Tommy Cornelis, DC House Grooves’ queer correspondent here, signing in for another edition of the Pride Underground!
Last year at this time, I challenged the larger dance music community and the queer underground to come together and find common ground on the dance floor. Whether you were listening to me or not, that result has certainly happened! ROAM and TNX teamed up to a throw day rager at a gay bathhouse. The DC Eagle just hosted Sticky Fingers Collective for an all night throw down. Mixed crowds share poppers at every DJ night and the many after-hours and day time warehouse spaces that have emerged in the past year. Even national headlines are being made like NPR’s “Reclaiming The Queer Dance Floor” and Resident Advisor’s “America’s Gay Techno Underground.” It’s clear our communities have never been closer, and it’s certainly a result of so many different crews bringing in quality programming seemingly every single weekend to both DC and Baltimore. So this year- no call to arms. Let’s just keep it up and make sure all are welcome at our events!
This year’s listings are certainly the biggest we’ve had, a testament to the many crews stepping up their games for Pride this year. We’re seeing awesome bookings like Gay Marvine, Vjuan Allure, Honey Dijon, K-Hand, and Lisa Moody to name a few. So without further ado, here are the listings for the Pride Underground 2016:
WEDNESDAY – JUNE 8TH
BJK: The Officially Unofficial Pride Humpday Disco
DJ: Jacq Jill
Location: Colony Club
411: Over the winter, DJ Jacq Jill hosted cozy DJ nights on Tuesdays called Hot Toddy at Petworth’s Colony Club. For Pride, Jacq Jill (real name Lauren Wright) will be ditching the hot drinks, invoking Billy Jean King, and heading outside on Colony Club’s lovely back patio. If you’ve never been, Colony Club is primarily a day-time coffee shop, but has a really great beer list, hosts cute and chill queer parties at night, and even has a ping pong table upstairs. Jacq Jill owns deep house and regularly works alongside the Blisspop and Philco party crews!
Market Crash – Special DC Pride Edition & 2 year Anniversary
Location: The Big Board
DJs: Kevo and Dezo
Drag Performance: Emma Vixen
411: For the past 2 years, Andrew Dimpfl (the man behind that insanely awesome artwork for the ROAM x TNX party) and Michael Richardson have been hosting Wednesday Hump Day gay parties with DJs and drag performances at The Big Board on H Street NE. Market Crash has been diversifying its sound as of late, booking underground DJs such as George D’adhemar (Honcho, PGH), Dean Sullivan (DILF, BHH @ RNR) and myself to name a few. The drag performances are always on point here too. Plus being one of the only gay parties on the east side of town, and certainly the only weekday gay party in NE, you get to see some different trade here. I hear the burgers are top notch too!
411: While this is not a music event, I had to include this because it celebrates the underground kink & fetish communities. Located at the leather and gear shop TrickBox, DC Leather Pride is hosting lessons and demonstrations on kink subjects from 8-10PM.
THURSDAY – JUNE 9TH
My 2 Dads.. and Mother Too!
DJs: DJ Lisa Frank, Bil Todd & Poppy Burns (Tommy Cornelis)
411: One of the best pick-ups for the queer community in 2016, in my opinion, has been the addition of Trade on 14th street. It’s really served as a much-needed, everyday gay bar, with quality DJ bookings on the weekends from underground stalwarts such as TNX, Dean Sullivan, DJ Lemz, Wess the DJ, Keenan Orr & more. DJ Lisa Frank and Bil Todd experimented with their My 2 Dads night a couple months ago- playing everything from house, techno, disco to freestyle. It’s back again for a special pride edition, with the addition of me DJing through my drag alter-ego Poppy Burns!
Location: Dr Clock’s Nowhere Bar
DJs: Wolfblister & Dianamatic
411: I’m really happy to see that Dr. Clock’s Nowhere Bar is back after a short hiccup as DC’s de-facto incubator space for weirdo, experimental parties and that Schadenfreude Neubauten is back as well- where DJs Wolfblister (Kwasi) and Dianamatic play an eclectic mix of coldwave, post punk, minimal synth, goth and near goth stuff.
FRIDAY – JUNE 10TH
BHH: Rock & Roll Hotel – PRIDE 2016 – feat Juana
Location: Rock N Roll Hotel
DJs: Juana (One Love Massive), Tommy Cornelis B2B Dean Sullivan
411: Last summer, Rock N Roll added DJs on their rooftop every Friday and Saturday, leaving the Bear Nonsense Happy Hour, which happens every 2nd and 4th Friday of the month, in need of a good music marriage to their already thriving event. I decided to step in with my disco Disco Sunset concept, bringing in queer DJs and some fresh meat to DC’s alternative bear happy hour event and playing daytime-vibe disco, funk, boogie and house. This summer, Dean Sullivan has been added as a resident and the marriage has evolved even more. The mix of alterna-bears, RnR regs, the TNX party crew and a diverse cast of queer DJs, always makes for a raucous start to the weekend. For Pride, Dean and I are starting with a B2B set before letting Juana from One Love Massive take over the decks. Expect Paradise Garage-era classics and maybe even a little techno later on.
Booty Rex Pride Party
Location: The Black Cat
DJs: NATTY BOOM (Anthology of Booty), DJ rAt (Anthology of Booty), MOTHERSHEISTER (Anthology of Booty), DJ INDANILE (Anthology of Booty), JUNEBULLET (She Rex), DJ C.RUSH (She Rex), ALEX DB (Bodywork)
411: I think it’s safe to say that this is officially a pride staple event every year now, where the Anthology of Booty DJ collective and the (now sadly defunct) party crew She.Rex join forces to take over both floors of The Cat on Pride Friday. It’s a guaranteed good time, shit show, where the ladies come out in full force (but people of all genders are certainly welcome). I’m especially excited to see Natty Boom and Alex DB back in town from NOLA for this one!
Sonic Cinema presents DC is Burning!
Location: Bossa Bistro + Lounge
DJs: Vjuan Allure & Chris Burns
411: I have to say- this is one of the best bookings of Pride 2016! On Friday- legendary ballroom scene DJ Vjuan Allure plus DC’s Chris Burns will be DJing to the back drop of Paris is Burning playing on a big screen. Seriously- what more do you want for Pride? Marcus Webb is the brainchild behind Sonic Cinema- a monthly event pairing DJs with film.
Otter Crossing PRIDE 16 // with Bright Light Bright Light (DJ Set) & CTRL
Location: Green Lantern
DJs: Bright Light Bright Light & CTRL
411: Fuzzy pride hits peak celebration at the consistently fun party Otter Crossing this Friday. Back again from last year to do a DJ set, is indie-pop favorite Bright Light Bright Light, joined by the boys of CTRL, a monthly indie-dance party at Town.
BEST ABOVE GROUND:
Cap Pride & BYT Present: HEX – The Abracadabulous Opening Party!
Location: Dock 5 & Union Market
411: I normally don’t give write-ups for the official events, but I gotta give it up for BYT. They consistently go big for Pride, but this year they really stepped up their booking game by bringing in DJ Lisa Moody from Baltimore’s legendary Deep Sugar and Girl Squad crew. Kudos, BYT! Add in awesome live act Mundy and fierce drag queens Chi Chi DeVayne and Thorgy Thor- this should be their best pride party yet.
SATURDAY – JUNE 11TH
Flash & CPA present HIPS fundraiser w/ Dean Sullivan, Keenan Orr
DJs: Dean Sullivan & Keenan Orr
411: Flash is hosting an awesome fundraising event Saturday during from 6-9:30 to support HIPS– a really important community organization here in the district. About HIPS: “HIPS promotes the health, rights, and dignity of individuals and communities impacted by sexual exchange and/or drug use due to choice, coercion, or circumstance. HIPS provides compassionate harm reduction services, advocacy, and community engagement that is respectful, non-judgmental, and affirms and honors individual power and agency. We believe that those engaged in sex work, sex trade, and drug use should be able to live healthy, self-determined, and self-sufficient lives free from stigma, violence, criminalization or oppression. We will achieve this through engaging sex workers, drug users and our communities in challenging structural barriers to health, safety, and prosperity.”
Plus with DJs Dean Sullivan and Keenan Orr, this is going to be the perfect post-parade, pre-night time turn up event!
