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  • 09/23/13--15:55: Tequan Richmond
  • Our annual April Beautiful People Issue, celebrating a cavalcade of cuties to watch in different disciplines, has been such a sensation we've decided to showcase noteworthy movers and shakers all-year round on We kicked things off in the city of Angels, and will be posting an L.A.-based Beautiful Person a-day for the next few weeks.

    Tequan_Richmond_1.jpgYou might recognize Tequan Richmond for his role as the suave grade-school lothario Drew Rock on Chris Rock's Everybody Hates Chris, but Richmond, who also stars on General Hospital, is all grown up now and getting great reviews for his performance opposite Isaiah Washington in D.C. beltway sniper film and Sundance favorite, Blue Caprice.

    Describe what you do in 3 words.

    Make things happen.

    What are you working on now?

    Currently I'm working on General Hospital as a series regular. I play TJ. It's an interesting switch from Everybody Hates Chris.  My latest film, Blue Caprice, was worthy enough to premiere at Sundance in January and just came out in theaters. 

    Describe living in L.A. in 3 words.

    Really bad traffic.

    When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?

    In the NBA.

    Do you remember what your first day living in L.A. was like?

    I'm from North Carolina originally. My first day in LA I might have gone to Venice Beach. It was definitely hot and the sun was out like no tomorrow.

    What's the biggest misconception about L.A.?

    That everyone who comes to L.A thinks its so easy to do this thing we call "entertainment." 

    Where's your favorite place to eat in L.A.?

    Jumpin' Java on Ventura.

    What's your favorite street intersection in L.A.?

    Fairfax and Melrose. Really cool crowd that I vibe with over that way. Stores on Fairfax Avenue like DOPE Couture and Supreme get all my money.

    Who's the most beautiful person you can think of and why?

    My mother. She sacrificed everything for me. Simply the most beautiful thing anybody could do as a human.

    If you could be any star from Old Hollywood, who would you be and why? 

    I would wanna be the black James Dean. Cig, scotch, leather jacket, killing the film world.

    Sweater:  Vivienne Westwood
    Pants:  John Varvatos
    Watch:  Vintage Omega watch courtesy of Gray Gallery LA
    Stylist: Natasha Newman-Thomas
    Hair: Sylvia Wheeler
    Makeup: Ren Bray

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    Here's a super-quick clip of Gina Gershon as Donatella Versace in the new Lifetime movie "House of Versace." TEAM MAYA. [ImWithKanye]

    Bryan Cranston read an amazing erotic fan letter on Conan O'Brien last night. Just watch.

    Here's a heart-melting clip of a little girl who just wanted to stop hearing scary fireworks outside singing "Tonight You Belong To Me" with her dad ... Except, she keeps inserting imaginary fireworks into the song. Better the devil you know. [TheDailyDot]

    Walter White reacts to the big bag of bullshit that was Jeff Daniels beating Bryan Cranston for Lead Actor in a Drama. [TastefullyOffensive]

    noteasybeingcool.pngNot easy. [Pizzzatime via ChelsaMander]

    tumblr_msvo8hSod41qzmyfdo1_500.gifYour Tuesday motto. [JuliaSegal]

    bodiddley_45637tyu.jpg We're carrying two Bayer and Bo Diddly's guide to survival folded up in our wallet from now on. [Mlkshk]

    And the award for the Greatest Halloween Costume Of All Time goes to... Hopefully she was carrying around a boombox blasting the Righteous Brothers on repeat. [TheClearlyDope]


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    Each Monday, Eli Yudin and Carey O'Donnell, authors of the very, very funny Twitter account @NotTildaSwinton, will be recapping the Real Housewives of New Jersey for us. Below, their next installment.

    real-housewives-of-new-jersey-season-5-gallery-epsiode-517-15.jpgCarey: The penultimate episode! I don't even know how long we've been watching this season at this point. Maybe we've always been watching; since we were young, since we could see that something was red or orange, know something felt hot or cool, this season has been on without us ever even acknowledging it -- a grey glow at night in a dark TV room without windows. I would say I was relieved that it's ending, but that's only partially true. There's always a pang of sad at the end of a story, but this story was always ending before it even began. Before Caroline paced around her large kitchen while her family slept, then, stopping to stare out into the blackness behind her back deck. Before Teresa and Brudda Joe were riding bikes as kids through the woods, and Teresa fell off her bike, spilling out onto the tan dirt, cussing at Joe as he sped ahead laughing. She looked down at her knee -- a small red rip on the cap. It didn't hurt, though. She brushed herself off, set her bike up right, and then, for no reason whatsoever, quickly looked up at a high tree above her. On one of the branches, Kim D. the crow sat perched, looking right back at Teresa below. 'Yes,' Kim D. thought. Teresa could hear that too, that "Yes." She first thought it was the slowly chilling September winds, caught through a tunnel of trees, but it sounded husky, throaty. A husky, throaty voice she would come to know in many years. One day, at Posche, Teresa was sipping a mimosa with some women she didn't know too well. She was a little quiet, but friendly, smiling, listening to them laugh. The receptionist, on the phone with a customer, asked Kim D. a question. "Yes," she replied, then slipped back into the conversation she was having. Teresa froze, almost dropping her drink on the black Posche carpet. She heard it, that same voice she heard as a girl in the woods. Everything went silent and slowed down, except for her own heartbeat, and Teresa slowly looked over at Kim D., chatting and laughing and flaring her nostrils. "Yes," she heard again. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Kim D. shot back a quick glance, a small grin. Teresa pulled her fur coat towards her chest and turned away.

