Remembering an Angel
Despite our office being gradually encircled as Ford Arts, Beats & Eats proceeded to encamp itself all over Royal Oak, we still managed to break out and attend several events on Thursday. First, the tribute to Angel Busque at the Woods Gallery was packed with people who knew and loved the late artist. Emily Rose, Lauren Mendelson, Steven Gamburd, Lisa Grix, Jerry Shirts, Theresa Walding, Tony Klee, Mark Barrett, Mike Galbraith and many others shared their memories throughout the evening.
Pinky and the Pump
We returned to RO on Thursday night just in time to get fashionably fashionable at the PinkPump Fabulous P2Exchange Opening Bash on 4th Street. We were particularly pleased to be greeted at the door with a swag bag containing not only a darling pair of pumps, but plenty of candy, beauty products and even a gift card to Liquid Salon – Makeover Time! Tawny Thieu took another bow for her entrepreneurial energy as well as a quick moment to chat with us – and about a dozen other media sources as well. Let us tell you, it was a long line waiting for her – about her newest endeavor, hinting that while she's expanding her brand in Detroit, she's also working toward going international. The incredible Eliza Neals showed up right after her Campus Martius gig to perform another set of songs. And there was more than just music in the air at the store-opening soiree. There was also a candy-inspired runway show, which treated us to a few new fashion ideas as well as some pleasure for our sweet tooth. The roster of faces and names enjoying the party right along with us were pretty impressive inside and outside the building as well. We spotted DJ Jenny La Femme, Rick Manore, Chris Gustafson, Rola ("Detroit Unleaded") Nashef, and also met a very talented photographer named Sophie Bruza. Since motoring out of Tree City was pretty much impossible even at 11 p.m., we imbibed at Gusoline Alley for a few hours and learned that Julie Fournier, Bridgett Davenport and Candy Draper are revving up the motors for the upcoming Hazel Park Art Fair. Labor, labor, labor – that's all we ever do around here.
The record release show for Slaughterhouse's welcome to: OUR HOUSE last Thursday night at the Royal Oak Music Theatre was nothing short of a showcase to prove that four of the most talented MCs in the rap game just so happen to all be in Slaughterhouse. Joell Ortiz, Joe Budden, Crooked I and hometown homeboy Royce da 5'9" had their usual banter back and forth during their set, but didn't delay in bringing the hits – including a fantastic live performance of the new album's "My Life" – during their hour-long set (which refreshingly included both new tracks from the newly-released album and older tracks – in addition to some tribute songs, paying homage to the fact that hip-hop is, indeed, not dead). It's no shock to see the firm grip they have on the Billboard chart with last week's release (their sophomore album), and it was that same cohesiveness within the group that was on display during their intimate ROMT performance. Keep it going, guys – and thanks for the hospitality!
Reinventing the Wheel
Not only will one of Detroit's historic treasures, The Whitney, be upping the ante in terms of their culinary offerings, it's now going to be upgrading their third floor bar as well. In addition to bringing the concept of true fine dining back to the establishment, owner Bud Liebler is commited to making it the historic destination that it truly is. There will once again be tours offered of the 22,000 square-foot establishment. And additionally, what was once dubbed "The Ghost Bar" will be renovated – complete with craft cocktails and the latest and greatest of everything – and losing the clubby atmosphere that it had recently embodied. You'll likely recognize a familiar face, as well – Kat, everyone's favorite former Oslo bartender!
Artfully Beating the Heat
We took a couple quick strolls around downtown Royal Oak as Ford Arts, Beats & Eats festival was being set up – talk about manpower! The dozens upon dozens of workers set everything up nicely for Friday's first day of the festival. We'd totally be lying if we said that we didn't run out to buy ourselves an elephant ear, chicken on a stick (WTF is that, seriously?!) and grab ourselves some Lockharts BBQ and Palm Palace. More musical coverage of the festival to come... | RDW