Another Partyline time lapse. The bad news is the lag time continues because of the New Year ploppin’ down in the middle of the week and holding me back in order to make deadlines. The good news is you will finally get to hear what was hot in these streets for New Year’s Eve – and we will be back in real time starting next week. But let me jump right into this New Year’s Eve rundown.
Scratching my head at Sommore. Let me say that I was thrilled that The New Year’s Weekend Comedy Festival did not happen on New Year’s Eve and disrupt the rhythm of my party flow. Sommore came stomping through the Chaifetz Arena once again with the sickest shoe game imaginable. Those silver red-bottom booties would have been a perfect Christmas gift. But shockingly, I can’t really say I felt the same way as I usually do about her little piece of set before the show got started. I could have just been being hypersensitive, but I felt a little like she might have a taste of team Make America Great Again in her spirit. Okay, you thought it was cute that Trump quietly prank-called the whole country with his Presidential Alert, but to say that he does fly [expletive] is a stretch. And when she tried to justify folks calling the police on other folks by saying that it’s the mass shooting culture that has them on alert is a mess, when black people are getting the cops called on them for saying “good morning” with too much bass had me looking super sideways. Now, I did holler when she talked about how there is no excuse to be ugly in 2019 with all of the tools that the girls have to get glammed up – and how back in the day, the only thing you had to work with in creating a diversion was a long, stringy bang.
New Year, same jokes. The show continued as regular Mike Epps openers Kenny Howell and St. Louis’ own Gary “G Thang” Johnson did what they do. I was happy there was some fresh funny on the tour in the form of another St. Louisan Guy Torry. He was hilarious during his gig at the Funny Bone last year, but at The Chaifetz he essentially spent his whole time coaching random audience members through a simulated snooze of a “love scene.” The winning “performer” got $100, but we didn’t get any jokes. DC Young Fly was in St. Louis so many times in 2018 that I feel it’s safe for me to start the rumor that he has his own little Red Hot Riplet (if you get my drift) somewhere in the 314/618. I still cackled at his bits, though. The MVP of the night though, undoubtedly went to Mark Curry. I know y’all probably think that Mr. Cooper might be corny, but I hollered through his whole set. My favorites were when he said he smuggled his father’s gun inside the school and his daddy was such a savage that he walked up in the school and got it back. And his mother pulled a pistol on him and his siblings in church and said “Keep playin’ with me. I’ll shoot this one bullet and it will go through all eight of ya’ll!” I was DOA. As much as I ride for Mike Epps, I was so underwhelmed by his headlining set, that I was concerned. He tried to refresh some of his old standby jokes, and it was borderline pitiful. I know for a fact Mike Epps is double-over funny, so maybe he’s going through something. But this will mark the second year in a row he’s brought in a new year with old jokes. And DC Young Fly won the battle of the afterparties between him and Mike Epps. He had the Marquee on lean. I thought Mike was holding his own until I got up in Dos Salas and realized that all those cars belonged to the folks who walked over to the Marquee.
Strolling out of 2018. Let me say that the pretty girls of the Gamma Omega chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha played no games when it came to going out of 2018 with a bang. The AKAs were up first with their End of the Year party Friday before New Year’s Eve at The Machinists’ Hall. They brought out the undergraduates, graduates, gold, silver and diamond stars of AKA and folks from all of the other fraternities and sororities on the dance floor for an epic gathering that can best be described as “Stomp The Yard: Grown and Sexy Edition.” Am I the only one who had never seen Alphas, AKAs and Deltas step alongside the Kappas when “Freaks of the Industry” came on before that Friday night? And it was so packed that I’m sure some folks pulled up in the Bridgeton Target parking lot expecting to partake in somebody’s midnight sale only to learn that those cars were people packed up in the Machinist Hall putting on for their fraternities and sororities in a major way.
“DJ Lyte” and the dapper Nupes. The AKAs weren’t the only organization going hard in the name of beautiful folks. The pretty boys of Kappa Alpha Psi gave guests a New Year’s Eve experience to remember at the Union Station Hotel with hip-hop legend MC Lyte on tables keeping the party turnt. She has some serious skills as “DJ Lyte” too. Did y’all know she was a member of Sigma Gamma Rho? All of my favorite Nupes came dressed to the nines for the sold-out event that had the longest Kappa stroll I’ve seen not on somebody’s HBCU campus. I was hoping that some of them had brought their canes, but I know first-hand that Crown Royal and cane twirling don’t mix. Most of this crowd was the pre-shoulder-shimmy generation of Kappas, but they still served up entertaining smooth strolls as we rang into 2019.
Young folks formally in the New Year’s Eve spirit. I had the time of my life watching the Millennials handle New Year’s Eve like grown folks. My first stop on the party scene was the Marquee, and I knew I would be delighted when I saw the line filled with after five and cocktail attire. I was like “y’all better come through with the gold sequined gowns and classy black dresses.” It was quite cute. They had some plus-sized appetizers for the folks as they came in. The vibe was so sophisticated that I almost felt out of place, so I just perched by the table with the steak sliders and threw down ahead of my annual cleanse. Even though it was sweaty by the time I made it over there, The Sauce Events crew had a similarly panache vibe going over at Blue Ultra Lounge. If folks keep it as classy going out of 2019 as they did when they were ringing it in, I might have to recycle my salute dress as a beat the streets in the name of the New Year.