We all know that former Mayor Michael “Mix Master Mike” Nutter can rap — as if YouTube would ever let us forget.
But have you heard about DJ Darrell Clarke?
That’s right, the buttoned-down City Council president apparently has some skills, too. Allow us to direct your attention (if you’re reading online) to this priceless footage of Clarke, still clad in suit and tie, cutting loose behind the turntables to Meek Mill‘s “Ima Boss.”
The video is from a rooftop fundraiser last Thursday evening for MenzFit, which provides professional interview clothing and other assistance to men seeking gainful employment.
(Clarke spokeswoman Jane Roh said the event raised $620. By our calculations, Clarke could raise more than that for his campaign committee just by sneezing in a developer’s general direction. Still, it’s not nothing!)
Anyway, back to how Clarke is apparently cool now. Prior to the party, he tweeted out his playlist, which, in addition to a double dose of Meek Mill — North Philly, couldn’t resist — included Bruno Mars, Beyoncé, Drake, Kanye West, and, Childish Gambino (Clout’s personal favorite of the mix).
When we asked Roh if her boss compiled the playlist himself, she first said that it must be a “slow news week” (whatever that means), then said that her boss’ tweet “speaks for itself.”
“He does have good taste in music,” Roh said, “and I will pass your compliment along.”
Clout ran the playlist past Inquirer and Daily News music critic Dan DeLuca, who opined that “DJ Darrell Clarke shows himself to be a reliable if slightly behind the times party-starter with his 11 song hip-hop and R&B playlist.” DeLuca chided Clarke for committing “the mixmaster’s faux pas of stacking up multiple songs by the same artist” and for going with the “too obvious” Beyoncé selection of “Party.”
“Kudos to Clarke though,” DeLuca added, “for including the delectable ‘Redbone,’ a slow burner from Childish Gambino’s 2016 Awaken, My Love!”
Some City Hall employees found Clarke’s performance slightly jarring. One vertically challenged City Council staffer questioned whether Clarke was “too tall to be rapping.”
“Looks like those giant wind puppet things at car dealerships,” the staffer joked after seeing the video.
That’s mean. Hilarious and probably accurate. But mean.
We welcome this new side of Clarke. Just lose the tie, man.
DA shakeup … again
If there is one hard-and-fast rule at the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office these days, it is this: Don’t get too comfortable at whatever desk or post you currently hold.
Try to follow along.
Former District Attorney Seth Williams hired Kathleen Martin in 2015 to be his chief of staff. She became the acting district attorney in June when Williams resigned because of that whole going-to-federal-prison-for-corruption thing.
Martin then sought the post of interim district attorney but, on the day the 14 candidates for that post were to pitch themselves to the Philadelphia Common Pleas Board of Judges, withdrew and told the judges they should select instead John Delaney, the deputy district attorney in charge of the trial division.
The judges voted the next day and, in three rounds of balloting, Delaney came in second to former assistant district attorney Kelley Hodge, who won the day.
Hodge on Tuesday promoted Delaney to first assistant district attorney and demoted Martin to deputy district attorney in charge of administration and technology.
Cameron Kline, a spokesman for the office, said the changes “were made after thoughtful consideration of the needs of the office.”
But like we said, don’t get too comfortable. Hodge only serves until the first week in January, when the winner of the Nov. 7 general election — Democrat Larry Krasner or Republican Beth Grossman — takes over.
Trump ally to speak at GOP clambake
The summer political doldrums — in Philadelphia, not that pandemonium in Washington — are set to end as always after Labor Day.
And before that, by tradition, comes the Billy Meehan Clam Bake in Northeast Philly on Aug. 27, the largest fundraiser every year for the Republican City Committee.
Bob Paduchik, the co-chairman of the Republican National Committee, who ran President Trump‘s presidential campaign in Ohio last year, is the guest speaker at this year’s 33rd annual clambake.
Michael Meehan, elected in April as Republican City Committee chairman, said he is eager to sell $100 tickets but cautious about selecting a guest, given the current political climate.
“There’s some who think we should have had one of the Trumps,” Meehan said. “While I’d like to sell tickets, I don’t want chaos.”
The clambake is a family affair, reflecting back to a time when Republicans — now outnumbered 7-1 by Democrats in the city — held political control here.
The current event was started in 1984 by Meehan’s father, William “Billy” Meehan, who led the local GOP from 1961 until his death in 1994. It was a revival of an event previously held by Billy’s father, Sheriff Austin Meehan, who ran the party from 1936 until his death in 1961.
Vince Fenerty has retained the title of clambake coordinator despite being forced out of his $223,000-a-year Philadelphia Parking Authority job in September amid a sexual harassment scandal.
“I think, physically, I’m perfect for this, because you’re never going to find me in a scandal. I have no temptation to drink, to smoke, to do drugs, to do weird stuff.” — Lindy Li, a 2018 Pennsylvania congressional candidate (who won’t say what district she will run in) being interviewed by the Chinese Phoenix TV.
Staff writers Chris Brennan and William Bender contributed to this column. Tips: firstname.lastname@example.org.