Christopher Blue’s progression into the adult nightclub industry was a natural one.
“Being on the adult film side of things, it was a natural progression just like it was when I got into adult publishing,” says Blue, who publishes Desire Magazine in Tampa. Blue’s first direct foray into the gentlemen’s club industry came when he booked adult stars into the Sunset Strip in Indianapolis.
“Then my first actual work in an adult nightclub was when my roommate was GM at the Pink Pony in Tampa,” he recalls. “He knew I had a following and I was looking for a change so he brought me in to manage, and especially DJ.”
ED Magazine spoke with Blue — on behalf of StripJointsMusic.com and our monthly Spotify series — about the markets he covers (Tampa and Houston), grappling with COVID-19, and his one piece of advice for the industry. And don’t miss Blue’s personalized Spotify playlist, courtesy of Bob Chiappardi and StripJointsMusic.com!
ED: In what markets are you currently covering? Of the markets you cover, what are their similarities and differences?
BLUE: For my ED Club Hopping I do Tampa Bay and Houston. The similarities are first and foremost the entertainers. Being in two major markets, the girls are not just more beautiful but they have talent performing and working it. Lots of competition so they take it seriously.
In Tampa, we have three small counties with clubs all over the place. Even though these businesses are in competition, it still seems close-knit like a family. This manager or entertainer is at this club now and three months later they are working down the street. In the Houston area, it’s true what they say—”They do it bigger in Texas”—things are so spread out in Houston, you go into an area and it’s a whole different group of people.
“I’ve been to about a dozen EXPOs and every time I go it still blows me away. How Don and the ED crew put together an event of such a large-scale and to do an event with so many different moving parts just for us is incredible. If you have never gone, just go. You just cannot miss it. Contacts, vendors, seminars … it is a learning experience with lots of fun.” — Christopher Blue
ED: How has the COVID shutdown affected your business? How long do you think it will take clubs in the markets you cover to get “back to normal”? Or at least, a new normal?
BLUE: Desire magazine was definitely affected. As great of a magazine Desire is, you can not sell and print ads to clubs that are closed. A lot of clubs are just now trying to re-open and unsure if they will be able to make money in a close-contact business. We will get through this like everybody else. We stick together.
ED: You’ve been to Expo many times before; for anyone who has never been to Expo, what would you tell them if they asked you why they should go?
BLUE: I’ve been to about a dozen Expos and every time I go it still blows me away. How Don and the ED crew put together an event of such a large-scale and to do an event with so many different moving parts just for us is incredible. If you have never gone, just go. You just cannot miss it. Contacts, vendors, seminars … it is a learning experience with lots of fun.
ED: If you could change one thing about the strip club industry, what would it be?
BLUE: Training the entertainers. That’s why I respect Warren at Thee DollHouse because he actually has training classes. You get hired to be an entertainer and at a lot of places, it is baptism by fire. If McDonald’s hires you at minimum wage you are sent to a 40-hour training class. A girl in this business that has the opportunity to make as much money as a doctor or lawyer needs a little schooling.
ED: What is your favorite music to hear on a busy Saturday night at the club? Conversely, when you’re not in the club, what music do you prefer to listen to?
BLUE: On a busy Saturday night as long as it is uptempo high energy. Make it a party. For years Strip Joints was my best friend to make a party. Some songs just lend themselves perfectly. Crazy Bitch, Heaven by DJ Santana, Enter Sandman, Lil Jon Get Low, Rob Zombie, Manson.
At home, give me classic rock and blues like the Beatles. More obscure stuff like The Move, Utopia, and (Bob) Dylan and the endless Prince vault.
ED: If you could see any concert or lineup of artists, living or deceased, who would it be and why?
BLUE: It would be a weekend festival — here goes:
The Beatles: Each Beatle does a solo set then all together with Billy Preston; The Rolling Stones with Brian Jones; The Who; Todd Rundgren solo and Utopia; Prince with the original band- Andre Cymone, Dez Dickerson, Gayle Chapman, Dr. Fink; Morris Day & the Original Time; Bob Dylan with The Band; The Move with Roy Wood, Jeff Lynne, Richard Tandy and Bev Bevan; the original Kinks with Peter Quaife and Mick Avory; Cheap Trick with Bun E. Carlos and no keyboard player and no family members; Rockpile with Dave Edmonds, Nick Lowe, Billy Bremmer and Terry Williams; Rod Stewert and The Faces; MC5; Jeff Tyzik (“his album “Radiance” is the best jazz album ever”); The Power Station with Robert Palmer, the Duran boys and Tony Thompson.