Moonlighting

James Iha and John Cameron Mitchell take a break from the daily grind

 JAMES IHA should quit his day job. Even though the ex-SMASHING PUMPKINS, now A PERFECT CIRCLE guitarist is fine at what he does, his recent guest DJ gig at the Misshapes party held at Luke & Leroy proved he had a knack for smooth transitions, clever programming, and knowing what the kids want. After his set, he said humbly, "It was fun, but I had a few slow moments."

How does one get a rock star to play at one's party? Iha's a friend of the famously well-coiffed promoting trio (GEO! LEIGH! GREG!), and had only spun once before, but they convinced him to give it a go. Before heading to the bar we wondered, What do you play if you are the former guitar player for the Smashing Pumpkins? "Dress You Up" by MADONNA would never have occurred to us, but there you have it. The Pumpkin does the Material Girl. Iha also threw on some DEPECHE MODE, HAPPY MONDAYS, and LE TIGRE's "Deceptacon," the latter of which caused all the young 'uns to bop up and down so hard that we thought the second-floor dance space would cave in and create a hill of hipsters on the ground level.

After Iha threw on VAN HALEN's "Panama," Hedwig and the Angry Inch star JOHN CAMERON MITCHELL ventured into the DJ booth and got a quickie lesson on the equipment. At first glance, the two rookies looked like old pros. Mitchell, who knows promoter Greg from the film world, chose a more obscure set, though he did toss on some FRANZ FERDINAND and BILLY SQUIER's "Stroke." The highlight came when he paused early on to dedicate a song to the recently departed super freak. "This is a dedication for someone who just passed," he said on the mic. "Let's do the slide in honor of RICK JAMES."

John Cameron Mitchell gets DJ pointers from James Iha.
photo: Tricia Romano
John Cameron Mitchell gets DJ pointers from James Iha.

Given the line around the block, it probably wasn't necessary for the Misshapes folks to offer a cut-rate drink special ($10 at the door got you an open bar till around 1), but it sure made life difficult for the doorman THOMAS ONORATO, who usually helms the ropes at Motherfucker. He was overheard saying to no one and everyone in particular: "If you are not a regular, or if you are not on the guest list, or if I don't know you, or if I don't like you, then you are not getting into this party." Way to go with the Studio 54 diva realness!

This week, VINCENT GALLO won't be DJ'ing. Thank G-d for small favors. But maybe we need another one, because on Wednesday he and SEAN LENNON will be performing some selections from Gallo's Warp release When at Rothko. Considering that this is the same man who receives a blowjob from CHLOË SEVIGNY in his new work of cinematic art, The Brown Bunny, expect a twisted experience from the staunchly Republican actor. Let's get the word out to the Republican invaders. They'll be very proud.

LYLE DEREK, the man behind the debaucherous Squeezebox parties, is teaming up with MICHAEL CAVADIAS (a/k/a Lily of the Valley) for God Save New York, an anti-RNC bash featuring all of their favorite downtown upstarts at the Coral Room on August 29. Famed performance artist KAREN FINLEY emcees, with BOY GEORGE, KEMBRA AND THE GIRLS OF KAREN BLACK, RUFUS WAINWRIGHT, MICHAEL T, KIMYON, and BEN JELEN all in attendance. Proceeds will go to the New York Civil Liberties Union. Derek says that T-shirts designed by Heatherette (RICHIE RICH's label) in homage to the cover of the Sex Pistol's "God Save the Queen" will be available, and adds that MISS GUY of the TOILET BOYS is in the studio with DEBBIE HARRY recording a track of the same name, which will be released at a later date.

Derek's got other tricks up his sleeve. The rooftop of the Coral Room is spitting distance from Crobar, one of the few clubs in town that agreed to host a party for the GOP. Maybe we should install Onorato at Crobar's door. Says Derek: "We can get up on the roof on the Coral Room and give the Republicans a warm reception as they get out of their cheap limos." Right—make it hot for them.


tromano@villagevoice.com

 
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