Friday, September 25, 2009

09/19/09 - An Interview With "Punking Out" Director/Producer Ric Shore

(Image via: - Used With Permission)

About a month ago I was turned on to a great little film titled “Punking Out”, a documentary film shot in 1977 at what was then the world capitol of the punk-rock universe, CBGB in New York City. The movie features performance and interview footage of The Ramones, The Dead Boys, and Richard Hell and the Voidoids, as well as people who were attending the shows, some of the CBGB staff, including owner Hilly Kristal, and some people who just happened to be checking out the scene. The film was recently screend in New York City as part of the 2009 Howl Festival and has been racking up awards around the globe since 1979. I couldn’t get my hands on a copy fast enough, and when I did, I decided I had to know a bit more about the film. So I emailed the films Managing Producer, Ric Shore, and he agreed to do an interview and give me some background on this historical document of that amazing moment in time. Ric called from his home in Venice Beach, CA via telephone and we spoke for just about an hour on a recent Saturday afternoon and this is what he had to say about the project.
TATSOL: Hi Ric, thanks for taking the time to do this interview. Fist off, I was wondering if you could tell me a bit about how you came to be involved in film making projects in general. Were you studying film in college or was it just a hobby?

RS: Well, I came to NYU after being really impressed by the “An American Familyseries by Alan Raymond, and I ended up being in his workshop, it was the only year he was there, he wasn’t there when I got to NYU, but it was like one of those strange coincidences that happen when you focus on something. I wanted to do that kind of documentary work, the Frederick Wiseman “Fly On The Wall” type style, you know, and Alan Raymond took it to TV. I don’t know if you’re familiar with that series [An American Family], that’s going back quite a few years.

TATSOL: I actually learned about it about a year ago. When I was in New York in July of 2008, I ran into a guy named Bobby Albertson who used to play bass with a band called the Bush Tetras for a while around 1983, and he was telling me about that. He was actually friends with Lance Loud.

RS: Is that available on DVD? I think it is.

TATSOL: “An American Family?”

RS: There’s a store that has that stuff, Videots, down in Santa Monica.

Anyway, that’s how I kind of got into it. I loved bands like the New York Dolls, Lou Reed and things that came along that were like that, but those two bands were my favorites at the time. I wasn’t really following the punk scene, it happened so quickly and I kind of heard about it, and I started going down to CBGB’s and I was so amazed at the scene there and the Ramones were so fresh and new, that whole concept of the short, intense song, it was sort of self parody and self effacing, a sort of comic book sort of presentation. I didn’t really think of them all that seriously, I thought, “Oh, that’s cool.” And then the Dead Boys, we sort of stumbled into, they were there one night and they were just such a snotty, in your face, street-fighting band for real, kind of menacing. But when we gathered them to do an interview they were just regular guys. It was just the culture where they were from, you know?

TATSOL: I was just wondering how you happened to be in New York at that time. You said you were going to NYU in 1977?

RS: For a film degree, yeah. I was accepted into film school, I was really amazed. I was just a footloose sort of …you know, I was just out of high school, I was just ready to move to California. I was sort of a hippie in high school, I wasn’t really college material so to speak and I wasn’t all that sure I could be in college, you know. I was raised in a culture that was Ivy League all the way so it was really weird. But I sort of stumbled my way into it, they accepted me, it was really strange. It was just sort of a focus I had once I saw that “American Family” series and I wanted to do documentaries of the underbelly in subcultures and stuff like that. It just sort of came to…to…it realized itself. I didn’t really push it. But that year I had a project in the film workshop. In the workshop you’d vote on each other’s projects and there were only five directors and they’d get a film allotment from the school to do a film. So I was awarded a film allotment for my project, but it wasn’t the Punk Rock film of CGBG, it was about Army brat families that moved around all the time, something else that kind of fell apart.

So Alan Raymond came up to me and told me that he’d done some preliminary research on the Punk scene down at CBGB’s, and we started chatting it up. I was always interested in how subcultures are absorbed by the mainstream society mainly through fashion and music, stuff like this. I just remember walking with him for about an hour in the Village and he was a very spacey character, it was hard to get close to him – he was very focused on film projects. But he gave me all his notes and I pored over the notes, they were very good actually but they weren’t really structured into a film, it was just like...observing the scene. Punk Magazine was out at the time and he was talking to those guys [John Holmstrom and Legs Mcneil] and a number of the bands. [Alan] wasn’t a punk rocker or anything. So I kind of took it from the standpoint that I was a film journalist going to do a project and I was passed the baton from him and then I made it my own. I completely researched the crap out of it and lined everything up.

The guy who was with me at the time who was my assistant, Juliusz Kossakowski, I asked him if he wanted to be part of this project and he said, “Sure,” and he was from Brazil so he really didn’t get the scene much at all except what I prepped him with and then he latched on to it. He’d originally wanted to do a kabuki theatre thing. Maggie Carson was a friend of mine in a film class and she wasn’t attached to a project. People had to group up with the directors and I guess she was kind of grouped up with a guy who was going to do the Talking Heads, but only like a performance film. It was so boring, like why would you do something like that, just a performance film, you know, in color? We’re in film school for Christ sake. So we were kind of making fun of him, this guy, [Laughs] it was just moronic that this guy had no concept of a documentary. He actually did that film, I don’t know if he sold the footage or anything. So Maggie came over to my project because I invited her over and we got together and got excited about it because the scene was so exciting. It was just being born you know? Maggie was following the punk scene and she was into a lot of the bands so she was ahead of the curve in that regard. And then we said lets expand this allotment out by putting $10,000 of our own money into the project. With the film allotment it gave us about 10,000 feet [of film] to shoot, which, I forget how many hours that was but it was something like…

TATSOL: It says on your website you shot about 30 hours of film.

RS: That might be an exaggeration to tell you the truth, but yeah, roughly in that area. But anyway, we were working pretty good together. We were all students so the idea of sticking to roles was a foreign concept and it got us into trouble later on when we started to cut the film. But accumulating the footage wasn’t too bad. We brainstormed out questions for Maggie to ask [the people we were interviewing] and we were just posturing as just NYU students doing a film on punk rock and just had ‘em bounce off of that. It was a good idea because the foil just made the [interviewees] act out even more, you know? Like we were these straight yuppie kids and we dressed that way, we didn’t dress like punk rockers or anything.

TATSOL: Yeah, I was gonna ask you about that. I was wondering how the bands felt about that, about being filmed?

RS: Well, with the Ramones, we had to go to Danny Fields first because he was managing them and he was all into it you know, Sire Records gave us permission and everything. But then Johnny [Ramone], when he saw us with the big light, we had this big light ‘cause it was so dark in the club, he immediately said, “No. Those guys can’t film,” and here we’re all set up and ready to do it. So I don’t know how it happened but we were eventually able to do it, I think Danny Fields intervened ‘cause we’d done an interview with him, it seemed like hours, you know, with a nude picture of Iggy Pop over his bed and everything, it was weird. But he intervened and we were able to do it. But there were restrictions on how close we could get [to the stage]. That’s why the footage of the Ramones is so horrible and it’s just from way back and we had to cheat a lot of the shots together, actually it turned out pretty well.

TATSOL: Yeah, I thought it so. It’s not hard footage to watch like a bad bootleg or something like that.

RS: It was an amazing thing how it all pulled together. It was the most excruciatingly difficult circumstances to film in that club, it was dark. I don’t know if you’ve been in the club have you?

TATSOL: Yeah, only once unfortunately.

RS: Yeah, so you know, it was very narrow, and there’s tables everywhere, and they packed the club past the limit and everything, it was so hard, but we kept passing the camera around, me and Juliusz were tag-teaming it, and I did all the interviews, but he was a thin nimble guy so he was ideally suited to kind of weave in for the closer shots. The interviews went phenomenally well. Maggie just had the instinct in timing. I think the idea with interviews is a timing thing, not to get in your own way and to let the subject talk and act out and stuff. Since Maggie was following the scene, she had the proper mindset and instincts about the tongue-in-cheek way to deliver things and so that was great.

We did a lot of interviews outside of the club, particularly at Punk Magazine and with Danny Fields and whatnot, but they were so boring compared to what was going on in the club, and then we cut them in to an hour and a half version of the film, but every time we went out of the club, the energy level went down so far it just didn’t seem good to us. The whole idea of collaborating that way, the way Maggie, Juliusz and I were doing the project, it falls apart when you start to make the choices about what stays and what goes and it got so problematic that we had some really nasty fights. What evolved was, it was really a clever way [of doing it] because there were three bands we divided it up along those lines and we just passed those units around and we took turn editing it. Maggie was a great editor and she assembled a lot of the film but what happened was, we sort of let audiences edit the film. We did it like Hollywood, we did these little focus group screenings and we’d invite people from all walks of life, blah, blah, blah, and we’d take notes afterwards, ask them questions and everything, so that’s how we got the idea of making the film shorter. Plus there was this opportunity to show it on PBS with Alan Raymond’s new film at the time, “Police Tapes”, but that deal fell through. But the focus groups kept hammering us about the energy loss whenever we went outside the club. We could have juiced it up with quick cutting techniques and cheating it by putting some music in the background and that kind of stuff, but at the time quick cutting didn’t really exist like it does today. The film, as it’s cut now, plays like a Ramones song sort of, like it’s short and sweet. It actually turned out OK so we were pleased with it.

The interesting thing about it is that there was a lot of footage of the interview with Richard Hell and the problem with that footage was that it made him look foolish because, you know, he’s a fairly articulate guy, but at the time he seemed to be out of it or something because he had great difficulty putting long, meandering sentences together. He also seemed to be so tired that he was falling asleep half the time but would then wake up suddenly. So he was so out of it that he couldn’t string together a thought, it’d be all over the place. We just couldn’t cut it in a way that would be flattering. We didn’t want to make fun of him being out of it, so it was problematic and we decided to cut it out entirely, plus it was outside the club again, that idea, so that’s why you don’t see any Richard Hell interview [in the film].

If I was to redo the film today, I could do an hour version that would absolutely rock. Legs McNeil gave a great interview and John Holmstrom as well. It was at Punk Magazine. We did a b-roll on the magazine and the production, it was really cool.

TATSOL: That would be cool to see. I wanted to ask you about that. I was wondering if you had ever thought about making a longer cut of the film, but it sounds like you already experimented with that idea and decided that this was the best cut for the film.

RS: An unfortunate thing happened at the editing suite we were in, they accidentally, I don’t know how it happened, but they thought we had left and they threw away a lot of our footage.

TATSOL: No way. Oh man, that sucks.

RS: Yeah, it’s pretty much gone except for clips here and there. But the version you see [on the DVD] was cut at the time and it was so fractious a thing to try to get it together to edit, it was just so emotionally exhausting to work that way. It’s amazing that it got pulled together at all, but that’s the situation really.

TATSOL: I was wondering if you ever did any filming over at Max’s Kansas City for this project? Or was that a whole other scene you weren’t interested in portraying in your film?

RS: Well, I’m a film formalist. When I do a film I always design it like a graphic artist would approach a canvas or other medium. They would think of the medium they would want to use and what feeling or tone they would want to establish by using a medium in a certain way. So that is why, by the way, it was the talk between me and Alan that established doing that film in grainy, pushed, news stock…like we did because it just suited the material, it looked like Maplethorpe’s photos and the posters and the album cover that the Ramones put out that year. I think it was “Rocket To Russia.”

TATSOL: Yeah, kind of a grainy black and white kind of graphics style.

RS: Exactly. You know, while that other guy was doing a performance film in pristine color, he wasn’t understanding why we were doing ours in news stock, so we’d get the graininess going. So that’s the idea, I always approach film in a painter-ly way so this goes back to the idea that Max’s and the other places weren’t the proper set because, you get where I’m going with this…here at CBG it was pure punk.

TATSOL: Yeah, you still had a bit of the glam-rock thing going on at Max’s at that time.

RS: Yeah, exactly. You couldn’t design a better set than CBGB. Hilly instinctively knew this, he knew to leave the graffiti up, to leave the swag and the posters up that people put up, right? He was the original analog, user-created venue, right? [Laughs]. Let people…kind of…what would you call it?

TATSOL: Do the interior design…[Laughs]

RS: [Laughs] Yeah, the interior design. You couldn’t get a better fuckin’ designer to do that. It just came across just super with our film because that was the background. And what happens when you watch a film, well, the background and the foreground and everything gets flattened and we were picking up the background as intense as the foreground and so on and so forth.

TATSOL: It’s kind of cool that it’s done in that kind of grainy film stock because now, years later it gives it a more historical tone.

RS: Well, yeah, that too. But at the time it just went along with the whole theme. A lot of forces came together to make the film happen other than just me and that’s what happens in film, that’s the magic of film-making. You gotta be quick on your toes to adjust and bring mistakes or so-called mistakes or things that you discover as you go along in to the project. But yeah, approaching it in the painter-ly way, I didn’t think we had to go anywhere else. You only had a certain amount of time to create an intense tone or feeling so why dilute it.

TATSOL: Well, it’s a great story. I’m thrilled that the film exists, it’s a really important historical document of a special time that many of us couldn’t experience because we were to young or whatever, especially now that the club is gone and there’s such an interest in that whole scene.

RS: To tell you the truth, I’m not following it, I’m just doing my own thing. What is the scene now? It seemed it slipped away for a while and then the lady I spoke to at the New York Public Library recently said it was on the upswing with that Howl Festival thing.

TATSOL: I think it’s that whole “You don’t know what you got till it’s gone” kind of thing.

RS: Really. But when did it start though?

TATSOL: The uptick in interest in that scene?

RS: Yeah, was it after CBGB’s folded?

TATSOL: I think it was coming before that. I think some of the interest was rekindled as the Ramones started to pass away a few years ago. I can’t remember where I read it in an interview someplace, but it was something to the effect of, “we never appreciated the people when they were here, and now that they’ve passed away, we realize we how much we REALLY DID like those people.” I think it applies to the club as well.

RS: [Laughs…]

TATSOL: And then the whole thing with the club eventually closing in 2006, there was some controversy there with the whole “Save CBGB” thing, and Hilly’s fight to keep the club open while he was being literally forced out. I think a lot of the revived interest came from that. It was in the media quite a bit.

RS: Well let me ask you, if you said you were in the club, how old are you?

TATSOL: I’m 39. I went to the club one time in March of 2004 and I actually met Hilly. I couldn’t believe it. It was about 10:30 in the morning and I was down there to take a few photos and there were these two guys standing outside the club, so I asked one of them to take a photo of me in front of the club and he said, “Sure.” And the front door was open, they were busy doing some cleaning inside and I asked the guy taking the photo if I could poke my head inside and he said he didn’t think that it would be a problem. He yelled inside and asked Hilly if he minded if I came in for a few minutes to take a look around, and Hilly said, “Yea, come on in.” I was shocked to be meeting him.

RS: He was friendly?

TATSOL: Oh, yeah. Totally cool. He let me come in and told me not to take too long, but I got a chance to walk in and look around a bit and actually talk to him for about 5 or 10 minutes. He even agreed to let me take a picture of him. He was telling me about how the Bowery was changing so much…how it was hardly recognizable anymore.

RS: Oh yeah, that was before it really turned, eh?

TATSOL: Yeah. He told me about a place where he said I could get a good sandwich up the block and I said goodbye and left. I was amazed that I had just met him. He seemed to be in reasonably good health then too, from what I could see, that was in 2004. And then he passed away just over two years ago, in August of 2007.

RS: [Losing the club] killed him…

TATSOL: Yeah, I think so too. It was his life and there had to be a lot of stress with that whole situation.

Well, anyway, it’s been really cool talking to you Ric, I appreciate you taking the time to talk and for giving me the chance to do something I’ve never really done before, like I said, you’re my first “real” interview for this blog, so it’s been a pleasure to talk to you. I’m glad to be able to help get the word out about your awesome film.

RS: Hey, that’s all right man…I wish you the best of luck with that. It’s been nice talking to you.
Visit Ric's website for more information on the film and find out how to obtain a DVD copy for your own home library at:


Thursday, September 24, 2009

One From The Archives: 09/24/06 Celtic Frost/ Sahg/ Teratism @ First Avenue, Minneapolis, MN

09/24/06 Celtic Frost/1349/Sahg/Teratism @ Minneapolis, MN (Flyer - Top) 09/24/06 Celtic Frost/1349/Sahg/Teratism @ Minneapolis, MN (Flyer - Bottom)
(All Images via: NYCDreamin Archives)

When I began hearing, in late 2005 that Celtic Frost, one of the original and most important and influential bands of the experimental/death metal genere, would be returning to the music scene after a 15 year absence with a new CD in 2006, I almost wet myself. This would be the first new material from the band since 1990's masterpiece "Vanity/Nemesis". That was good enough on it's own. But then I heard they were going to tour the U.S. in fall 2006. Well, I didn't even DARE to dream they would come to Minneapolis. The last time they played here was back in 1987. But when the dates were announced, I was floored to see a date scheduled for here on September 24th. I was almsot in shock. Could this be for real?

09/24/06 Celtic Frost/1349/Sahg/Teratism @ Minneapolis, MN (General Admission Ticket)
A general admission ticket.

It was for real all right. The tickets went on sale a month or so before the show and I picked up mine (above) as soon as possible. I tried to talk a few friends into going with me but had no takers. So I'd be going alone, fine with me. These people didn't know what they were gonna be missing. Losers. (Sorry guys!)

09/24/06 Celtic Frost/1349/Sahg/Teratism @ Minneapolis, MN (Comp. Ticket)
A comp. ticket given to me by a friend who picked it up somewhere but didn't want to go to the show. I had already purchased my ticket so I didn't really need it, so into the archives it went.

09/24/06 Celtic Frost @ Minneapolis, MN (Autographed Monotheist CD Booklet)
Autographed "Monotheist" CD booklet.

The concert kicked off with three opening bands that I knew nothing about and still don't. Teratism was first, followed by Sahg and then 1349, who are apparently very good friends with the members of Celtic Frost and were hand-picked by the band to open the shows on this tour. I wasn't there to discover new music or support the opening bands though, and just suffered through them, waiting...and waiting...impatiently. I was still a little shell-shocked that in just an hour or so I would be seeing a band that I thought I'd never have the opportunity of seeing. It was so exciting I almost couldn't stand it.

Title Page of the 2000 "Are You Morbid" book - autographed by Thomas Gabriel Fischer and Martin Eric Ain.

The moment I'd been waiting for since 1986 finally arrived...Frost hit the stage and it was immediately apparent that this was going to be an all-out ass-kicking. They were loud. They were brutal. They were in your face. They shoved it down your throat. They were everything I'd ever thought they'd be in a live setting. It was so unbelievable to actually be seeing them and I was in awe as they completely destroyed the nearly sold out crowd at First Avenue, many of whom seemed to be sharing my sense of bewilderment at what we were witnessing.

09/24/06 Celtic Frost @ Minneapolis, MN (Autographed Metal Maniacs Magazine)
August 2006 "Metal Maniacs" magazine autographed by the whole band.

