Thursday, December 16, 2004

One down, one to go, another town, and one more show 

Did I mention that I was spinning tunes at Irving Fucking Plaza last night? No, I suppose I couldn't mention it until today, because it was a private party.

What a cool gig. I played about three hours of music before, inbetween, and after bands at the Wenner Media holiday party at Irving Plaza last night. Basically, it was the office Christmas party for employees of Rolling Stone, Us Weekly, and Men's Journal. It's extra meaningful for me because I weaned myself on Rolling Stone in my high school days, and in fact the first place I ever worked in New York City was in those very offices, when I did an editorial internship at Us in the summer of 1993. It's been a while, though; I walked several laps through Irving Plaza, wondering if I would see any familiar faces that I had not seen since I worked up in the office there, and I didn't recognize anyone. If David Fricke or Peter Travers were there, they were well-hidden. Tim Robbins—one of my favorite actors—was the obligatory celebrity sighting; damn, that man is tall.

Maroon 5 headlined, and I think it might surprise some people that their encore set consisted of these three covers: "Rockin' In The Free World," Oasis' "Hello," and yes, "Highway To Hell." Big City Rock played a solid opening set.

Other than a slight delay in the beginning of Jann Wenner's speech and introduction of Maroon 5 that caused me to get lost in the '60s vibe for longer than I would have planned, it all went off without a hitch. Everyone at Irving was fantastic; the production manager, sound man, video guy, and bar staff all treated me very well. Maroon 5's sound guy, Nate from Big City Rock, the caterer, and all the Wenner Media folks I met were universally wonderful. People went above and beyond to accommodate all my needs, and it made the night that much more pleasant.

It was an office party, so people were busy gabbing, picking at the snacks, and, oh yeah, drinking their faces off. There were some good, enthusiastic dancers in the latter part of the evening, and that was a kick. There really are few experiences in life that are more of a goof than blasting ABC's "The Look Of Love" in a huge room with a waning party and getting five or six couples to dance.

Tomorrow night, big private music biz holiday party gig number two of the week, which will be my first time rocking the decks on the planet of Brooklyn. Details accordingly; don't wait up.

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