After a Fashion
What's this we hear about a new studio next to the Continental Club, and what well-known out-of-towner is involved?
WHAT ABOUT BOB? We caught up with local artiste (video, photo, music) Bob Sherman. He had work on display at the recent "Erotica" show at Gallery Lombardi (where I understand he made a Helmut Newton-ish spectacle of himself by wearing a fishnet-covered neck brace and pushing around a wheelchair-bound model), as well as showing work and engineering the video production for the upcoming Momoko fashion show. Bob is shooting the CD cover for DKay.com's new release. DKay.com was started by Juergen Engler, mastermind behind the sensational German industrial band Die Krupps, and is signed with Zomba Records (home of, um, Britney Spears and many other luminaries). DKay.com recently toured with electronica pioneer Gary Numan, and Engler has been chosen as headliner and poster child for the famous music festival in Dusseldorf, for which Bob shot the poster image. But we'll talk more about Bob in a minute. Engler has purchased the old recording studio next to the Continental Club, where they are installing a 24-track recording system, and the very hot, but unsubstantiated rumor is that he has made a deal with Continental owner Steve Wertheimer to open up the wall between the club and the studio to produce live recordings from the Continental Club. Germany has a very popular country music television channel, so the possibility of not only recording in the club, but transmitting live feeds to Europe is very cool. Repeat: the rumor is unsubstantiated, and Engler will not confirm the report. Samples of DKay.com's mesmerizing music can be heard at their Web site, the eponymous DKay.com. What a fab site it is. With dazzling technical innovations, it is the perfect representation for this very forward band.
Meanwhile, along with his other news, Bob tells me that he and his company, Phat Farm Productions Inc., have (not unexpectedly) received a cease-and-desist letter from the legal counsel for Def Jam Records founder Russell Simmons' Phat Fashions. The letter, with no less than 60 attorneys' names on the letterhead, is a bit heavy-handed considering that Bob has been using the Phat Farm name, or some variation of it, for at least 10 years. But Simmons founded his business in 1992 and presumably copyrighted the name at that time, though for the last nine years, Bob's had no problem from them. Until now. They've given him a week to stop using the name he's worked under for a decade.
ON THE TOWN Had a lovely lunch at the Stephen F. Austin Hotel's Star Canyon -- fab food, cool interiors, and great service. Very nice, but the nicest part were my companions, Garden Room owner Patty Hoffpauir and her longtime store manager, Julie, as well as prominent wardrobe consultant Paula Lundgren. Patty's been a great supporter of the Designers' Guild, so a few weeks ago, my fashion companion Gail Chovan insisted that we take a little trip to the Garden Room (and several other stores) to see what I was missing. A lot, apparently, since we immediately ran into man-about-town Joel Mozersky, who had accompanied Bea Arthur there on a shopping exhibition. It was fun to see her, but even more fun was the sale room in back: racks and racks stuffed with luscious clothes at remarkable prices. Patty also informed us of her trunk show featuring the easy-care designs of Yansi Fugel (Thursday-Saturday, July 19-21), and we'll announce more events from her soon. Also, we'll fill you in on the charming and fascinating Paula Lundgren very soon.
PERSONAL NOTES In order to give Austin a more omnipotent Style Avatar, I am announcing my resignation from the Designers' Guild of Austin. As a founding member, the Guild will always have a position close to my heart, and I will remain involved as a consultant. The Guild continues to have enormous impact on the Austin fashion scene, but in the name of objectivity, I must decline to be intrinsically involved.