The wheels are in motion

Ok, I'm off like a prom dress.
Who knows if I'll get bored enough in Texas to take the time to post. I'm sure I'll have lots of good stories from New York. Tennille and I will be seeing Xanadu on Sunday. I'll be meeting up with Glenn on Saturday. Hopefully I'll get to see this film that QTA pointed me to.
Also, dancing w/ robots on Saturday.
I promise I'll get you an I <3>


Conversations at 8508

How many movies has Tom Cruise worn a headset?

Rain Man
Top Gun
Days of Thunder
Jerry Maguire
Mission: Impossible
Mission: Impossible 2
Mission: Impossible 3
Minority Report


People all over the world

Before you read this post, you need to press play--

I was disappointed that there weren't more house heads at the movie on Saturday night--maybe I didn't do a good enough job of publicizing it. Maybe more would have come if they had known that the much-loved
Lady D was one of the interview subjects.

The film felt a bit schizophrenic,--walking the line between a promotional video for the label and a film about the early days of the AIDS epidemic in New York--but hearing some of the stories as told by the people who were there was pretty amazing.

Besides one quick snippet from a DJ at the Paradise Garage, the film glosses over the drug aspect of disco culture. I think that really does a disservice to re-creating the environment in which this music was born, but really the film is more interested in the chunks of vinyl put out on West End than it is in establishing the milieu of the disco scene. In this glossing over the drug aspect, the filmmakers also fail to tell the audience that Larry Levan died, essentially, from his drug addiction. Because the film bounces back and forth between Mel Cheren's charitable donations to Gay Men's Health Crisis and life at the Paradise Garage, it almost seems that Larry died of AIDS.

What this film does best is extol the virtues of the hugely influential label.
Jellybean Benitez and Junior Vasquez both come off as narcissists--the former from his snobbery and "I was there" attitude, the latter in his story of how he felt that Larry passed the torch to him. The rest of the interviewees seem to have a genuine affection for the tracks. Judy Russell is used to hilarious comedic effect, only getting quick statements like, "That track was hot," and, let me tell you, she liked all the tracks--except Heartbeat.

One thing that the film really got me thinking about, and I really hope that someone out there can comment on this, was the Disco Demolition Night at Comiskey Park on July 12, 1979.
Randy Jones, the cowboy from the Village People, makes the contention that the disco backlash was actually based in homophobia and racism. I would also like to add classism to that mix, but mainly the first two. It kinda blew my mind. I mean, I've seen footage from that night lots of times (including in the fine film The Last Days of Disco), but never did it occur to me that racism and homophobia could be the underpinnings of the rage from that night.
Anyway, the film is worth your time. And if any of you who lived through the disco heyday (ahem, Earl) or who have a degree or two in history (ahem, GayProf) would care to expound on disco and its backlash which culminated in Disco Demoltion, it would be much appreciated!


Is it all over my face?

The Seattle Lesbian and Gay Film Festival kicks off tonight with The Walker starring Woody Harrelson and a bevy of older beauties. This year's festival is fairly comprehensive and very impressive.
I, however, am only making it a point to see one film--The Godfather of Disco. Based on Mel Cheren's autobiography, My Life and the Paradise Garage: Keep on Dancin', the film's cast reads like a who's who of dance music--and it should; Mel's label, West End Records, defined the sound of disco with tracks like "Don't Make Me Wait," and "Is It All Over My Face."
I guess Mel lived a bit of a double life, but all of that came to an end as the age of HIV/AIDS devastated the world he created. Mel stepped firmly out of the closet to battle homophobia and the disease in the mid-80's.
There is a feeling I get when I hear a West End track. Its hard to explain, and I've had this conversation with a couple people before. Its like being nostalgic for something that you've never experienced--and kind of holding this idyllic model in your mind and allowing that fantasy to supplant whatever actual reality is there. So I'm looking forward to this film giving me more context for these amazing, genre-defining tracks. You should go, too.
Here's the trailer:

And, just for fun, a track that Tim Curry sings (maybe even wrote) about the legendary Paradise Garage. And, even better, Loose Joints "Is It All Over My Face."


A perfect storm

Matt and I discussed who we thought would be at the show on our bus ride to Capitol Hill. Bill had already bailed. Matt's friend Jonathan wasn't going to make it and my friend Jonathan is in some fly-over state. It was a Monday night and the cover was close to $20 bucks--both deterrents in our minds.
Even though Trentemoller's reach is pretty broad, we were convinced the club would be sparse. The Seattle hard core, some enthusiasts up from Portland, but certainly not a packed venue in our minds.
Small venue, weeknight. That's my speed. Well, it was my speed sometime before the graveyard took hold of me.
Regardless, we got to the club about an hour after the doors were open and there were already a handful of people.
Abstract Soul was opening with a 2 hour set--from 9 to 11 and were pretty much tearing it up. The played Gui Barato, Booka Shade, and all kinds of crunchy, acid-y bass. By the time they left the stage, the place was packed--not uncomfortably so, but definitely two times more people than I expected. I even ran into a guy I know who lives in Portland, go figure.
Anders Trentemoller took the stage w/ a bassist and a drummer. They laid the smack down and everyone had a great time. It was such an interesting cross-section of people. There were ravers and hippies and hipsters and househeads, and everyone was there to get down. Even the frat-types didn't douche it up. This is the high water mark that I needed for the year. I danced my ass off and went to work late, a sweaty mess.
So as 2008, my year of nothing approaches, I will have a very fond memory of a good show from ought seven.


All Melville all weekend

This past weekend I watched:

And this:

And this:

Tonight I'm going to hear this:


Anthony Glycolic Face Cleanser

Yes, I'm one of the 'mos who loves product. Sue me.

I don't obsess about it or anything, but I find that most grooming products purchased in drug stores truly are subpar to the crazy, face-burning, entirely too expensive kinds purchased at specialty stores, on-line, or at department stores.

I think my . . . fondness for cleansing products started with Kiehl's. I consider their Ultimate Brushless Shave Cream the marijuana of cleansing products. The arches of its gateway has lead to Zirh and Anthony with H20+ looming on the horizon.

So, I figured I'd start a series about all those products that line my medicine cabinet (drawer).

The first in the series is Anthony Glycolic Face Cleanser.

I got this product in a shave kit that also contained Pre Shave Oil, Shave Cream, and After Shave Balm. The whole reason I got it was because my dopp kit was shot and I wanted a new one, plus I had heard some good things about Anthony.

The Glycolic Face Cleanser is an interesting product. Its taken me a while to figure out how to incorporate it into my routine. It is a light, silky liquid that does not foam up. Its consistency reminds me of a night face cream or watery lotion. It is easy to remove because of this consistency, and I use it when I'm going to go out (to work, choir practice, etc.) but won't be taking a shower for while.

You can feel it tingle a bit as you rub it around your face. Your skin really will be squeaky clean when you're rinsing the cleanser off. The cleanser is also fragarance free which adds to this product's fresh clean.

The makers recommend using before a shave. I don't use it for that purpose. Even though it has glycolic acid (the smallest of the alpha hydroxy acids), it lacks the depth of clean that I require before a shave. Like I said, I use it more for a waking-up-late, running-out-the-door, just-have-time-to-wash-my-face, or I use it on when I feel like all those other heavy cleansers that I use have burned away most of my epidermis.

The product design is ok, but I don't like people's names on product (you won't catch me in Victoria's Secret). Plus, Anthony sounds so fey and I like my cleansing products to be a bit more masculine. Does that sound gay?

It retails for $18 bucks and I have a feeling that my bottle will last 5 or 6 months, so I recommend it.