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Just wanted to thank Bill Brewster for sending us this note about the passing of Francis Grasso, 52, who is generally regarded as the first modern DJ. His club The Sanctuary helped define late-sixties(!) gay disco and he pioneered the whole shamanistic tradition of DJs taking the crowd on a trip..

I got an email from a friend of Francis Grasso this morning telling me that, unfortunately, he passed away last weekend. .. The cause of death is not yet known, but he had been having a difficult time in the last period of his life. It's a very sad end to one of the most remarkable lives in the history of the DJ and worth remembering that when Francis invented what we now know as the modern DJ, he was doing it because he loved music and not because he ever expected to earn vast sums of money. There are many people with a lot less talent who have become considerably wealthier than Francis could ever have hoped to.

If you don't know Bill, he wrote the amazing "Last Night A DJ Saved My Life:The History of the Disc Jockey" which is filled with amazing stories including Francis Grasso's.

[This message was edited by Chi Chi on 03-23-01 at 08:38 PM.]
Noted character actor, East Village icon, nightlife legend and panhandler extraordinaire, Rockets Redglare AKA Michael Morra died on May 28, at New York's Bellevue Hospital. He had been admitted to the hospital's emergency room two days earlier after complaining of breathing difficulty. Rockets appeared in many theatrical productions, as well as in scores of films, most recently Penny Marshall's "Big" and Julian Schnabel's "Basquiat." He was 52.
An informal memorial will be planned later on in the year.
Legendary spoken word performer Emilio Cubeiro died on approx. June 15, 2001 in Craftbury Common, VT of complications due to Hepatitis C.
A frequent contributor to one of the first gay poetry magazines, "Mouth Of The Dragon" throughout the early Seventies, Cubeiro's exceptional live performances combined poetry, rhythm and music years before anyone else.
Reportedly, a young poet named Lydia Lunch saw him perform at CBGB's in 1972, and left completely transformed. It would be over 20 years before they would finally work together.
A picture of Emilio is available at Lydia's excellent site:
as well as a video of their collaborative "The Smell Of Guilt"
Emilio also worked with Annie Sprinkle, directing her "Herstory Of Porn" in 1997.
His written word is included in "Noirotica", a collection edited by Thomas S. Roche

[This message was edited by hatches on 07-01-01 at 03:00 PM.]
yeah, it's true...
lance has checked into the chelsea in the sky.
pinto attended (or will soon) his memorial in l.a. i'll see if i can get him to post here.

for those who don't know who lance loud was...
he was the oldest sibling in the loud family who were made famous in the 70's on a PBS mini-series. the show - AN AMERICAN FAMILY - was the first reality based tv show ever aired. it followed the family in their so-cal house and lance as he moved to new york.

he took a room at the chelsea and ran with holly and candy and the rest of the downtown darlings. he was possibly/probably the first out homo on television.

pinto - you're the expert on this one...
care to continue??
i got this from the faerie newsletter.

chi or dads... if this is better placed in a queenmother topic, please move. thanx.

"This is the Revolution...and I'm not missing a minute of it!!!"
Sylvia Rivera at the Stonewall Riots, 1969

Legendary Activist Sylvia Rivera died this week of liver cancer. Her ashes will be carried in a horse drawn cart from the Stonewall Inn to the Hudson River piers on
Tuesday, February 26th at 9PM.

Stonewall INN

Tuesday, Feb 26th
9 p.m.

Faeries have made 40 red foam core hearts decorated with lots of luv and festooned with ribbons, beads, paints, and pictures of Sylvia.

Please join us in celebrating the life and legacy of this incomparable Transgender Activist.

Let her know we love her!

As I understand it, there will be a Funeral at MCC (see below) at 7 PM on Tuesday. After which Sylvia's ashes will be carried in procession in a horse drawn carriage to the Stonewall Inn and then to the Piers.

Funeral: Tuesday Feb, 26th, 7 pm
Metropolitan Community Church
446 West 36th St., Manhattan

(Bring flowers, contributions to help offset costs, or other offerings, and yourself!)

Funeral Procession:

After the funeral, from The Stonewall (53 Christopher) to the Waterfront (or as close as we can get) (Bring flowers, Sylvia requested rainbow flags, bring yourselves. If you play a horn instrument, musicians are being requested to possibly accompany a horse and carriage that are being planned by members of Transie House.)

Bring drums, talismans, costumes, shoes.

Bring Love.

See you there, Fannie Mae B. Free

[This message was edited by goblin73 on 02-25-02 at 11:05 PM.]
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Gobs just letting you know that we met up with the faeries in front of Stonewall, and met your fellow Texxxan Huckleberry Fairy. They made the most beautiful hearts with Sylvia's picture and feathers, beads, fluff, glitter etc. and handed them out to the marchers. Daddy is going to scan one of the hearts for the website so you can see it.

It was an incredibly touching evening - the procession walking through the Village with the band playing and the coach with white horse and black plumes. We'll be doing a page soon on the site so you can see.

If I could love the faeries any more, I did that night. On time, DONE, and with throws for everyone. Now that's trans power!
thanx empress...
i hadn't looked at it until you said to.

goddess bless those faeries! can they turn it out or what?? i can't wait to be back in new york with all of those/you freaks!!!! and i was so glad to see what looked like an INCREDIBLE turnout for someone who sounds like an INCREDIBLE spirit. RIP, VIP indeed.

btw... the cute bearded boy (in the pic with the other boy closing his eyes) is aaron. he was at the whiz on my last night there. the one featuring eyelids is jan ("yon"). and the one in the fur coat is hucklefaerie ken. (didn't you meet him?) just putting some names and faces together.
Here are the details for Don's wake and funeral.
Please please pass them on to anyone whom you feel
would like to celebrate Don's life.

The Wake:
Wednesday 5th June
Perrazza Funeral Home
199 Bleeker Street
(between Macdougal + 6th Ave)
2-5pm Open Casket for family
7-9 Closed Casket

The Funeral Service
Thursday 6th June
St. Francis Xavier Church
16th Street (between 5th + 6th)
10:30 AM

There will be an informal lunch at Bowery Bar after
the Funeral Service.

Thanks for all your love and support during this time.
Jill x
Widely publicized and with a NYMag article to come out Holly died last week. She had been my art dealer from 1974-1980. Everything the many NYTimes obits said about her and Grace Gluck's full biography is true. She treated artists like friends, supported many many talents, and went with her gut feelings no matter what the odds.

My personal memory which I'll never forget was the crazy summer we drove up to Lake Placid with a stationwagon trunk full of white wine and returned with a statonwagon trunk full of depression glass. We had gone for a mad thrift shop depression glass binge, had housefulls of guests for drunken dinners everynight and rooted her son John on in his skating. William Wegman told me later that we scared him! It was the best time!!

I spoke with her son Tom with whom I shared some memories.

Although she never attended Mother, Chi Chi told me they played scrabble at a friend's on St. Bart's (or was it hearts at a rehab?) No matter two great muses who have influenced me and been an important part of my life.

There will be a Memorial Service for Holly in the fall.


SOLOMON-Holly. We will miss this grandest lady of the art world, who surrounded herself at her gallery and at home with the creations of the artists she loved, supported and represented. Thank you for all you did to make the art world so lively. Agnes Gund, Daniel Shapiro

THE ARTS/CULTURAL DESK | June 10, 2002, Monday
Holly Solomon, Adventurous Art Dealer, Is Dead at 68


- Holly Solomon, an art dealer known for her championship of the new and untried, for her spirited, high-stepping lifestyle and for being the subject of a glamorous portrait by Andy Warhol that made her a Pop icon like Elizabeth Taylor and Marilyn Monroe, died on Thursday at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. She was 68 and lived in Manhattan.

The cause was complications from pneumonia, her son Thomas said.

[This message was edited by daddy on 06-21-02 at 03:14 PM.]
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Holly was a steam roller. She paved the way. She had one of the first galleries in SOHO. When SHE moved downtown EVERYONE moved downtown.

Holly started so many people's careers. Too many to mention. She was often the first person to give an artist a break. Most of the household name artists of the 70's, 80's, 90's and beyond got their start somehow with Holly.

Holly, subsequently, had one the best art collections in the world. Going to her apt. (57th Street) was like going to the Museum of Modern Art. This building, which she and then husband Horace owned, was Marilyn Monroe's Building. (Holly had amazing Marilyn Monroe momentos)

Horace was the inventor of the bobby pin.
(Not true but he told everybody that. I guess I was the only one that actually believed it)

Holly was absolutely GORGEOUS when she was young. If you ever saw pictures you would gag. The Andy Warhol Portrait of Holly is definately one of his best.

Holly was generous. She helped with my rent on a couple of occasions when I was in art school. I showed her my (awful) art and she wanted to help. She saw something I guess. (It wasn't my drawings)

She always supported and often came to Jackie 60. She loved it. I think that was the art that she was waiting for. She was supposed to be interviewed for the Jackie 60 Movie but got sick. Always the trouper, she wanted to do the interview at her house right after her chemotheropy but I said let's wait. We never did it.

Holly was fierce.

[This message was edited by daddy on 06-21-02 at 03:15 PM.]
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Michael's lover Gareth sent me a note that Michael died last night between 8-9PM, at Saint Vincent's of complications due to HIV/AIDS which he had been fighting bravely for years. Gareth shut off his med tubes at 8PM because Michael loved curtain time.

I'm sure many of you remember the pierced and tattooed very handsome couple, Michael and Gareth who frequented Jackie 60, Click & Drag and recently Cheez Whiz.

Michael was an actor/songwriter. He was one of the girls in "Cage" on Broadway and recently performed his songs at small gatherings.

Michael was a fun loving rebel, a fierce and loyal friend and over the past couple of years threw many parties for which he hired Hattie Hathaway, Robert Flowrider and myself to entertain. He also befriended Sabrina who was to write a piece for an anthology Michael was planning. Ginger recently photographed Michael at the Betty Page party. If Ginger could post that picture I know Garreth would love it.

Anyone wishing to write Gareth a note:

[This message was edited by Rose Royalle on 06-21-02 at 05:00 AM.]
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Hi, everyone,

I have at last found a place suitable for a party for us all to get together and honor Michaelian. Here are the details:

Monday, August 19 - that's a week from today
The Slipper Room
167 Stanton Street at Orchard
(lower east side - 1 block south and east of 1st Ave. and Houston)
7:30 til whenever
Cash bar

We'll start with about an hour of sharing memories, stories - anyone who wants to contribute is welcome to do so. Then we'll turn up the music and just mingle.
Please let me know if you are coming. And spread the word to others who I might not reach. Would like to have a big turn out.

Can't wait to see you all.

Tara died suddenly last Monday from complications
brought on by an untreated chronic bronchial condition.

Versaille Room vets may remember Tara, one of a group of very pretty, quite passable Pan Asian/ Philipine young ladies who were regular customers @Mother. The girls were always followed by droves of chasers who would compete for the privilege of buying their drinks. They remained loyal to "Jackie 60" and even followed the legendary party downtown to Don Hill's. Among her coterie of friends--Ana, Meghan, Gretchen (of Lucky Chengs) and Kim to name a few.

Tara worked selling cosmetics @Bergdoff's and later bartended @Eidleweiss off and on for many years. I will always remember her good humor and generosity to me.

Services will be held today, Sunday October 6 from 2-9PM at a Memorial Home (wasn't told name) on "12th St. and Avenue A". All are welcome to attend.
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Was this the same Tara that was pretty big and would wear black rubber dresses? Often she wore a black Betty Page wig and I used to tell her she could totally win in a plus-size Betty competition. I used to see her at Mother and also Kitsch-Inn and I even have a picture of her somewhere. (without her wigs she had a shaved head)

If it's the one I'm thinking of I had no idea she was even a tranny! I thought she was genetic girl all this time! Just goes to show you never know.

Very, very sad. So young and so full of spirit. Rest in peace.
Next to Quentin Crisp, one of my favorite New Yorkers was an uptown girl whom I belatedly learned passed on. I was visitng the NYTimes obit section for the first time in many months and discovered Daphne Helman, had passed away this summer very close to if not on Warhol's birthday.) She was listed as a name on the bottom of the page but the link wasn't working. Later that day I was on the Motherboards in the Versailles section and was reminded of the RIP VIP which I've also avoided far too long so I finally visited and learned of Holly Solomon's death. Another great loss. I was curious if a mention of Ms. Daphne appeared here and since it had not I'd like to contribute the Times synopsis with the small footnote that they failed to account for the fact that age 80 she took up Rollerblading in Central Park which is where we happened upon each other, her in lots of colorful protective gear and me in one of my April Fool's numbers.

Daphne Hellman, Harpist With Eclectic Taste, Dies at 86

Daphne Bayne Hellman, the jazz harpist who performed around the world and for three decades at the Village Gate but who had a special affection for playing on subway platforms, died on Sunday at a nursing home in Manhattan. She was 86.

Ms. Hellman, who had played on the streets of Paris at a music fair as recently as June, was recuperating from injuries suffered in a fall last month near her town house on East 61st Street, her family said.

In a wildly peripatetic musical career that began in the 1940's at Town Hall -- where Time magazine called her ''as curvesome as a treble clef'' -- her professional choices were generally as eccentric as those she made in the rest of her life.

She saw nothing particularly unusual, she said, about plucking her harp on the street in front of the Hotel Pierre, where she came out to society in 1933, at a supper dance in the roof garden.

She did not seem to care what people thought when, after years of playing well-to-do places for well-to-do crowds, she also took the stage at clubs like CBGB, on the Bowery, accompanied by the kitchen-drawer percussion of a man called Mr. Spoons, otherwise known as Joseph Jones Jr., whom Ms. Hellman put up in her town house after his third wife left him.

She played the Beatles or Roger Miller or bluegrass warhorses like ''Foggy Mountain Breakdown'' with as much appreciation as she played Bach and Debussy, Gershwin and Kern.

Although she was an heiress with substantial means -- ''My mother had mucho money,'' she said in one interview -- she liked to count the money she earned when she began playing in the subway in the 1980's, sometimes carrying coins to a delicatessen near her house to trade them for bills.

''She was just the antisnob, that's what she was,'' said Art D'Lugoff, who owned the Village Gate, where Ms. Hellman and her trio, Hellman's Angels, played every Tuesday for 30 years when she was in town. It was one of the longest nightclub runs in the city's history.

''She had money and she knew a lot of people and she got along with everybody,'' said Mr. D'Lugoff, whose club closed in 1994. ''She opened up a new world for me, and I opened up a world for her.''

Ms. Hellman was sometimes compared to Katharine Hepburn, not only because of her high cheekbones and patrician good looks, but also because she lived a life of elegant rebellion, even before she first touched a harp at the age of 12.

Born Daphne Van Beuren Bayne, the granddaughter of the founder of the Seaboard National Bank, she recalled in a 1990 profile in The New Yorker that as a child she liked to keep bats and armadillos as pets. ''They are much maligned and misunderstood,'' she said of bats.

As a young woman, she first tried acting, training in New York and London and landing a walk-on part in a Broadway production of ''Hamlet.'' She also modeled for Man Ray and Harper's Bazaar. But after her marriage to her first husband, Harry Bull, the editor of Town & Country magazine, and the birth of their son, Sandy, she began to take the harp more seriously.

Over the strong objections of her father, she had her jazz debut at a cabaret called Le Ruban Bleu, at 56th Street and Fifth Avenue. Over the next few years, she played at a string of clubs that sound like a roll call from another musical era: the Hotel New Yorker, with Ving Merlin and his All-Girl Band; Upstairs at the Downstairs, with Blossom Dearie and Imogene Coca; Billy Rose's Diamond Horseshoe; the Versailles; Le Perroquet.

Once, at Le Ruban Bleu, according to the New Yorker profile, a young Billie Holiday, quite drunk, angrily refused to share the club's only dressing room with Ms. Hellman, who played there twice a year.

But most of Ms. Hellman's relationships with famous people were much more congenial and enduring. Her cluttered East Side town house, usually full of boarders, birds, dogs and litters of gerbils, served as the base for a kind of floating salon. And she was its musical Zelig, whose close friends included, besides Mr. Spoons, the historian Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr., the artist Saul Steinberg and the writer Norman Mailer.

In the 1940's, she had briefly supplied a beautiful face and high-society name to gossip columns when her marriage to Mr. Bull fell apart and she had an affair with Geoffrey T. Hellman, a writer for The New Yorker. She married him in Reno in 1941, hours after her divorce from Mr. Bull. (Her son, Sandy Bull, a noted guitarist, died last year; she is survived by a daughter, Daisy Paradis, and a son, Digger St. John.)

Mr. Hellman left her for another woman, and in 1961, she married Hsio-Wen Shih, a Chinese-American architect and writer, who left their home one day in 1965 and disappeared, breaking her heart, friends said.

''It was like he went out for a pack of cigarettes and just didn't come back,'' said Lyn Christie, the bassist in Ms. Hellman's trio, who played with her for decades, everywhere from the subway to Sri Lanka, Madagascar, Bombay and Hong Kong.

''It felt sort of like the trips we made to China were an attempt to try to find out about him,'' Mr. Christie said. ''But we never did come across him.''

Ms. Hellman's daughter, Daisy Paradis, said that her mother, who sometimes smoked a pack of Salems a day, had slowed down only slightly over the last few years. She had not played the subway for quite a while, mostly because it had become harder to find someone to help her lug her 85-pound harp down to the platform. But she played in Hong Kong and Sri Lanka this year and was appearing at the Firebird Cafe in Midtown at the time of her fall.

''She was an incredibly intrepid woman,'' said Mr. Christie, who recalled that in Hong Kong she tried to ride on horseback into Communist China. ''She loved to do whatever she knew you weren't supposed to do.''


[This message was edited by dreambot on 10-19-02 at 11:46 AM.]
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