Sunday, February 25, 2007

A Pill to increase Inflammation

On Wednesday, February 21, I was one of the Presenters for The Pill Awards, honoring excellence in Queer Music Videos and Film Shorts seen on ADD-TV (Attention Deficit Disorder TV) on cable Television. I was also one of the panel of Judges for the awards. They took place at Splash nightclub in Chelsea and had a huge crowd with many luminaries from the Queer nightlife, television and entertainment industries involved including: George Lyter (ADD-TV), Josh Rosenzweig and Dereck Reynols (Here! TV network), John Baez and Jennifer Howd (Punkmouse Media), Daniel Nardicio (D List), Randy Jones (Village People), Out Music, Next Magazine, HX Magazine, Ken Kleiber (That’s Kentertainment), Ryan Wolowski (Out and About TV), Walter McBride (Broadway World .com), Billy B (Radio Gay Today), Jay McCarroll (Project Runway), Wolfgang Busch (How Do I Look?), and others. The event included powerhouse performances by Josh Zuckerman, Kevin Cahoon & Ghetto Cowboy, Jonny McGovern and his sexy soccer players, The Ones, and La'Mady . Drag Ladies Carmilla Cann, Peppermint, Sweetie and Jimmy James were also there. Plus Mark Schulte, photographer Jeff Eason of Wilson Models, photographer Aaron Cabbett, Athena Reich, Triple Creme, Ari Gold, Brian Kent, Rich Overton, Michael Formika Jones, Francis Legge, Reed McGowan, Jeff Karpf, Nita Aviance and many others also enjoyed the festivities.

I was thrilled to present the Award for Best Drag with the very talented and sexy singer/songwriter Josh Zuckerman. I was also very happy to tell the audience about his video Out from Under being number one on Logo cable TV network for over 6 months! And everyone said how sharp we looked in the spotlight together! He was wearing a white shirt with a black tie and I was wearing a mod 60s white, black and blue print gown. Drag Diva Peaches Christ was the hostess of the evening and she was hoping to get the award. But Josh and me cracked open the plastic pill and read that the winner was Cyber Cissy - And Ms. Cissy wasn't even there to accept the award! Since there were several awards that Peaches was nominated for and didn’t win, she referred to herself as the Susan Lucci of Drag. I reminded her that La Lucci finally did win an award after being nominated 19 times. “Oh, I have 18 more to suffer through!” moaned Peaches.

Photos: Chris, *Pill Awards sign, **Josh Zuckerman & Lady Clover Honey announcing winner, *Ryan Wolowski & Clover, Jimmy James, Carmilla Cann, *Josh Zuckerman with Clover. (*Photos courtesy Ryan Wolowski of Out and About TV) (**Photo courtesy Walter McBride of Broadway World .com)

Gray Matters - Sapphic Cinema Screening Benefit

On Tuesday, February 20, I attended a fabulous Benefit Film Premiere Screening Gala of a Lesbian romantic comedy. I went with Tony Sawicki and Robin Cloud to create a segment for Under the Pink Carpet. The film was Gray Matters, whose tagline is: “A Brother, A Sister, and the Girl of their Dreams.” It sounds like a delicious Sapphic Soap Operatic love triangle, indeed! Stars from the movie, Heather Graham, Molly Shannon and Alan Cumming attended the event with writer/director Sue Kramer. Ms. Kramer said that the film was inspired by her Lesbian sister. The gala was a pre-viewing benefit for Hetrick Martin Institute (home of the Harvey Milk High School for LGBT Youth) and took place in a ballroom and cinema screening room at the sophisticated TriBeCa Grill. I had the chance to meet again some wonderful filmmakers and people form the Hetrick-Martin Institute, who are doing such good and important work providing for LGBT youth. The Guest-list included: Sarah Wran (creator of After and author Lauren Blitzer of She Said What? talk show on the Logo cable TV network. Plus, Abby Peck, Thomas Krever and David Mensah of Hetrick-Martin, Steven Carbajal of Fat Dot PR and others.

The film was very enjoyable and the Lesbian kissing and love scene was sizzling. I can see why critics have compared Heather Graham, who played Gray – the lead and title character - to a young Goldie Hawn. And it’s funny since writers have on several occasions said that I too resemble a young Goldie myself. Molly Shannon was hilarious as Gray’s gossipy office buddy. It was a pleasure meeting her since I'll never forget how funny she was on her two guest appearances on Will & Grace as a friend turned psycho and I also loved her on Saturday Night Live. The only thing more charismatic than Alan Cumming’s screen presence was his live presence that evening. We talked about his recent marriage to male graphic artist Grant Schaffer in Great Britain. Alan was a true Scottish charmer that evening and we had the most delightful time watching the film, chatting, sipping Martini’s and nibbling on the gourmet crab cakes.

Photos: Alan Cumming and Lady Clover Honey. Molly Shannon, Clover Honey and Sue Kramer

Monday, February 19, 2007

Sweet/Sour - La Dolce Vita

Porn Czar Michael Lucas was served a lawsuit claiming that his erotic male/male adult film, Michael Lucas’ La Dolce Vita, will "infringe, tarnish and dilute" the trademark rights to the 1960s Italian Cinematic classic La Dolce Vita, directed by Federico Fellini. “This is incredibly homophobic” said Lucas in an official statement on his blog. They say the title of its movie was also likely to cause confusion among consumers. Of course this is not true at all. Michael Lucas says this himself: "This lawsuit is completely out of line. I think they're making fools of themselves. I don't think Fellini would like that. Nobody can be confused and think they're buying Fellini's movie by buying mine. It's a sex flick. This movie's taking place in New York today and has absolutely nothing to do with Fellini's, produced in 1960 in Rome. I'm not hiring [my actors] for their ability to act. That's for sure."

I was an Extra in four non-sexual party scenes of Michael Lucas’ La Dolce Vita, including a big-production fashion show number with celebrities Randy Jones (Village People), Michael Musto (Village Voice), Kevin Aviance, Amanda Lepore and others. It is always very sad and disheartening when Homophobia rears its ugly head and attacks a friend and a fellow Out producer. Being an Out producer and correspondent on a TV magazine news series, there were times when I was denied Press access for fear that being associated with something Gay, or the interpretation of their work by an openly Gay person, would tarnish their reputation. Gay people, like all other people have the right to be inspired by all culture, including classic movies, and to create and produce. I wish Michael good luck in fighting these Bigots and hope it doesn’t cost him too much.

Photos: Michael Lucas and Lady Clover Honey, Movie Posters

Coffee Date Movie Premiere

On Saturday, February 17, I attended the New York City premiere of the romantic comedy film Coffee Date at the Pioneer Cinema in the East Village. The producer and the stars flew in from LA, where the film garnished rave reviews. Out actor and comedian Jason Stuart (also from the ABC sitcom My Wife and Kids) and the Oscar-nominated, Golden Globe winning Sally Kirkland were two actors from the movie who attended the premiere along with the writer/director Stuart Wade. Tony Sawicki, Stephanie Butler and myself covered the event for a segment on Under the Pink Carpet. Coffee Date was very funny and clever and was about a Straight man whose life gets spun out of control when an unexpected friendship between him and a Gay man causes everyone in his life to believe that he too is Gay. Sally Kirkland played a very funny and accepting Mother who became an eager member of PFLAG (Parents/Friends of Lesbians And Gays.) She also gave us an interesting and lengthy interview about her long and varied career and her relationships with many notable people. We had fabulous time enjoying the movie and having the red wine and pizza from Two Boots next door. We also took pleasure in meeting the film makers, actors and others from Hollywood.

Photos: Jason Stuart, Tony Sawicki, Stuart Wade. Sally Kirkland

Valentine Opening Climaxxed

So February 14th, Valentine’s Day arrived! I took this time to reminisce about all the men I loved through the years. I remembered the days of yesteryear, back before all Gays ever went to Chelsea and everyone gathered in Greenwich Village. Christopher Street was the place to be and from the Hudson River to 6th Avenue, the cross-town thoroughfare was bustling with Men, looking for love. It seemed rather appropriate that one notorious Gay Pick-up palace on Christopher Street was renovated into a more upscale Lounge, renamed Climaxx with cable TV personality Barry Z hosting, and was having its Opening Night Gala on this day devoted for Lovers. Although I was just there the night before, I love openings so much I couldn’t resist coming back for seconds. The Guest List included Randy Jones, the original Cowboy from the Village People, singer/songwriters Josh Zuckerman and Robert German, PR Guru Stephen Schulman, The Glamazons, a hot stripper named Marchello and many others.

Photos: Marchello, Randy Jones, Barry Z

Next, Monster Partying

On Tuesday February 12, it was time for more Networking, so I went with my Gal Pal Rita Petite to Next Magazine’s Next Works Networking event. This month it was held at The Monster, the legendary Greenwich Village club. It’s always fun to hang with the gorgeous guys from the Next publication. Myself, also being a Journalist working for a Queer production, always finds interesting things to chat with the Next guys about. I also wanted to give a big congratulatory kiss to the new Editor in Chief, Justin Ocean, who was recently promoted from being the Listings editor. I also kissed hello the dining editor Peter Sherwood - plus Lou Marino, John Amaturo, photographer Chris Ramon. I ran into Will Clark who told me he was going to start up his super fun Porn Idol contest again at TV host Barry Z’s new bar, the renovated Boots & Saddle on Christopher St., and asked if I could be a Celebrity Judge. Of course, Judging the sexiness of hot young men who aspire to be erotica stars is one of my many talents! The Guest-List included: Josh Rosenzweig of Here TV, Wil Fisher form The Ali Forney Center, Mark Schulte, Eduardo from V2 Vodka, Sorceress Barbara Goode and Chris (who’s better know as his Drag Alter-Ego – the fabulous high-kicking Edie). We chatted about how Edie is one of the few Brunette Drag Queens. Most Divas prefer being Blonde beauties, but Edie feels that raven hair is classier and better suited for her! Edie certainly is one classy Lady! I lended my Vanna White modeling skills by being the stage beauty who pulled the cards out of the box to determine who wins the raffle door prizes. I’m glad no one minded it when I pulled my own card out and won a prize myself! It was a DVD collection including the Here TV series, Shock To the System. But it was no shock that we all had a great time!

Photos: Next Editor- Justin Ocean, Josh Rosenzweig from Here! TV, Barbara and Rita, John Amaturo

From Boots to Barry Z

Will Clark mentioning Barry Z’s new lounge, Climaxx, at the above Next event got me thinking about old times at the old Boots & Saddle, which was many times jokingly referred to as Bras & Girdles. It was a fun place with a circle of lights on the ceiling, the front of a truck as a juke box and an actual hitching post in the center of the floor that guys leaned against as they chatted and cruised. The old place is gone and transferred into a new place with a new name and with cable TV’s Barry Z hosting. Climaxx was scheduled to have its Grand opening the next night, but me and Rita were thinking that almost everyone is fashionably late, so we would be fashionably early - an entire evening early - And make a grand entrance at the new watering hole. The hitching post is gone and there’s a new digital juke box. There’s also beautiful new woodwork and mirrors. Barry gave us a big warm welcome. The last time I saw Barry was at a Jerry Springer show celebration that he taped for The Barry Z Show. Drag Diva Kenny Dash was also there hosting a Karaoke night, so me and Rita grabbed the microphone and belted out a few numbers. The more things change, the more they stay the same!

Photos: Barry Z, Kenny Dash

Friday, February 2, 2007

Chelsea Boys released by Lady Bunny

I realized that I must be a very well-read, literate lady as I was preparing to go to my third book release party of the new year! This time it’s Steppin’ Out by cartoonists Glen Hanson and Alan Newirth, a collection of comic strips from the Chelsea Boys funnies that we read in Next Magazine. This is their second book. I fondly remember being at the first Chelsea Boys book premiere event with Tony Sawicki and the Under the Pink Carpet camera crew at the Leslie-Lohman Art Gallery. This time, the release took place at Mid-town hotspot, Club Therapy and had many celebrity attendees. Among them were world-renowned Drag icon Lady Bunny herself, looking fabulous in a black mini with a huge glitter-gold playboy bunny. Other stars were Frank DeCaro from Sirius Out Q Radio and Porn Star turned Singer/Recording Star Frederick Ford. Frank DeCaro went to the same High School in suburban northern NJ. – If the teachers could see us now! Frank joked about Frederick’s huge dick, Bunny’s huge hair and his huge ass on the same stage. Lady Bunny later added to the humor by saying “You have a good face for the radio” to DeCaro. She also gave me a zinger by introducing me as being known for being on Under the Pink Carpet and also being known for “tricking out of the third stall of Port Authority’s Men’s Room.” Being dissed by Lady Bunny is one of the highest honors anyone in NYC Queer Society can get! I also fondly remember the first time she insulted me in 2001. Nobody does it better! Frederick Ford sang his new song “Turn My World Around” in between Bunny’s outrageous clowning as they raffled off a slew of prizes. Lady Bunny was unsuccessful in getting Ford and some of the prize winners to remove their clothing on stage. I guess they didn’t have enough of the V2 vodka shots that were being served liberally throughout the evening! We also generously received gift bags from Kenneth Cole. With fierce Drag, free vodka, singing Porn stars and newly published comic books, it was much more fun than when Frank and I had to spend time with books in our High School Library! Since I don't believe being limited to one Porn Star per evening, I stopped by Will Clark's Porno Bingo on the way home to see the gorgeous Jonathan Blu along with other friends like Will, A.B., Manny, Tre Xavier, Mark Schulte, playwright Kevin Brofsky and others from Emerging Artists Theatre.

