Friday, August 5, 2011

Party @ John Varvatos

{Party Invitation}
Last night, I attended the lively John Varvatos Party on the Bowery. Upon entering this "store turned concert party" that is hosted the 1st Thursday of every month, the first thing I noticed was the plasma screen TV inviting guests to check in on Foursquare to receive gear from Moonshine (the clear corn whiskey that was being promoted at the event). I had never heard of Moonshine before that but right then and there I whipped out my phone and checked into the venue on Foursquare hoping to get some free loot. The first 20 people who checked in received a free T-shirt and I was number 15, yes!
{My free Moonshine T-Shirt!}
{Walls decorated with framed past concert posters}
We then made our way through the store and couldn't help but notice the interesting artwork on the walls. All the images on the walls were a collection of promotional posters for some of the past shows. In the Fall of 2008, John Varvatos started a Thursday Night Live Concert Series where he hosts new or rediscovered artists and bands to perform in his store on 315 Bowery which had previously been the space that hosted the seminal underground music club CBGB. According to their poster CBGB was "originally meant to be a small club to house Country, Bluegrass, and Blues music, CBGB grew into one of the most influential venues in the world, and a sanctuary for rock musicians everywhere. Most notably remembered as the birthplace of Punk Rock. CBGB opened their doors to any band that came through, offering them all they truly wanted, a chance to play. Some of the bands that called CBGB home were the Ramones, The Heartbreakers, Blondie..." After CBGB officially closed in 2006, John Varvatos took the initiative himself to pay homage to the club by hosting a monthly concert that replicated CBGB's true spirit at his own store.
After about half an hour of mingling, Julia Haltigan took center stage. This New York native's amazing voice instantly attract attention as she sang about everything from heartache and lust to motorcycles and tattoos. Her songs have an American pop feel to them which I loved right away. After the concert ended at 10, which they were very prompt at making sure everyone would be out by 10:05, we headed over to Phebes, another fun NYC hotspot where we spend many of our nights.

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