Uncommon hip hop artist and actor Common celebrated his handsome cover of Michigan Avenue magazine at the newly redone Pump Room at Public Chicago. The tony venue was established in 1938 by famous hotelier Ernie Byfield.
Besides Common, celebrities served at the Pump Room over the decades include John Barrymore, Frank Sinatra, Humphrey Bogart, Judy Garland, Dean Martin, Joan Crawford, Sammy Davis Jr., Michael J. Fox, Eddie Murphy and Olivia Newton-John.
The Pump Room also appears in songs and movies including the Fred Fisher song Chicago (That Toddlin' Town), the Monkees song Don't Call on Me and Alfred Hitchcock's movie North by Northwest. In 2010, Studio 54 co-founder Ian Schrager purchased the Ambassador Hotel including the Pump Room. The Sun Times reports New York City chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten has now taken over the kitchen.
Guests at Common's Michigan Avenue magazine cover party at the Pump Room had a fabulous time nibbling and sipping on Belvedere Vodka. During his interview with Michigan Avenue magazine, Common said about his career, “I want Oscars. I want to win Emmys. I want to open up some schools, travel some more, just build a family and enjoy life.”
Common also spoke about his friendship with fellow Chicagoan Kanye West, saying, “We’re brothers. He will speak his mind when it comes down to it. ‘What you doing wearing that shirt, man?’” Both men are also talented rappers and hip hop artists who created a unique niche in their field.
Also a talented actor, Common's latest role is as former slave Elam Ferguson in “Hell on Wheels,” an AMC Wild West drama. Common was the first actor cast in the “Hell on Wheels” series.
The Chicago Tribune reports he said about the role, “It's the most fulfilling role I've ever taken. I was so passionate about it that it didn't feel difficult. I had to do massive research on what life was like around 1865.”
Common read books and got his hands on all types of information about the era. “People living during that time couldn't always afford the simpler things in life like food and water – especially African Americans.”
Common brings his due diligence and passion to the role of a former slave in “Hell on Wheels,” debuting on AMC on November 6.
Photo Courtesy of Michigan Avenue Magazine, All Rights Reserved