Category: Canal Room


A Birthday Extravaganza

January 20th, 2013 — 1:31pm

Apart from the whole getting older thing, I’m a big fan of birthdays. They’re an opportunity to, as Oprah Winfrey once said, rock it out and celebrate with the people you love most. As I gear up to turn 39 tomorrow, I’m happy and blessed to say this is already one of the best birthdays ever.

Me and Julie

The celebrating began last weekend, with a visit to Glen Cove in Long Island to see my dear friend Julie. Over a delicious dinner at one of her favorite restaurants, we talked about her preparations for motherhood – she’s expecting a baby next month – and my recent fun return to speed dating.

Back at the house she shares with hubby Brian, the three of us had some laughs about eccentric baby names as we enjoyed delicious apple pie and chocolate cream pie. A perfect night with a truly lovely couple who are perfect for each other.

Birthday festivities kicked into high gear on Friday at work, when my amazing boss and colleagues treated me to lunch at Amaze, a cozy Sushi place in Midtown and presented me with a $100 gift card to TJ Maxx. Back at the Westin New York Grand Central, they surprised me with a selection of delicious mini-cupcakes from Baked By Melissa.

Bite sized perfection: mini-cupcakes from Baked By Melissa

How lucky am I to work with such thoughtful people?

Yesterday was an afternoon of fun and pampering. It started with lunch at Hudson Place with my old friend Abby, in town from Boston with her family. Next stop, a heavenly pedicure at my favorite nail spa, Dashing Diva. Then, it was off to SoHo for a girls night out with my dear friends Crystal, Lisa and Sara.

Girls Night Out: (from left) Crystal, Lisa me and Sara

We met up for dinner at Italian bistro Barolo. Though our waiter was a little slow on the uptake, we enjoyed every bite. I treated myself to a melt-in-your-mouth burrata appetizer followed by linguini alle vongole. For dessert, we all shared crème brulee, warm banana tart and the dessert I would marry if I could, tiramisu.

Our next stop – my all-time favorite nightclub, Canal Room, to see awesome 80’s tribute band Jessie’s Girl. I knew it was going to be a great night when I encountered keyboardist Sky. When I told him I had posted on the band’s Facebook wall about my birthday, he said he happily changed the set list to accommodate one of my favorite 80’s tunes, and offered to make sure I was pulled up on stage when they played it.

Getting in touch with my inner 80's superstar alongside Jessie's Girl!

Sure enough, I got a birthday shoutout and relived a magical moment from a few birthdays back by joining the band on stage for the Erasure classic, “A Little Respect.” As I shook my booty alongside the high energy, super talented band members of Jessie’s Girl, I felt like the luckiest 80’s child in the world.

There is good reason I’ve raved about Canal Room so often over the years. It’s that rare nightspot where you can always count on great music, a good crowd and none of the attitude which tends to accompany most clubs in NYC. If you haven’t been there and you love to dance, you’re missing out.

Thanks to my wonderful friends and Jessie’s Girl for a rockstar birthday celebration!

Comment » | 80's cover band, Barolo, birthday celebrations, Canal Room, Girls Night Out, Jessie's Girl, SoHo, Westin New York Grand Central

A Second Date With A Semi-Surprising Outcome

December 8th, 2012 — 7:40pm

My second date with Long Island bachelor and OkCupid member E began much like the first – at a fabulous nightspot in Chelsea.

We met for drinks at The Darby, an upscale jazz club and restaurant with rich, elegant décor and great music. As we clinked glasses, E said I looked pretty and we made easy small talk about the holidays and our plans for the evening.

For dinner, E chose Crispo, a first-class Italian bistro with a cozy main dining room featuring exposed brick, a waterfall and wrought iron chairs. The food was amazing – I had black truffle ricotta ravioli and we shared a sublime tiramisu for dessert. Along the way, E asked a lot of questions and listened intently as I told him about my travels to Australia over the years and what I learned during my U.S. Dating Blitz.

Crispo serves delicious, authentic Italian fare (Photo Courtesy: Whollygastromony.com)

I found myself thinking maybe I had read too much into his gay-related observations on date #1 — until we got to Canal Room down in Soho.

As we waited for awesome 80’s tribute band Jessie’s Girl to take the stage, E quoted some advice a friend had shared with him–

“’If you like this girl, don’t tell her you like Neil Diamond.’”

While I’m processing why he’s telling me this, E reflects on how popular tight jeans were during the 80’s – and gestures toward the rear end of a guy in front of us who’s wearing them.

At this point, I can’t ignore the fact that my gay-dar vibe is sounding an alarm. I try putting that aside once the concert starts, doing by best to just enjoy Jessie’s Girl’s energetic set of 80’s classics. But when E leans over – twice – to comment on the band’s muscle-shirt clad male backup singer, my patience begins to wear thin. Nothing’s a bigger buzzkill than having your date make eyes at other men.

E and I shared an awkward cab ride back uptown.

“I’ll talk to you soon,” he called out as he shut the door and I knew that wasn’t going to happen. Because clearly, he has a few things to figure out when it comes to who exactly he wants to date.

Though I managed to eventually find the humor in this unexpected episode, it also served as a cautionary tale of what can happen when you rely too heavily on the Internet to find love. I’ve said it many times and it bears repeating: online dating is a lot like gambling. There are the lucky few who hit the jackpot and then there’s everybody else. I, for one, have had my fill of cyberspace-instigated dates. So I’m officially taking my online profile down and making a New Year’s resolution to get offline and back out there again.

The quest for love continues.

2 comments » | 80's cover band, Canal Room, Chelsea, new year's resolutions, OKCupid, online dating, second dates

NYC Event Pick: We’ve Got You Covered Concert For Sandy Relief

November 28th, 2012 — 8:09pm

Longtime readers of this blog know I’m a huge fan of concerts at the Canal Room in SoHo. So I’m excited to tell you the club is hosting We’ve Got You Covered, a benefit concert for Sandy Relief with a rock star lineup of entertainment.

Next Wednesday December 5th, four of NYC’s best cover bands will perform at Canal Room – Elektric Company (70’s music), Jessie’s Girl (80’s), Bayside Tigers (90’s) and Party Rock (2K and today’s pop). All proceeds support All Hands Volunteers’ Hurricane Sandy relief programs.

Jessie's Girl puts on a totally awesome tribute to the 80's

I recently had the pleasure of seeing Jessie’s girl, a new iteration of Rubix Kube. It’s the same talented group of musicians, only fronted now by three new lead singers – each of whom bring the megawatt charisma and infectious energy needed to perform 80’s music. What’s also new is the guitarist and keyboard player take turns at the mike as well. In a word, awesome.

Every tribute band I’ve seen over the years at Canal Room has been fantastic. We’ve Got You Covered is a must-see show and a great deal besides – four bands for the price of one. Tickets are $20 and you can book online or pay at the door.

Comment » | 80's cover band, 80's music, Canal Room, concerts, NYC events, Rubix Kube

Reconnecting With A Blitz Bachelor

October 17th, 2010 — 2:41pm

Friday night, I had the pleasure of catching up with Anson, one of the bachelors from my US Dating Blitz.

Smart, funny and adorable, Anson was by far the best date of my two-month adventure. He showed me a great time while I was in Houston, so I was excited for the opportunity to reciprocate.

Petrarca: Anson and I enjoyed a sublime dinner at this Tribeca bistro (photo courtesy: Petrarca Cucino E Vino)

We met up in Tribeca at Italian bistro and wine bar Petrarca Cucino E Vino. Over a delicious dinner (creamless cauliflower soup and chicken with chanterelle mushrooms for me), Anson and I talked about my recent travels to Europe, his action-packed week in NYC and our mutual affection for karaoke and “The Goonies.” As it did during our first date, conversation just flowed and I found myself appreciating all over again how easy Anson is to talk to.

Voyage: Tribute bands don’t get any better than this

Our next stop — my favorite club, Canal Room. Taking to the stage were Bon Jovi tribute band Bon Jersey and Journey cover band Voyage. Though Bon Jersey rocked it (especially on “Dead or Alive” and “Livin On A Prayer“), there was no question the night belonged to Voyage. Lead singer and Steve Perry doppelganger Hugo had the entire crowd cheering as he belted out hits like “Faithfully” and “Oh Sherry” and, of course, “Don’t Stop Believin’” and “Anyway You Want It.”

Thanks to the generosity of Canal Room’s music promoter, Anson and I got to enjoy Voyage from the VIP seating area. After the show was over, we stuck around for the DJ and danced until 2am. I didn’t want the night to end.

Reconnecting with Anson was a wonderful reminder that good guys do exist.  Bachelors here in the Big Apple would do well to import some Texan charm.

Comment » | Bon Jovi, Canal Room, The Great Dating Blitz

An 80’s Style Birthday Celebration

January 26th, 2010 — 12:08am

Saturday night, I headed down to SoHo for a birthday celebration with my cousin Chris and ten of my best galpals.

Happy Birthday: Making a wish over a candle-lit slice of ricotta cheesecake

The evening’s festivities kicked off at Petrarca, an Italian bistro long on great service, delicious pasta and excellent wines. Over a delicious dinner (creamless cauliflower puree soup and risotto with porcini mushrooms for me), we talked about my friend Andrea’s new PR gig and the fun of being flooded with birthday wishes via Facebook.

Girls Night Out: (counterclockwise from right): Leila, Sara, me, Caroline, Rachel and Bobbi at Canal Room

After dinner, we headed over to my favorite NYC nightspot Canal Room, which graciously comped our admission for the show. Performing was my favorite 80’s tribute band, Rubix Kube.

Rubix Kube: Best 80’s tribute band ever

I’ve had the pleasure of seeing Rubix Kube a handful of times and they never disappoint. I was especially excited when keyboardist Rich Forman gave me a birthday shoutout.

What could be better than celebrating with good friends and revisiting the music of your childhood? I found out when I jumped on stage and rocked it out with lead singer Scott Lovelady.

A Little Respect: Rubix Kube’s Scott and I jammed to the 80’s Erasure hit

You can enjoy the sounds of Rubix Kube most Saturdays at Canal Room. The band will also be part of Canal Room’s Help For Haiti benefit concert on Wednesday February 3rd, featuring four tribute bands. Tickets are $20, click here for more info.

Comment » | 80's cover band, Canal Room, Girls Night Out, Petrarca restaurant, Rubix Kube, SoHo

An 80’s Style Birthday Celebration

January 25th, 2010 — 7:08pm

Saturday night, I headed down to SoHo for a birthday celebration with my cousin Chris and ten of my best galpals.

Happy Birthday: Making a wish over a candle-lit slice of ricotta cheesecake

The evening’s festivities kicked off at Petrarca, an Italian bistro long on great service, delicious pasta and excellent wines. Over a delicious dinner (creamless cauliflower puree soup and risotto with porcini mushrooms for me), we talked about my friend Andrea’s new PR gig and the fun of being flooded with birthday wishes via Facebook.

Girls Night Out: (counterclockwise from right): Leila, Sara, me, Caroline, Rachel and Bobbi at Canal Room

After dinner, we headed over to my favorite NYC nightspot Canal Room, which graciously comped our admission for the show. Performing was my favorite 80’s tribute band, Rubix Kube.

Rubix Kube: Best 80’s tribute band ever

I’ve had the pleasure of seeing Rubix Kube a handful of times and they never disappoint. I was especially excited when keyboardist Rich Forman gave me a birthday shoutout.

What could be better than celebrating with good friends and revisiting the music of your childhood? I found out when I jumped on stage and rocked it out with lead singer Scott Lovelady.