All too soon the show was over. As soon as the band left the stage, I made my way over to the merchandise booth where it had been announced they would be appearing to sign autographs and meet their loyal fans who had waited so many years for this moment. After a few moments of rest backstage they reappeared and began signing autographs, shaking hands posing for photos and conversing with their fans. I had brought along several items in hopes of scoring a few autographs and they were cool enough to sign every single item, not just one, as so many bands seem to do these days. It was fun to watch them mingle with their admirers and they seemed genuinely pleased that so many people had come out to share the evening with them. After hanging around for quite a while and taking it all in, it was finally time to head home, a long-time dream having finally become reality.

09/24/06 Celtic Frost @ Minneapolis, MN (Autographed Terrorizer Magazine)
"Terrorizer" Magazine Issue #145 (Summer 2006) Autographed by Thomas Gabriel Fischer

09/24/06 Celtic Frost @ Minneapolis, MN (Poster Autographed by all 4 Members of Celtic Frost)
This is a cool large size poster that was hanging outside the venue in a display case. I managed to get it out before the show started and guarded it with my life all through the show. I had the guys sign this as well.

The band made another return to the States the following spring, but I was a bit disappointed to learn that they would be playing support to the far inferior Type O Negative. But at least they scheduled a stop in Minnepolis on that brief tour as well, and of course I was there to support the mighty Frost yet again. It seems that this would be the final time I was able to do so, as the band splintered again shortly after completeing that tour.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

One From The Archives: 09/24/97 Pantera/ Machine Head/ Coal Chamber @ Roy Wilins Auditorium, St. Paul, MN

09/24/97 Pantera/Machine Head/Coal Chamber @ St. Paul, MN (Ad)
(Image via: NYCDreamin Archives)

Another Pantera concert. They were touring in support of their recently released "101 Proof Live" CD, which I thought sounded like it had been doctored-up in the studio. I was heavily into tape trading then and I had several bootleg concert tapes of the band that sounded much more...authentic. Less sterile. This show featured special guests Machine Head, who I wasn't really into at that time, and the amazing Coal Chamber, who I was. There is no ticket stub along with this ad because they took your complete ticket upon entry into the Roy Wilkins Auditorium, in order to prevent you from leaving and coming back in - once you were in, you were in, there was no re-entry. Also, people had been known to put their ticket stub into their cigarette pack, toss it up to their buddies in the balcony, and then their friends would come and join the party on the main floor. This didn't stop the true hardcores though, they just jumped off the balcony to the main floor when there wasn't a security guy looking. This was a good 15-20 foot drop. You can't keep the true hardcores out of a good mosh pit and the pits at Pantera shows were always the best...the stuff of legends. I'd recently gone through a bad experience in my private life, and was pretty, uh, medicated, at this show. Good thing I had my buddy "337" to drive me home 'cause I never would have made it on my own. I don't really remember much about the show except we had a really good time...the first time I'd had any fun in a while.

One From The Archives: 09/24/05 Queensryche @ Myth, Maplewood, MN

09/24/05 Queensryche @ Maplewood, MN (Ad)
(Images via NYCDreamin Archives)

09/24/05 Queensryce @ Myth, Maplewood, MN

09/24/05 Queensryche @ Maplewood, MN (Ticket)

One of the four times I have seen Queensryce over the years. This time there was no opening act, just them. They played for over 2 hours, performing "Operation Mindcrime" in it's entirety for the first time in 15 years. It was a good show, but I had seen them do this in Duluth back in May of 1991, and it was much more memorable the first time. You can read about that show HERE.

09/24/05 Queensryche @ Myth, Mpalewood, MN

Sunday, September 20, 2009

A New York Minute: 09/16/75 - Talking Heads/ Shirts @ CBGB

"A Trio That Shows Art's Effect On Rock"
by John Rockwell
New York Times - 09/16/75

CBGB, a tacky little club at 315 Bowery near Bleecker Street, has been presenting young local rock bands for several months. First there were a few tentative bookings then a full-fledged "festival" and now things have regularized with unknown bands on week nights and bands that have made something of a cult name for themselves on weekends.

Last weekend the two principal bands were Talking Heads and Shirts. Both were interesting enough, but the ambience was almost more interesting. Late Saturday night CBGB had taken on all the trappings of a real New York scene subsection scruffy underground. It's a cross between Lower East Side radicalism and Mercer Arts Center flash, and most amusing as a visual spectacle.

Of the two bands last weekend, Talking Heads was the most provocative. This is a trio consisting of a singer-guitarist, David Byrne (who writes most of the material); a bass player, Tina Weymouth and a drummer, Chris Frantz. They are all in their early 20's, live in SoHO and attended Rhode Island School of Design.

What is interesting about their music is that it is so unabashedly un-commercial. The direct influences are clearly the Velvet Underground and more recent effusions of tortured undergroundism like Television. The songs (what one could hear of the words) seem to deal epigrammatically with anger and alienation, and are half-sung, half-gabbled in a wobbly monotone. But the instrumental music is something else again - simple but tightly structured and full of ingenious quick shifts and planes of aural color. The relationship between the classical-music avant-garde and visual and conceptual art over the last decade has been a fascinating one, and Talking Heads is a stimulating instance of how the art world has had an effect on local rock as well.

Shirts is a septet with a woman singer, two drummers, an organist and three guitarists. Execution is more conventionally polished than Talking Heads chooses to muster, and the group's prospects for a record contract would seem liklier. This is progressive rock that sounds inventive and effective enough, but whose very familiarity makes it a little deja entendu at CBGB.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

A New York Minute: 09/05/76 - Dictators Offer Bill Of Punk Rock at CBGB

"Dictators Offer Bill of Punk Rock"
by John Rockwell
New York Times - 09/05/76

Six Men Crunching, Steady Rhythm at CBGB

The Dictators, who opened a three-night stand at CBGB's Friday, are in the inadvertantly ironic position of having predated the currently fashionable New York underground punk-rock scene and then being forced to try and cash in on it.

The group consists of six young men (singer, two guitarists, a guitarist-keyboard player, bass and drums) who hail actually or honorarily from the Bronx. They put out a record on a major label (Epic) at the beginning of 1975. But it didn't really go anywhere, and it was only after Handsome Dick Manitoba, the singer, got into a well-publicized fight with Wayne County, the scene's foremost transvestite punk rocker, that the Dictators wormed their way back into the limelight. If a weekend at CBGB's constitutes the limelight.

Friday's show had it's noxious elements. The volume was set so loud that it distorted not only one's plugged ears but also the speakers, blitzing out all treble and definition. Mr. Manitoba is, to put it charitably, a better actor than singer. And the decision to introduce two young women from the Miss Bare-All America contest smacked more of a sales convention stag party than the so-called underground.

That all said, the Dictators have their musical virtues, at least in comparison with their heavy metal competition. The key ingredient for any such outfit - crunching, rock-steady rhythm - the Dictators have. And Ross (The Boss) Funicello and the other guitarists are certainly flashy in the best rock sense. So maybe the group's calculated use of the CBGB underground will lead it back to the commercial health of the aboveground after all.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

A New York Minute - Flea Market Find! 1947 Hotel New Yorker Room Service Menu

1947 Hotel New Yorker Room Service Menu (Cover 1)

1947 Hotel New Yorker Room Service Menu (2)

1947 Hotel New Yorker Room Service Menu (3)

1947 Hotel New Yorker Room Service Menu (4)
(Images via: NYCDreamin Archives)

Found a few cool New York City-related items at a local flea market last weekend. I paid the best price possible for items like this: only $1.00 each.

Apparently someone, we'll call him "Mr. Smith", attended a United Fresh Fruit And Vegetable Association luncheon at the Hotel New Yorker on February 18th, 1947. You can see the program for this luncheon in the following post. Mr. Smith must have stayed the night in the hotel and thought to himself that he may find himself in need of a bit of room service later in the evening after an exciting fun-filled day of discussing fruits and vegetables with his colleagues. That would be enough to make anyone hungry. Or to be in need of a few (or several) drinks.

Unfortunately, these are the only two items that I was able to obtain from Mr. Smith's stay in the big city. There were probably more (receipts, etc.) but these two pieces were all that were for sale in the pile of stuff I was looking through. So we'll never know what other exciting shenanigans Mr. Smith got up to on his trip to the big city...

A New York Minute - Flea Market Find! 02/18/47 United Fresh Fruit And Vegetable Association Luncheon at Hotel New Yorker

02/18/47 United Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Assn. Luncheon Brochure (Cover)

02/18/47 United Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Assn. Luncheon Brochure (Program)

02/18/47 United Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Assn. Luncheon Brochure (Menu)
(Images Via: NYCDreamin Archives)

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Coming October 26th: "All Hopped Up And Ready To Go: Music From The Streets of New York 1927-1977" by Tony Fletcher

(Image via:

Just heard about this from our friend Sesu Coleman of the Magic Tramps, who was one of many, many people interviewed for the book. Should be a good one.

All Hopped Up And Ready To Go: Music From The Streets of New York 1927 - 1977
by Tony Fletcher
Release Date: October 26th, 2009.
496 Pages - 33 Photos

From the book description at

"A penetrating and entertaining exploration of New York’s music scene from Cu-bop through folk, punk, and hip-hop. From Tony Fletcher, the acclaimed biographer of Keith Moon, comes an incisive history of New York’s seminal music scenes and their vast contributions to our culture. Fletcher paints a vibrant picture of mid-twentieth-century New York and the ways in which its indigenous art, theater, literature, and political movements converged to create such unique music. With great attention to the colorful characters behind the sounds, from trumpet player Dizzy Gillespie to Tito Puente, Bob Dylan, and the Ramones, he takes us through bebop, the Latin music scene, the folk revival, glitter music, disco, punk, and hip-hop as they emerged from the neighborhood streets of Harlem, the East and West Village, Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Queens. All the while, Fletcher goes well beyond the history of the music to explain just what it was about these distinctive New York sounds that took the entire nation by storm."

