Levi, “social chairman” of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity at Cal State San Marcos, says, “Most of the students don’t live within a five-mile radius of the campus. There isn’t much to do on campus. We don’t have a football or basketball team.”
To create a social scene, Levi and the band Morning Riot staged eight off-campus parties within the past eight months. The events featured DJs, a live set by Morning Riot, and alcohol. They charged admission ($5 for women, $10 for men), and guests could only get in if they were dressed according to the prespecified theme (pajamas, sports uniforms, devils and angels, pilgrims and Indians, or Greeks in togas).
“It was an excuse for young people to show up with as little as possible on,” says Morning Riot drummer Josh Ahrend. The Jumping Turtle was rented out for the first four events, he says. When the parties outgrew the San Marcos club, they looked for a bigger venue.
“After being rejected by 20 to 30 places, I finally found Kaito in Encinitas,” says Ahrend. He says the band and the frat staged four parties at the 250-capacity sushi restaurant.
“Every event had a line of people around the building.” The last party was held on February 16.
“It was, like, 200 people over capacity.… The whole place was like one big mosh pit. There was so much condensation, you could write your name on the windows. There was so much moisture that our equipment started shorting out and we kept getting electrocuted.… There was vomit inside and outside. It was so packed that one girl had an anxiety attack. They had to call an ambulance.…
“There were undercover officers busting kids for drinking. I don’t know how they slipped in. I think there were, like, five people cited. The next thing you know, the cops showed up. At one time I saw eight cop cars, but I think there was more. They came inside and started clearing people out. It was over by 11:05. We were only into our fourth song. When they cleared everyone out, the place was in shambles.… The two midgets and the dominatrix we hired to perform never got to go on.”
Ahrend says that the owners of Kaito had sold their business and liquor license to another company and that February 16 was their last night in business. (The restaurant’s website, however, indicates that the restaurant planned a move to a different Encinitas location.)
ABC administrator Robin Van Dyke admits that ABC investigators were present but she won’t disclose why they were there or how many under-age citations were given out. She confirms that Kaito’s liquor license was being sold but that any ABC-related penalties must be addressed by the old owners before a transfer is allowed.
Attempts to reach Kaito management were not successful.
– Ken Leighton
Muse from Beyond Newish neighbor David J has reunited with Bauhaus multiple times and is planning a Love and Rockets reunion, but first there’s his musical about the life of Edie Sedgwick, which debuts March 6 in L.A.
“It’s part one-woman show [and] part rock concert, replete with avant-garde minimalist staging and video imagery,” says J on his blog of Silver for Gold (the Odyssey of Edie Sedgwick), which he wrote and directs. Sedgwick is best known as Andy Warhol’s onetime muse whose beauty and descent into tragedy have become the stuff of pop-culture legend.
“Writing Silver for Gold,” says J, “it felt as if I had entered into a subtle psychic relationship with this beautiful dead girl, and she was actively encouraging me to write. She became a bright light that glowed all the brighter whenever I started to create. It was as if she was feeding on the attention. This might sound highly fanciful, but that is how it felt. Edie was enduring in her ultimate role, that of the muse.”
Some incidental music for the production was provided by Marcelo Radulovich, of the local Trummerflora arts collective.
During his local residency, David J has DJ’d at clubs and sat in with a local Bauhaus tribute band at the Casbah. He mentored local singer-songwriter Renata Youngblood and recorded with her, reportedly playing her debut EP for Bauhaus front man Peter Murphy at the 2005 Coachella music festival and thus landing her an opening slot on Murphy’s subsequent solo tour.
Silver for Gold (the Odyssey of Edie Sedgwick) debuts March 6 at the Met Theatre in Hollywood and will run through March 16.
– Jay Allen Sanford
Box-Office Surprise “The show was fabulous, and the venue is fabulous,” says “Melanie” of the February 8 Tab Benoit show at Anthology. She says she loves just about everything about the 300-capacity supper club and music showcase in Little Italy, but she wasn’t too happy about a box-office surprise.
“I was there for the second show. We waited in line and paid cash for the tickets. When it comes time to pay, there was a $3-per-ticket service charge.”
She recalls the ticket price being advertised as between $10 and $27.
“When I asked about it, there was this guy who worked there named Roy who told us it was to pay for three ‘beautiful women’ who worked the door. That’s not exactly what I wanted to hear.…
“I just think it should have been advertised that tickets start at $13. Besides, if they are going to use that money for nice-looking people, get some hot guys down there, goddamn it.”
One local promoter says service charges have become more common.
“It started about five years ago; it’s just the newest trend to develop another revenue stream. House of Blues does it. The Sports Arena has a $3.50 service charge. Qualcomm and Coors also charge a service charge for every ticket they sell.”
The promoter says that many artists appear for a set guarantee versus a percentage of the door (whichever is greater). Because the service charge is not part of the advertised ticket price, the venue does not have to pay the artist a percentage of that fee.