a week on the scene


Make your own party. It's Lala Land - David Lynch style - at Top Karaoke Room (10608 Perrin Beitel, 590-2560), where $20 will get you and up to nine friends a private room for an hour. It's a surreal experience. A room comes equipped with mirrors, party lighting, comfortable couches, a coffee table, three microphones, a teleprompter, a remote control, and a stack of directories with massive lists of song selections in Korean. Occasionally, you will stumble across a page or five of American pop, and then it's on.

The Top Karaoke teleprompters flash serene stills of snow-capped mountains, desert plains, lush tropics, and a phallic chipmunk standing erect on a rock. It's so arbitrary it's scintillating - especially when you're screeching "Welcome to the Jungle."

Is there alcohol? Yes. The ladies who run the joint will open a tab so you can open some tabs on beer (or soda) cans. And there is a complimentary plate of pretzels, peanuts, and strips of nori (seaweed) included in the room rental.


This isn't really a music event, but people seldom strip down to their skivvies without a soundtrack. So in the music column it goes.

The Shades of Love, a tasteful sex boutique located at 300 W. Bitters at West Avenue, will host "How to Strip for Your Lover," at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, July 23. The step-by-step class is intended for women only, and will be led by Maitrisse Elise, who will provide "instructions for the ultimate seduction," including what to wear and how to move. Elise will reveal "the most sexy techniques that professional strippers use to keep men coming back for more."

The class costs $7, but you know what they say: You've got to spend money to make money. Contact the Shades of Love at 494-3006 or online at


And then there is the prolific DJ Grial, whose dance card is downright booked. Grial plays international, electronic downtempo, and experimental beats every Sunday and Monday night at Club Ibiza (516 Brooklyn, 44-IBIZA); international electronic lounge from 7 to 10:30 p.m. each Thursday at Silo (1133 Austin Hwy, 824-8686); and Latin lounge on Saturday nights at the Davenport (300 E. Houston, 789-4451). •

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