...can't wait to read it!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

In Stores Today! Ace Frehley "Anomaly"

It's finally here. September 15th, 2009 - a day Ace Frehley fans have been waiting for for almost 20 years. Today sees the release of the new CD from the coolest man on Earth (or any other planet), titled "Anomaly." It's like September!

The CD has been available for streaming at and as a download at Rhapsody for about a week now. I was gonna try and wait till today, but I just wasn't strong enough to hold out. I had to hear it, so I checked it out on Rhapsody, nervous and excited. I was blown away, as I thought I would be. Ace has really delivered the goods with this new batch of songs, like there was any doubt that he would!

The CD is currently in the #1 position for Hard Rock releases at As it should be.

Of course, you could just sit at home and listen to the songs for free on your computer, but then you'd be guilty of helping to destroy the record industry and we all know you wouldn't want to be part and parcel to that now, don't we? So TODAY - this morning, RIGHT NOW, run, don't walk, and go out to your nearest Wal-Mart or Best Buy (both of whom have "exclusive versions" of the CD on their shelves), or your favorite local indie record shop (and if they don't have the CD there they might deserve to go out of business anyway!) and pick up a copy of "Anomaly" and support the only Space Man from the Bronx. You'll be glad you did.

And the great news continues! Ace is currently booking dates for a fall tour, so be on the lookout - he's coming to a city near you soon to melt your face and make your ears bleed!

Monday, September 14, 2009

One From The Archives: 09/15/92 Guns 'N' Roses/ Metallica/ Faith No More @ HHH Metrodome, Minneapolis, MN

Hard to believe this one was 17 years ago already. The rumors had been flying all that spring of 1992 that Guns 'N' Roses and Metallica, two of the biggest bands in the world at that time, would team up for a summer tour. Then it was confirmed and tickets went on sale shortly after. Of course we were there to get ours the day they went on sale for the bargain price of $27.50. Hard to imagine that now, but that's what they cost. And then we sat back and waited for the tour to roll through the Twin Cities. In rapt anticipation, we watched reports of the tours progress on MTV, back when they actually had some music and music news on there. The tour started out on July 17th in Washington DC at RFK Stadium...

One thing is clear from watching that clip, the MTV VJ's were in serious need of a good slap-down even back then. But back to the story...

Then at some point early on, the tour was re-routed and rescheduled. The Minneapolis date was moved back to September 15th. We went and exchanged our tickets for ones on the new date and waited and continued to watch MTV for updates.

09/15/92 Guns 'N' Roses/Metallica/Faith No More @ Minneapolis, MN (Ad for Originally Scheduled Date - 08/05/92 - Rescheduled to 09/15/92)
(Images via: NYCDreamin Archives)
Print ad for the originally scheduled August 5th, 1992 G'N'R/Metallica concert at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome in Minneapolis. The show was rescheduled early in the tour to take place on September 15th, 1992.

Then, on the night of August 8th, a few things took place during the show in Montreal, Quebec, Canada that threatened to derail the tour indefinately. During Metallica's performance that evening, vocalist/guitarist James Hetfield suffered 2nd and 3rd degree burns on his left arm after he wandered too near a pyrotechnic effect that went off as he stepped near it. The band were forced to cancel the rest of their performance as Hetfield was whisked away to receive medical attention.

So the stage crew began the process of setting up for Gun 'N' Roses' set, which by all accounts, had been starting extremely late in the evening at each stop on the tour as Axl Rose played God with his thousands of fans each night, rewarding their attendance with long, extended waits between sets. This show was no exception, and as the delay between sets grew longer and longer, the Montreal fans started to become restless. When G 'N' R finally took the stage, after only a few songs, the trouble began with the band members claiming they could not hear the stage monitors, and Axl claiming he had a sore throat. They left the stage after a short 55 minute set and the Montreal fans went nuts, rioting in and near Olympic Stadium, causing hundreds of thousands of dollars in damages and injuring 13 people.

It wasn't looking too good for our chances of seeing this tour make it to Minneapolis. But after things were sorted out and smoothed over in Montreal, Guns 'N' Roses had time to refocus, and Metallica had time to hire their former roadie and friend James Marshall, guitarist with the band Metal Church, the tour started up again in Phoenix, AZ on August 25th, winding across the Southwest and up into the East Coast before coming back through the Midwest and finally making the long anticipated stop in Minneapolis.

Below, the ad for the rescheduled show and a ticket stub.

09/15/92 Guns 'N' Roses/Metallica/Faith No More @ Minneapolis, MN (Rescheduled Date Ad)(Top) 09/15/92 Guns 'N' Roses/Metallica/Faith No More @ Minneapolis, MN (Rescheduled Date Ad)(Bottom)

09/15/92 Guns 'N' Roses/Metallica/Faith No More @ Minneapolis, MN (Ticket)

The show here was pretty uneventful in comparison, but it was a good night of solid rock and roll for the many thousands of Metal faithful who jammed the Metrodome. Faith No More were (I thought) quite impressive and I found myself wishing they had been allotted a longer slot. But alas, it was time for Metallica, now a five piece, with the above-mentioned James Marshall filling in on guitar for the still injured Hetfield, who handled the vocals sans guitar. It was kind of cool seeing them with an extra member on the stage and Marshall proved he could deliver the goods, easily keeping up with the band. I thought, as Metallica finished up their set, Guns 'N' Roses could never come close to matching Metallica in sheer entertainment and musicianship. I was about to be proven wrong in this assumption.

As was expected, the delay between Metallica and G 'N' R was long, but when they finally hit the stage late in the evening, I was completely blown away at just how awesome the Gunners were in concert. I figured they'd be kind of sloppy - but nothing could have been further from the truth. They absolutely destroyed Metallica within just a few numbers. I had had my doubts but I was witnessing something truly amazing, Guns 'N' Roses in their prime. They seemed tireless, like they could have played all night, and had they, I would have stayed till the very end. It's hard to describe it now, all these years later, but there was just something about their performance that night that has etched itself into my brain as a truly special night of rock and roll and I will never forget it.

It was the only time I ever saw Gun 'N' Roses in concert and the final time I would see Metallica as well, as I thought they were beginning to veer to far from their origins for my taste with their big, fancy stage and all their lighting and special effects. They were no longer the little kick ass Bay Area thrash band they once were. Little did I know just how far, in the next few years, they would stray. But I had a feeling things were headed south for them. They continued to get bigger and bigger as their music became less and less attractive to my ears. They are still one of the biggest bands in the world and can sell out any arena they choose to play.

Faith No More eventually broke up at some point, but have recently been playing together again for the first time in many years.

And we all know what became of Guns 'N' Roses...too bad, for a brief time in that long ago summer of 1992, we thought they could have been the Led Zeppelin of their generation.

09/11/09 RIP Jim Carroll - Author, Poet, Songwriter - The Jim Carroll Band

Both Stupefaction & EVGrieve (among many others) are reporting the incredibly sad news of the passing of writer and musician Jim Carroll. He passed away on Friday, September 11th, at his home in New York City. He was 60 years old.

More details at: New York


Friday, September 11, 2009

09/11/01: We Will Always Remember The Day The Evil Landed

"The Evil Has Landed" - by Testament

The sky began to fall
Ripping open a path up to heaven
Time slowed to a crawl
Early morning September eleven

Steel crumbling frames
The scales of justice are decimated
Hate ignites the flames
New York City incinerated

See the flames on the river
Is this our judgment day?
Praying hands of a killer
When evil flies our way
Our way...

The towers got hit
A steel bird with wings of destruction
As the buildings split
The skyline has been deconstructed

So many people killed
Two thousand nine hundred seventy four
Innocent blood spilled
Extremists plotting a holy war

See the flames on the river
Terrorism sealed our fate
Praying hands of a killer
Reciting a sermon of hate

Will you please reconsider
Is this our judgment day?
Time to stand and deliver
When evil flies our way
Flies our way...

We will pick up the pieces
We never cast the first stone
Through all of the bereavement
We will rebuild our home

The sky began to fall
Ripping open a path up to heaven
Time slowed to a crawl
Early morning September eleven

See the flames on the river
Terrorism sealed our fate
Praying hands of a killer
Reciting a sermon of hate

Will you please reconsider
Is this our judgment day?
Time to stand and deliver
When evil flies our way

Flies our way...

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Tonight! 09/10/09 Snow Patrol/ Plain White T's @ State Theater, Minneapolis, MN

09/10/09 Snow Patrol/Plain White T's @ Maplewood, MN - (MOVED) (Ad)
(Images via: NYCDreamin Archives)

09/10/09 Snow Patrol @ Myth, Maplewood, MN (Ticket)
Original ad and ticket for the Snow Patrol concert when it was scheduled to take place at the Myth in Maplewood.

Heading in to Minneapolis tonight to see Snow Patrol (whom I know very little about actually). This will be my first time seeing them, the second time for the Gorgeous One, who says they are a great live band. The show was originally scheduled to take place at the Myth in Maplewood, but was moved to the State Theatre in Minneapolis a few weeks ago when the Myth closed due to financial troubles and multiple lawsuits. Some people are upset about the Myth closing and hoping that it re-opens, quite a few more are glad to see it go. I'm of the second opinion and I say good fucking riddance...

