On Sunday, June 5, Denver International Airport was the scene of a celebrity shoving match that not even the star-crazed fans of Access Hollywood could have predicted. While waiting in line to board a 4:45 p.m. Frontier Airlines flight to Los Angeles, former American Idol contestant Corey Clark and early-'90s rap star Coolio became enmeshed in a scuffle that involved a few menacing chest bumps before it was ultimately broken up by security guards.
The 24-year-old Clark had been in Denver to pimp the story of his alleged affair with Idol judge Paula Abdul. According to Entercom Denver, he gave the "secret scoop" to 105.9/Alice morning-show hosts Shea, BJ and Howie, then gave a special live performance at Boulder's Millennium Harvest House on June 3. But two days later, on Concourse A, would-be passengers and airline employees were less impressed with Clark's skills. According to one Frontier worker, Clark was "acting like a total jackass," videotaping himself with a handheld camcorder and driving around in a motorized cart intended to transport people with disabilities.
It's not clear whether Coolio was aware of Clark's status as a bloodsucking fourth-tier celebrity, but he was obviously unimpressed with the singer's antics. Though the employee could not confirm who started the shit-talking, she gave props to Coolio for gracefully bowing out of the fight and agreeing to take a later flight. "Coolio was cool," she says. "Way cool."
Dog-gone shame: Something's missing from Miss Talulah's. The usual baubles still cover the shelves of the six-year-old shop and those of its younger sibling, Talulah Jones, but both places feel strangely empty.
Fred is gone.
"When I first got him from the pound, he was shy and scared of people, he'd been so abused," says Robin Lohre of Fred, a mutt who started his retail career with her on a tony block in San Francisco, then moved on to win hearts (not to mention a Best Shop Dog award in the Best of Denver 2001) after she opened her first store, on 22nd Street. "But because of the love and support he had, he became so friendly and so full of himself, so absolutely social. If he didn't get attention, he was just dumbfounded. In San Francisco, they called him the mayor of Fillmore Street, which is this five-star shopping street where I worked at Smith & Hawken."
In February, Fred was diagnosed with a fast-growing cancer; he died ten days after the first symptoms appeared.
To help Lohre though her grief, employee Dani Rose asked customers to submit their memories of Fred. "He was such an important part of the community that we all needed to grieve and show Robin that he was important," Rose says. Last week, she presented Lohre with a book filled with dozens and dozens of their recollections.
"I was amused when shopping at Miss Talulah's," wrote Sheila Martin. "Robin and I were talking, and Fred was barking at some disturbance outside. Without raising her voice, Robin simply said, ŒFred, I think you're ready for a time...' Fred did not need to hear the word Œout' -- he simply grumbled to himself (loud enough for all to hear), put his head down, turned and walked behind the counter. The response was hilarious. I will miss him."
Since the recent birth of her daughter, Imogene Amelie, has kept her busy, Lohre has no plans to replace her pet. Not that any dog could take his place. "He was 100 percent Fred," she says. "Pure-bred Fred."
Scott Campbell has long been the city's indie-music maverick, booking bands at the 15th Street Tavern until he and partner Mark Gebhardt opened the Larimer Lounge in 2002. Now he's mixing things up again, taking on a day job as a real estate broker. We buzzed Campbell to find out if he still plans to party every night.
Q: What compelled you to get a day job when you've got one of the most popular clubs in town?
A: Actually, I worked on Fullerton projects for a number of years; I just didn't have my license until recently. I love owning a bar; you just don't make enough money. You make a little bit of money, but not enough to live a real life. Real estate is interesting, so I wanted to pull the trigger and get my broker's license.
Q: Will you still be a barfly?
A: I live in the Ballpark neighborhood, so I can keep an eye on it. And that is one of my farm areas, where I sell and try to get clients. It's definitely beneficial to own a bar in the neighborhood. I meet a lot of people. And I hired Melissa Martin from the 15th Street Tavern a while ago. She does about 90 percent of the Larimer bookings, but I retained my relationship with the top national acts and will be booking them.
Q: What's the most difficult part of being a bar owner in Denver?
A: All the competition. When I started out ten years ago, it used to be us and the Bluebird. Now there are six or seven places all trying to do the same thing, and new ones open all the time. So everyone is going after the same dollar. Even the LoDo Music Fest has called it quits this year. The whole landscape of live music has changed over the last ten years.
Q: What's exciting right now in Denver real estate?
A: The conversions and the sheer number of residential units on the market, and that the market doesn't seem to be slowing. There are a ton of buyers out there. As they say in our realtor meetings, the lower end is moving really quickly. If you have a $150,000 or $200,000 home, it gets four offers and sells above the asking price. If you have a $900,000 home, it takes a year to sell. I can't believe, at Stapleton, the number of out-of-state people moving to Denver.
Q: So you don't think the market is saturated with lofts and faux lofts?
A: We haven't hit it yet. Working for the developer, I've noticed the higher-end ones take longer to move, but lower-end ones move really quick. Less expensive lofts would move really quickly.
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Q: What is exciting right now in local music?
A: There are more great local bands on the scene than there ever have been, and they're doing more things. At South by Southwest, we did a barbecue with a lot of local bands, and it was packed. Denver has a really hot scene in both rock and roll and real estate.
Q: We hear you might be Denver's next bar-owner mayor.
A: That was a joke. I have no plans for that.