The Real Stormy Monday

On Monday, February 19, Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus and the official Boogaloo Bag photographer and baker Nancy “Jeannie” Gardner trekked out to the furthest point of East Williamsburg in order to entertain the troops that happen to show up at the Jupiter Disco that night. Appropriately called Stormy Monday–it rained all day–The Boog had a box of old 7” records and Miss Nancy had a container of home-made fudge.

But before The Boog went to work, the couple shared grease at Los Hermanos–quite possibly the most excellent taqueria in the world. The dining area is actually the loading dock for a tortilla factory. Get your fresh tortillas here–a 30 oz. bag for one dollar! It is only steps away from the Jefferson Street stop on the L Train, on Starr Street. Once filled up on tacos and quesadillas, the scene was made at the Jupiter Disco, a couple of blocks away.

Stormy Monday is the Jupiter Disco’s official retro/Sixties night. Each Monday, a different DJ is asked to come and swing. The February 19 date was The Boog’s third time working this hustle and each time is a gas, even though he swings for five solid hours without a break.

As previously mentioned, Nancy “Jeannie” Gardner brought along her borough-famous, cinnamon-infused fudge and it was the hit of the evening. Our pal and fellow DJ Drew Redmond was on hand to devour much of it! Also, she took all of these photos.

DJ Drew Redmond comes to Stormy Monday to get fudged up!

Here’s a list of the records played by Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus at Stormy Monday–all 120 of them:

None of these records are for sale. Some of them may have links to the youtubes. Click on them to listen to the boss sounds.

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Here’s WHAM on your Face!

On February 10, the 31st WHAM-O WATUSI was held at the Bootleg Bar. It took place on the second Saturday of the month instead of the first in order to accommodate the host, Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus, whose presence was required at the fabulous Subway Soul Club event on February 3rd. However, the WHAM-O went on without a hitch, spruced up immensely by the presence and the records of guest DJ Kurtis Powers.

The Wham-O Watusi was visited by DJ Captain Heartlock, seen here discussing the situation with Kurtis Powers.

Mr. Powers is a cool cat who we have known on the scene for many years, but only recently had the pleasure to work with. He has recently acquired an online streaming radio station that he calls The Face Radio. It blasts all sorts of cool, Modernist sounds: soul, funk, rare groove, jazz. He is also an internationally renown DJ–in fact, less then a week after he spins at the WHAM he will be on a DJ tour of Great Britain for two weeks. At the WHAM, he played a ton of great old soul and R&B records that had the place hoppin’.

Phast Phreddie played a few soul records, too. Also, since Fat Tuesday was later in the week, he played a set of seven records from New Orleans. Plus, he played four “monkey” records in a row!

Nancy “Jeannie” Gardner is seen here displaying her fabulous brownies at the Wham-O Watusi!

Also on hand to spiff up the evening was the Boogaloo Bag photographer Miss Nancy “Jeannie” Gardner who baked some delicious brownies–including some vegan ones–and passed them out to those in attendance. At the WHAM-O WATUSI one can literally dine and dance! What other DJ night brings you yummy treats along with boss sounds for your feets?

Here’s a list of all the records played by Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus at the WHAM-O WATUSI:

None of these records are for sale. Many of them have links to the youtubes. Click on them and recreate the WHAM in the privacy of your own home!

Special thanks to our pal Robbie Busch for letting us use this groovy image he created for our poster.

Subway Soul Club Action: 2018!

Happy feet time at Subway Soul Club. Photo by Lauren Krohn.

The Subway Soul Club started in December 2001 when Lady Dawn and some of her friends, fellow Brit Jeff Valle and Dr. Scott Bulleit organized the first event, held at a small joint in the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Since then, Lady Dawn would draw up the beautiful flyers, dance around in vintage Mod frocks and take names for her mailing list. Jeff and Dr. Scott, along with a guest DJ or two, played cool records that got folks on the floor dancing. SSC then moved around a little bit, and in the confusion, Jeff and Dr. Scott both moved back to their respective hometowns (Dr. Scott is from San Francisco Bay area) by the summer of 2002. At this point, Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus was asked to step in as resident DJ. That July, he helped find a new home–Raffifi on East 11th Street–and it was there that SSC lived so well for so long. When Rififi closed, about four or five years later, the Club became homeless, but carried on nearly every month at several different venues for a few years. The most steady was The Loft in Williamsburg, where SSC held forth until May 2011, when Lady Dawn decided to give it a rest.

Lady Dawn and Jumpy at the door, greeting folks at Subway Soul Club.

Subway Soul Club was resurrected in 2013 when it became an irregular, periodic affair. Since then, there has been at least one SSC happening a year at such venues as Grand Victory, Coco 66 and Lucille’s Blues Bar at BB King’s.