Photos: Lady Bunny, Poster, Frederick Ford, Chelsea Boys creators Glen Hanson and Alan Newirth, Frank DeCaro, Jonathan Blu, Veronica Vera of Miss Vera's Finishing School - Cross Dressing Academy

Real Men: Photographed, Drawn, and In-The-Flesh

On Tuesday, January 30, I was invited to the official book release party celebrating Real Men by good friend Ray Dragon, the artistic photographic journal that bursts with muscles, nude male flesh and more! And it was wonderful to see Ray Dragon again, everyone’s favorite Porn Star come Fashion Designer with his own label who returned to Porn industry with Directing/Producing and then became an erotic artistic photographer. And it was also very nice to see his models at the event, in the flesh. The party was held at the beautiful new Gallery of the prestigious Leslie-Lohman Gay Art Foundation. On display at the Gallery was a show called Boy Bordello, that contained drawings from the Queer Men’s Erotic Art Workshop, an art group that works with beautiful men in unabashed sexually inviting poses. The space was colorfully decorated in the bordello theme with ornate frames around each drawing! In the late 90s, I once had my art displayed at the gallery. I was greeted by Mr. Charles Leslie, the founder himself and Harvey Redding, workshop director. I also met Mark Schulte, photographer Michael Alexander, artist Richard Rodgers, friends Rosie Eggman and Keisha Lorainne from the Radical Faeries, and my girlfriends Madeline and Rita. I later spoke with Ray Dragon about his versatile life that included being an actor, Metropolitan opera performer, erotica star/producer/director and artistic photographer. It’s funny how Ray spent time designing clothes to cover men and now photographs them unclothed, which is the exactly the way I prefer viewing them.

Photos: Clover Honey with Ray Dragon, artist Richard Rodgers, Arod, Madeline, Clover Honey, Charles Leslie, Rita.

RUB - Queer Eye for the Straight Drummer

After the above event on Tuesday January 30, me and the girls headed uptown, to the Upper West Side to see my friends in the pop/rock band RUB give a fierce concert. RUB was fromed by combining members fro Rubberlegs band and Urban band and has Robert Urban on vocals and guitar, Steve Sullivan on bass, Gordon Smith on vocals and keyboard and Ant Maullela on drums. It’s two Straight and two Gay guys who musically play together orgasmicly (figuratively speaking). The concert was also a celebration of Ant’s birthday. Ant is one of the Straight guys and he plays the drums with fierce energy and keeps the beat going strong! All of us girls thought he looked smashing in his see-through shirt and kilt. He’s also one of the most supportive guys ever! I was the lead vocalist in singing “Happy Birthday to You” a la Marilyn when he was presented with the traditional candle-topped birthday cake. Special guest vocalists were Travis Laughlin who did a remarkable Janis Joplin impersonation and singer/songwriter VIRGO who did a Eurythmics number from the 80s. Cher Impersonator Howie V also stopped by and performed a Sonny & Cher song with Robert as Sonny. Jed Ryan from PM magazine was also among the partygoers. The concert took place at Citrus, a beautiful, spacious club with bamboo sticks, padding and lotus twigs adorning the walls.

Photos: Clover Honey, RUB, Jed Ryan, RUB, Travis Laughlin