Promotion Commotion

Judging character in clubland is like comparing two criminals. It's impossible. There are only lesser liars, lesser scam artists, and lesser bastards. But in a reversal of roles, two promoters got screwed.

Josh Isaac, the wunderkind who came out of nowhere two years ago with his monstrous Global Bass parties at the Limelight, has popped up again, this time promoting house events. His first party was to feature Guy-Manuel and Paul de Homem-Christo, but the Daft Punk DJ and his brother never showed.

Isaac contends he did all the right things: booked the hotel, paid the deposit, etc. But he shortly discovered he was bamboozled—and was dealing all along with a nonexistent booking agency in France that he was recommended to by a former colleague, Greg Gumo, who used to work at the Limelight. Gumo, who is currently living in Japan, could not be reached at press time.

Dark & lovely: Didier Vervaeren, Xavier Delcour, and Melissa Burns at the Tribeca Grand
photo: Cary Conover
Dark & lovely: Didier Vervaeren, Xavier Delcour, and Melissa Burns at the Tribeca Grand

Since then, the agency has gone AWOL, says Isaac in an e-mail missive. Meanwhile, he's out 25 G—the sum he paid to book four shows through the agency. Isaac didn't respond for comment.

Apparently, the same agency also had its fingers in an Aphex Twin booking at the Roxy in November; but that show was also canceled after the promoters, Stuck on Earth, discovered that they too were duped.

"After I heard Daft Punk didn't show, I put one and one together," says SOE co-owner Jeff Cohen.

With more than 50 shows under its belt, SOE promoters aren't easily fooled. "[The agency] knew what they were doing. We had to do a proposal, a venue contract, a deposit." The only red flag, says Cohen, was the agency's insistence on a direct deposit of $9,000 into their bank account.

"People said, 'Wow, how'd you get Aphex? He's the hardest person to book,' " says Cohen. "I guess he is the hardest person to book."


Fischerspooner's Lizzie Yoder had a birthday party and the whole downtown scene showed up at Idlewild on Friday the 13th. Tommie Sunshine provided metal tuneage for a crowd that included F/S member and fashion designer Cindy Greene, Rory Phillips of London club Trash, and Nick of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs.

Photographer Jeremiah Clancy, also known in the F/S posse as Peanuts, was resplendent in a sweeping dark-red cloak, and beamed about F/S's new deal with Capitol Records. Fly Life reported several weeks ago that the band was signed to EMI for over $2 mil (what Ministry of Sound U.S. famously threw at the band before getting financially zonked), and it looks like Capitol, a subsidiary of EMI, gets the goods. Clancy—who joked that his alter ego Peanuts "gets resentful sometimes" 'cause he doesn't see the bling-bling—told me the video for "Emerge" and the album #1 will finally see U.S. soil early next year. Good for them, but I'm not holding my breath. If I did, I'd be dead!


Last Thursday, Clancy's photos of Fischerspooner antics were on display as part of NYU's 20 Year Alumni Retrospective. His F/S mates turned up, including an incognito Casey Spooner, who looked like a golden California boy with his grown-out blond hair, orange shirt, and tidy little glasses. Fittingly, Spooner was getting ready to fly to L.A. to attend actress Ann Magnuson's wedding. Ah, the life of a rock star.


Later that night at the Tribeca Grand, designer Xavier Delcour's party found every electro casualty sporting their latest fauxhawk. Among the skinny ties were the usual faces—downtown designers Christian Joy and Richie Rich (in a coy little blond bob), pouty bombshell Melissa Burns of W.I.T., and Vice mag co-founder Suroosh Alvi. Over in the corner bar, Irish bloke David Holmes held court. And in a surreal moment, I was surrounded by three bald men: DJs Neil Aline, Ulysses, and Larry Tee (Richie Hawtin, where were you?).

The very music-heavy event featured appearances by Ladytron, James Murphy, Mt. Sims, and Vitalic among others. Downstairs in the banquet space ("I open it up when I need it," said Tribeca Grand creative director Tommy Saleh with a flourish), it seemed like a bumping nightclub instead of the usual game of Gawk at the Fauxhawk. Imagine that, fashion and music people actually dancing!


tromano@villagevoice.com

 
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