Graphic arts superstar Shepard Fairey spent time in Fishtown finishing the first of three murals he’ll execute through the Mural Arts Program. “Lotus Diamond,” now adorns 1228 Frankford Ave. Fairey, long familiar with Philly’s street-art history (“Cornbread was the first graffiti artist,” he said of North Philly’s tagger), talked up Hennessy Cognac, the liquor sponsor behind his current painting trek, and signed Hennessy V.S. bottles labeled with Fairey’s personal designat a lunch at Pod and a PAFA party, where he spun with DJ Cosmo Baker.
That same Frankford Ave. address will get its long-rumored rock ‘n’ roll hotel if developer Roland Kassis has his say. Though he can’t disclose all participants (Stephen Starr mentioned this previously but is no longer a partner, claims the developer) Kassis said he was waiting for the zoning process to start on his 125-room “hottest, coolest boutique hotel in Philly,” designed with Brooklyn architect Morris Adjmi. Kassis is also saying his tenant at 1335 Frankford, the La Colombe cafe/distillery, should open within two weeks and “change the daytime face of our neighborhood.”
Chef Michael Solomonov (Zahav, Federal Donuts) got a jump-start on Dizengoff at 1605 Sansom. The hummus and pita palace is now up and running after a soft opening last Friday — coinciding with a New York Times column that revealed the extent of the drug use (crack and heroin) he described to Philly mag last year.
Seen on the scene
While rapper Meek Mill sits in jail, his protege, Philly hip hop vocalist Lee Mazin, dropped singles and appeared at the Peace in the Street bash, where she announced her debut album’s release date: the second week in October.
Local vocalist/TV icon Peggy King just wowed an audience that included Debbie Reynolds and Sally Kellerman during her Hollywood debut at Catalina Jazz Club. Closer to home, the singing dynamo debuts at The Palm in Atlantic City on Aug. 15 with Philly’s All-Star Jazz Trio.
When Hard Rock Cafe hosted Philly DJs King Britt and Dozia’s Back2Basics reunion tour Friday, the duo got a surprise visit from their pals in The Roots, Questlove and James Poyser. Quest even picked up stick and jumped behind the kit to play with the live band/DJ crew.
PYT’s Tommy Upprepped his tiki bar contribution to Frankford –The Yachtsman– with the cocktail joint in soft opening mode. The Kickstarter-backer bash is Aug. 13.