music matters

The local basketball team was in the club last night, the only people with money.  So annoying, tell me again about how Pantera is rich people music?[1]  I asked for Azealia Banks, it seemed like a valid time to request good music.

He asked why he should play Azealia Banks for me.

“Aside from the fact that I pay you 10% of what I make?” Cranky, I had to go there.
“You have to do that anyway.”


“Ok can you play MIA?”

“Like Paper Planes?”

“No.  Paper Planes should never be played again, let alone in a strip club.” I’ve lost count of how many strippers I’ve seen dance to that, each thinking it’s new and clever to clasp their hands together, pointing at the audience and pretending to fire at the part, you know the part.  Worse, I’ve seen girls get into fights over “whose song” it is and who did the gun/hand/shoot the audience thing first.  Tired. I’m insulted he even asked. If I’m going to dance to a song about wanting your money I’ll request Gangsta Boo.

Maybe he hasn’t been djing as long as I’ve been dancing or maybe he has a higher tolerance for cheesy stripper dramatics than I do.  He looks blank.

“Xxxo will be fine.”


1- The well-worn strip club line is that hip hop and rap is “poor people” music, ie, brown people don’t have money, so we shouldn’t encourage their presence in the club by playing music that… oh my god I can’t even finish that sentence. It’s too gross and stupid on so many levels.  We’re far enough from the 80s that men with money no longer want to hear Girls, Girls, Girls or whatever, but apparently no one’s found a passable replacement.

This seems to be fading at my club, or maybe it’s the fact that I tip an extra ten dollars to sometimes hear a song that makes me smile. One night I requested Santigold but the dj–the weeknight dj–was too busy staring at my boobs to register.  I thought he was kidding, but I repeated myself just in case.

“Santigold, got it?  Or if that’s too crazy I’ll settle for Paranoid.  Either should be good with these kids.”

He waved me away, and I found myself onstage dancing to fucking Pantera.  Everyone at the rack left and I fumed my way through the song, hearing “Keepers” start up just as I got off stage. He probably thought he’d come up with it himself.  I watched and saw exactly what I expected, young hipsters in oversized glasses returned to the stage as my friend Baby unwittingly benefited from the djs lackwittedness.

“You mean you didn’t ask for Pantera?” he asked, genuinely bewildered.  I flipped out.

“I’m going to give you a good solid minute to look at my tits, you’re going to get all that out, and then you are going to pay attention when I talk, because it is polite, and because I pay you ten percent of what I make and it is insulting to do otherwise. Those kids?  Those 20-somethings?  We do not want to hear Pantera.  We do not like Papa Roach.  It is a new dawn, it’s a new day,” and I am not feeling good, I silently added, “and we want fucking good music.”  I thought about it.  “Here’s five dollars, never play Pantera while I’m onstage again.”

Palms greased, he looked appropriately contrite.


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