Friday, May 15, 2009

Stan Bardenboar says "MAILBOXES AND DYLANS ROOM STAY" Residents Rejoice!

Recently while loitering in the lobby of the Virtual Hotel Chelsea, eating cheese curls, and flinging every sixth one towards my poet friends, we got to discussing the subject of the ratty old pigeon hole mailboxes behind the front desk. About every 12th. cheese curl, Mr. Bardenboar who was crunching numbers and mumbling about "deadbeats", would poke his head from behind the counter and yell "Skall, you're gonna have to clean those up!".

I decided this would be a good time to give old Stan some crap and see if I could thoroughly disrupt his bean counting trance.
I strolled up to the counter doing my best "John Wayne just rode a horse for 32 hours and my ass is sore" walk, firmly planted my elbows on the old wood counter, and started to poke.

I said "Stan, when you gonna get rid of those crappy old boxes behind the counter and get us some nice shiny secure ones, so that when my transvestite neighbor gets an envelope of anthrax delivered to him, it doesn't creep it's way around that decrepid hole and infect my latest MENSA certificate?"

Mr. Bardenboar looked at me with what I can only describe as contempt mixed with a kitten dipped in hot sauce. He slowly removed his glasses and let them dangle from thier chain (in an obvious attempt to hypnotise me), placed his pen in his 90 year old ledger book so as not to lose his place, licked his lips and and began to speak with the fervor of a Pentecostal in a television store.

"Son, do you have any idea how long these mailboxes have been here?"

"Do you have any idea who's mail these mailboxes have held?"

"Some of the worlds greatest poets, artists, writers, and musicians have gotten their paychecks, letters from sweethearts, girly magazines, and even Christmas cards here."

"Let me ask you something Mykal, if these mailboxes were good enough for... (he now recited the entire list of famous residents from the 1800's to today, that he recited to me at least a hundred times before, including one time when I complained about a backed up toilet)".. and finished with "then why aren't they good enough for you?"

At this point, I couldn't keep a straight face any longer, and began to crack a smile, I think he started to realize that once again, i was just trying to get the old guy riled up for our entertainment. I had to admit, that on my very first trip to the hotel, the first thing I wanted to see was the old mailboxes, that epitomized the interior of the Chelsea to me.

This seemed to dismiss myself in the old mans eyes as he turned back to his book, and started to raise his specs back to his face. Before he got them all the way up, I stopped him in his tracks and said: "Hey Stan, when you gonna gut room 211, you know the one where that Zimmerman guy stayed, it looks all crapped up since that weirdo painted it all green and blue, can't you tear it out and put some shiny paneling in there?"

At this point I think he caught on that I was trying to kidnap his proverbial goat, he placed his finger in the air as if to silence the words before they left my tongue.

"Skall, I know the room isn't like Mr. Dylan left it, it's had a few coats of paint, and a few other people over the years, but it'll be a cold day in Hell's Kitchen when I ever have that room gutted."

"See, those coats of paint, and those people, are what makes the Chelsea Hotel what it is, no, not all of our floor tile matches, and every room is different, each one holds a piece of the person that stays there, and pieces of all the poeple before them, to gut that room would be like turning your back on the history of this place, and a dishonor to all of those people."

"You want a cookie cutter hotel where all the rooms look the same, and all the people act "normal"? Go down to the Holiday Inn, and ask them in which room was Blonde On Blonde written."

"But you already know that don't you Skall?"
"That's why you're here."

"Now leave me alone and go play with your poet friends."

"And while you're at it, why don't you pay your rent you deadbeat?"

We smiled in synchronicity, as he replaced his glasses, and turned back to writing in his ledger, without missing a beat.

I love that old man.

(Room 211 is now open for viewing in the Virtual Chelsea Hotel, unfortunately the only photos I had to work from were the ones showing the wanton destruction of this great piece of American history. Please visit for the story of the destruction of Bob Dylan's room.)

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Last Poet Standing

At 7:30 SLT on Saturday May 9th 2009, we hosted our first ever Spoken Word Competition at the Hotel Chelsea Second Life!

The Last Poet Standing heat promised a prize of $1000L to "the last poet standing" and it is a test of endurance and performance skill, as poets are required to read in a "round robin" format, never reading the same poem twice.

The heat began at 7:30 SLT and featured Gwendolyn, Rosarie, Saberman Carter, Sissimaid, and Skylar Smythe.

Sabreman Carter was the last poet standing, by 12:30 SLT, after five straight hours of Spoken Word Performance!

Spectators filled the room throughout!

Congratulations Sabreman!

For more information about Spoken Word events at the Hotel Chelsea Second Life, please contact Skylar Smythe, Director of Marketing at:

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Sim Slamming Saturday -Hot Chelsea Nights

Once again, a FULL HOUSE as Musicians and poets packed the Lyceum Lounge at the Virtual Hotel Chelsea.

