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This Week's HipBites

Phoenix From The Ashes

Spacehog was a band that seemed to be HUGE and then...
they were not.

Where did all that talent go?
Well, at least one of the band members is forging a name for himself, and he's a force unto himself. He's been spinning at Man Ray, Starfoods , even at former bandmate's Royston Langdon's nuptials to Liv Tyler.

Jonny Cragg.
Remember his name.

HG: So has everyone from Spacehog gone their separate ways?
JC: Yes. Everything you read about bands breaking up happened to us. Addiction, distractions, lack of success, all of that. We suffered from early success and raised expectations.

HG: Were you always a DJ?
JC: Yes, I was always the guy that brought a suitcase with one change of underwear, a toothbrush and 2000 CDs. When all the royalties ran out, it was also a way to sustain. And it meant something to be applauded for it, to go out and spin.

HG: What kind of music is hot for you now?
JC: I'm spinning a lot of funk/indie rock, some hip hop. It's a genre melt. Keep the floor on it's toes.

HG: How is life as a DJ different than in a band?
JC: You don't have to rely on three other people. You don't have to worry someone will turn up still drunk! The certain self reliance, that's very appealing.

HG: Drawbacks?
JC: Can't say I miss music, I am playing drums in a girl band call The 22s.

HG: Where are you a DJ now?
JC: The new Soho House is one spot and I am also spinning at new hot spot 17 Home.

HG: What kind of people come hear you?
JC: Mainly deaf people.

HG: No, seriously.
JC: Well, at Don Hill's it's indie. At The Park, it's supermodels and the guys with no taste and big bank accounts who love them. I'm kidding. I'm just jealous.

HG: Do you have a large bank account?
JC: (snorts latte) Definitely not. You know you either have style or not. I know I have it but you can't tell cause right now I'm dressed up for a soccer match!

HG: Last gig?
JC: My friend (Jacques) Lu Cont's wedding (Les Rythmes Digitales producer). He's the bassist on Madonna's tour. Also I just did my ex bandmate Royston Langdon and Liv Tyler's wedding.

HG: Are you worried you'll become "The Wedding Singer"?
JC: I'm not "mobile DJ guy". If that happens, I will take a remote teaching gig on a Greek island.

HG: Teaching?
JC: Landscape gardening.

HG: Tell us about The 22s.
JC: It's been an eye opener to the sexism in the industry. It's not one example, it seems to be all- pervading in the industry. It's the little things. The way people talk to them. EVERY guy in EVERY studio, at EVERY rehearsal assumes they're stupid. The way they're objectified, it's gross.

It's well beyond looking at a cute girl on the street. Men just refuse to acknowledge them as people, their personality.

HG: Are there changes now that you're in the band?
JC: It helps that I am older and have been in a couple of established bands, but I was in England and the organisers of an event that we were doing actually said different things to them than they said to me. Men just assume they can be pushed around. I'm not Mr. Negotiation so it isn't about that! It makes me a bit sad.

HG: Is the DJ world the same?
JC: I would assume so. I have not seen it first hand. There's people like Justine D out there. She was on the cover of Time Out recently. While it's no coincidence, that she's attractive, that does not discredit her work. She's really good. I'm a fan.

HG: Let's talk about the music industry.
JC: The whole copyright thing, it's completely un- enforceable and the industry stubbornly, archaically does marketing and retail in a way that doesn't work. You can't expect the consumer not to steal when retail is so high and so little is being offered. Give the consumer something they want at a reasonable price, because they DO want the art etc. But under $10. People would start buying records again.

HG: What do you think of Sirius (satellite radio)?
JC: Brilliant. Great idea. Claims to have simple subscription fee, claims to eliminate payola (editor's note: payola is the music industry controversy where radio stations are being accused of taking non cash bribes to play songs.) Clear Channel, Infinity, radio programming is too powerful. Sirius' offices are a bit like James Bond. I almost expected Dr. Evil to be sitting there stroking a white cat! Companies will have to pay attention to Sirius.

I am willing to try to get my records on the radio, but right now the artist ends up paying. The only way to address this is to have power. The 22s are a small band, we have no power. With Spacehog, we rejected that system and the result was we didn't get played on the radio.

We had to part with a lot of money to get a song as huge as the one we had. The artist doesn't make any money until millions of records have been sold.

Every once in awhile there is a song that gets out there, gets under people's skin in spite of it. I'd like to see more of that.

A Quick and Dirty on Jonny

Dream travel destination:
Ecuador

CDs in his stereo:
A record by Hot Hot Heat, music by Ed Harcourt, music by Gemma Hayes

Best place he's ever spun or played:
New York City

Best food:
French

Drink of choice:
Water

Last book read:
Oscar Wilde's Collected Works

In his bag:
CDs, discman, book, wallet

Musicians he's admired:
Jimmy Paige, John Coltrane, Jimi Hendrix, Jan Garbarek, Dave Grohl



O-LIVE MY TAN, O-LIVE ME

Whether we're longing for Capri or Pantelleria, who knows, but one thing is for sure, we don't just have Italia on the brain. We have olives. Restoring our skin since our near- equatorial experience has been a long road paved with the extract of a certain oil:

1. Hands
The olive oil stores, Oliviers & Co, have a soft, soft cream; Creme Mains. Actually made in Provence, the cream could soften a truck driver's calluses.

2. Cleanse
Davines' (the Italian line out of Parma) Regenerating Vital Juice from the Extra Virgin Skin Care line, has been decongesting our pores of all the sunblock we rubbed in. We knew those Italian olive pickers had suspiciously good complexions.

3. Hair
The scalp does get burnt and hair dries out with all the swimming we did. Korres' Juniper and Olive Tree dermatologically tested shampoo is how we've been saving our noggin.

4. Legs
Kiss My Face's Olive Soap is surprisingly nourishing for super sensitive fried gams.

5. Moisturise
L'Occitane Olive Face Cream with SPF 15. Fight free radicals (and we don't mean Amnesty refugees) with pure A.O.C. grade olive oil.



above: hot property DJ Jonny Cragg

DJ Jonny Cragg spins on Tuesday, July 1st @ 17 Home, in NYC.
7-11pm at 17 Home
17 Stanton St. (btwn. Bowery & Chrystie)
For further information please call (212) 252-2044.

HIPTRENDS
We're:

1. Smelling:
the Diptyque John Galliano candle

2. Visiting:
the new Paramount Bar in NYC

3. Reading:
Hillary Clinton's memoirs

4. Staying:
at the Royal Riviera hotel's L'Orangerie in Cap Ferrat

5. Anticipating:
the Marimekko exhibit at Susan Soros' Bard Arts

6. Wearing:
Anya Hindmarch's lavendar espradrilles, that benefit Breast Cancer Care

7. Displaying:
peonies in pale pink and fuschia.

HIPLINK
Remember a fabulous band called Luna? We love them much more than the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Both of whom performed at, and supported, along with House of Field, Alize, Nars, Giorgio Armani parfums, L'Oreal, Zac Posen and Sigerson Morrison, the venerable and worthy charity organisation Lymphoma Research Foundation.
www.lymphoma.org






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