Onetime Gravy Train!!!! frontman Seth Bogart is the leopard-printed/speedo-wearing Hunx of Hunx And His Punx (or, these days, Punkettes). His Oakland-based band’s debut album comes out next month. In addition to his campy vintage rock ‘n’ roll and that Girls video cameo (remember, it was his penis being used as a microphone), Bogart co-runs a hair salon called Down At Lulu’s. He’s also at work on a variety show called Hollywood Nails. I asked him about all of this.
STEREOGUM: Some background on Downtown At Lulu’s would be great. What’s the name? When did you open it? Who’s your partner in the business?
SETH BOGART: It’s named after an old bubblegum song by the Ohio Express. It’s also a vintage clothing store and record store. I opened it in 2006 with my friend Tina Lucchesi best known as the drummer of the Trashwomen and singer of the Bobbyteens.
STEREOGUM: Do you have employees? Or do the two of you handle everything?
SB: The two of us run the salon and the clothing portion is run by four girls, kinda like a big co-op. I love being surrounded by women.
STEREOGUM: You sell records and clothes, too. What’s the overall aesthetic?
SB: It’s painted all pink with lots of gold accents like chandeliers and lamps. Kinda has a candy store meets a flashy grandmas living room vibe.
STEREOGUM: You’re a John Waters fan, right? Has that influenced the style?
SB: I loved his movies in high school. I think he would like the place.
STEREOGUM: A friend of mine who used to live in Tucson mentioned you did zines at one point. Do you sell zines from store? Still make any?
SB: I don’t have time for it as much anymore and although I love them I don’t think they reach enough people which is why I prefer recording and making videos. We do sell some at the shop though.
STEREOGUM: Do you have a background in cutting hair? Or did you start when you opened the salon?
SB: I went to beauty school when I was 20 so I’ve been doing this for like 10 years. It’s a really good job that gives me freedom to go on tour a lot and not have to work more than a few days a week. Plus, I get to gossip all day.
STEREOGUM: What are some hair trends for 2011? Your favorites? Any particularly bad ones?
SB: OMG you’re asking the wrong person!! I don’t know about hair trends.
STEREOGUM: Do you have any dream clients? I mean, is there anyone whose hair you’d really like to cut?
SB: Well I get to do people from band I love like Dum Dum Girls, Crocodiles, Men and Brilliant Colors … That’s pretty much a dream clientele right?
STEREOGUM: What do men need beauty-wise? Pro/anti waxing?
SB: I absolutely hate waxing and any kinda manscaping although I love it when I’m cutting a man’s hair and his eyebrows are really insane and I get to trim them. I’m into the natural look on men.
STEREOGUM: Do any of your clients recognize you from the “Lust For Life” video?
SB: Once in a while … Oops!
STEREOGUM: Is it tough juggling the salon with touring?
SB: Not really. Tina really saves the day every time.
STEREOGUM: And you’re working on a show called Hollywood Nails?
SB: Hollywood Nails is a variety show of sorts kinda like a cross between Pee-wee’s Playhouse and Saturday Night Live. The pilot episode were working on will touch on the subjects of outer space, gay pets, BBWs, condiments, and music.
STEREOGUM: Has someone picked it up for broadcast?
SB: We just got funding from friends to film the pilot episode that we are now developing. My dream is that Logo or IFC will run the show one day. I’d love to work on art and music full time.
Since it’s Valentine’s Day, here’s Too Young To Be In Love track “Lovers Lane.”
- Hunx And His Punx – “Lovers Lane”Download