The Scene: Tuesday night at the China Club in Hollywood, at an all-star blues jam to benefit the Alisa Ann Ruch California Burn Foundation. China Club co-owner Danny Fried hosted the evening for the group, which provides burn care, prevention and education throughout the state.
Who Was There: The Kal David Band backed up a rotating lineup of guest stars including Eric Burdon (of the Animals), Mickey Dolenz (of the Monkees), Herbie Hancock, Rick James, Robby Krieger (of the Doors), Donny Osmond, Johnny Rivers, "Married . . . With Children" star Katey Sagal (who was once a backup singer for Bette Midler) and Ron Taylor.
Dress Code: The invitation specified "dress: optional," but most guests elected to wear clothes. For women, the prevailing look on the club scene is still a dress that fits tighter than panty hose, with bust line cut as far south as feasible and hem raised as far north as legal.
Fashion Statement: One man wore a string of puka shells (the first recorded sighting of them since the Bicentennial). Other people were wearing the ultimate functional fashion accessory for rock clubs--wads of cotton stuffed in their ears.
Noted: Like their East Coast counterparts, L.A. club-goers strive to look like they don't get home until after sunrise. Not that they want to look like they don't go to the gym; when the ubiquitous black leather jackets come off, men and women alike display the kind of designer biceps that New York club-goers sneer at.
Quoted: "Milli Vanilli couldn't be here, but they sent a tape," said master of ceremonies Bobby Collins. (Let the Milli Vanilli jokes begin.)
Overheard: "I never stay up this late. I've got a child and I'm usually in bed by 8," said one woman, whose black miniskirt and suede boots would not cause her to be confused with Donna Reed.
Money Matters: Reserved tables for six went for $1,500, but $50 was all it took for general admission.
Triumphs: Performance artist Danny Dent took the stage for what he called his "Two Fisted Art Attack." Wielding four brushes in each hand, he painted a 10-foot portrait of John Lennon in under 12 minutes. The club sensibly covered the whole stage with sheets of black plastic before he began.
Glitches: The show was scheduled to start at 9 (in musician time that translates to 10:30-ish). According to club management, the flu bug bit several performers scheduled to appear, including Melissa Manchester, John Goodman, and Thelma Houston.