Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Cardi B, This Year’s Whirling Dervish of a Rap Star, Wows the A List Crowd at Former Four Star NYC Restaurant


It used to be called the Four Seasons. It was New York’s most famous restaurant for power lunching and dining in the Seagram’s building, a landmark designed by Philip Glass and Mies van der Rohe. It was famous for its pool in the main dining room.

Last night, Warner Music covered the pool and invited in a few hundred people to watch Cardi B, a whirling dervish of a rap star (with a good sense of humor), take the place over. She has two dancers who channel Tina Turner’s Ikettes circa 1966. (Real name Belcalis Almanzar, age 25, former stripper, born in the Bronx, famous for “no filter”).

Cardi, like Nicki Minaj and Lil Kim before her, is a cherub who likes to shock people with bad language. But she’s just a girl with a dream, as Joan Rivers might have said. She’s also a clever businesswoman who’s currently featured on at least a half dozen different chart singles.

She whooped it up in front of Warner Music’s owner, Len Blavatnik, as well as executives, fans, and friends, plus celebs like Janelle Monae and Kelly Clarkson. The place was packed and the smell of pot was strong. This was not the Pool Room of Henry Kissinger or Pete Peterson. How times have changed!

The irony, of course, is that this was the Seagram’s building, owned by the Bronfman family,  until it was sold to Aby Rosen, who kicked out the Four Seasons. Now the whole place is called The Grill. And this was Warner Music, once owned by Edgar Bronfman, Jr., until he drove it into the ground and sold it to Blavatnik. In all the years Edgar Jr. owned the record company he never — as far I as anyone could recall– used the Four Seasons pool as a stage for one of his acts. But now it all came full circle, shall we say.


Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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