The 25th Anniversary Tour picked up some left hearts in San Fransisters. For four nights of fun, I played the Empire Plush Room at the York Hotel. There was still a little Kitty Carlisle Hart dust on the stage from when she entertained there. Rory Paull and Rob Kotonly, indefatigable bicoastal producers who also produce shows in New York and Philly, have taken over the Plush Room, a beloved SF speakeasy that was about to be closed. They’ve refurbished it beautifully and gotten it back to working order. They both love to give tours of the secret tunnels that flappers and those in the know navigated to get to the club. Rumor has it that a ghost of a former piano player roams the hotel at night. I think it’s a queen whacked out on ambien trying to find the kitchen.
After thirty "straight" days of rain, the weather was sunny and lovely and the people were happy. I rode over to Berkeley and did an interview with Andrea Lewis, host of the Morning Show on good old KPFA. Andrea is one of the smoothest, most professional interviewers I’ve had the pleasure to talk with – she gets all the info in absolutely effortlessly. KRON’s morning show with the much beloved reviewer and raconteur, Jan Wahl, was too short. I wanted to interview her. She promised to come to the big NCLR Women’s Dinner at the Moscone Center on April 22. I told her it’s three acres of lesbians in fabulous outfits and she said she’d be there with her hat on! Sedge Thompson’s live radio show, West Coast Live, was another pleasure, Prairie Home Companion without the heavy breathing.
On Sunday afternoon, my dear sponsors, NCLR hosted a meet and greet at Sauce Restaurant for all their major supporters. The food was great – the folks in San Francisco do good food and that includes Hans Food, the little hole in the wall Michele and I found for breakfast. It was wonderful to meet so many local,loyal NCLR supporters. Kate Kendall had just returned from a trip to Minneapolis and fired up the crowd with tales of the cases they are involved in there.
So now I can add the Plush Room to the venues I have known in San Fransisters: The Great American Music Hall, The JCC of Marin, the Herbst Theater, The Palace of Fine Arts, the Brava Theater, The Greek Theater, the Calvin Simmons Theater [where I played during an earthquake!] to name a few.
Happy Spring. Sadly war. Three years now and the Support the Troops ribbons are faded and have started to resemble infinity signs. It truly is March Madness. I’m chilling for a couple days in Corte Madera with my dear old friends Jeanne Rizzo and Pali Cooper before heading up to Seattle, Vancouver and Victoria. While some might say it’s time to move to Canada, I’m just going to visit. In San Franscisco, ten thousand people protested the war on the third anniversary. I like to protest it every day. I’m specifying my taxes should go to education. Risk an audit for peace.