The pert, 2D bunny head, one ear tilted rakishly to the side, is instantly recognizable as the Playboy trademark. Whether you love or revile the fantastic, plastic Playmates, Hugh Hefner and Playboy are nevertheless pop culture icons. The bunny has once again become fashionable, with newly trendy T-shirts and thongs selling out at specialty boutiques like N.Y.’s Henri Bendel and L.A.’s Fred Segal. A recent partnering with post-feminist, alterna-girl pin-up site SuicideGirls.com confirms Playboy’s keen business sense to attract the hip, pro-sex feminist market. Fueling the fire of this popular resurgence is the Playboy 50th Anniversary Club Tour, a 50-city tour that promises to take “privileged patrons” back to the day of the “private key playgrounds” of the 1960s Playboy clubs.
Playboy must have known that Nashville needed some “bam-chicka-bam-bam.” (Want proof? Check the Casual Encounters section of www.nashville.craigslist.org.) The skintastic tour kicked off here on Fat Tuesday at the Havana Lounge. I caught up with our local Playmate, Stephanie Heinrich, a.k.a. Miss October 2001, for a brief chat about the tour and more.
“The best thing about this tour,” Stephanie says, “is that it re-creates the vibe of the classic Playboy parties. It’s pretty cool to see the bunnies and Hef’s famous bed.”
What about Hef and the infamous mansion? “Hef is wonderful. He really respects women and is very generous” she says. “The mansion is all that and more.”
Ever get into a catfight with another Playmate? “No!” Stephanie giggles. “We Playmates are at the top of our game. There’s no jealousy.”
What’s it like to be a Playmate? “It’s fun. But do know that Playmates are normal women who like pizza and drink beer.” Quite the down-to-earth Nashville girl our Stephanie is....
Other femmes fatales were found Saturday night at the “Soundtrack of our Lives” event, hosted by Mike Grimes at the Mercy Lounge. Annette Cornelius from Venus Hum was there to support artist friend Mark Sloniker. Local favorite Daniel Tashian and new rockers The Taste complemented the sultry sounds of Jen Cohen and Derek Hoke. I loved that Jen’s glittering attire included her chic eyeglasses, making her part siren, part sexy librarian.
The art was as varied as the music, including works by artists in the “untitled” collective and some exceptional pieces by established artists such as Mark Hosford and Lesley Patterson. Art-related events in Nashville consistently draw an intriguing and unpretentious crowd....
Checking in on...PM café. A recent trip to PM confirmed that the crowd is still delightfully winsome, though in a barely legal kind of way. I was completely beguiled by PM’s entertainment, the very young, but very capable, hip-hop trio Out of Place. The two turntablists were deftly skilled, and the emcee looked way too young to be so smooth.
Hey househeads, don’t miss the Elevator Music Collective workin’ the wax with special guests Tortured Soul and Jolby at Audity Central this Friday at The End. Saturday, hang with the tattooed rock-a-billy set when Joshua Black Wilkins takes over Layla’s. Sunday, take your little turn on the red carpet catwalk for the Belcourt Theatre’s official Oscar Party and fundraiser.
By Amy Waddell
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