manhattan socialite Jocelyn Wildenstein, while a blog from Fox News‘ website wonders if Heidi will be the next Joan Rivers. I wondered the same thing as the Fox News writer – I mean how could you not, with the Golden Globes red carpet and all?

I really feel bad for Heidi more than anything. Every girl and even some guys have had their fare share of body issues. The doctor that operated on Heidi says that she doesn’t have body dysmorphic disorder but she states that she’s not anywhere near finished getting work done, even after being in extreme pain and needing assistance breathing after surgery. Something’s wrong. I also feel bad for every little girl that sees Heidi’s picture on newsstands at the supermarket and thinks that Heidi is the ideal she must live up to.

We also found this man-girdle thing this weekend in the back of the coupon section of the newspaper. It made us feel like we were losing our minds a little. It can be found on a website called Four Corners, which has a whole host of odd things that will most likely be on a television near you at 4am very soon.

On the not so crazy side of things, Glamour has some ideas on how to dress plus size bodies, Wallpaper* City Guides are now available as apps for iPhone and iPod touch, Self Magazine wants you to get more sleep, and Target is coming out with a line from Jean Paul Gaultier. Have a non blurry peek, and try not to let the craziness get to you today.



Pam Strikes Again

bumpitsPam Anderson’s planned visits to the area don’t stop with Rite Aid. Next Saturday, she’ll be hosting the opening of the 360 Lounge and Nightclub at Parx Casino in Bensalem from 9pm – 2am. The nightclub includes slot machines, a stage, 3 108-inch LED TVs, a 100,000 watt sound system, signature cocktails and an LED-lit lava dance floor that pulsates to the music. If 360 turns out to be terrible, there’s a Chickie’s and Pete’s at Parx Casino that’s set to open soon. Nice.

Katy Perry is Glamour’s cover girl this month, and they’ve posted a slide show of pictures, as well as info on some great sales – up to 70% off! A designer with local roots, Tory Burch is also having a sale. Her stuff still isn’t cheap but you’ll have the chance to save quite a bit.

Nylon and O Magazine tried out products so ‘you don’t have to’ – Nylon says that Sephora’s Zit Zapper works, and Oprah’s staffers say that everything was going well when they tried Bumpits, until someone asked if they had a Lego in their hair.

Lastly, Giada De Laurentiis has a new line at Target, but this Coke Can Fridge also caught our eye.



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