Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Chicago's Queen of the E-Scene: Candace Jordan

Playboy-Bunny-cum-Social-Media-Maven: Candace Jordan 

When deciding where to go for a memorable night out – VIP parties, charity events, movie premieres, fashion shows – we consult our favorite bon vivant, Candace Jordan. 

Whether she’s blogging about provocative style trends for Sunday’s  Chicago Tribune Magazine or interviewing attendees from last night’s red carpet affair for her Watch312.com show, Candid Candace Chicago, the fabulous Mrs. Jordan always has the first look, and the final word, on the best tinsel in town.   

Chicago's Red Carpet Queen

Luxe File Chicago caught up with the ground-breaking, Midwest Emmy Award-contender and former Playboy model who dished on putting the razzle-dazzle into her love life, her favorite things about Chicago, and that one little thing (or two) she can't live without. What else did we learn? Don't ask her about Aretha (Franklin).

How does Watch312.com’s Candid Candace Chicago differ from other online entertain- ment shows: Well, it has me as the host! I conceived the show as a way to bring viewers with me to these events virtually. I like to spotlight parties, premieres, and festivals that have a lot of human interest. I always look for an element that elevates the event to a newsworthy perspective.

Which celebrity/Chicago insider would you like to interview for your show: I just did! I had the honor of interviewing Al Pacino at The 48th Chicago International Film Festival for the world premiere of his upcoming film, Stand Up Guys. I also interviewed his award-winning cast members: Christopher Walken, Alan Arkin, and Jon Bon Jovi (who wrote two songs for the film). 

Candace with Al Pacino at the Harris Theatre for the kick off of The 48th Chicago International Film Festival 

You’re a woman who’s hard to say “No” to. Has there ever been an interview you couldn’t get or someone who wouldn’t open up to you on camera: Fortunately, there hasn’t been many but when I asked Christopher Walken what his new movie, Seven Psychopaths, was about, he said, “The title". Geez...

Designer(s) you like to wear on camera: I'm not really into labels. For on-camera appearances, there has to be a focal point near my face, such as a bold necklace or an interesting collar.

Media Maven's Must-Haves: 
A mega-watt smile and dramatic accessories  

Your pre-interview/shoot rituals: I make sure I’m prepared and have done my homework. When I got the green light to interview Aretha Franklin, I was told it would only be for a quick sound bite so I prepared accordingly. When I learned I would be the only media person allowed into her dressing room that night and that she was willing to talk longer than I anticipated, I knew I was in trouble. Running out of questions, especially in the face of greatness, is very humbling.

Three Queens and a Jackson: 
Candace with N'Digo's Hermene Hartman 
(in blue), Aretha Franklin, and Jesse Jackson

Favorite Watch312.com episode: The coverage of Red Moon Theater Company’s Gala. The visuals were astounding and the party was off the charts. It was put up for Emmy consideration but we didn’t win.

Another favorite piece we just finished tells the story of the building of the world’s largest Ronald McDonald House and features the miraculous story of one of their ambassadors, Max Herrick. I think this documentary has great Emmy potential and I’m so proud of it. (See video below.) 

Your home is on fire. Which material possess- ion would you save: This is a tough one because my husband says he’s never seen anyone so attached to their possessions. If I had to choose one thing, it would be my rare book collection, particularly my signed Harry Potter books. And, of course, family photos, my paperweights, a few paintings, and...

Which journalist has inspired you most: I’m inspired by so many but I most identify with David Patrick Columbia, who writes New York Social Diary. I don’t know how he does it: every single day he pumps out the most amazing content. I’m lucky to get my “blogazine” finished in a week! 

New York Social Diary's pup-loving founder, 
David Patrick Columbia

You are a very accomplished woman: media personality, perfect hostess, loving wife, magazine centerfold, charity emcee, play- wright, fashion darling. What title is next on your list: I would like it to be "talk show host".

Favorite swear word: (Sadly it’s) fuck.

Don't worry, Candace. It's our favorite, too!

What would your friends say about you that you never would: I'm a fiercely loyal friend.

What’s the itinerary for a rare night in: No makeup; pants with an elastic waistband; simple dinner; candlelight and a roaring fireplace; watching a great show, like Downton Abbey or Hercule Poirot; or listening to music from the 1930’s and 1940’s with Chuck, the chihuahuas, and my stepson, Charley.

Best thing about being featured on a Playboy cover: Actually, I’ve been on eight covers (two American and six international). Who wouldn’t love it?  It’s great exposure, no pun intended! 

Candace Collins - Playboy (Sept. 1996) #twinsrock

Candace Collins - Playboy (Feb. 1980)

Candace Collins - Playboy (Feb. 1979)

Perks of being a TV personality: Covering the events and causes I'm passionate about and spotlighting all the great people and places Chicago has to offer.

Best power lunch restaurant: RL Restaurant or if I want to stay in my Old Town 'hood, Nookie’s on Wells Street.

What’s on your 2013 Bucket List: Take a vacation with Chuck (anywhere!); become more organized; gain an even bigger audience for my Chicago Tribune column and website; and host or co-host a network show.

Bucket List: Appear on the cover of 
VS Chicago. Check!

You and your best friend-husband, Chuck, have been married for AGES. How do you keep the sizzle crackling: We do it by being each other’s best friends and biggest champions. He is my greatest joy and the love of my life.

A (LOVE) League of Their Own: 
Candace and Chuck

Your out-of-town friends are on the fence about moving to Chicago. What do you say to sell them: Chicago is one of the world's most exciting cities and it’s getting better every day. We boast one of the nation's top restaurant and nightlife scenes, and our art and cultural festivals rival those in New York, Los Angeles, Miami, and throughout Europe. Of course, if the tax discussion comes up, I might have a problem.

You are on a short list of Chicago’s most-snapped. What is your first thought when you see yourself in a newspaper or magazine: Did they give the photographer credit?

Best thing about being Candace Jordan: Being married to Chuck Jordan.

Marital Bliss: Candace & Chuck on 
their wedding day (July 21, 1989) 

Congratulations! You were recently recognized as the “Most Social Scenester” by Racked Awards '12. Not an easy feat, considering the competition. How does it feel to be adored by a 20-to-30-something audience that recognizes you as their city's leading social media authorityIt makes me unbelievably proud! It also gives me a heightened sense of obligation to keep putting out content that my readers/viewers will find interesting and 
entertaining and, hopefully, helpful.

Photo Credit:
Lead photo of Candace courtesy of Erika Dufour Photography
Photo of Candace courtesy of Steve Starr
Photo of Candace and Al Pacino courtesy of Mila Samokhina
Photo of Candace for VS Chicago courtesy of Mila Samokhina

Written by Kerry & Sally Shorr 

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