    real-housewives-of-new-jersey-season-5-gallery-epsiode-517-10.jpgBUT LET'S MOVE ON! Melissuh and Gorgon Joe head down to the glimmering, bronze city of Orlando, Florida so Melissa can work more on her music with celeb manager Johnny Wright. They arrive at a large, ugly house that seems to wrap around an entire block, and on the screen, a text appears that says, "Johnny Wright's Compound," which is then reaffirmed by Melissa who says excitedly, "Look! It's Johnny Wright's compound!" Thank you for that. Johnny wants the rising songstress to sing live on a radio show that has launched many successful acts like 'N SYNC, Britney Spears, the Jonas Brothers, etc. They have 24 hours to pack in 2 weeks worth of musical boot camp. "I've gotten this far without professional training, so I think I'll be good!" Melissa says. She does some vocal drills with one of Johnny's people, Gorgon Joe hovering on a couch in the back. She has some ability, but it's mostly bad, cracked notes. Gorgon admits she's not that good, but insists that no matter what, he thinks she sounds like an angel. That's sweet! Later, she performs on the show and the other cast members gather round to listen to it, fighting off laughter. In one interview, Kathy tries so hard to be polite about her cousin-in-law's live song. "I think she did great," she says in this strange, stifled tone. She probably went home, into her laundry room and laughed/screamed, kicking the washing machine and pulling her own hair out.

    Eli: Yes, the teal dreams of Orlando. I don't really know what there is in Orlando other than one of the Disney Lands or Worlds or Places or whichever it is. I believe that Johnny Wright has had some hand in the success of all these bands based on the MTV awards that he has in his COMPOUND, but I still feel as thought there's a definite possibility that he's just an actor. The songwriter, Justin, is definitely a real songwriter, or a GREAT actor, to show that full level of discomfort while watching songs he's slaved over be twisted and affected by Melissa Gorga's stylings. She performs in some sort of radio thing at a radio place that's apparently famous, despite my never having heard of it, in some sort of saran-wrap like dress, doing a dance that mainly consists of her cupping her boob repeatedly. And the crowd loves it. Yet another testament to the power of a producer who knows the combination of tones that releases mindless dopamine in listeners. As far as talent goes, however, Melissa could surely be much worse.

    real-housewives-of-new-jersey-season-5-gallery-epsiode-517-07.jpgCarey: We cut to another vast, Italian restaurant in a shopping mall, where Teresa sits at a table for lunch, wearing a purple fur coat and fedora and looking like a Times Square pimp from the '70s. A large black Escalade pulls up, and a driver actually gets out to open the door for someone. You hear Godfather-esque music and see only two pin-thin legs and black suede heels stepping out of the car. It's Victoria Gotti! A caricature artist's greatest work! She and Teresa met on Celebrity Apprentice and according to Teresa, have stayed very close. Victoria seems comfortable on camera -- after all, she used to have her own show in the golden era of reality TV. Victoria is also used to bad press, not just about her infamous father. In 2005, she claimed she had breast cancer, later changed her story to having precancerous cells (instead of a full on cancer diagnosis), received tremendous backlash in the media, and had her TV show canceled. She later went through financial probz of her own, including a home foreclosure. ET CETERA, ET CETERA. Yes, the fallen reality star. Teresa has already chosen Victoria to guide her over the River Styx into in the reality TV-famous afterlife. Victoria asks some legitimate questions, including ones about Joe's legal woes, and how he faces jail time, and if Teresa is going to be play if he goes, and if she has she told her daughters, and RAH RAH RAH RAH. Teresa gets teary-eyed when she mentions that she and Joe have told Gia what was happening, briefly letting go of this monkey bar of delusion she's been dangling from for years. Teresa looks exhausted. You could tell she wanted so badly to just fall into Victoria's boney frame and get put into the Gotti escalade and drive off into the amber winter light to Long Island or anywhere but there.

    Albie and Chris have since given up on blk water (which I told my own personal tale of last week), and are opening a restaurant called "Little Town NJ," where they will apparently be serving a menu of vagueness. "Come on in! We are very lost people," the sign out front should read. They're having a grand opening soirée, and eeeeeveryone is showin' up. After some people arrive, Caroline walks in. "Where are my boys!?!" she yells, Lauren tailing behind her. Lauren, the forgotten monument. She looks amazing, and has a nice job, and a boyfriend and I want everything good to happen for her. Anyway, Caroline continues to be bizarre about her sons. They sample these bread ball things, and Caroline says, "IT'S NO BROWNSTONE!" It's NOOOOO BROWNSTONE, BOYS! Ya here that, FUCKERS?! What an awful thing to say to your kids. At least pretend everything is perfect at the opening night of your sons' fake restaurant that you paid for, and save the concerns and criticisms for pillow talk when they start getting bored with it in like a month. Albie says, "Well, we...we kind of want our own taste, so I guess that's good then!" It was so sad. Then big Albert walks in, and the boys are terrified of his opinion.