09/10/09 Snow Patrol/Plain White T's @ Minneapolis, MN (MOVED) (Ad)

09/10/09 Snow Patrol/Plain White T's @ Minneapolis, MN (MOVED) (Ticket)
Ad and ticket for the relocated Snow Patrol concert, now being held at the State Theatre in Minneapolis.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

One From The Archives: 09/09/07 Rush @ Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, MN

09/09/07 Rush @ St. Paul, MN (Ad - Top) 09/09/07 Rush @ St. Paul, MN (Ad - Bottom)

09/09/07 Rush @ St. Paul, MN (Ticket)
(Images via: NYCDreamin Archives)

This was the second time (of three) seeing Rush on their 2007-2008 "Snakes & Arrows" tour. This show was on my home turf in St. Paul at the Xcel Energy Center. The first time I saw them on this tour just two months prior to this show, it was outdoors, on the ocean at the Jones Beach Amphitheatre in Wantagh, Long Island, NY. The New York show was amazing and this second show in St. Paul was pretty damn good as well. The setlist was identical at both shows but it was actually really cool to see it a second time.

One From The Archives: 09/09/03 Kiss Symphony: Alive IV Theatrical Screening @ Regal Cinemas, Brooklyn Center, MN

09/09/03 Kiss Symphony Alive IV DVD Theatrical Screening @ Brooklyn Center, MN (Laminated Theatre Card - Front)
 (Images via: NYCDreamin Archives)

09/09/03 Kiss Symphony Alive IV DVD Theatrical Screening @ Brooklyn Center, MN (Laminated Theatre Card - Reverse)
A laminated window display (front and reverse) I liberated from the theatre box office where I saw the one-night-only showing of Kiss Symphony - Alive IV.

This was fun.

On February 28, 2003, Kiss performed in Melbourne, Australia with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, directed by David Campbell (who, by the way, is the father of the multi-talented Beck). The band recorded the evening's performance for an upcoming CD ("Kiss Symphony -Alive IV") and DVD (same title) release.

The CD was released on July 22, 2003. The DVD came a bit later, appearing on September 10th, 2003. The day before the DVD was released, fans "in the know" in select cities in the US were treated to a "one-night-only" theatrical screening of the DVD. Minneapolis (actually in Brooklyn Center at the Brooklyn Center 20 Cinemas) was one of the cities where the DVD was screened and you know I was there. It was pretty fun to see the painted foursome (including Peter Criss, but sadly no Ace Frehley - although Tommy Thayer, who had only been in the band for a short time at that point seemed to do a pretty good job actually)up on the big screen, all larger than life. I had had my doubts as to how well Kiss performing with a symphony orchestra would sound, but it turned out well actually, something different from a band who seems to keep repeating their gloried past.
The theatre was pretty full and everyone who attended seemed to enjoy the show as there was sporadic applause throughout the screening.

One From The Archives: 09/08/02 WLOL Wango Tango @ Canterbury Park, Shakopee, MN

09/08/02 WLOL Wango Tango /W/ Grand Funk Railroad/Night Ranger/Steppenwolf/Starship @ Shakopee, MN (Ad)

09/08/02 WLOL Wango Tango /W/ Grand Funk Railroad/Night Ranger/Steppenwolf/Starship @ Shakopee, MN (Ticket)
(Images & Photo via: NYCDreamin Archives)

The Wango Tango was an all day event, held 7 years ago at Canterbury Downs race track in Shakopee, MN, sponsored by the local FM Classic Rock station WLOL. I was wondering why, since Ted Nugent was not there, they chose to call it the Wango Tango? But Whatever. I picked up a pair of tickets in advance ($20.00 each) for my then girlfriend and myself.
The day of the show arrives and she and I and "337" head over to Shakopee and as we're getting out of the car, this girl comes walking up to us and asks us if we need tickets. Obviously, the girlfriend and I didn't need one, but "337", who was gonna buy one at the gate said, "Yeah, How much?" "They're FREE," the girl announced, "Comp tickets!" "337" looked at us and smiled this huge "Ha Ha" smile as the girlfriend and I were exchanging "WTF?" glances and I was thinking how I could have saved $40.00 for beer and food or something. Oh well, you win some and you lose some.
The day started off with Starship featuring Mickey Thomas. I had kinda low expectations for them, but they proved to be very impressive, sounding amazing live. I was thinking that it was too bad that Grace Slick was no longer in the band, but they played one my favorite Starship tracks "Jane", with a blistering guitar solo, and "No Way Out", so that was cool.
I had absolutely no inclination to see John Kay's Steppenwolf, so when they came out we decided to go look around the grounds for a bit and grab some food. We wandered back over to a good spot about three quarters of the way through their set, and as I expected, they were not so amazing. Born to be Wild? More like born to be mild.
During the late part of the afternoon, Night Ranger came on. I had seen them several times previously and was pretty excited to see them again as they always put on a high energy, rockin' show. They were pretty kick ass on this particular evening as well and the three of us really enjoyed their set as the afternoon sunshine faded from the sky and darkness fell. Following are a few really poor quality photos from their set I shot on actual film, one of those cheap disposable camera things Kodak used to sell.
09/08/02 WLOL Wango Tango @ Shakopee, MN (Night Ranger)

09/08/02 WLOL Wango Tango @ Shakopee, MN (Night Ranger)

09/08/02 WLOL Wango Tango @ Shakopee, MN (Night Ranger)

09/08/02 WLOL Wango Tango @ Shakopee, MN (Night Ranger)

The beautiful late summer evening ended with headliners, the "American Band", Grand Funk Railroad who were also in top form on this particular evening. And unlike the time I saw them just about one year later, there was no problem lighting up a cigarette, no one hassled us. There seemed to be quite a few people wearing Kiss t-shirts in the crowd, obviously there to support GFR guitarist Bruce Kulick, who'd played with Kiss for about 10 years prior to hooking up with GFR. The only real problem of the day were all the older - middle-age people who had parked their fat lazy asses in lawn chairs in the first several rows in front of the stage. I always thought that area was for the crazy rockin' fans who were able to stand throughout the entire show. But the old drunk Steppenwolf fans seemed to need to sit down to make it through the show and were not about to budge for an reason. Other than that this was a very fun day and it was nice that 3 of the 4 bands put on excellent, memorable performances. Below are just a few low-quality photos from their set as well.

09/08/02 WLOL Wango Tango @ Shakopee, MN (Grand Funk Railroad)

09/08/02 WLOL Wango Tango @ Shakopee, MN (Grand Funk Railroad)

09/08/02 WLOL Wango Tango @ Shakopee, MN (Grand Funk Railroad)

09/08/02 WLOL Wango Tango @ Shakopee, MN (Grand Funk Railroad)


Monday, September 7, 2009

Remember That One Time At Coventry?

01/31/73 & 02/01/73 Kiss @ Coventry, Queens, NYC, NY
Ad for Kiss' very first shows - 01/31/73 & 02/01/73 @ Coventry, Queens, NYC, NY

Latest UPDATE: 03/29/14

OK, all you early-70's NYC rock and roll it is...the long-promised "Coventry" piece. I had this mostly ready to go last winter and was finishing it up when I lost my hard drive and everything on it. So I've been busy piecing it back together and here is what I've come up with. Unfortunately, photos of the Coventry are still elusive (I'm still looking!), but there is at least now some video that has surfaced of Kiss performing at the club on 12/22/73 (see below), so we can at least get some idea of what the club was like inside.

This will be another one of those "work-in-progress" pieces, so be sure to check back in the future to see what has been added/updated.

Popcorn Pub/Coventry
47-03 Queens Blvd. (at 47th Street)
Sunnyside, Queens, NYC, NY
Phone: 212-729-9681

Paul Sub - Owner, Coventry
Excerpt from:
"Dressed to Kill" by Ken Sharp
Goldmine Magazine (04/11/08)
It was a big club, around 5,000 square feet, and it held around 700 people. Everyone from KISS, The New York Dolls, The Ramones, Blondie, Sam & Dave, The Dictators and Elephant's Memory played there. I'd put on 10 acts a week, both local and national. The only act we turned down, because we didn't want to spend $300, was Aerosmith (laughs). The New York Dolls were really the ones that kept Coventry going. They played once a month, and whenever they played, 700 people would show up. They had the main following of all the bands who played there. The Dolls really helped pay my rent (laughs). All the other groups who played there, from KISS to The Ramones, didn't really bring in that many people.

Paul Sub - Owner, Coventry
Excerpt from:
Kiss Alive Forever: The Complete Touring History
by Curt Gooch & Jeff Suhs [p. 17]
As you came in [to the club], there was a small stage on your right and a large one on your left. The P.A. equipment was the size that you'd put into Madison Square Garden, and we occasionally had problems with the neighbors. From floor to ceiling, the club was maybe 15' high. There was also a basement where people could go relax. It was a hang-out room that was sealed off to the public, but sometimes bands would take their guests down there.


09/01/72 Link Wray/Magic Tramps
09/02/72 Link Wray/Magic Tramps
09/03/72 Link Wray/Magic Tramps
09/08/73 Link Wray/Magic Tramps
09/09/73 Link Wray/Magic Tramps
09/10/73 Link Wray/Magic Tramps

Sesu Coleman - Drums, Magic Tramps
Excerpt from: Link Wray Tribute Page
While in New York City in the 70's working with my band - the "Magic Tramps" - featuring Eric Emerson, Warhol Superstar -we were asked to convert a club in Queens NY, called the "Popcorn" into a Rock club called the "Coventry". The bill was the "Magic Tramps" and "Link Wray". We would perform a show with Eric Emerson and then Eric would leave the stage and Link would come on and immediately turn his amp backwards towards the wall and start playing "RUMBLE" ... Music to my ears. It was such a thrill and honor to play a week with Link and get to know him as a person.



01/30/73 Kiss *Kiss' 1st Concert Appearance
*This was also the weekend that the club, formerly known as the Popcorn Pub, officially changed it's name to Coventry.

Excerpt from:
Kiss Alive Forever: The Complete Touring History
by Curt Gooch & Jeff Suhs [p. 17]
This was Kiss' debut show. Kiss' performance was the first at the newly named Coventry, which had been previously called the Popcorn Pub. For a band that became renowned the world over for it's garish, rediculous appearance, Kiss' attire for their fist concert was, simply put, dull. Of the four, only Gene wore makeup that even hinted at what was to come, with pncake [makeup] covering his face and black greasepaint smudged formlessly around his eyes. Peter wore a small amount of Rouge, and neither Paul nor Ace wore any makeup whatsoever. The band's clothing was very pedestrian as well. Gene wore bellbottoms and a sailor suit top. Ace wore jeans and a shirt, as did Paul, who included a dark sports jacket in his ensemble.

A handful of Poloroid [photos] from one of the first Kiss shows at Coventry shows exists and [were] sold [in a] June 2000 auction. See the photos here:
Gene Simmons & Paul Stanley / Paul Stanley & Ace Frehley
Peter Criss / Gene Simmons

Paul Sub - Owner, Coventry
Excerpt from:
Kiss Alive Forever: The Complete Touring History
by Curt Gooch & Jeff Suhs [p. 17]

There was no real formal booking at Coventry. Kiss came in like all the bands did and asked if they could play. Whoever came in...we just booked them. We never turned anyone down. On average, Kiss drew about 60 or 70 people. They didn't draw at all.

Gene Simmons - Bass & Vocals, Kiss
Paul Stanley - Guitar & Vocals, Kiss
Peter Criss - Drums & Vocals, Kiss
Lydia Criss - Ex-Wife of Peter Criss
Excerpts from:
"Dressed To Kill" by Ken Sharp
Goldmine Magazine (04/11/08)
Gene Simmons: I was always the asshole who decided to pick up the phone and bother people and get us to where we wanted to go. On my way into work in the city I used to pass by this club in Queens. I called the club, got the manager on the phone and started selling, which is what I've always done my entire life. I said to him, "We've got a band called Wicked Lester, and I'm really excited about it. You should book us, because we're terrific." So he agreed to put us on for three nights during the middle of the week when nobody went there. We had yet to name ourselves KISS. That first night we changed the name of the band from Wicked Lester to KISS.

Gene Simmons: Coventry was located in Queens, New York, in a downtrodden industrial area. Two stories above the building we played was a subway, so when we played, the trains would be going by, and it was loud. It was owned by the boys (imitates tough guy accent) "Who kind of talked like this.'" We played a Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday and were paid 30 dollars.

Paul Stanley: First time we played there, it was virtually empty.

Peter Criss: Nobody was there (laughs). It was a nightmare. We killed ourselves for six people.

Lydia Criss: I remember it was a really cold winter night. The only people who showed up at that first Coventry show were me, Jan Walsh, who was Gene's girlfriend at the time, and her friend, plus the road crew - Eddie Solan; Joey Criscuola, Peter's brother; and Bobby McAdams - and the people who worked at the club.

Paul Stanley: Coventry was important for us, because it was so difficult for a band like us to get any gigs because we didn't play Top 40, and we weren't part of the Mercer Arts crowd, which was the crowd that took in the New York Dolls and some of the Andy Warhol, Max's Kansas City bands. So, we needed a place that could be ours, and Coventry was a place in Queens that was just on the other side of the East River. It gave people in New York access to come see us, and it also set us a little apart from the New York glitter bands. Coventry was a place where we really cut our teeth, and it was the first place we ever played.

Sesu Coleman - Drummer, Magic Tramps
From: Private Interview with NYCDreamin - 12/07
We didn't hang with Kiss as they weren't part of the "Glam Scene." Who knew?!?

01/31/73 Kiss
02/01/73 Kiss
02/02/73 Salty Dog
02/03/73 Salty Dog
02/04/73 Salty Dog
02/??/73 Harlots of 42nd Street
02/??/73 Harlots of 42nd Street
02/??/73 Harlots of 42nd Street
02/??/73 Harlots of 42nd Street
05/04/73 The Four Directions/Jim Mall(?) Quartet
05/05/73 The Four Directions/Jim Mall(?) Quartet
05/11/73 New York Dolls

Arthur "Killer" Kane - Bass, New York Dolls
Excerpt from:
I, Doll: Life and Death with the New York Dolls [p. 160]
...we had played in New York for three or four hundred people at most, either at the Oscar Wilde Room at the Mercer Arts Center or somewhere like Max's Kansas City or the Coventry in Queens. Those were our largest gigs to date - not exactly football stadiums!

05/12/73 New York Dolls
05/.../73 The Brats
05/.../73 Toro
05/18/73 Teenage Lust/Sweetblood
05/19/73 Teenage Lust/Sweetblood
05/25/73 Harlots of 42nd Street
05/26/73 Harlots of 42nd Street
05/27/73 Harlots of 42nd Street
06/19/73 Rapscallion
06/20/73 Ramble On
06/21/73 The Brats
06/22/73 Ruby and the Rednecks/Ramble On
06/23/73 Ruby and the Rednecks/Ramble On
06/24/73 Ruby and the Rednecks/Ramble On
06/26/73 Rapscallion
06/27/73 Ramble On
06/28/73 The Brats
06/29/73 New York Dolls
06/30/73 New York Dolls
07/01/73 New York Dolls/Blue Suede
07/06/73 Teenage Lust/Planets
07/07/73 Teenage Lust/Planets
07/08/73 Teenage Lust/Planets
07/23/73 Ramble On
07/24/73 Ramble On
07/25/73 The Brats
07/26/73 Brownies Revenge
07/27/73 New York Dolls/The Brats/Luger/Malachite
07/28/73 New York Dolls/The Brats/Luger/Malachite
07/29/73 New York Dolls/The Brats/Luger/Malachite

07/30/73 Singing Irish/Dancing Fiddler/Mary Ni Catain & Margaret Barry

07/31/73 Singing Irish/Dancing Fiddler/Mary Ni Catain & Margaret Barry

08/03/73 Bulldog
08/04/73 Bulldog
08/17/73 Teenage Lust/Luger/Bitch
08/18/73 Teenage Lust/Luger/Bitch
08/19/73 Teenage Lust/Luger/Bitch
08/31/73 Wild Honey/Kiss/The Dogs

Excerpt from:
Kiss Concert Review - Coventry
New York Daily News (Date N/A)
by Stanley Mieses
...his [Paul Stanley's] black-and-red striped platform shoes should win the Alan Ladd Footwear Award. They're so high that you can crawl through the gap between the heels and layed soles. He also serves as the spokesman for the group. 'We didn't come here to talk no politics, we're goin to rock 'n' roll,' he shouts to the small audience at the Coventry. He winks with the one eye that isn't painted black. 'I hope everyone here's been drinking...' and the thought trails off, sentence incomplete, into a number called 'Sloe Gin' [actually 'Cold Gin.] 'We'd rather you dance than ponder the lyrics,' he advises. The bass player sneers and the lead guitarist strikes an I-dare-you-punk pose. 'We're not the smartest boys around, you know,' the rhythm guitarist says, and the whole band laughs.

Stan Mieses - Writer, New York Daily News
Excerpt from:
"Dressed to Kill" by Ken Sharp
Goldmine Magazine (04/11/08)
Back in 1973, I was 20 years old. I was a copy boy at the Daily News. Hanging around, I impressed a couple of the editors with my enthusiasm for rock and roll. I'd gotten a couple of assignments to review rock shows. Then this guy Paul (Sub) wrote me from Queens - he must have seen my byline.

He said, "You're The Daily News. You guys should really cover clubs in Queens." So, I went out to this guy's club, The Coventry, sat down, and this group named KISS came on. I looked at them and thought this was like comic book or kabuki, something I'd never seen. They looked great. Musically, it sounded like cement mixing. It was not my style of music - my style leaned more to The Velvet Underground - but I thought their stage show was very impressive. The club was half full but they were enthusiastic. The substance of my review, which ran in The Daily News, was how they looked. I described the band in detail and not so much the sound. They had clearly defined characters, and that's something I hadn't seen since The Beatles. Each member of the band was individualized. The makeup made all four guys distinct. The behavior onstage was also very distinct. I thought these guys had a shot at making it, because, at the very least, the next day people would say, "You should see what I saw!"

09/01/73 Wild Honey/Kiss/The Dogs

09/02/73 Wild Honey/Kiss/The Dogs
*This concert never happened - it only appears on the posters Kiss had made up advertising the show. In all other advertisements only the August 31 and September 1 date are listed.

Paul Sub - Owner, Coventry
Excerpt from:

Kiss Alive Forever: The Complete Touring History
by Curt Gooch & Jeff Suhs [p. 23]
Kiss never really got paid. One day they came in and said that they insisted they could not play unless I gave them 50 bucks. So I asked what the $50.oo was for. They told me it was for a hotel they had to get so that they could put on their makeup.

09/02/73 Jerry Lewis Labor Day Telethon Benefit Event
09/28/73 Teenage Lust/Harlots of 42nd Street/Ramble On
09/29/73 Teenage Lust/Harlots of 42nd Street/Ramble On
09/30/73 Teenage Lust/Harlots of 42nd Street/Ramble On
10/24/73 Isis/Legs Latreau/Ulysses
10/25/73 Isis/Legs Latreau/Ulysses
10/26/73 Isis/Magic Tramps/Sniper

Joey Ramone - Vocals, Sniper, Ramones
Excerpt from:
Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk
by Legs McNeil & Gillian McCain [p. 178-79]
I'd just sit with Dee Dee [Ramone] on the corner off of Queens Boulevard and drink and insult people and stuff. That's when I got kicked out of the house. My mother told me it was for my own good. So I moved into my mom's art gallery. I had to barricade myself in real fast so the cops wouldn't catch me. The cops would come by, I'd see a flashlight and hear a police radio going, and they'd be banging on the door like they thought I was a burglar. It was a kind of a tense situation. I was always worried they'd get me. So I'd barricade myself in real fast with the paintings and sleep on the floor. I had a sleeping bag, a pillow, and a blanket and then I'd work there during the day. At night, I used to hang out at the Coventry, the big rock and roll club in Queens. One night I met Dee Dee there and brought him back to the art gallery to sleep on the floor.

Mickey Leigh - Brother of Joey Ramone
Excerpts from:
Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk
by Legs McNeil & Gillian McCain [p. 180-181]
It was about that time that Joey started getting into glitter and joined his first band. Joey joined the band Sniper and started hitching rides down Queens Boulevard to hang out at this club called the Coventry. I think Joey became the lead singer of Sniper by answering an ad in the Village Voice: "Let's dress up and be stars tomorrow."

I thought it was great that Joey was in a band, but it was really dangerous to hitchhike down Queens Boulevard looking the way Joey did. Joey's so unusual to begin with, so tall - he's about six six naturally, but in platform shoes he stood over seven feet tall. And he wore a jumpsuit. At that time, you really couldn't be doing that safely. You were taking a chance hitchhiking down Queens Boulevard like that.

He eventually got beat up. His got his nose bashed in. We had to go pick him up and bring him to Elmhurst hospital. I felt bad. Then Sniper became regulars at Coventry - playing a couple of times a month - so I wanted to go check them out, see what was going on. When I got there it was a real glitter crowd - everyone was into that band the Harlots of 42nd Street. So I thought it was going to be lame. I was shocked when the band came out. Joey was the lead singer and I couldn't believe how good he was. Because he'd been sitting in my house with my accoustic guitar writing these songs like "I Don't Care," fucking up my guitar, and suddenly he's this guy on stage who you can't tkae your eyes off of. I was blown away. I was shocked. I didn't think the band Sniper was too good, but I was real impressed with my brother. He moved like he would in the early Ramones days. I told him, "I can't believe it. I can't believe how you're coming off, how you're performing.

Joey Ramone - Vocals, Sniper, Ramones
Excerpt from:
Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk
by Legs McNeil & Gillian McCain [p. 181]

It was the glitter days and the New York Dolls and Kiss would come play at the Coventry, all those bands would come in from Manhattan.

10/27/73 Isis
10/28/73 Isis
10/29/73 *Folk Night /W/ Folk & Country Western Bands
11/16/73 Teenage Lust/Star Spangled Washboard/Planets/Bang Zoom
11/17/73 Teenage Lust/Star Spangled Washboard/Planets/Bang Zoom

12/21/73 Kiss/Isis/Rags/City Slicker/Flaming Youth
*Kiss' set was videotaped but was recorded over the following night. This was the first show where all four members of the band performed with full whiteface makeup. Actress were scheduled to open this pair of shows but cancelled, being replaced by Flaming Youth.

12/22/73 Kiss/Isis/Rags/City Slicker/Flaming Youth
*Kiss' set was videotaped - Available on the 4DVD Set "Kissology III".
Click each song title below to watch video from Kiss's 12/22/73 performance:
Deuce / Cold Gin / Nothin' To Lose / Strutter / Firehouse / Let Me Know / 100,ooo Years / Black Diamond / Let Me Go Rock 'N' Roll

*This was Kiss' final show as a NYC club band. During the show Paul Stanley announced to the crowd that the band had signed a record contract.

Paul Stanley - Guitar & Vocals, Kiss
Peter Criss - Drums & Vocals, Kiss
Lydia Criss - Ex-Wife of Peter Criss
Gene Simmons - Bass & Vocals, Kiss
Joe Valentine - Guitar, Rags
Bill Aucoin - Kiss Manager 1973-1982
Excerpts from:
"Dressed to Kill" by Ken Sharp
Goldmine Magazine (04/11/08)
Paul Stanley: Coventry was a study in contrasts. The first time we played there, there was nobody there. The last time we played there, you could barely get in the door. It was very cool. It was the first place we played when we got a record deal.

Peter Criss: Even though hardly anyone was there at our first gig, when we eventually played there enough times, I remember pulling up one night in the car with the boys and there was a line down the block. We went, "Holy shit! Wow, this is cool!" We had to go through the crowd, and they were all patting us on the back, and we made it to the basement and we said, "F**k!" It was cool.

Lydia Criss: The all-girl band Isis opened for KISS that night. The Dolls were in the audience. It was a wild show. It was all starting to happen for them, and you could sense the momentum building. Spirits were high.

Gene Simmons: When we played [Coventry] in December of '73, there may have been 80 to 100 people. But, there was a special excitement within the band, because we had just signed to Casablanca Records, which was going to be a brand new label. We were the first artists on the label. For all we knew, we were about to become big stars. In the beginning, you dream big.

Joe Valentine: We played on the same bill with KISS at Coventry in December '73. I didn't quite understand the correlation between kabuki makeup and rock and roll, but hey, rock and roll has strange bedfellows. But, their music was so good. To be honest, I thought they didn't even need the makeup. I said to myself, "These guys are gonna be big!" The Dolls were struggling at the time; their asexual look was a tough sell to middle America. KISS were the next New York band in line poised to conquer the world.

Bill Aucoin: I shot the footage that night at Coventry on a half-inch Sony reel-to-reel recorder with a Sony black-and-white video camera. We shot the footage not to preserve a show per se, but more to see if they did anything wrong that we could fix before their big show on New Year's Eve at the Academy Of Music.

Unfortunately, that same reel of video tape held some wonderful moments in their rehearsals in this dungeon down in the Bowery, but I taped over it when I shot their Coventry show. I always knew I had the footage, and a few years back, I finally had it transferred. I came out to L.A. and showed Gene and Paul the Coventry footage, and they were both quite amazed. I don't think they remembered they were as good as they were.

Gene said, "Gee, we really were together then." At that point, they'd rehearsed so much they were really tight. They were thinking of themselves as not being that tight and focused, but the truth of the matter is yes, they were. Watching the video you can sense what I believed from the first moment that I worked with them: KISS were really on a mission. They were driven to make this happen, and a lot of artists aren't. They expect it to happen, or they dream about the money. But, they don't necessarily have the drive, but KISS had it. At that time, they were very excited. They had their album coming out. They were doing their first tour. This was a dream for any artist, and you can see the excitement in their performance at Coventry.

12/23/73 Kiss/Isis/Rags/City Slicker/Flaming Youth
*Show was CANCELLED, probably due to poor weather conditions.

Eddie Solan - Kiss Road Crew Member
Excerpt from:
Kiss Alive Forever: The Complete Touring History
by Curt Gooch & Jeff Suhs [p. 25]

The final Coventry gig was cancelled for some reason. I can't remember why. It might have been the weather."

12/24/73 Harlots of 42nd Street/Actress/Rags/Messiah with Eric Emerson

12/31/73 Elephants Memory/Harlots of 42nd Street/Actress/+ 3 Guest Groups

??/??/73 Magic Tramps


*At some point in the first week of February 1974, the owner of Coventry opened a second club, Coventry II, in Manhattan. All Dates preceded with the notation "COVII" took place here.

Excerpt from:
"Debunking 'Don't Open in February' Myth
by Les Ledbetter
New York Times - 02/08/74
Pul Sub, owner of the Coventry on Queens Boulevard in Sunnyside Queens, decided to open a second club, Coventry II at 1550 First Avenue (near 80th Street) this week.

Coventry II
1550 - 1st Avenue (@ 80th Street)
Phone: 744-9400

HERE is what 1550 - 1st Avenue currently looks like in 2009.

01/01/74 Rags
01/02/74 Guest Groups
01/03/74 Guest Groups
01/04/74 The Brats
01/05/74 The Brats
01/06/74 Theater Of Madness/ Gran Faloon/ Milk & Cookies
01/09/74 Milk & Cookies
01/10/74 Milk & Cookies
01/11/74 Teenage Lust/Flaming Youth/Actress*/Palace
*This "Actress" should not be confused with the early version of the New York Dolls. They were two completely different bands.

