Johnny Depp Hosts Surprise Concert in Northern California
Johnny Depp surprised locals in Berkeley, Calif. on Monday night when he took over live music club Shattuck Down Low.
Depp was in the Bay Area for an invite-only screening of his new film, The Rum Diary, at UC Berkeley, after which he was joined by director Bruce Robinson for a Q&A conducted by award-winning journalist Ben Fong-Torres (see clip below). In the wings: musician Tom Waits, who had joined the movie star earlier for dinner at San Francisco restaurant, Prospect Park.
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“[Depp] chose to do a screening not for media, but for Berkeley students,” Fong-Torres tells The Hollywood Reporter. “The house was packed with 700 of them, studying film, journalism and English. It felt like a rock concert.”
The rum theme continued at the club with an open bar serving Hunter’s punch cocktails (named after Hunter S. Thompson), a concoction of punch, pomegranate, champagne, lemon and Sailor Jerry rum. According to Fong-Torres, Shattuck is a “good-sized nightclub a few blocks from campus… Depp had taken out the whole place but it was pretty low-key and not the mob scene I anticipated.”
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Depp is credited as a co-composer on the Rum Diary soundtrack and his JD Band also makes an appearance.
The evening’s main entertainment was by Chuck E. Weiss, well-known as the subject of the song “Chucky’s In Love” by Ricky Lee Jones, and his eight-piece blues band.
According to tweets from fellow revelers (and the club itself), Depp's JD Band took the stage as some point during the night and while club goers were hoping for an appearance onstage by Waits, alas, it didn’t happen. Still, says an attendee, “the band was killing it!”