Hope and DJ Charo, the promoters of Hudson Heels, say that the purpose of their parties “is to break barriers and bridge gaps within the queer community through music.” In one night, party-goers can hear everything from Etta James to 50 Cent to underground garage music. “We love playing for the eclectic music lover,” says Charo.
The pair started this monthly party at a bar in Washington Heights, which outgrew the venue almost immediately. They moved it to a bigger location downtown (Luke & Leroy) in March, where on the fourth Friday of every month they welcome some of the most talented DJs around. DJs Chris Padilla, Mika da Wizard, C.L. Smooth, Thunder, and Havana Funk have all made appearances. There’s even a live percussionist, Geraldo Flores, to add a Latin beat to the mix.
“We try and integrate the music that is mainly being played for the gay boys and play it for the girls,” says Hope. “We try to bring top DJs to the girl parties and give them something other than Top 40 to dance to.”
The dynamic duo also throws a weekly party at Luke & Leroy, called After Work Wicked Wednesdays. Resident DJs Anthony James and Charo spin low-key lounge, soft house, old classics, Latin, salsa, reggaeton and Afro-Cuban beats. It’s the perfect way to unwind on Hump Day. Note: Hudson Heels will return in September, after Luke & Leroy’s renovation. Aug 8 will be the last Wicked Wednesday until then.
Upstairs! @ 2A
A few years back it was Mondays at Doc Holidays. In recent history it’s been Fridays at Heather’s. There have always been generally straight bars usurped by us queers on certain NYC nights, and right now, that’s Sundays at the upstairs bar of 2A. A longtime East Village watering hole, 2A now serves as a Sunday night stomping ground for lesbians of all shales, sizes and astrological signs, and it has people singing its praises. “I go there to crack a beer and get my groove on,” says regular Devon “Mama” Kirkpatrick. “It’s crazy,” she adds. Why? For starters, resident DJ Sophia H. plays baby-making music all night long. “I’ve made love to most songs,” she confides. “I know which tracks are hot. I play only the sexiest music.” Sounds enticing! “It’s the only place I can really be myself,” says regular Chloe L. “No one judges me, you know?”
Nightlife maven “the Gaysha” (also known as Ellie), long-time head of promotions for *snapshop*, has teamed together with DJ Lesbian Van Halen to throw a new party, Choice Cu*ts. On August 25th, gear up for their bash at Williamsburg’s Sultana that will rock your world. “I’m very personal with folks when I approach them and don’t stuff flyers in pockets or leave a huge stack at the door. It’s important for me to invite people who give me a good feeling somehow,” says Ellie. She says she takes her cues from Dee Finley’s legendary party, XXY. “Like hers, this is essentially a no-rules, anything goes party. A ton of people live extremely queer lives without subscribing to a specific identity, and I want all these people at the party!” Another ubiquitous nightlife personality, tranny go-go boy Chaz says that Choice Cu*ts serves as that rare space where a smorgasboard of queers can “dance our troubles away.” Sounds fresh.
Special Note: Pride in the City Events Aug. 2-5
People of Color in Crisis presents the annual Pride in the City weekend, through Aug. 5. Go to prideinthecity.com for more info on HOT HOT parties and events!