13 August 2015


25 years ago, Deee-lite gave us "Groove is in the Heart!"  i was moving from Brussels to Quito when i first heard the song.  i had to ask a friend in New York to get it to me on vinyl & ship it to my new provincial home city in the Andes.  i often invited my new friends from the Lycée Français to parties at my house & played the record over & over & over...  the following summer of 1991, i flew back to Brussels to spend a few weeks back home, and from there, flew out to New York City to meet up with my younger brothers who had gone to summer camp in the USA, like i used to myself when i was younger.  our parents would send us out as far from Europe as possible on PanAm or TWA flights with our passports hanging down our necks in those ugly pouches, to the mountains of West Virginia or Idaho's Sun Valley so that we would be forced to practice English with mostly preppy white American brats for 4 to 6 weeks.

anyway, the Paramount Hotel was still very new (or rather had just reopened after Ian Schrager's reboot) & i was to meet up at the hotel with my two brothers, my father & my then step-mother.  the moroccan one.  she had a miscarriage on her way to NY so my dad & her weren't able to make it.  i was only 16 & arrangements were made for my younger brothers & i to stay alone at the Paramount for 2 nights.  awesome!

in the elevator of the Paramount, i ran into Lady Miss Kier & immediately recognized her, even though Deee-lite wasn't even that huge yet, and in spite of her being in sweats instead of the colorful club kid staples she wore on stage or just out on the town.  i introduced myself & asked very excitedly if she was performing anytime soon (because i needed to see that!).  without skipping a beat, her cool response was "Honey, I'm always performing!"

i found out they were doing a show in the basement of the Paramount or some adjacent basement around there; i can't quite remember.  i was underage, but at that time, it didn't really matter in NY.  besides, i now had an invite from the lady herself!  that night, i tucked my 2 brothers to bed, snuck out, made it to that basement & had one of the best nights of my life.  

yesterday, this video by musicologist Douglas Hovey surfaced online.  this footage of the early days of Deee-lite at Wigstock 1990 brought me right back to that magical night in NY.  when i saw them, the room was darker, but the ambiance was very similar.  maybe a  bit more debaucherous though.  it's a blur.  one thing's for sure, i had a blast & i get excited still today when i think about that night.

21 July 2015


Belgium in a few words... 

Bruegel. Beers. Mussels. Fries. René Margitte. Victor Horta. Jacques Brel:

Chocolate. Diane von Furstenberg.  Anne Demeulemeester.  Berntholer:

Martin Margiela.  Dries van Noten. Synthesizers. Jo Lemaire:

Kingdom. Clouds. Waffles. Banana-na Banana Split Hmmm:

Front 242. Ecstasy. Boccaccio. Roooooock To The Beat:

Raf Simmons. Veronique Branquinho.  Rafiki:

Walter Van Bereindonck. Pump Up The Jam:

Family. Rendez-vous. Stromae:

ID21: Belgium

there are so many Belgians i could chose from to include in a post celebrating Belgium's National Day.  instead, i'll keep it short & share one of my favourite Belgian pop songs from the 80s, by Lio who was then still a teenage singer.  this was my anthem; still is!  "Sage comme une image"  (wise & well behaved), which is a French expression meaning As Good As Gold.  that's me, 1000%:

click HERE for an old playlist of Belgian New Beat & other fun stuff!
lets bring thing back to a tune that better captures the Belgian weather vibes:

25 June 2015


back in 1987, Miss Simone released a new claymation video for the remaster of “My Baby Just Cares For Me” and that is when  the one & only Nina Simone & everything about her became cemented into my life as a boy…  that year, the video was always on TV & the song on every radio station.  no internet yet haha.  her bold choices & her fearless defense of human rights inspire me to this day.

in 2001, i scored tickets to Nina Simone’s last LA performance at the Greek Theater, my favourite concert venue in LA.  Miss Simone's age & the toll of living on the edge did nothing to weaken her strong stage presence.  honest as always, Nina Simone owned the night, even when she chose a couple times to abruptly stop a song so that she could restart it properly or in a different key, with everyone in the crowd chearing her on even more.  Miss Simone passed away just two years later.  and now, RadicalMedia’s new documentary film about her hits theaters in LA & NY, and starts airing June 26th on Netflix.  

for those of you in LA today, award winning director Liz Garbus will be presenting the film at LACMA tonight.  i highly encourage you to see it on the big screen whenever you get a chance.    it will be in cinemas mainly in Los Angeles & New York.  meanwhile, check out the TRAILER & the following articles from Hungertv, the LA Times, the NY Times and Vanity Fair...

02 June 2015

SPRING AFFAIR (playlist)

Spring is almost over & Summer is upon us.  i haven't shared any music since my Summer Flings of 2014, needless to say i'm long overdue.  just in case you enjoy my musical curations of new tunes sprinkled with a few classics, click on the photo below to access the folder of a fun mix i created a few weeks ago.  i recommend just clicking on the "download" button at the top left & in a few minutes, it will all be in a folder on your desktop:  
Spring Affair Playlist photo SpringAffair_zpsdn4g4ryv.jpg
if you'd rather just play it online, in the "view options" tab select "by name" so it will be in order & play through to the end.  if you download the folder, then i suggest you create a new playlist & drag all the MP3s into it.  i'm pretty sure it will place them in the oder i created & you'll have a good 3 hours of fun tunes to enjoy.  may you all have a smooth transition into the summer months ahead!  i'll close with one of the classics in the mix; a house track from 1986 often credited as the first house tune to crossover in the pop world & reaching 10th place in  the UK's mainstream single charts.  indeed, Love Can't Turn Around!!!

16 February 2015

NYC 1981

Radical Media's Austin Peters was commissioned by the studio of A Most Violent Year to create a film about the period in which the story is set. what a fun way to promote the release of the film.  check out the important New Yorkers who defined the city, and inspired cultural mainstays today, such as Penny Arcade or Curtis Sliwa & my favourite, the one & only Dapper Dan who pretty much started what is more commonly referred to now as "Ghetto Fabulous!"

12 February 2015

Every Breaking Wave

so U2 ain't my thing since they went all zooropa with 90s raver sunnies & shit.  however, Aoife McArdle's film is so nice it makes 2 of their new songs enjoyable, even cool.  Aoife brings U2 back to a time & place where the band & their music seemed relevant & good, well, at least good enough for when i was a teenager.  enjoy: