Hot Monkey Love Café owner Alma Felan allowed Funny Farm Productions to stage a series of Saturday hip-hop events called the Candy Shop, which featured a rotating group of DJs and MCs.
"We had 500 kids here," she says of the first event on February 3. "There were another 100 we had to turn away." On March 3, Felan called the cops on her own show.
"We close at midnight, and we turn out a lot of kids. They caused a scene outside [loitering, arguing, and being loud]. We called the cops to make sure they would leave safely." The following week, on March 10, Felan hired seven licensed and bonded security guards, plus she kept three of her own. Yet, she says she had a different sort of problem.
"There was a strong smell of marijuana coming from [the performers' dressing room]. They denied they were smoking it. I got very upset. I had them escorted out....
"My security patted everyone down [before entering the café on March 10]. They told me that some of the artists were snuck in the back door by the promoters; this was a slap in my face. This is disrespect. The promoters told me it was not a big deal....
"Even though I'm a liberal person, there are certain things you do not do around children. I feel that I have a responsibility to the parents who let their kids come here. I told them I was canceling [Candy Shop] shows. Now Funny Farm Entertainment is telling people to boycott all my shows."
On Candy Shop's MySpace website, the following bulletin was posted last week: "I'm asking U The Homiez 4 ur support this SATURDAY! Hot Monkey Love Does Not Want To Support Local Artists. Their Exact Words Are They ALL SUCK! Now they want to close the only club that supports artists like U.... We R gonna hand out flyers stating why they closed us. ME & TOMMY STARTED THIS SPOT FOR YOU GUYS. We are dedicating a new spot 2 just artists but b4 then we need your help if ur down!!! Let me know if your down to shut the doors for real!"
Funny Farm Productions is a partnership between James "Big Daddy" Quitugua and Tommy T. (who were a morning DJ team on Z-90 until 2002). Tommy T. denies bringing any of the pot smokers into the venue. He denies that it was the performers who were smoking pot.
"We were with them onstage.... Before that last night we brought our own security and we never had any problems. She fired them and brought in her own security [on March 10]. None of those guys knew what they were doing."
Tommy T. says he stands by his e-mail that calls for a boycott of Hot Monkey Love Café and that Funny Farm is looking for a new venue to host the Candy Shop.