If you haven’t been to Kress, the new too-cool-for-you restaurant/club/lounge in Hollywood, you’re missing spectacular views, five stories of pan-Asian California art deco redness, aggressive security, and mediocre DJs. But this Sunday you’ll have a chance to check out one of America’s oddest living creations: the living body of Michael Jackson. Returning from his Middle East hideaway, MJ has supposedly invited all of his siblings and a cast of celebrity characters (who exactly, we’re not sure) to ring in his 50th. What makes this item even more ridiculous is that the promoter who put on Sunday nights downstairs at Kress are leaking this story about the night’s special rooftop party, ostensibly to add some caché to their club’s already solidified reputation. In case there’s any doubt, this is another LA club where you will see someone from The Hills, get verbally bitch-slapped by a hostess, and forget about in twelve months when it sits empty and suddenly uncool.
So in case you’re looking to be rejected at a club door this weekend, and you happen to be in LA, come to Kress, where you might catch a glimpse of one of the 20th Century’s greatest music icons, and you’ll definitely not be let in.
Image: Steven Meiers
Disco diva Donna Summer played two sold-out nights at the Hollywood Bowl over this past weekend. The mixed crowd of youngish flamboyant gays and older sequin wearing disco queens from decades past packed the infamous Hollywood arena to see the queen of disco in the flesh. Playing from a great collection of 17 years of disco, pop and dance, Summer pulled from her new album Crayons as well as her older more famous disco tracks.
The first act was lackluster with her newer song’s failing to connect with the audience. Donna herself looked great throughout her numerous costume changes going from an orange African inspired dress to a swanky purple full-length. But her performance was stiff and she didn’t actually dance at all. Although she kind of waddled around, the stage design was quite innovative with hi-resolution screens changing colors and shapes to match the vibe of each song. The band was of course, quite good, as is to be expected for such a legacy artist.
By the time her second act rolled around, Donna began to loosen up, playing the old sexy beat-pumping disco fans had come to see. She raged through classics “No More Tears,” “She Works Hard for the Money,” “Bad Girls” and “Hot Stuff” bringing fans to their feet for some booty shaking. Playing “Last Dance” as her encore (duh), Donna left a good impression overall but there were still some kinks with her performance. What distinguishes Summer from other artists in her age group—Cher, Tina Turner, Madonna—is that her age has actually seemed to slow her down. In short, she’s not really working hard for her money, but it still won’t be her last dance.
Words: Nick Rabinovitch