In Washington, musician Moby drives a different kind of inaugural party

WASHINGTON Mon Jan 21, 2013 2:36pm IST

Musician Moby arrives at the 84th Academy Awards in Hollywood, California, February 26, 2012. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

Musician Moby arrives at the 84th Academy Awards in Hollywood, California, February 26, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Lucy Nicholson

Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, daughter of Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi, adjusts her flower garlands as she campaigns for her mother during an election meeting at Rae Bareli in Uttar Pradesh April 22, 2014. REUTERS/Pawan Kumar

Election 2014

More than 814 million people — a number larger than the population of Europe — are eligible to vote in the world’s biggest democratic exercise.  Full Coverage 

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - All across Washington this weekend, the wealthy, the politically connected and the curious are putting on tuxedos and ball gowns and crowding into fancy galas to celebrate President Barack Obama's second inauguration.

This was not one of those parties.

At an inaugural celebration at Washington's U Street Music Hall late Saturday and early Sunday, a man in a black blazer accompanied a young woman who was in a midriff-baring, sequin-covered bra. Another couple danced while wearing matching track suits.

Many partiers were in T-shirts; some brought the glitter - on sneakers, party dresses and more.

It was called the Blisspop Inauguration Party, and the star attraction was Moby, the electronic music legend.

The crowd was as diverse as any in town this weekend: several generations of self-described Democrats, Republicans and apolitical types - including many who didn't realize the event was related to Obama's inauguration.

"I came here for Moby" and "I just found out this was an inauguration celebration yesterday," were common comments by attendees of the party, which was thrown by a group of local disc jockeys.

The U Street Music Hall is a venue that symbolizes Washington's rejuvenation in an area that was scarred by rioting in the U Street corridor nearly 45 years ago, after the assassination of civil-rights leader Martin Luther King Jr and is now Washington's party central.

Inside the music hall, mirrored disco balls spun to a local DJ's set, bartenders with red flowers in their hair poured beer and mixed cocktails and the sold-out crowd warmed up their dancing feet for Moby's appearance. And in typical D.C. style, most everyone was willing to talk about politics and Obama's second four-year term.

"I think it'll be same old, same old for the next two years," said Mike Mizerak, 26, a psychology student from Virginia who came wearing a pirate hat and said he did not vote for Obama in the November 6 election.

"He needs to get more aggressive," said Lauren Reliford, 27, who works in health advocacy in Washington. "That's the Obama I voted for."

Many spoke of hope for more bipartisanship and compromise between Obama and the politically divided Congress, where Obama's Democrats control the Senate and Republicans lead the House of Representatives.

'WE'VE COME A LONG LONG WAY TOGETHER'

Moby himself, bald and goateed, appeared without fanfare, in a hoodie and glasses.

The hoodie and glasses quickly came off, and the DJ, grinning occasionally, raised his hands as he glowed under a red spotlight. He filled the room with thumping and swooshing electronic music for some two hours.

The show avoided the fate of Moby's 2009 inaugural performance, when a power outage left the star and his local partner drumming on trash cans and otherwise improvising to produce sound for more than an hour.

Moby's support of Obama is no secret. The musician actively posts in his online journal and Facebook page, often sharing his views on hot political topics.

This month, Moby weighed in on the heated debate over gun control. He criticized Republicans and the National Rifle Association, the nation's largest gun-rights group, over arguments they have made in opposing stricter gun ownership laws.

Moby's fans, regardless of their political leanings, did not seem bothered by the DJ's political activity.

"If you have that powerful platform and you use it to inspire people, I think it's spectacular," said art manager John Herlig, 48, who said he was registered as an independent voter.

About 2 a.m. Sunday, the crowd roared as Moby started playing parts of some tunes from the 1990s, when he was particularly popular.

Perhaps in a nod to the inauguration spirit, Moby rolled through a verse from a piece by fellow English DJ Fatboy Slim:

"We've come a long long way together, through the hard times and the good. I have to celebrate you, baby, I have to praise you like I should." (Editing by David Lindsey and Cynthia Osterman)

Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

Guns and Gowns

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Williams 'Boulevard'

Williams 'Boulevard'

Robin Williams confronts deep-rooted secret in drama 'Boulevard'  Full Article 

Photo

Mixed Blessing

For 'Daily Show' alum Oliver, 'Last Week' is 'fresh turf to ruin'.  Full Article 

Lorde Unwell

Lorde Unwell

Illness spoils "Royals" singer Lorde's Australian tour.  Full Article 

Oscars 2015

Oscars 2015

Zadan, Meron invited back to produce 2015 Oscars show - Academy.  Full Article 

New Season

New Season

HBO backs tech comedy 'Silicon Valley' for second season.  Full Article 

Lohan Miscarriage

Lohan Miscarriage

Lindsay Lohan reveals miscarriage on finale of OWN series.  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage