Best way to pimp a book to the young’uns? Pile a bunch of hot British babes—including newly svelte designer Alexander McQueen—into the dusty old National Arts Club for Mick Rock‘s fete for his David Bowie photo tome Moonage Daydream: The Life and Times of Ziggy Stardust. Among the stateside scenesters: party promoter-Blahnik addict Patrick Duffy; couture quartet As Four; silicone valley girl Amanda Lepore; transy Interview fashion director Joanna Jacovini with Heatherette designers Richie Rich and Traver Rains; ever-dandy dandy Patrick McDonald; upstart designers Liz Collins and Gary Graham; electro bandwagon chaser turned L’Uomo-Vogue model Phiiliip; and Chloë Sevigny, decked out in an interesting choice of lederhosen, giggling with comedian Jimmy Fallon.
Sashaying past the literary hall’s chiding signs (“Do not lean against the walls!” and “Smokers, please use ashtrays”) were models Shalom Harlow and Sophie Dahl. While not nearly as mutated as the sepulchral Christina Ricci, the faster, sleeker Dahl has gotten her share of attention from her new bod, and she’s sick of it.
The British tabs practically use Dahl for toilet paper—the 3AM girls refer to the doll-faced mannequin as a “slag,” ” ‘super’ model,” and “loser.” “It’s gotten to a stage where it’s really tiresome,” said Dahl. “I was 18 when I started modeling. [My body] was going to change.”
The granddaughter of Willy Wonka creator Roald Dahl just wrote a book, The Man With the Dancing Eyes.
“It’s not a Barbara Cartland novel,” said Dahl, referring to the sappy British romance queen who makes Danielle Steele look like Jane Austen. A relief. But for her sake it better be a halfway decent read or they’ll start calling her The Little Pretender.
Notorious for not performing in the U.S., West London broken-beat impresario and 4HERO frontman Dego played for a relatively small crowd of future-soul heads at Shine on July 24, including Triple 5 Soul founder Camella Ehlke and fellow dance producer King Britt.
The man behind the Winter Music Conference hit “Hold It Down” is a close contemporary of the Philly-based cabal of neo-soul artists. His name can be found in the album liner notes of everyone from Jill Scott to the Roots to Ursula Rucker. Although he’s still an underground dance music phenomenon, Dego doesn’t seem to be bothered that major labels and critics can’t get their heads around broken beat.
“It’s disappointing and to be expected,” he told Fly Life. “I mean, Americans often think the world starts in New York and ends in L.A. It’s them that are missing out, or just waiting for Timbaland to sample it!”
All these British celebs bring me back to the life of early-’90s London r&b posse Soul II Soul, and its bevy of erstwhile street divas—but damn, how hard some of them fell! Caron Wheeler, Victoria Wilson-James, and Kym Mazelle have all faded in and out of the music scene, and Doreen Waddell was tragically killed in a car accident this past March while running away from security guards who caught her shoplifting from a West End supermarket.
Lamya is vowing not to go the route of her less fortunate Soul II Soul sisters. Ever since the Omani-descended singer’s Learning From Falling dropped, she’s been securing her popularity with all of New York fagdom, first by performing at Victor Calderone‘s Masquerade party over Gay Pride weekend, and most recently at Trace magazine’s July 30 party for their fall issue—stylist Patti Wilson gave the songstress a Donna Summer-esque look for the cover.
Will the critics hold the S2S curse against her? “I’m sure they’ll all hate me next year,” she lamented. “I’ll have fun while it lasts!”
SPOTTED: Loony photog Dah Len hanging with model Selita Ebanks at the Trace party at Angel Orensanz Foundation . . . singer N’dea Davenport, appearing incog-negro in a bowler hat at the one-year anniversary party for Sistahs Harlem NY designers Carmen Webber and Shawna McBean at Negril . . . Nicky Hilton noshing on a burger while reading Toby Young‘s How to Lose Friends and Alienate People at the Union Square Cosí . . . and—more Brits!—Vivienne Westwood at the after-party for the final performance of Alan Cumming‘s ELLE at the Hudson Library Bar, along with Bazaar editor Glenda Bailey, writer Brian Keith Jackson, designers John Bartlett and Cynthia Rowley, and Monica Lewinsky (looking good!).