Meeting Moby (NYE/NYC 1990)
New Year’s Eve 1990. It had been a strange and amazing week in New York City. Staying at the Chelsea Hotel with Sean, Wigan, Nat, Lovejoy and the rest of the gang. We’d met Michael Alig and Superstar Dj Keoki had chaperoned us around The Limelight. We ended-up backstage with Deee-lite at the Palladium. And I’d danced around my handbag in various VIP Rooms with the likes of Susan Anton, Bobby Konders and Lady Miss Kier.
Still, 48 hours later, on January 2nd, IF? were supposed to do a LIVE PA at a small rock-n-roll club called The Chase on 3rd Ave. From that afternoon, our rotary phone in the hotel ‘suite’ hadn’t stopped ringing. And it seemed like every British ex-pat in town wanted to come to the show.
It was hard to fathom that during the way-too-late sound-check, IF?’s DAT Machine malfunctioned and Sean couldn’t get the backing tracks to play. At that point the club was already half-full and the band and myself were already on-stage — with me ready to introduce them.
I’m not sure whose idea it was to turn this epic-fail into an impromptu jam session. But somehow, there I was, in an orange Axl Rose wig, singing everything from the Sex Pistols greatest hits to Groovy Train by The Farm with IF? as my backing band. Ironically, by the second chorus of Anarchy In The UK other friends had joined us, grabbing instruments – including AGCG on keys, Lovejoy on congas and Seal Henry Samuel on tambourine and percussion (yes THE Seal). I think Mark Moore was there, too — I just don’t remember what instrument he was playing.
The Jam session lasted for nearly an hour — by which time the entire club had kicked-off. Everyone singing a-long or clapping. And ‘the show’ ended with rousing cheers.
Later at the bar (almost like a scene from The Blues Brothers) an older guy, replete with Tom Selleck moustache and sharkskin suit gave myself and Lovejoy his business card. He was after signing ‘the band’ to his label. And he seemed quite disappointed to hear that IF? was signed to MCA, Gerald to CBS, Seal was between MCA or ZTT and Lovejoy had his own Kooky Grooves label.
About 30 minutes later Lovejoy and myself had a similar experience with another Performer/Producer who introduced himself at the bar. I just remember this guy being slightly built. Big spectacles like Joe 90. Softly spoken. And he said he was putting together a new album for the owner of Instinct Records — whose apartment he was staying in. Anyway, he was looking for singers/performers for his album and he invited Lovejoy and I to “drop by the next day to listen to his demos.”
So, Thursday afternoon, we go round to the doorman building (somewhere near Park or 5th Ave) and meet the guy with the big Joe 90 glasses, from The night before. It’s a fancy, tiny apartment. Framed releases from Instinct Records on the walls. A recoding studio set-up in the front room. Sequencers and analog kit everywhere. And the guy plays us his demos — asking me if I’m interested on singing on them or Lovejoy playing with him. We politely decline, of course saying he maybe needs a girl singer — or at least somebody who can actually sing.
The guy wasn’t offended. He remained cordial. We left. No big thing. Still, I wondered if the guy or his tracks would ever go anywhere..?
Of course the demos we heard were off his first album and a track called GO. The guy with the big glasses was Moby — who would later feature samples from Daniel Ash’s side project TONES ON TAIL and Laura Palmer’s theme from TWIN PEAKS on the VERY same tunes he played us.
Decades later I would meet Moby at a party in Hollywood at Paul Boyd/Angie Martinez’s house. I think I was there with Wildcat Wil. Moby said hello but didn’t remember me. Why would he? Still — we both do Transcendental Meditation now. And I think he’ss also been to MIU in Fairfield Iowa. Maybe that’s the eternal connection? Maybe there’s no connection at all? Maybe it was just the Acid or The House?