Chelsea Girls and Bohemians danced long into the night to the music of some of SL's most talented singer songwriters.

Mykal Skall started the night with an impromptu 45 minute warm up set to get things started at 2:15SLT. Followed by:

Matthew Perrault performing originals off of his last two albums, as well as crowd pleasing ecclectic cover tunes, and ending his set with a requested Leonard Cohen tune.

Lance Rembrandt, then took the stage and kept the place hopping with several tunes from his newest release.

Rounding out the Saturday night set was the talent of Nonge Shipman's show of covers and originals.

The night didn't stop there, as a on the spot poetry challenge went out at 7:30pm. SLT, for more on this see then next blog entry.

Open Auditions a rousing success!

We had our first open auditions here at the Chelsea and they were wonderful!
We had Truelie Telling who did a marvelous job of entertaining us.  
We have booked three of the people who auditioned.
Starflower Orbit who will be playing in our line up on May 23rd at 5pm.  Along with Mason Thorne and Keiko!
Also we booked Orson Pfohl who will be playing on May 30th at 4pm along with Clairede Dirval and MMFKMT!
Then we booked JAMBA Losangeles who will be playing on June 6th at 5pm.
Join us again for our open auditions !
We hope to see you at our Live Shows soon! 

Friday, May 8, 2009

Friday Nights are Improv and Auditions!!

Due to the overwhelming numbers of live musicians, poets, and spoken word artists who have been expressing interest in playing live at the Virtual Chelsea Hotel, we have set Friday nights starting at 4pm. as "Open Auditon Night". If you would like to try out and see if you fit our venue, please IM enola Vaher.

What happens after auditions? Who knows at the Chelsea?

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Room rates drop to entice the artistic and ecclectic.

There were still a few vacant rooms at the Hotel as of yesterday, so we decided that we'd lower rates to attract the bohemians that were already sleeping in the lobby and on the street.

There may be a few left, so get them while you can.

Also there's been a lot of inquires about commercial space, so we began renovation of the storefronts across the street, these should be done by tomorrow evening, and filling quickly.

Advertising is also now available on the bus stop on 23rd. Street.

Mr. Bardenboar has been very pleased to see the hotel filled to capacity nightly, with the kind of crowd that used to be welcome at the RL Chelsea Hotel.

Impromptu Musical Show Draws a Crowd.

Last night at the Lyseum Lounge, an unannounced show took place... drawing on the talents and impulsivness of the gathered boheminas, Mykal Skall took the stage at some time before 7pm. SLT attended by a full house, following Mykal, Phiona Ember, and Buck Sideshow played into the night to delight of the Chelsea crowd.

Griffins in the lobby, naked men flying over the stage, and spur of the moments concerts, truly what makes the SL Chelsea the number one hot spot in Second Life.

You never know what will erupt, so stick around.....

Monday, May 4, 2009


Grand Opening "Bring Back the Bards" an Incredible SUCCESS!!

Virtual Chelsea Bohemians filled the Lyseum Lounge to be a part of this groundbreaking event, and filled the entire Sim as well.

From 12-7pm. SLT (Second Life Time, add 3 hours for EST) it seemed to be the hottest ticket on the grid as the Sim stayed nearly full for all 7 hours!!!!!

The night kicked off with Mykal Skall reading a prepared statement from the RL (Real Life) Residents of the Hotel Chelsea, who run the Hotel Chealsea Blog , the statement was:

"We at the Chelsea Hotel blog would like to thank Mike for all of the hard work he's put in on creating the beautiful virtual Chelsea Hotel. This really helps to draw attention to the issues surrounding the hostile takeover of the Hotel by the minority shareholders and their continued attempts to evict residents and demolish important historical structures throughout the hotel. By going online and continuing the traditions of the Chelsea at the virtual chelsea hotel you too can support us in our struggle. Someday we hope to welcome you here in person and open up the doors of the Chelsea to the creative people who have always dreamed of coming here. Long live the Chelsea Hotel! Bring Back the Bards!"

Amazing spoken word and poetry followed, from some of the most talented writers in Second Life.

Mykal Started the event by reading several of his original poems relating to New York City and the Chelsea Hotel, followed by the emotionally charged prose of Kitviel Silberberg. The final pieces of original work were written and read by NYC's very own Pooky Amsterdam, who read two pieces from her suite of work written about life in a virtual world. Pooky is also resident of the SL Chelsea who spent a lot of time hanging in and around the RL one, including being part of the scene there the day that Andy Warhol died. Due to a cancellation, Mykal then read two pieces from former hotel resident Leonard Cohen. All poets were met with rousing applause.

Next on stage was Ms. Phiona Ember who played a set of cover tunes transformed to the Phiona style, she even made a Miley Cirus song sound fit for the Chelsea crowd. The highlight of her show was the performance of her own composition, that was simply stunning.

The satin voice of Moondoggirl Moomintoog was to follow, but due to so many people being there, and technical difficulties, she didn't get to play her entire show. But what we did get to hear was fantastic. Moon seemed to carefully pick her setlist for the night, to fit the Chelsea Hotel history, and included a cover of former resident Bob Dylan that seemed to transform it into her own. We can't wait to have her back without the stress of the tech problems.

The beautiful baritone Lauren Weyland had the place in stitches as usual sporting bright yellow spandex, and taking jabs at RL and SL subjects as varied as Marlene Krauss, Virtual Sex, Elderly Valley Girls.

Back to spoken word we were treated to the works of Rosedrop Rust, House Ragu, Klannex Northmeade, Skylar Smythe, CorvusPDX Noble, Gwenette Writer, a veritable smorgasborg of SL poetic talent. House's performance of his work was incredibly fit for the venue, and brought to mind whisps of Keroauc and Ginsberg. Skylar also chose to open with her intense slam poem "Bunny Boiler" and followed with surprisingly non-erotic original works. (Skylar is one of SL's best known erotic poets). If you've not heard Klannex, "Rusty", Corvus, or Gwenette, do yourself a favor and attend their next events, as always it was memorable.

Multitalented Rosedrop Rust then put on his musician hat, and treated the crowd to a great mix of originals and covers, highlighted by his talents on not only guitar, but keyboards, and drew the crowd in like moths to a flame.

Treating the crowd to the true storyteller experience, Whirli Placebo painted a picture with every song he sang. Drawing from a catalogue of work dating as far back as the 1800's, he led the gathered bohemians through an hour of time, space, and emotion. This was a true singer/songwriter experience that will not soon be forgotten.

Moxy Barracuda admitted that he had read the sign stating that we at the Lyceum don't usually allow artists who use backing tracks, but that it was all his original music, and it was well received, and sounded great, but Moxy then turned us all on our heels, buy taking up guitar and keyboard, and performing stripped down and emotional versions of his originals which were very good, and very fitting for the night.

Closing out the night, Mykal took the stage as a recording played of Herbert Huncke talking about his take on the term "Beatnik", as this ended the first chords of Cohen's "Chelsea Hotel No. 2" began to fill the room as a fitting opener for Mykal's act. Telling the story of arriving at the Chelsea Hotel for the first time, taking out his acoustic guitar, and playing, while thinking "Wouldn't it be amazing if someone living in this historic building heard my music through the walls?" he then said that "for those people out there who think that Second Life is "just a game", here's proof to the contrary." "Because of SL, people in the real hotel have heard me, and are hearing us now, and we hope that the rest of the word hears us too, and it helps in some small way to bring attention to the current situation at the hotel, and someday soon they bring back the Bard family." Mykal thanked those listening at both the RL and SL Chelsea and stated that he was "Extremely humbled" by the buzz and attention that this small gesture of his is attracting.

Sometime during the night, an impromptu performace began by Buck Sideshow, as the Chelsea crowd didn't want to give up the night.

Hey baby, there's noise on 23rd. Street, both of them.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

SL Meets RL Grand Opening Event Posted!

Bring Back the Bards! Awareness Event at Hotel Chelsea Second Life

The Hotel Chelsea is one of the last remaining art enclaves and bohemian outposts, which nurtured the musical contributions of artists such as Bob Dylan, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, the Grateful Dead, Leonard Cohen and many more.

The Hotel Chelsea in New York is under threat right now, as they have begun to demolish this great piece of our musical heritage. You can do something about it!

Join Mykal Skall and other performing artists at The Hotel Chelsea Second Life for the "Bring Back The Bards!" campaign. This grassroots movement based at the Hotel Chelsea New York (First Life) hopes to reestablish management of the Hotel to the Bard family, who will preserve the history and artistic integrity of the site in perpetuity.

The Grand Opening is Sunday May 3rd begining at 12pm and ending with Mykal Skall Live at 6pm. There will be a myriad of Live Spoken Word Artists, and Live Music including:
Phiona Ember
Moondoggirl Moomintoog
Rosedrop Rust
Whirli Placebo
Moxy Barracuda
Mykal Skall
And the Comedy of Lauren Weyland

Chelsea Hotel Land Mark:

Saturday, May 2, 2009

RL Chelsea Hotel Blog Responds to Times article!

The Bring Back the Bards campaign has taken root in another life thanks to the hard work and talent of Mykal Skall. We're glad to have him on board in our ongoing fight to preserve the 125-year-old tradition of artistic freedom at the Chelsea.
Thanks also to Saki Knafo for bringing Mykal's work, and our struggle, to the attention of a wider public. And for minority shareholders Krauss and Elder, please be put on notice: when you desecrate this iconic hotel, the world is watching, and history will be your judge.
One Correction to the NYT article: Bob Dylan's old room, 211, did not undergo renovations. It was simply, and, I might add, illegally, gutted. Management planned to renovate it, but they did not have the proper permits, so the DOB shut them down. -- Ed Hamilton