It’s not often I’m in the same room with someone who’s been designated one of the city’s “Sexiest New Yorkers,” but there he was, Diego Garcia, lead singer of Elefant, standing a mere three feet away. He’s got that built-in handsomeness that only comes with good cheekbones, perfect skin, and long, brown hair. I asked him what it’s like to be officially “sexy”—at least according to New York magazine—and he rebuffed the compliment. He said that the interview portion of the profile was meant to be ironic and funny. “They really wanted that Don Juan thing, so I gave it to ’em,” he told me at the Spring Street Lounge last Tuesday night, where his bandmates Mod and Jeff Berral were DJ’ing for the first time ever (they even wrote up a playlist, complete with notes on how the songs ended and their length).
Unfortunately, the folks at New York don’t have an ironic bone in their bodies, so the copy reads straight—the indie singer says things like “I’ve dated a lot of models.” “I’ve actually never dated a model!” he protested to me. All press is good press, though. “My phone’s been ringing off the hook, like it’s my birthday. This one thing’s gotten more attention than any other press we’ve done.”
Another thing’s that’s been getting tons of PR—not all of it good—is Friendster.com. The folks behind the popular popularity contest website have been kicking people off who they believe are fake Friendsters. At the Tribeca Grand’s big bash last Friday, a drunk Tommie Sunshine told me that his account had been suspended. “They don’t think I’m a real person!” he said. In shock, Sunshine repeatedly e-mailed the Friendster peeps to reinstate his account—but maybe the fact that the DJ always wears sunglasses at night (like Corey Hart), his funny nom de disc, and his 537 Friendsters led the Friendster gods to believe he was a made-up character. One person opted out of the dotcom before he could get deleted: As our mates at Gawker.com posted, Fischerspooner‘s glam singer, Casey Spooner, ended his Friendster fun. Last weekend, we got a bulletin board post from his “special friend” Adam Dugas—himself a handsome performer and boy about town—proclaiming that “Friendster ‘alpha’ is going to be a GHOST TOWN.” Indeed, a few weeks before that, renowned San Francisco turntablist QBert‘s profile was removed.
Fallen Friendsters can go to http://z900.com/Fallen/—a graveyard for real and fake Friendsters who’ve been kicked outta the joint. Others who are tired of watching their French can join similar sites like EveryonesConnected.com, Ringo.com, Tribe.net, or my new favorite, OnlyUndiesClub.com, which features the country’s cutest young (very young) punk and emo kids in just their underpants. Still, none of these sites are going to inspire their own verb à la “Man, you better Friendster me!”
Mr. Sunshine, who really is a real person, is still pinching himself from the deal he sealed with Traci Lords to work on her next album. When he was hanging out with the ex-adult queen he wasn’t sure if it was really happening, but it’s true—he’ll be recording a song with Lords that he co-wrote with Mark Verbos called “Head 2 Toe in Drag.” He’s also lending his production skills to W.I.T., three girls who got all their pouty-lipped poses from Ms. Lords. The trio has moved from lip-synching to actual live performances, and it is recording its new CD with a slew of impressive producers—among them Mark Bell of LFO fame and Vince Clark of Erasure. Let’s just hope the girls don’t set out on an ill-fated DJ career, like Lords did a few years ago.
But if they do decide to spin the wheels of steel, they should grab Frank Broughton and Bill Brewster‘s latest book, How to DJ Right, which is a clever, useful guide to spinning records. (Where was this tome when I was learning, dammit.) The authors had a book party at APT on Thursday night attended by several local DJ nerds, including Peter Wohelski (a/k/a Anthony) and Mathematics member Roy Dank, who moonlights as a publicist and is pushing the book. My favorite suggestion in the cheeky how-to is “Open a shrink-wrapped record in style by slicking its edge back and forth against your jeans.” Broughton, who admitted to being a DJ “amateur,” because he’s not “anal-obsessive” enough for the job, pointed out his favorite tip in the book. “How to get into a helicopter without looking foolish: Duck a little but not too much. Try to act nonchalant, like it’s a taxi.” “Hey,” he shrugged, “you never know!”
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on August 12, 2003