    real-housewives-of-new-jersey-season-5-gallery-epsiode-517-11.jpg Eli: Luckily they receive Albert's blessing on their "beefsteak sandwiches." I feel like the word "beefsteak" itself is redundant, or sounds like the name of a sort of vegan beef-alternative like Tofurkey. As far as we can tell, the restaurant has two dishes, which are the aforementioned beefsteak and some sort of meatball thing which is the wrong color and more shiny than one would prefer. But to be honest, their restaurant really doesn't affect my life in any way, so I wish them the best of luck and a positive business experience.

    real-housewives-of-new-jersey-season-5-gallery-epsiode-517-27.jpgCarey: THEN THE OPENING OF POSCHE 2. Yes, Kim D. the crow had announced earlier that she was going to open a NEW boutique location, simply called "Posche 2." POSCHE 2 sounds like a sequel to a terrible action movie. Posche 2: The Rise of Phoenix Cruiser, starring Kim D. as Phoenix Cruiser, a tough-as-nails and super chic C.I.A. agent who was left for dead by her partner on a mission in the Middle East. Anyway, she's having a biiiiig girls' night party at Posche 2 where you can come and get your hair and makeup done and drink Tang and Popov vodka. Teresa and Melissa have decided to take out Penny -- whom I'm sure also saw Kim D. the crow when she was a little girl. "She'll be der! I have to invite her: she's a customer!" Kim D. says about Penny. How terrifying is Penny, though? She's this great, tall thing, with a fake blonde ponytail. Her eyes are always wide and she's sort of hunched over and smiling at all times. From the side, she looks like the Pixar lamp. She arrives at the event, pacing around and muttering to people. Jacqueline has now been involved in Penny and her hubby's tweeting war, where some comments were made about Nick, Jacqueline's autistic son. Understandably, Mama Bear goes AWOL. She approaches this withered aspen tree with a blonde weave and is like, "You don't know me," blah blah blah. Midway through their argument, Penny stops Jacqueline, puts a hand on her shoulder and says, "I love autistic kids, though." She says it in this serene, confident way that is on par with an indirectly racist person defending themselves with "Some of my best friends are (insert race)." Jacqueline kind of cocks her head back. "I taught autism," Penny adds, as her closer. Yes, Penny taught autism. She majored in Communications with an Autism minor. That's really great, Penny. Jacqueline closes her mouth, and nods. What can you say to that? Nothing. You don't say anything.

    real-housewives-of-new-jersey-season-5-gallery-epsiode-517-02.jpgMelissuh comes over and asks Penny to step outside (she doesn't actually say step outside) to chat with her and Teresa. Penny agrees, and they move into another room, with Kathy, Caroline, Jacqueline and some other random women following behind like debris. Basically, Penny says what everyone has been suspecting: Teresa had something to do with these rumors of Melissa cheating on Gorgon that Penny and her husband have randomly been spewing out of their fat Internet mouths. Teresa vehemently denies this, and gets super aggressive with Penny. I guess I believe both of them. Teresa must have met Penny at some dinner months and months earlier, feeling this familiarity between them, this kinship, marked by Kim D. the crow decades earlier. She probs asked Penny to maybe mention a few things about her brother and Melissa on Twitter, just to have those blind items out there. "U see that?! We got her!" Penny texted Teresa in the beginning: "She's going down! Bitch!" Another text: "I want her to be dead." Another: "Let's drink her blood." Teresa got so freaked out at Penny and her enlisted hubby's intensity that she backed away from them. She had no idea they would take it this far, and now here they are, fighting inside a boutique called "Posche 2," surrounded by silent, gawking women. As Kim D. was taking care of something with the front computer, the din of the party lessening slightly, she could hear a Teresa shriek. She cocked her head to the side, but didn't turn around. Penny and Teresa were fighting. She had found them when they were girls and now they're here. With her. Fighting. Yelling. Crying. Preparing for something even bigger. Something different was coming to Posche 2 that night. This was where they were meant to be. 'It's wonderful,' Kim D. thought.

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    Sky Ferreira has released a video for the lead single "You're Not the One" off her upcoming debut album Night Time, My Time out October 29th on Capitol Records. While hanging out in club bathrooms and wearing sunglasses at night doesn't do much for her current heroin-chic rep, the video, directed by Grant Singer (who also shot the "Everything is Embarrassing" video) is an 80stastic display of Ferreira coming to terms -- and plotting revenge -- with lost love at a neon-lit club probably somewhere in Berlin. Ferreira gives early Madonna vibes dancing to the super-pop song in her new short platinum shag, moto jacket and fishnet top. The song's production, done by Ariel Rechtshaid, was inspired by David Bowie's Low, but what we really hear is Wilson Phillips' "Hold On" for da club. And that's a good thing. 

