When word hit that Beanie Sigel — still the hardest rapper in Philly — was hooking up with local label manipulator Chris Schwartz, ears pricked up. Sigel never stopped being formidable even when fortunes grew smaller and jail time loomed larger. His lean, mean MC style can be heard on a recently released mixtape (Broad Street Empire Vol. 1: Lost Files) then on an EMI-distributed full-length this summer (the album, titled This Time or The Classic, to be released Aug. 14). Schwartz is known for Ruffhouse Records and its legendary decade (’89-’99) of smashes with Lauryn Hill, the unrelated Cypress Hill and beyond. After that came RuffNation. The big Schwartz news is that he’s been quietly gathering old business associates from both of his past labels for what could be a Ruff-Something-or-Other 3.0. Let’s see if he picks on the prettier Nicolo brother (of the Butcher Bros. production team) to aid him in his quest. (I’ll leave y’all to decide whether Joe or Phil is looking cuter of late.)
West Chester chef Dan Funk, come on down! The Food Network producers of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives dined at Funk’s Social Lounge two Tuesdays ago, dug the Cajun fare and are looking to bring host Guy Fieri in for a taping in August (he will already be in the We-Chest for an appearance on QVC). Funk and Fieri will meet in NYC to hammer out the details of their spicy date.
Anyone going to one of Mr. Kim Kardashian (Kanye West)’s two shows at Revel in Atlantic City will be able to sample the hotel/casino’s new four-tier nightclub HQ, though only one or two of the levels will be open this weekend — the whole hot spot won’t grand-open until September. A slate of top-notch DJs like Calvin Harris, Chromeo and A-Trak will be hitting HQ’s boards before autumn.
The layman might not know him, but Philly scribes and film professionals alike have recognized Allied-THA promo maven Nick Tarnowski as a man who steers the ship and guides the timetable. Sadly, he’s leaving town to become director of Allied-THA’s Denver office (the company now has offices worldwide). In a note to his constituents, Nick recalled eight happy years of screenings and stunts. “Hell, I once put the Phanatic in a chair hooked up to balloons and sent him over 100 feet into the air,” said Tarnowski. “How many people can say that?” How many people can say that their stunts were sometimes better than the movies they were promoting, too? Thanks, Nick.
Whether you’re listening to Geator Gold AM, gambling at SugarHouse or heading to the Shore (maybe Margate), make sure you stop your car and shout a belated “happy birthday” to the Boss with the Hot Sauce, Jerry Blavat, who just turned 72 July 3.