Kansas native Patrick Cleandenim makes clever dance-pop about going out at night (he even has a song about the Gansevoort Hotel). His newest release, Orange Moonbeam Floorshow–an irresistable mix of dramatic, 80’s-style vocals, lounge music, synthesizers, and disco–was released midsummer. A Cooper Union BFA, he also makes “abstract, abstract-narrative, and narrative” films and maintains a marathon performace schedule around Manhattan and Brooklyn. Below, “Little Baby Party,” a track from Orange Moonbeam, and some of the basics:
CB: Is Cleandenim your real last name?
CD: Cleandenim began as a stage name but I now use it for most of my work. It was derived from my middle name, Clendenin.
CB: What’s your day job?
CD: During the daytime, I am a room-service agent at a scandalous hotel. I also sell very expensive vintage leather jackets, and custom jackets that I make, made-to-order.
CB: What’s the best way to get people to dance?
CD: I like inviting them onto the stage. In general, I prefer to play without a stage so that the show is less of a frontal performance and people can dance wherever they want to.
CB: You perform really frequently, and at great length–how do you keep your energy up?
CD: I drink a lot of coffee and Coca-Cola. Soon I will be performing a little less often, but with a new band who sound something like Iggy and The Stooges crossed with disco-era Clash and Fela Kuti.
CB: Theme song for this fall?
CD: “Be My Baby” by the Ronettes, dedicated to original writer Ellie Greenwich, who passed away a few weeks ago.
CB: How did you spend Fashion Week?
CD: Nothing extraordinary. Working hard, making things.
Patrick Cleandenim plays tonight at Union Hall at 10PM and on Sunday, September 20th at the Bowery Hotel at 8 PM.