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    We've been waiting for a Sharon Needles episode of RuPaul Drives... since the web series' inception and oh boy, it's here and it's fun. RuPaul picks up the RuPaul's Drag Race season 4 winner and it's a nonstop wit-fest from there --  Needles' joke about his hometown in Iowa being crowned "the meth capital of the world" by TIME magazine in 1996 was especially hilarious. And speaking of: this episode seems particularly timely, not just because Breaking Bad's finale has really given meth jokes a second wind, but because Sharon asks a question that seems to be hand-tailored for the debate surrounding Miley Cyrus (who also likes meth jokes). With legions of blogs finding Miley's relationship to race and cultural appropriation problematic and a few, like Vice, championing her as being truly punk rock, Sharon gets to the heart of the debate: "Do I [do what I do] to show that I'm an educated person [and] to exploit these things artistically, or am I just a punk rock brat that likes pushing people's buttons? I can't tell." Sharon's solution is to meet his critics "half way" as long as they do the same for him, and maybe Miley should follow suit. Watch above.

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    A new show of photos by Iké Udé is coming to the Leila Heller Gallery (568 West 25th Street) this fall.  The exhibition --  "Style and Sympathies" --  runs from October 10 to November 9 and features self-portraits by the New York-based, Nigeria-born artist.  He gives the art of portraiture a new twist in these photos from his critically acclaimed "Sartorial Anarchy" series.  Udé was on Vanity Fair's International Best Dressed list in 2009 and 2012.  Here's a sneak-peek:

    ikeude26.jpgSARTORIAL ANARCHY #26, 2013

    ikeude21.jpgSARTORIAL ANARCHY #21, 2013

    ikeude17.jpgSARTORIAL ANARCHY #17, 2013

    ikeude22.jpgSARTORIAL ANARCHY #22, 2013

    ikeude29.jpgSARTORIAL ANARCHY #29, 2013

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    Screen Shot 2013-09-24 at 4.24.17 PM.pngThere's no denying that MS MR is a band with a healthy sense of the dramatic. The driving percussion layered under Max Hershenow's full-bodied keys and Lizzy Plapinger's hauntingly beautiful vocals on tracks like "Bones" and "Hurricane" are what the duo (who tours as a four piece band) are best known for. But their most recent album, Secondhand Rapture, is also incredibly listenable. "Fantasy" channels Florence and the Machine, while "Think of You" has an almost Lady Gaga-esque quality. They return to Webster Hall tonight to headline with Wildcat! Wildcat!, and we caught up with the New York-based band about their sound, playing for a hometown crowd and how wild the last year has been for them.

    I saw you at Webster Hall when you opened for Marina and the Diamonds.

    Max Hershenow:
    Really early.
    Lizzy Plapinger: Yeah, that was really early.

    A year ago.

    LP: That's crazy to think about. Yeah, that was a year ago. It was amazing. That was our first ever tour.

    MH: That was the end of the US tour with Marina, and we'd played a few larger rooms, but it was still very new and fresh and exciting. It's always nice for us to come back to New York and have a hometown show. We're very connected to New York and proud of our New York fans, so it always feels right when they come out. What's so awesome about this is that we've opened at Webster twice -- once for Marina and once for Jessie Ware in the spring -- and now we're doing our own headline show there, it does feel like part of the tradition, passing on the baton, of playing these rooms.

    Tell me about playing a big room like Webster Hall as a duo.

    LP: I mean we have two other musicians with us on stage. Max is on keys and I'm singing, and we have a drummer and a multi-instrumentalist. So for us I feel like we're living out our more developed life as a band. We were very adamant from the beginning that it would never be just the two of us on stage. And especially not with a laptop. That's not what we wanted to perform and we really thought that that undermines the scope of the music, just given how dramatic and over the top it is. The addition of the two other players it feels like more of a band performance. It gives it more of a free, rock, live edge to it. It gives us the freedom to really move around and perform it, and not just be stuck to a drum track or something. I think there's something sort of false if it would just be me and Max playing on top of that.

    MH: It's something that helps us evolve as musicians as well. For so long it was just the two of us in this very introspective world, which I think was a great way to write the album, but by bringing in two other musicians who are really phenomenal players -- much better than we are, technically -- I think it's challenged us and pushed us to keep evolving in ways we might not have. We've definitely learned over the past year that it's about performance and not just about the music and writing itself.

    So you feel like you've gotten better as a band?

    MH: We started at such a green place that it's impossible not to. It's exciting to think about it. It's exciting to think about you having seen it at Webster Hall a year ago and then how far it's evolved in the past year. I think we're still sort of in that phase where every week we were better than the last week.

    I would say that the Game of Thrones trailer was the point that you guys really started to blow up. Would you agree?

    LP: That Game of Thrones moment was huge for us. I mean, as insane fans of the show -- it's something we've all watched in the tour bus together, something we all talk about obsessively -- it was just extremely exciting to see.

    There's a tendency for hardcore fans of bands to hate on new fans who've found out about the music via something like the Game of Thrones Trailer or hearing your music on a show like Pretty Little Liars. What do you have to say to those people?