Here we are, just barely a little over a month into 2013 and we have already had a Subway Soul Club event. Held on February 3rd at the Gemini & Scorpio Loft, any one who attended will tell you that it was one of the best ones since leaving Riffi.

The Gemini & Scorpio Loft is an unmarked door on a side street in Brooklyn, just a short walk from the Gowanus Canal. It is a large room, smartly appointed with suns and moons and cosmic curtains and low lights and most importantly, a wooden dance floor! One of the things that made this SSC special was the fact that all of the available advance tickets were sold about a week before the event actually took place. Everybody who was in the house was there to dance and dig fabulous Soul Music from the Sixties. There were no looky-loos, hodads, or creeps who accidentally drop in from the street. Also, it was such a gas to see so many familiar faces–many of them regulars from the Riffifi days, and others that have picked up on SSC along the way, plus many new people who now can’t wait until it all happens again.

And what fabulous music, too! Joining the Phast Man at the DJ booth was DJ Honky and Connie T. Empress who played some incredibly great Soul records all night long.

DJ Honky gets ready to spin another great record at Subway Soul Club!

DJ Honky is a legend among Soul Music aficionados. He was one of the hosts of Dig Deeper, a series of Soul Music concerts and dances that resurrected such great Soul singers as Don Gardner, Darrow Fletcher, Renaldo Domino and Sugar Pie DeSanto and put them on a Brooklyn stage in order for their fans to admire them. These shows were great. Many of these singers had not performed in decades, yet each show was fabulous. Before and after the live portion, DJ Honky and his co-host Mr. Robinson, and some times an internationally renown guest DJ, would play some of the rarest and most obscure Soul records ever. These guys new their stuff and were happy to share it with the world. DJ Honky recreated some of that magic during the four sets he worked at Subway Soul Club.

Connie T Empress swings at Subway Soul Club!

Before there was a Subway Soul Club, there was the Empire State Soul Club–New York City’s original Sixties Soul Music dance. It’s driving force and den mother was Connie T Empress, known as the Empress of Soul. When the Boogaloo Bag writers discovered the ESSC in the mid-Nineties, it was packing them in at Irving Plaza–a large concert hall near Union Square. However, like all good things, it, too, came to an end. Miss Connie was one of the key DJs, always playing jumpin’ records while wearing a sparkly dress and a be-jeweled tiara. The Empress of Soul recreated some of that magic during the four sets she worked at Subway Soul Club.

Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus swings at Subway Soul Club!

For Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus, the Subway Soul Club is his premier DJ gig. Since becoming its resident DJ 15 or so years ago, it is the event that he most looks forward to and laments that it does not happen more often. He has a couple of boxes at home full of records that he has noted as SSC-appropriate–adding to it frequently. Also, he maintains a database of records that he has played at his DJ gigs and consults it frequently when assembling the box of records he is to play at his DJ events, so as not to play the same record too frequently, in order to keep it all fresh. It is with this fastidiousness that Phast Phreddie hopes to bring a little magic to the game.

Lady Dawn has her own magic, too. She worked hard promoting the event, setting up the advance ticketing situation and dealing with the club. She designed the beautiful flyers–and has done so since the very beginning. Indeed, her handbills and posters of past Subway Soul Club events are collectable and cherished among cognizant hep cats. In fact, her superb designs have been the only constant thing with the Subway Soul Club–well, that and the excellent vibes of folks dancing around to groovy old Soul 45s.

In the cool blue light of Gemini & Scorpio Loft, Mr. Robinson and DJ Honky reminisce about Dig Deeper at Subway Soul Club!

Those who know DJ Honky, know that, aside from being a great DJ and a fine example of a human being, he is an excellent cook. He likes to bake things and the things he bakes are delicious. Phast Phreddie is exceptionally fond of his ginger snap cookies. DJ Honky was gracious enough to bake some for Subway Soul Club attendees. (He also circulated copies of the Dig Deeper 6-Year Anniversary 2-CD sampler that he and Mr. Robinson assembled, containing some of the rarest soul records imaginable. Added to the mix were some most excellent chocolate chip cookies baked by Nancy “Jeannie” Gardner, the official photographer for The Boogaloo Bag.

What’s left of DJ Honky’s ginger snaps!!

Nancy “Jeannie” Gardner’s excellent chocolate chip cookies.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Although the Gemini & Scorpio Loft was an excellent venue for Subway Soul Club, it may not be possible for another event to take place there in the near future, if at all. Lady Dawn and Phast Phreddie continue to hunt for a permanent home, a place where SSC could take place three or four times a year. It could happen. But who knows… maybe the Gemini & Scorpio Loft will be the place, but perhaps only once or twice a year. We shall see.

Here’s a list of all the records played by Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus at the Subway Soul Club:

None of these records are for sale. Most of them have links to the youtubes clips, so the reader may click on them and dance around in the privacy of your own home.