Sunday, November 18, 2012

Down at the Rock and Roll Club

Brendan Toller, director of the upcoming Danny Says, did a great interview on Dave the Spazz's show last week, and was featured in the Village Voice blog a few days ago.  Just now when I went to get the link for that, I noticed the V.V. blog also did a recent piece on John Joseph's Lower East Side walking tours.

Get dishpan hands at the Norton Records Wash-a-Thon tonight if you can --or if you're not local, drop a few Paypal'ed bucks into their Superstorm Sandy recovery fund.

Via the Bomp List Bookshelf Facebook group, I was hipped to this vintage piece on Lou Reed by Bruce Pollock, and learned that memoirs from Marty Thau and Richard Hell are due to be published soon.  And speaking of those fellas--while browsing at Sonic Boom the other day I chanced upon a DVD entitled Punk Revolution NYC, which I couldn't recall hearing about before.  (Indeed, even after I bought it on impulse, I could find only two reviews for it on the entire internet.)  I've only watched the first disc so far (it's a two-disc, three-hour-tour production), but it's quite a thorough documentary, covering the NYC punk scene from its proto- to prime eras. The film has a pretty straightforward format--i.e., interview segment/performance clip/interview segment/archival photo display/interview segment--but all the clips are well-chosen and they talk to many of the right people.  (I didn't see any Talking Heads among the talking heads though.  Have I made that dumbass joke before in regard to another vintage punk documentary?  Probably.)  Here's an excerpt from it, about the NYC scene's influence on the U.K.

I devoured the new Peppermint Twist book in a matter of hours.  It's more of a mob story than a music book (in fact, I think Chapters and Indigo are shelving it under True Crime), and it also seems to focus more on the Miami Peppermint Lounge than the New York original.  That was O.K. by me, as it put me in the right frame of mind to watch the episodes of Magic City that my great buddy Flipped Out loaned to us....but still, as much as I enjoyed the behind-the-scenes tough stuff, I would have preferred a bit more emphasis on the hip-swiveling happenings within both clubs.  (As is my wont, I've also gotta nitpick on a factual error I noticed very early on in the text--Vernon and Irene Castle were husband and wife, not "a popular brother-sister dance team"!)

Coincidentally, and further to that picture of the Action House included in my last post, here's a quote from Chris Dreja which I saw in Light and Shade: Conversations with Jimmy Page:  "The people who ran the promotions, especially in America, were mainly mafia.  I remember playing Vanilla Fudge's club in Long Island and being introduced to truly menacing people who were eight feet tall, with chewed up ears and smashed-in faces, and had names like Vinnie."


Te Ta said...

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Danny said...

I worked at the Peppermint Lounge programming all the Video (I was the "VJ" ) when it re-opened in the 1979 Punk-Rock incarnation. Tho' I worked on many productions with Fouratt and helped with Giorgio Gomelsky's Tropical Hot Dog Nite (mentioned in the final pages of the book) I was not interviewed or mentioned! Despite this disappointment, I thoroughly enjoyed the book

Anonymous said...

Its Danny again: Check it out folks: Peppermint Lounge Facebook Group

BigBill Sawyer said...

I worked at TRUDE HELLERS ,so I totally understood your mentioning the Mob guys who came into the Clubs ,while I was there in the 60s as a waiter and asked to be a dancer but was too shy & big to walk the small space near the stage & back wall ! I also had worked at Your Fathers Mustache a Banjo Band Club similar but better then the RED GARTER ! Across from the Mustache ,I worked as a Chef (Glorified Cook ) at The Riviera Cafe when Eddie Kelly & Dick ? his partner owned it ,but later after I left NYC in '68 , they lost the lease. What I am trying to remember is the 3 piece band and Vocalist ,who reminded everyone of Frankie Valli a bit, he was White guy and his band members were Black or Afro-Americans , and they were incredible showmen. Somethin' Paris I am almost sure? Later in New Orleans I met Marty & Ward who were Bouncers at the WAGON WHEEL & PEPPERMINT LOUNGE both on 45th St. The 4 piece band also later was the house Band at The Metropole Cafe....It will come to me one day, but what a time NY was in the 60s & 70s !