    MH: I think we've always been a band rooted in the indie DIY aesthetic. The album was recording in my apartment with just a computer and a keyboard and a microphone. Super DIY. And the fact that those first fans really responded to that means the world to us. We've never been shy about our aspirations either. I think we want to be a mainstream band as well. I think we want to make pop with an indie twist. We're highly ambitious like that. I just want everyone to listen to it. I want as many people to listen to it as possible and I think finding it through TV shows is a good way to find it because it feels like a different interpretation of the song, but a very legitimate one, even if it's not in the exact context in which I wrote it.

    LP: And also it sort of builds off of the aesthetic of the band, which is very mixed media and collage oriented. So for us it's an artistic choice that we're so open to television and film. Like Max said, putting the music in a different context is part of the greater project that we're sort of trying to demonstrate. I think pop music is at an incredibly exciting point right now. Pop music is being made at a very alternative level.

    Secondhand Rapture is an album that I feel like I can listen to from start to finish without ever getting to a song that I want to skip. Did you set out to make an album like that?

    MH: We joked the entire time that we would write an album only of singles.

    LP: Even when we were mixing with Tom, we would be like, 'No, no. Tom, it's not big enough. You have to approach every single song like it's the most important song on the record.' He would make so much fun of us, but that was important to us.

    MH: Something about making an experience throughout, an emotional ebb and flow. I like the idea of that. It wasn't a concept album. We weren't writing songs as a whole thinking about them as a cohesive body of work. But now that we have [gone through the mixing process] I feel like there is an overarching story that builds. And I like the idea that you can follow that and the idea that you can listen to the whole album means a lot.

    Ultimately, for us, we just make music that we really love and I think if we keep doing that we can say, 'Yeah we stand by this music whether it's successful or not because we love it.' And hopefully other people feel the same way. I also think that even if someone didn't like the whole record, because there's such a range of music on there, there's a song in there for everyone.

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    For his "Hold on We're Going Home" video, Drake decided to take the phrase literally (or is it cinematically?) and rescue a kidnapped lady -- nay, his kidnapped lady -- who needs his help "going home" (sorry, had to). Bill Pope -- who was the cinematographer for the Matrix -- directed this video and packed it with enough rescue movie stuff to be out-and-out absurd. It's got everything you could ask for: '80s-era Miami; A$AP Rocky, Fredo Santana, that kid from Perks from Being a Wallflower wearing eyeliner and one dangly earring, and the gang hanging out on a yacht full of rotary phones that's also surely full of cocaine. It also features so much shitty dialogue and enough good ol' fashion conflation of masculinity and guns to make you hope that it's a knowingly funny send-up of the genre. Either way, the song is a jam.

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    Here's a strange video to titillate your afternoon craving for politics and drag queens serving up Tina Turner realness: drag queen Tina Turnstile -- née David Ilku -- takes on the increasing corporate presence in our dear, old (increasingly unaffordable and whitewashed) New York City to the tune of Tina's "We Don't Need Another Hero." Produced by our perennial friend crush Parker Posey, it's sure to get you riled up for the upcoming mayoral election while also reigniting your passion for the Queen of Rock's wig game. Watch above.

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    Anna Nicole at BAM

    Opera, some might say, is the highest of the high-brow; nudie magazines and reality TV, on the other hand, the lowest of the low. What happens then when the New York City Opera and BAM turn their attention to the fabulously-tragic former playmate-of-the-year Anna Nicole Smith? Is this a peanut-butter-in-your-chocolate situation or a Fat-Elvis D.O.A.? Find out in our full review!

    Romeo and Juliet at Richard Rogers

    Shakespeare was fond of putting magical creatures in his plays. Romeo and Juliet is not one of them. Broadway producers are fond of casting Hollywood movie stars in their productions. Romeo and Juliet is one of them. Can Orlando Bloom, aka Legolas, hold his own on the boards? Find out in our full review!

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    What year is it? It might be 2013, but here's a cool dose of the '90s from a re-united Luscious Jackson. Back after a 15 year hiatus and now down to three members -- Kate Schellenbach, Gabby Glasser and Jill Cunniff -- the band at one time recorded for the Beastie's label Grand Royal. And, yes, Kate was the Beastie's drummer from 1981 to 1984. "Show Us What You Got" has a nice indie, funkiness plus the filtered performance video directed by Breeders bassist and Paper travel columnist Josephine Wiggs helps the overall effort. The album's called Magic Hour and it's out November 5 and they're playing Webster Hall on December 7. Tickets are HERE.

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  • 09/24/13--16:15: Melissa Coker
  • Our annual April Beautiful People Issue, celebrating a cavalcade of cuties to watch in different disciplines, has been such a sensation we've decided to showcase noteworthy movers and shakers all-year round on We kicked things off in the city of Angels, and will be posting an L.A.-based Beautiful Person a-day for the next few weeks.

    Melissa_Coker_1.jpgFashion snots who believe there's no worthwhile west of the Pennsylvania state line should meet Melissa Coker. The designer behind the print-centric L.A. label Wren has been turning out separates the cool girls can't resist for 6 years.

    Describe living in L.A. in 3 words.

    Calm, quiet, peaceful

    What are you working on now?

    Our Wren x Minnetonka collection just hit the stores, including ours. It's been a whirlwind keeping up with the sales.

    When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?

    A florist / archaeologist.

    Do you remember what your first day living in L.A. was like?

