Right on, party people
I.W. is fuming about having clearly missed out on the wildest party period in Minneapolis history — 40 years ago. A weeklong Christie’s auction of Andy Warhol art starts Saturday at Aria in Minneapolis’ Warehouse District -- a show that also features works on loan (but not for sale) from former Minneapolis collector/salon and gay bar owner/ bon vivant Gordon Locksley and his ex-partner, George Shea. To mark the occasion, we revisited Star Tribune stories about the mod, lavish bashes held by the dashing duo in the late 1960s and early ’70s at their posh Mount Curve Boulevard residence. Today’s revelries pale in comparison. At a ’68 Valentine’s Day gala thrown in honor of Warhol’s visit, the pop-art star’s eyes looked “surprisingly vacant” and “Mrs. Russell Cowles came in bright orange crepe evening culottes.” Another time, artist Christo wrapped nudes in plastic as party favors. Yet another swingin’ soirée, this one on Kenwood Parkway at the home of Locksley colleagues, was dubbed a “Juliet-of-the-Spirits Orgy” featuring guests “of the fashionably lightfooted set ... young men, showing a lot of stained and painted skin, one with his body rubbed in silver. ... There was a tall fellow in a Sgt. Pepper outfit, and another in an ambiguous Egyptian costume that could, to the untrained eye, be taken as pharaoh or princess. ... Dinner was called, and then somebody yelled down from the terrace, ‘Seconds?’ From down below a voice answered, ‘Did you say sex or seconds?’ ‘In this crowd,’ came a third voice, ‘it’s all the same thing.’ ” Locksley — who left town 30 years ago and now lives in Florida — even gave his hired help crash courses in Fellini, should they happen to be engaged in conversation by a guest. So, what happened at your last social gathering?
Looks like Prince is once again making news — or at least making news-show music. A jazzy, mid-tempo instrumental that wouldn’t sound out of place in a fancy hotel’s elevator is now the theme for Tamron Hall’s “News Nation, ” which airs weekdays from 1 to 2 p.m. on MSNBC. If this catches on, maybe the Time will consider revamping the theme for “60 Minutes.”
Some people dress for fundraisers and some just opt for fancy T-shirts. I.W. was impressed by the custom-made T of Questlove at Saturday’s second annual Benefit 2 Celebrate Life organized by Prince & the Revolution drummer Bobby Z at First Avenue. Since he was drumming for Princess, Maya Rudolph’s Prince tribute band, Questlove had a T-shirt emblazoned with the titles of Prince’s first five albums — in chronological order, of course. Bobby Z’s wife, model Vicki Rivkin, was wearing a pretty exclusive T-shirt, too. It’s was a 3rdeyegirl T that Prince himself sent her. That’s supposedly the name of his all-woman backup trio or their album or something to do with them and him. I.W.’s vote for the best T, though, was the one Bobby Z had printed for the Princess/Questlove two-city tour: New York’s Carnegie Hall and Minneapolis’ First Avenue.
(Barnes &) Noble prizes
The Barnes & Noble Discover Awards were begun in 1990, intended to honor books by writers at the start of their careers. Each year the judges choose two books — one nonfiction, another fiction. The winners of the 2012 Discover Awards are both graduates of the University of Minnesota — Cheryl Strayed, author of the memoir “Wild,” and Amanda Coplin, author of the novel “The Orchardist.” Strayed, who grew up in McGregor, Minn., and now lives in Portland, Ore., received her undergraduate degree from the U of M, whereas Coplin earned an MFA from the U in 2006, and now also lives in Portland. Strayed will be in the Twin Cities Tuesday at the Central Park Amphitheater in Woodbury and Wednesday at the Apple Valley Galaxie Library as part of Club Book. In other book news, St. Paul writer Peter Bognanni, author of “House of Tomorrow” who teaches at Macalester College, has won a Rome Prize, which is a one-year residency at the American Academy in, of course, Rome.
Runaway gets ‘Rhythm’
While attendance was sadly less than stellar, the inaugural Girls Got Rhythm Fest was widely regarded as one of the coolest events on the concert calendar in 2012, and organizers and sponsors are thankfully standing by it. They lined up former Runaways singer Cherie Currie to give a rare performance as the headliner for the May 10-11 event at the Amsterdam Bar in St. Paul. Portrayed by Dakota Fanning to Kristen Stewart’s Joan Jett in the 2010 movie on the all-female punk band, Currie battled addictions, became a chain-saw woodcarving artist (no kidding) and largely dropped off the music industry radar in the ’80s, though she reportedly just finished her first album in more than 30 years with help from Matt Sorum and Duff McKagan (Guns N’ Roses, Velvet Revolver). Also on the festival bill are San Francisco’s the Avengers, Berlin’s Ana Lucia, Italy’s Marilu and the Machetes, Milwaukee’s Sugar Stems and Minnesota scenesters Is/Is, Gateway District, the Vignettes and Total Trash.