PRIDE ’16: GAY MARVINE, DJ Lisa Frank & The NeedlExchange
Location: U Street Music Hall
DJs: Gay Marvine (Bath House Etiquette), DJ Lisa Frank, The NeedlExchange (Bil Todd, Baronhawk & Tommy Cornelis)
411: U Street Music Hall, TNX & Lisa Frank are teaming up again for their 3rd consecutive Pride party. In the past, we’ve brought you Honey Dijon, Honey Soundsystem, Nancy Whang, and Kim Ann Foxman, and they’re not disappointing this year either. Gay Marvine, real name Chuck Hampton, earned his chops DJing in Detroit in the 90s alongside greats such as Derrick May, Juan Atkins, DWynn, Stacey Pullen, and many noted others. He absolutely tore up Movement this year, playing at the Opportunity Detroit Stage at the festival, the queer underground after party Club Toilet, and the Bunker after-party at Tangent too. His sets are based in Detroit house and techno classics, working in his own amazing disco edits along the way. He’s making his DC debut this year alongside the uhall pride crew for what is undoubtedly the top pick for pride weekend. You can even win free tickets through Tortoise and The Snare!
And check out Gay Marvine’s preview mix on the TNX SoundCloud Page!
3-Year Anniversary: Motel Flash with Honey Dijon, K-Hand, Sean Morris; TrioTech
DJs: Honey Dijon, K-Hand, Sean Morris
Flash is hosting a whole slate of quality events for its 3-year Anniversary this week, under the moniker “Motel Flash”, and my favorite among them is their Saturday pride event anchored by Chicago native & NYC resident Honey Dijon and Detroit’s K-Hand. These ladies are gonna turn you out with quality house, disco, techno and more. I gotta say- it’s pretty awesome having a trans woman headline one of the biggest bookings of Pride weekend 2016! If you’ve never seen Honey Dijon, add this to your party stops Saturday night. And check out this interview Blisspop did with K-Hand to learn more.
Bare – Pride Month
DJs: DJ Rosie and Keenan
411: The Ladies of LURe are bringing in two of DC’s hardest working DJs in the game for their Pride event this year- DJ Rosie and Keenan Orr at Cobalt.
Saturday! Furball DC: Pride! W. Jeremy + Tedd Patterson
Location: Black Cat
DJs: W. Jeremy + Tedd Patterson
411: NYC-based men’s party Furball made its DC debut back during MAL alongside Pittsburgh’s Honcho DJs at The Black Cat, and Furball is returning again for Pride, this time bringing in NYC DJs W. Jeremy + Tedd Patterson. W. Jeremy is the co-owner of Get Up Recordings, which boasts Honey Dijon, Kim Ann Foxman, Discodromo and Vin Sol on its roster. I’m slightly worried the music may skew a bit tribal/circuity to the crowd, but these DJs certainly have the chops to bang it out.
BEST ABOVE GROUND
Pride Parade presented by Marriott Rewards®™©
I love our pride parade. We’re one of the only cities to do a Saturday parade instead of a Sunday one. Pro-tip- don’t get too drunk though. Far too many rookies blow their wad during the day and don’t make it out to the many, quality events happening Saturday night. Pride is a marathon, not a race! Here’s the route: http://www.capitalpride.org/celebration-2016/parade-map/.
SUNDAY – JUNE 12TH
We Can Make It Work 001
Location: Warehouse Location TBA
DJs: Juan Zapata, Zem Su Yung, Edo, Grody, Philco, Yomimbi
411: This is not a queer event, per say, but in the past year, the connection between the queer underground and the larger head community has never been stronger, and it’s been most evident at the many after-hours and day time warehouse parties popping up all over the city, where mixed crowds have allowed these events to thrive. These DJ vets all have large queer followings too, including Zem Su Yung who was one of TNX’s first guests when we made the move to Zeba Bar.
Smokeshow – PRIDE Closing Party!
Location: Old Engine 12 Firehouse
DJs: Vodkatrina and Tezrah
411: Featuring women’s party honchos Vodkatrina & Tezrah (who is insanely busy this pride season!), this closing party features free entry if you attend Saturday’s #PrettyBoiPride pre-parade party at the Bier Baron!
BEST ABOVE GROUND:
Pride Festival Presented by Live! Casino®™©
Location: Pennsylvania Ave NW between 3rd and 7th Streets NW
411: Megan Trainer (I’m not even bothering to look up if I’m spelling her name correctly) headlines the concert portion of the Street Fest this year, so if you head down there, the DuPont Tent is the place to be. Here’s the lineup:
12-1 DJ Jill Jack
1-2 DJ Sean Morris
2-3 DJ Nick Ayler
3-4 DJ Sidekick
4-5 DJ Tim Jackson
5-6 DJ Keenan Orr
6-7 DJ Madscience
That’s a wrap! If I missed your event, hit me up on FB and I’ll be happy to add it- assuming you don’t play circuit music there ?