    I'm from Illinois originally and moved to LA from New York.  My first day in LA I was shocked at how quiet it was. It's a sleepy town that goes to bed early in a lot of ways.

    What's the most touristy L.A. thing you've ever done?

    I went to Mann's Chinese theater and looked at all the hand prints in the cement.  It's mainly old Hollywood stars and really fun. Marilyn Monroe for goodness sake!

    What's your best celebrity run-in story?

    Seeing Fabio at the gym.

    If you could be any star from Old Hollywood, who would you be and why?

    Audrey Hepburn. I've always loved her style and she was in some of my very favorite movies.  She's so beautiful but also sweet and cute and silly and fun.

    What's your favorite street intersection in L.A.?

    I like where Western turns into Los Feliz Blvd -- Griffith Park appears as you make the turn.

    How do we get from Chateau Marmont to Venice Beach? Give us driving directions.

    I say sit back down at the Chateau and forget the beach. 

    Dress: Wren
    Earrings: Prada
    Shoes: Jerome Rousseau
    Stylist: Natasha Newman-Thomas
    Hair: Sylvia Wheeler
    Makeup: Ren Bray

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    Screen shot 2013-09-25 at 7.32.40 AM.pngScreen shot 2013-09-25 at 7.33.07 AM.pngScreen shot 2013-09-25 at 7.33.29 AM.pngScreen shot 2013-09-25 at 7.34.17 AM.pngScreen shot 2013-09-25 at 7.34.54 AM.pngNew favorite Twitter alert: @SATC3quel, which imagines what Carrie, Miranda, Charlotte and Samantha would be doing and who they'd be screwing (sorry, had to) in our modern and age well into the future. It is the best. [via Queerty]

    Here's an, um, interesting parody of the internet's favorite joke song of the moment, "The Fox," done by a bunch of Abercrombie models in animal costumes. We're cool with shirtless hot guys saying "the cow goes moo" and whatnot, but Abercrombie should probably spend less time making model videos and more time apologizing for hating heavy people and trying to make clothes teenagers actually want to buy. [via Jezebel]

    When we first saw this we really thought it was a horrible trick, but no. This guy -- a San Francisco resident named Isaiah Webb -- can and does choose to eat ramen out of his own beard. There aren't enough ughs and eye-rolls in the world to un-see this shit. [via Death and Taxes]

    Screen shot 2013-09-25 at 7.44.22 AM.pngOh god, Bill Clinton (or whoever runs Bill Clinton's Twitter), was a "2 Girls, 1 Cup" reference really necessary? [via Gawker]

    Here's a hilarious and accurate rendition of what Homeland: The Musical would look like. In addition to hard-hitting lyrics like "I've got the guy right here/his name's Abu Nazir/and if the bomb goes off/we're all comandeered," it also provides helpful review soundbites that are very, very accurate. [via Death and Taxes]

    Screen shot 2013-09-25 at 8.22.11 AM.pngSwoon. [via Afternoon Snooze Button]

    For those of you who like scary movies with really stupid titles that speak to your real world experiences, here's the trailer for Big Ass Spider! Oh, how we know the woes of the Big Ass Spider. [via Deadline]

    UFQB.jpegAgreed, Elaine. [via mlkshk]

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    Remember a while back when rumors were flying that A$AP Rocky and Rihanna were a couple because they were photographed doing date-y things? I don't either, but the reason for those pics, as it turns out, is the music video for "Fashion Killa," one of the big hits on Rocky's album LongLiveA$AP. As the title suggests, the song is all about fashion and swag and Grade-A name rhyming, i.e. Madonna, Nirvana, Rihanna, and a million designers. Apparently, the fictional world of a RiRi-Rocky relationship is all about going on a luxury shopping spree while being bathed in the greyest light imaginable. It also includes A$AP Ferg dropping in to sing part of a completely different song off of his own album, which, what? Oh well: at least Ricky (that's their couple name) is easy on the eyes. Watch above.

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    Haim won our hearts when they covered Sheryl Crow's deep-cuts classic "Strong Enough" on an Australian radio program. Actually, the trio of sisters who specialize in folk-meets-smooth-R&B originally won our hearts with their first EP last June. But our obsession might have reached its peak with their cover of Miley Cyrus' sledgehammer-fellatin' hit "Wrecking Ball." After a bout of gargling from Este (the cover actually starts at the 0:33 mark), Haim launch into a more guitar-filled, less produced-sounding rendition that almost feels more painful -- and therefore more right -- than the original. Or maybe the Haim gals are just really, really good and singing painful songs about failed relationships. Watch above.

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    "We've never done it like this before," P-Thugg of Chromeo said last night at the opening of their The White Room installation project at Milk Studios with Snarkitecture and Tumblr IRL in promotion of their new album White Women. "We just wanted to give something to everyone, not just VIPs, but the people that have been supporting us for almost ten years," Chromeo's Dave 1 said. "We wanted to take them on a different experience seeing us then what they are use to." "http:>

    And their fans showed up. By 6:30pm there was a line around the block of first-come, first-serve RSVPers waiting for the doors to open at 7:00pm. Once inside you were directed by women in white around the back, through the loading dock and into the Milk Gallery space where Brooklyn-based art-meets-architecture duo, Snarkitecture, had created an installation inspired by the album. "http:>"There is always a sense of humor about their music," Alex Mustonen of Snarkitecture said. "Which is good for us because our world is about play and creating something unexpected and memorable. This collaboration was about creating a playground for them and the music."  


    The White Room is open to the public until 6pm today at Milk Studios, but exists on the Internet with Tumblr IRL forever.

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    In our new column United Nations of Style, we'll be talking to the coolest, cuckoo craziest and most creative fashion designers around the world to hear what inspires them and what it's like to work in fashion where they live. This week: London-based Nicomede Talavera.

    NICOMEDE PORTRAIT.jpgHow would you describe your design aesthetic?

    With all my work I like to take elements that sit at opposite or conflicting ends of the spectrum and combine that to create something that feels modern. I never want to be categorised as a 'sportswear', 'streetwear' or 'minimal' designer, and I want an oddness with textures, fabrics, proportions, [and] detailing where you can't pin-point an overriding influence or category.

    What are your design inspirations?

    My inspirations are always very personal and from things I see everyday and that I feel are relevant to me, whether that is memories I have from growing up, youth movements, subcultures or music.

    Nicomede14.jpgWhere do your ideas come from?

    For S/S '14, my inspiration was the way young Muslim boys dress, mixing sportswear with cultural garments. I saw this regularly growing up in Hounslow, South-West London. There was also a guy that I saw heading to work wearing a pinstriped suit, with a silk tie, backpack and trainers, and loved the combination of textures and styles. Which is why, for example, the elasticated sports shorts have been made from pinstripe, suiting with silk and corduroy, and why there are extended lengths meant to evoke more traditional Muslim garments.

    Who do you dream of dressing? If you could dress anyone, past or present, who would it be?

    I don't really think of my clothes in that context, and especially not in terms of a celebrity or famous person. I genuinely like it when a 'normal' person responds to my designs enough to purchase them and mix them in with their own style. With my last EASTPAK collaboration I saw people in London and Paris carrying bags from the collection and it was great to see people who had consciously taken a hunch on a piece from an emerging designer.

    Nicomede13.jpgIf you weren't in fashion, what would you be doing?

    A backup dancer! I sort of jest but, seriously, it was once in my head when I was a teenager.

    Describe the fashion and design community in your city.

    Charged, determined and progressive.

    How does the fashion and design in your city affect the style of your brand?

    I think in London there is a strong sense of what has happened before and a respect for designers and movements that have been successful and have had an impact on the visual image of the city. But more than anything, there's a palpable drive and ambition to really make an impact and have your own point-of-view and footprint.


    Describe the Nicomede Talavera man.

    Instead of having a specific guy in mind, I'd like to think that with each collection that I design, I carve [out] my own "boy." One who's  effortless, modern and chilled.

    What do you know now that you wish you had known when you started out?

    I always knew before setting up the label that most my time would be taken up with the business side of things, but I think it would have been good to know even more information about that end. If I had more time I would have learned more prior to setting up the label, or even chosen to study Business Studies back at school. There are so many different aspects that all need completing simultaneously!

    What's next for you?

    Now that I have launched my S/S '14 collection and S/S '14 EASTPAK collaboration, I'm already on a roll with A/W '14. I've added some really exciting new stockists for my clothing collection and the bags, which means my pieces will be available in Asia, America and Europe.


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  • 09/25/13--16:00: Nicole Byer
  • Our annual April Beautiful People Issue, celebrating a cavalcade of cuties to watch in different disciplines, has been such a sensation we've decided to showcase noteworthy movers and shakers all-year round on We kicked things off in the city of Angels, and will be posting an L.A.-based Beautiful Person a-day for the next few weeks.

    You might know comedian and actress Nicole Byer from her work with the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater in both New York and L.A, or as a scene-stealing talking head on MTV's smart and dishy girl-talk show, Girl Code. PAPER, however, fell in love with her on Twitter, where she regularly tweets about the absurdity of L.A. life and the joys of being single. A sample gem: "All I'm looking for is a man to take me curtain shopping and then fuck me. That's what a relationship is right?" Ms. Byer, we bow to you.

    Describe what you do in 3 words.

    Film funny shit.

    What are you working on now?

    Season two of MTV's Girl Code and auditioning a lot.

    Describe living in L.A. in 3 words.

    Hard, exciting, breezy.

    When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?

    I wanted to be an illustrator for children's books. Then I realized art is hard. Later in high school I decided I wanted to act -- a Broadway starlet who cannot sing or dance well.

    If you got to take over MOCA, what would your first exhibition be?

    Oh, probably a bunch of selfies. Or like really cool conceptual stuff that makes people wonder if it's art or just trash that's been moved inside.

    What was your first day like living in L.A.?

    New Jersey-born and raised, my first day in L.A. was a lot of crying. Driving was hard, sleeping on my friends couch was hard -- literally, leaving all my friends in New York was hard. I hate change.

    What's the biggest misconception about L.A.?

