Penguin Prison *Live + Hey Champ * Live
DJ Sets from Moneypenny + Mister Joshua
Beauty Bar | Chicago
The lovely ladies of Moneypenny (as I've so often referred to them) have been throwing a party called Spandexxx at one of Chicago's better club spaces for almost two years now. It began when the space was Sonotheque, a club—for those who remember it—that was one of the best places in the city to go and hear cutting edge music. Now as Beauty Bar the torch is being carried on and so is Spandexxx. For a special Halloween edition the Spandexxx crew has asked yours truly to come in and do a guest DJ set, which I couldn't be more stoked about. The whole crew is traveling along (including regular Dialogue Inc contributor Roy Shay!). Here's the deets:
9pm - 2am | 21+ | $5 | free with R.S.V.P. to urchicago.com/spandexxx
Prizes for Best Costumes | Hosted Tito's Vodka bar from 9 – 10:30 with R.S.V.P.
Penguin Prison (LIVE)
Hey Champ (LIVE)
Moneypenny (DJ set)
Mister Joshua (DJ set)
Hey Cliche! (Visuals)
Rachel Olin Cable (Monste Make Up provider)
Last summer I had the pleasure of sitting down with Moneypenny's Chess Hubbard, Jessica Gonyea and their manager Matt DuFour to talk more about all they have in store for us in their budding career. Here's an excerpt from that conversation:
Armed and Dangerous
Moneypenny is sexy, talented and bent on world domination.
by Joshua P. Ferguson
Originally published in Time Out Chicago magazine | 07.30.09
“It was a heartbreaking decision,” Chess Hubbard pines, semijokingly. Recently, Hubbard and her DJ partner, Jessica Gonyea, decided to change their name from Rocktapussy to Moneypenny. “I’m such a huge Bond fan, I was immediately like, Oh, my God, that’s the best!” Hubbard says of their original handle. Over High Lifes, Pacificos and a serious barbeque spread, we meet both women and their manager, Matt DuFour, at the trio’s home-office. “We didn’t want anybody not to listen just because our name was Rocktapussy,” Gonyea explains.
Luckily, the duo—transforming from a not-so-mild-mannered DJ team to a live outfit—quickly came up with an equally good Bond reference. “Our parents love it,” Gonyea says of the change. “I went all of last year without telling my parents what it was called.” Hubbard says, “Whenever I would talk to my mom about it, she’d be like, ‘You really need to change that name!’”
At 29, both women have slowly been transitioning from their day jobs—Hubbard as a graphic designer, Gonyea as a costume designer—to full-time music careers. The quieter of the two, Hubbard, who deejays as Mother Hubbard, cofounded the Life During Wartime party with Chris “Bald Eagle” Baronner in 2003. “When we first started, we just got wasted and played songs we like,” Hubbard says. Life During Wartime has since become a more professional affair that’s helped launch the careers of Flosstradamus and Kid Sister. It was Floss’s Josh Young who taught Hubbard to deejay.
As DuFour pulls bison burgers off the grill, Gonyea, a.k.a. A-Cup, tells us she moved to Chicago from Ann Arbor around the time Life During Wartime was starting. “I filled my Ford Escort and took off,” she says. “I had to get out of there.” She was approached to sing and play keyboards in the local band Office; together, they racked up high-profile performances at South by Southwest and Lollapalooza in 2006 and 2007. Meanwhile, DuFour, who owns UR Chicago with Hubbard and is dating Gonyea, introduced the two. Last year, Gonyea quit Office to concentrate on Rocktapussy.
“We didn’t have any lofty aspirations for it, aside from party rocking,” Gonyea says of Rocktapussy’s start last year. “And being awesome,” Hubbard adds. With the duo itching to do original music, DuFour connected them with songwriter-producer Simon Perry, who’s penned songs for the Jonas Brothers and Echo and the Bunnymen, and indie dance band the Prairie Cartel to help Moneypenny craft a commercially viable sound. “We don’t know what all’s going to happen once it goes through the pop-o-matic 3000,” Gonyea says with a laugh. “There’s definitely gonna be some pop jams—Lady Gaga, Britney-type stuff—but there’s also some more left-field stuff.”
Get a taste of what's on deck for tonight with this Moneypenny Halloween mixtape: