The idea of ‘safe spaces’ has become controversial, but in nightlife it’s increasingly important

When Kate Ross first came out, she would go to lesbian bars and parties by herself. She didn’t exactly get a warm welcome. At the lesbian dance party She Rex, which used to pop up at Chief Ike’s Mambo Room, she says a fellow partygoer took one look at her high heels and long hair and called her a “confused straight girl.”

“I shaved off all my hair and had a mohawk,” she says. “No one questioned me after that.”

Read more in the Washington Post.


Brent Faiyaz brings R&B to Southwest Wharf’s new Union Stage

“On Friday night, R&B singer Brent Faiyaz opened his concert at Union Stage with the lyric, “I remember being scared to go home.” Soon, the 22-year-old Columbia, Md., native would prove he had nothing to fear.”

Read more in The Washington Post.

Interview | Julius Jetson

“As Julius Jetson, 26-year-old DMV talent Julian Ragland has spent the last few years treating audiences to new songs, styles, and artists, first as a party promoter, then as a DJ-producer, and now as the head of his Ghetto Ghetto imprint. But it turns out his gift for musical introduction started even earlier.”

Read more at Blisspop.

Lana Del Rey finds truth in the artifice at Capital One Arena

“Pop culture is artifice, and the only pop star brave enough to fully acknowledge that is Lana Del Rey. The 32-year-old singer-songwriter has made a career out of authentically embracing inauthenticity, exploring the dark allure of nostalgic Americana for her generation of devotees. “Look at you kids with your vintage music,” she sings to them on “Love.” “You’re part of the past, but now you’re the future, signals crossing can get confusing.” On Thursday night, there was nothing confusing at Capital One Arena, where Del Rey invited the audience to visit the fantasy world she has created.”

Read more in The Washington Post.

Justin Trawick’s journey to Americana

“As a kid, Justin Trawick thought he knew every nook, cranny and creaking floorboard of his childhood home in rural Loudoun County, Va. He was an only child — his “closest friends were chickens and cows” — and he spent plenty of time exploring the pre-Civil War home. But it wasn’t until the summer before he started high school that he made a discovery that would change the course of his life.”

Read more in The Washington Post.

Maxo Kream, Punken review

“With his last two projects, Maxo Kream established himself as one of rap’s best storytellers, his trap tales heavy with gory details and delivered as bursts of semiautomatic syllables. On Punken, the 27-year-old Houston artist opens up about the world that forged him, revealing the forces and decisions that turned a young knucklehead into someone facing five to 99 for organised crime.”

Read more in Crack Magazine.

The best old albums that we discovered in 2017

“After Chris Cornell’s death in May, I tumbled down a Northwest rock wormhole and revisited the 1996 documentary “Hype!” As is always the case when a scene becomes an arms race, there are plenty of bands beyond the Soundgardens and Nirvanas that make all those headlines and platinum plaques possible. In this case, one of those bands was the Gits. In the film, they are seen performing “Second Skin:” Lead singer Mia Zapata sounds like a punk rock Janis Joplin as she lives up to her “I’ve got that chance to give every drop that’s left in me” lyric, leaving it all on the stage.”

Read more in The Washington Post.

Federalist Pig Founder Wants to Blanket D.C. in Killer Barbecue

For years, “Adams Morgan” was synonymous with cheap booze, jumbo slice, and regrettable decisions. “I grew up in D.C. and remember when nothing went on in Adams Morgan,” says Rob Sonderman, the seasoned pitmaster at crazy popular barbecue spot — and aspiring local chain — Federalist Pig, who recalls nights at Madam’s Organ or the Reef as “wall-to-wall people, sweating and getting drunk.”

Read more at Eater DC.