    The biggest misconception about L.A. is when people tell you about L.A.-living, or you watch a show about L.A., you think they're lying because the weather is nice all the time and everyone is laid-back. Everyone hating traffic is a common ground that you can bitch about because it fucking blows, and  eople are so nice to each other because everyone who is no one could possibly be a someone. People are flaky but no one really cares. The people are beautiful because they are the daughter/son of someone or they're the hottest person from their shitty town in Idaho. You will drive two blocks when you could walk. There are porn stars at the gym and they look just as barely lucid in person. You will eat kale, you will drink some healthy juice that people swear will make your cellulite disappear. You will go on hikes. You'll stop ogling famous people because they're always there. High schools really are outside -- everything is outside. Apartments don't have roofs in the lobbies and malls have no roofs because it never rains. Or maybe the biggest misconception about L.A. is that it's a city. It is, but not in the same sense as NYC or Chicago. It's like a laid-back suburban city.

    Where's your favorite place to eat in L.A.?

    Masa of Echo Park or Alcove.

    Whose sex scandal is more embarrassing -- Anthony Weiner's or Arnold Schwarzenegger's?

    Fucking the maid is pretty intense and badass. Also, she wasn't super hot, so I'd like to think that was one for the underdogs. So I have to say Anthony Weiner's dick pics are pretty embarrassing. You can't fuck some girls in person? You get off just sending picture of your dick to people? Gross, stop it. I doubt anyone is rubbing one out to your weird old dick.

    Who's the most beautiful person you can think of and why?

    My mother. She is such a fucking lady. Every picture I have of her just emulates and screams beauty. My mother was such a funny woman who marched to the beat of a drum somewhere. She made me believe that being smart and interesting is way better than being some basic bitch.

    What's the most touristy L.A. thing you've ever done?

    I've been trying to save money, so I haven't done like real L.A. things, but hiking to the Hollywood sign is one. I think its worth it. Its pretty impressive up-close ish.

    What's your best celebrity run-in story?

    I was in a Rite Aid when I first moved here, around Novemberish, and I was trying to get in line to pay and fell into a Christmas tree display. None other than Shia LaBeouf helped me out of it. He was holding a Starbucks cup with the name 'Tommy' on it. It made me laugh that a Starbucks employee put the quotes around his fake name just to be like, 'Yo, Shia, I know what's up.'  

    If you could be any star from Old Hollywood, who would you be and why?

    Probably Lucille Ball. She was just a rare gem who was beautiful and funny and a smart motherfucker. I can watch I Love Lucy now and laugh like I've just seen it for the first time. Or maybe Joan Crawford -- what a powerful bitch in every sense of that being a good and bad thing.

    What's your favorite street intersection in L.A.?

    Probably where Hollywood meets Sunset and 10 other streets. Its confusing and I always fuck it up.

    Dress: Xscape
    Necklace: Kirks Folly
    Stylist: Natasha Newman-Thomas
    Hair: Sylvia Wheeler
    Makeup: Ren Bray

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    Michael Cera, Bill Hader, Jon Daly, Joe Lo Truglio and Alia Shawkat -- among other very funny people -- star in this perfect new band mockumentary on Islands and their new album, Ski Mask. [Pitchfork]

    A local news reporter in Lodi, California was minding her biz, reporting on a local grape festival when a baboon named Mickey came up, shook her hand, and then grabbed her boob and bared his teeth. Isn't that just like a damn baboon? Why are baboons so disgusting? [Dlisted]

    Here is a video of Jon Hamm cuddling a baby snow leopard on Jimmy Kimmel last night. That is all. [Towleroad]

    ICYMI: Stephen Merchant and Joseph Gordon Levitt had a lip synch battle on Jimmy Fallon the other night and it was pretty awesome. Jo Go Lev really goes there but Merchant bests him the "Single Ladies" dance.

    tumblr_mtn0gnLUKJ1ruw1vso2_1280.jpgVia Buzzfeed's masterful roundup of hilariously bad book covers.

    tumblr_mi6obwFWRZ1qj0u7fo1_500.jpgBasic bitch bday. [Ratsoff]

    Good god this video of a baby trying ice cream for the very first time it too, too cute. [Gawker]

    tumblr_ms286eIUm41qk2aclo1_1280.jpgBut honest. [FYNFM]

    Let's do this, Thursday. [FYD]

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    Starting Friday night, the W Hotel on Lexington Ave. (541 Lexington Ave.) will be home to Casino Diabolique, a new site-specific art installation dreamed up by artist (and Creative Director at Paper's sister company, Extra Extra), Desi Santiago. The casino, which is the first art piece the W Hotel has commissioned, will feature a multi-sensory experience combining light displays by nightlife maestro Seva Granik, scents created by Tomas Delucia of The Sense Society, a soundtrack composed by Azari & III and casino games like The Zodiac Wheel, The Pendulum, Black Jack along with a tarot card reader. Attendees will also have the opportunity to leave with prizes such as free cocktails, Bliss spa treatments or a stay at the forthcoming W Verbier. If you go, make sure to give the performers' costumes a once-over -- we hear they were designed by white-hot luxury streetwear brand Hood By Air.

    Casino Diabolique is open from November 15-17, 8-10pm; to book a visit, go HERE.

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