On Saturday night, we went with friends (event producer Bryan Rabin, legendary Details editor Annie Flanders, makeup artist-to-the-stars Kathy Jeung, and designer Michael Schmidt) to the Universal Amphitheatre to see Blondie perform. Original members Deborah Harry, Chris Stein, and Clem Burke are on a Road Rage tour with the New Cars. Harry wore chartreuse, and her jacket bore a tire track across the front (which she created herself by running over it with her car). And she wore sensible shoes, the better to dance through the band’s mega singalong hits “Call Me,” “Heart of Glass,” “The Tide Is High,” “One Way or Another,” and “Rapture.”
Afterward, we visited Harry backstage in her sweltering ’60s-mod style dressing room. Harry, now in orange, seemed a color-coordinated extension of the decor. It should be said here that we’ve known Debbie Harry since 1987, but we always turn into an idiot in her presence, dear; we forget basic rudiments of speech, and end up staring at her like a stalker, or asking retarded questions like has she seen Madonna’s Confessions concert when the tour hasn’t even started yet. It’s embarrassing. Meanwhile, Flanders had no such problem. (Harry was on the cover of the original Details three times.)
After more stabs at awkward conversation, our group left and Rabin took us to the Tropicana at the Roosevelt Hotel on Hollywood Boulevard, where legendary club promoter and onetime actor (21 Jump Street, River’s Edge, Heathers, etc) Josh Richman was celebrating his 41st birthday in a small suite once occupied by Marilyn Monroe. Really small, but with a terrace overlooking the pool. We were pressed so close to the likes of Robert Downey Jr, Judd Nelson, Ashley Hamilton, Jessica Alba, Joy Bryant, Jeremy Piven, and Twiggy from Nine Inch Nails that we couldn’t get back far enough to see who they were. Richman, whom we’ve known as long as we’ve known Debbie Harry, and have seen just as frequently, has taken over the plum job of running the Tropicana and Teddy’s at the hotel, a position Amanda Scheer-Demme recently, and famously, vacated. So hopefully we’ll be on the list now. In lieu of a buffet, guests were simply given the room service menu and pointed toward the phone. Classy. We ordered a turkey club. When Debbie Harry stopped by hours later, she said she’ll be 61 in July, but plans to invite only dyslexics to her birthday party.
(Photos, from top: Harry, Flanders, Schmidt; Harry, Chris Stein; Jeung, Rabin; Harry, Flanders; Richman)