A Little Respect: Rubix Kube’s Scott and I jammed to the 80’s Erasure hit

You can enjoy the sounds of Rubix Kube most Saturdays at Canal Room. The band will also be part of Canal Room’s Help For Haiti benefit concert on Wednesday February 3rd, featuring four tribute bands. Tickets are $20, click here for more info.

Comment » | 80's cover band, Canal Room, Girls Night Out, Petrarca restaurant, Rubix Kube, SoHo

Finding My Sea Legs Again

December 27th, 2009 — 10:24pm


When it comes to things I’m thankful for this holiday season, the healing power of the human body is most definitely one of them.

I’ve been experiencing this particular wonder since a PDA-related fall with PR exec E one month ago. Slowly but surely, my injured leg has been regaining strength.

Last night, I felt like I had finally found my footing again, during — appropriately enough — an evening of dancing with E at my favorite SoHo nightspot Canal Room.

Awesome 80’s cover band Rubix Kube had me shaking my booty at full force. I’m in recovery mode today, but haven’t felt this good in weeks. Getting your groove on really is the best medicine.

Comment » | Canal Room, leg injuries, PDA, Rubix Kube, SoHo nightclubs

Finding My Sea Legs Again

December 27th, 2009 — 5:24pm


When it comes to things I’m thankful for this holiday season, the healing power of the human body is most definitely one of them.

I’ve been experiencing this particular wonder since a PDA-related fall with PR exec E one month ago. Slowly but surely, my injured leg has been regaining strength.

Last night, I felt like I had finally found my footing again, during — appropriately enough — an evening of dancing with E at my favorite SoHo nightspot Canal Room.

Awesome 80’s cover band Rubix Kube had me shaking my booty at full force. I’m in recovery mode today, but haven’t felt this good in weeks. Getting your groove on really is the best medicine.

Comment » | Canal Room, leg injuries, PDA, Rubix Kube, SoHo nightclubs

Weekend Event Pick: Unforgettable Fire Returns

May 5th, 2009 — 10:00pm

As I’ve mentioned before, one of my favorite live music venues is NYC’s Canal Room in Soho. And one of the best cover bands I’ve ever seen there, Unforgettable Fire, is making another appearance on Saturday, May 9th.

Unforgettable Fire (UF) is one of the longest-running U2 cover bands

I had the pleasure of seeing the U2 tribute band last fall. Like the rest of the standing room only crowd, I got swept up by UF’s electrifying performance – and lead singer Tony Russo’s uncanny resemblance to Bono.

UF knows how to put on a slickly produced show, with video montages and a frenetic mix of both classic and current U2 hits. I can’t think of a better warm up for U2’s upcoming 360 tour – which I’ll be seeing twice at Giants Stadium in September!

Tickets to this Saturday’s UF show are $18 in advance ($20 at the door) and UF will be performing with Grammy-nominated Reggae singer Pato Banton. For more info, visit http://www.canalroom.com/.

Comment » | Canal Room, SoHo, U2, U2 cover band, Unforgettable Fire

Weekend Event Pick: Unforgettable Fire Returns

May 5th, 2009 — 5:00pm

As I’ve mentioned before, one of my favorite live music venues is NYC’s Canal Room in Soho. And one of the best cover bands I’ve ever seen there, Unforgettable Fire, is making another appearance on Saturday, May 9th.

Unforgettable Fire (UF) is one of the longest-running U2 cover bands

I had the pleasure of seeing the U2 tribute band last fall. Like the rest of the standing room only crowd, I got swept up by UF’s electrifying performance – and lead singer Tony Russo’s uncanny resemblance to Bono.

UF knows how to put on a slickly produced show, with video montages and a frenetic mix of both classic and current U2 hits. I can’t think of a better warm up for U2’s upcoming 360 tour – which I’ll be seeing twice at Giants Stadium in September!

Tickets to this Saturday’s UF show are $18 in advance ($20 at the door) and UF will be performing with Grammy-nominated Reggae singer Pato Banton. For more info, visit http://www.canalroom.com/.

Comment » | Canal Room, SoHo, U2, U2 cover band, Unforgettable Fire

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