01/12/74 Teenage Lust/Flaming Youth/Actress/Palace
01/13/74 Actress/ Palace
01/18/74 Exuma/ The Fast/ Theater Of Madness/ Billy Peppa
01/19/74 Exuma/ The Fast/ Theater Of Madness/ Billy Peppa
01/20/74 The Fast/ Theater Of Madness/ Billy Peppa
01/23/74 Isis
01/25/74 Isis/ Legs Latreau/ Mushroom
01/26/74 Isis/ Legs Latreau/ Mushroom
01/27/74 Isis/ Legs Latreau/ Mushroom
02/01/74 Isis/ Wild Honey/ Ulysses
02/01/74 Coventry II opens at 1550 1st Avenue at 80th Street in Manhattan
02/02/74 Isis/ Wild Honey/ Ulysses
02/03/74 Isis/ Wild Honey/ Ulysses
COVII 02/04/74 Grand Opening /w/ Actress/ Lean Bros.
COVII 02/05/74 Actress Lean Bros.
COVII 02/06/74 Paul Fleisher/ Portable Radio Circus/ Bogart
COVII 02/07/74 Paul Fleisher/ Portable Radio Circus/ Bogart/ Braid
02/08/74 Bobby Knight Soul Society/ Wild Honey/ Cannon/ Gran Faloon/ Bob Lennox Group
COVII 02/08/74 Bogart/ Braid
02/09/74 Bobby Knight Soul Society/ Wild Honey/ Cannon/ Gran Faloon/ Bob Lennox Group
COVII 02/09/74 Bogart/ Braid
COVII 02/10/74 Braid
02/14/74 The Brats/ Rags/ The Fast/ Gran Faloon
02/15/74 Teenage Lust/ Wild Honey/ Theater Of Madness
COVII 02/15/74 Elly Greenberg & Friends/ Olduvai Gorge
02/16/74 Teenage Lust/ Wild Honey/ Theater Of Madness
COVII 02/16/74 Elly Greenberg & Friends/ Olduvai Gorge
02/17/74 Magic Tramps/ Flaming Youth/ Canon/ Theater Of Madness
COVII 02/17/74 Elly Greenberg & Friends/ Olduvai Gorge
02/20/74 Palace/ Guests
COVII 02/21/74 Elly Greenberg & Friends/ Model/ Guest Group
02/22/74 Magic Tramps/Rags/Wild Honey/Palace
COVII 02/22/74 Elly Greenberg & Friends/ Model/ Guest Group
02/23/74 Magic Tramps/Rags/Wild Honey/Palace
COVII 02/23/74 Elly Greenberg & Friends/ Model/ Guest Group
02/24/74 Magic Tramps/Rags/Wild Honey/Palace
COVII 02/24/74 Elly Greenberg & Friends/ Model/ Guest Group
02/27/74 Behemoth/ Guest
COVII 02/27/74 Lean Bros.
COVII 02/28/74 Auditions
COVII 02/29/74 Bob Miles
03/01/74 The Brats/ Canon/ Booby Knight/ Soulciety
COVII 03/01/74 Actress/ Jimmie Yessian/ Special Guest
03/02/74 The Brats/ Canon/ Booby Knight/ Soulciety
COVII 03/02/74 Actress/ Jimmie Yessian/ Special Guest
03/03/74 Canon/ Booby Knight/ Soulciety
COVII 03/03/74 Actress/ Jimmie Yessian/ Special Guest
03/05/74 Lean Bros.
03/06/74 Bang Zoom/ Guest
COVII 03/06/74 Auditions
COVII 03/07/74 Bob Miles
03/08/74 Exuma/ Actress/ Sniper/ Bang Zoom
COVII 03/08/74 Eric Emerson's Star Theater/ Schub & Friends
03/09/74 Exuma/ Actress/ Sniper/ Bang Zoom
COVII 03/09/74 Eric Emerson's Star Theater/ Schub & Friends
03/10/74 Actress/ Naked Rush
COVII 03/10/74 Eric Emerson's Star Theater/ Schub & Friends
03/12/74 Naked Rush
COVII 03/12/74 Lean Bros.
03/13/74 Dictators/The Dogs *Dictators first concert performance
COVII 03/13/74 Auditions

Andy Shernoff - Bass & Vocals, Dictators
Excerpt from:
"Lou Reed Is A Creep: Discourse With Two Dictators"
The Coventry was one of the glitter-rock places in New York, and if you were doing original music, that was the ONLY place to play. If you were a cover band, you could play anywhere; that's what people wanted to see. People didn't want to see bands playing original music, today it's a whole different story.

Loren Molinare - Guitar & Vocals, The Dogs
Excerpt from:
July 2001 Interview
Well, we really moved to NYC first, in June of 1973 and lived in the Lower East Side of New York. We were playing gigs with the Dictators and Television and Kiss, The Fast, at places like Max's Kansas City, The Coventry and the Club 82 and the Electric Circus. It was a great experience to be in NYC in those days, the New York Dolls had just been signed so it was pretty rocking, but I think we had our hearts on going to Hollywood. It was very hard to survive in New York - very expensive we did not work day jobs. LA seemed to be the place to go.

03/14/74 Lean Bros.
COVII 03/14/74 Bob Miles
03/15/74 Crown Heights Affair/Mama Crowder Band/Dictators
COVII 03/15/74 Actress/Nick Mole/Guests
03/16/74 Crown Heights Affair/Mama Crowder Band/Dictators
COVII 03/16/74 Actress/Nick Mole/Guests
03/17/74 St. Patrick's Glitter Ball Festival with 4 Top Groups
COVII 03/17/74 Actress/Nick Mole/Guests
03/19/74 Ministry
COVII 03/19/74 Lean Bros.
03/20/74 Buzzy Linhart Band/ Theater Of Madness/ Actress/ Special Guest
COVII 03/20/74 Auditions
COVII 03/21/74 Bob Miles
03/22/74 Buzzy Linhart Band/ Theater Of Madness/ Actress/ Special Guest
COVII 03/22/74 Eric Emerson's Star Theater/ Guests
03/23/74 Buzzy Linhart Band/ Theater Of Madness/ Actress/ Special Guest
COVII 03/23/74 Eric Emerson's Star Theater/ Guests
03/24/74 Buzzy Linhart Band/ Theater Of Madness/ Actress/ Special Guest
COVII 03/24/74 Eric Emerson's Star Theater/ Guests
03/27/74 King Heart/ Big Mouth
03/28/74 Spring Festival /w/ Harlots of 42nd Street/ Super Dude
03/29/74 Elephants Memory/Satan The Eternal Fire Man/Miami's
03/30/74 Elephants Memory/Satan The Eternal Fire Man/Miami's
04/03/74 Jonah/ Guest Group
04/04/74 Dictators
04/05/74 Harlots of 42nd Street/ Magic Tramps/ Palace/ Dictators/ The Wizard
04/06/74 Harlots of 42nd Street/ Magic Tramps/ Palace/ Dictators/ The Wizard
04/10/74 Canon/Planets
04/11/74 Canon/ Planets
04/12/74 Street Punk/Mama Crowder Band/Planets/Ruckus
04/13/74 Street Punk/Mama Crowder Band/Planets/Ruckus

Read a GREAT story about a near disasterous Planets gig at the Coventry written by their guitarist, Binky Philips HERE.

04/14/74 Ruckus
04/17/74 Canon
04/18/74 Canon/Jasper & the Catfish Band/Whiz Kids
04/19/74 New York Dolls/Miami's/Casterbridge Union
04/20/74 New York Dolls/Miami's
04/24/74 Dictators/King Hearts/Whiz Kids
COVII 04/24/74 Bob Miles
04/25/74 Harlots of 42nd Street/The Brats
COVII 04/25/74 Bogart

04/26/74 Harlots of 42nd Street/Mama Crowder Band/Dictators/Whiz Kids

"Handsome" Dick Manitoba - Vocals, Dictators
Excerpt from:
"What's Cookin'?"
Back in 1974, the Dictators were playing regularly at a joint on Queens Blvd. called the Coventry. We saw Kiss play there and we opened for bands like the NY Dolls & the Harlots of 42nd St. I always noticed this guy at the bar at the Coventry. He was ALWAYS hanging out. You couldn't help but notice him. He was very tall, very skinny, & very unique looking. "Who is that guy?" I wanted to know. "That guy?--that's Jeff Starship--he's got a band called Sniper!" Well, Jeff soon became Joey [Ramone].

COVII 04/26/74 Bogart/Women's Revalation

04/27/74 Harlots of 42nd Street/Mama Crowder Band/Dictators/Whiz Kids

COVII 04/27/74 Bogart
COVII 04/30/74 Auditions
COVII 04/31/74 Bob Miles
05/01/74 Zero/ Turn Down Broadway/ King Heart
COVII 05/01/74 Denise Rogers & Company

05/02/74 Village Voice (Dictators @ Coventry Review)

05/02/74 Fantasy/ King Heart/ Special Guest
COVII 05/02/74 Denise Rogers & Company/ Big Jive
05/03/74 Soul Survivors/ The Brats/ Rags/ Age/ Fantasy
COVII 05/03/74 Denise Rogers & Company
05/04/74 Soul Survivors/ The Brats/ Rags/ Age/ Fantasy
COVII 05/04/74 Denise Rogers & Company/ The Bohemos
05/05/74 Age/ Turn Down Broadway/ King Heart
COVII 05/05/74 Denise Rogers & Company
COVII 05/06/74 Auditions
COVII 05/07/74 Auditions
05/08/74 Idle Hands/ Behmoth/ King Heart
COVII 05/08/74 Bob Miles
05/09/74 Cotton/ Big Jive/ King Heart
05/10/74 Teenage Lust/Wild Honey/Actress/Big Jive
COVII 05/10/74 Canon/ Solo Wind
05/11/74 Teenage Lust/Wild Honey/Actress/Big Jive
COVII 05/11/74 Canon/ Solo Wind/ The Bohemos
COVII 05/12/74 Canon/ Solo Wind
05/15/74 Lefties Rable/ Turn Down Broadway/ King Heart/ Guest band
05/16/74 The Dogs/ Turn Down Broadway/ King Heart
COVII 05/16/74 The Bohemos/ Rod MacDonald
05/17/74 Five Dollar Shoes/ The Dictators/ Fantasy/ Magic Tramps
COVII 05/17/74 Solar Wind
05/18/74 Five Dollar Shoes/ The Dictators/ Fantasy/ Magic Tramps
COVII 05/18/74 Solar Wind/ The Bohemos
05/19/74 Fantasy/ Turn Down Broadway
05/22/74 Ziegel/Speakeasy/+ Special Guest
05/23/74 Television/+ Special Guest
COVII 05/23/74 Bohemos
05/24/74 Geri Miller & Band (Hawk)/Women's Revelation/Speakeasy
COVII 05/24/74 Bohemos
05/25/74 Geri Miller & Band (Hawk)/Women's Revelation/Speakeasy
COVII 05/25/74 Bohemos
05/26/74 Speakeasy/+ Special Guest
05/29/74 Dictators
05/29/74 The Deadly Nightshade
05/30/74 2 Groups
05/31/74 Revival/Dictators/Rags
06/01/74 Revival/Dictators/Rags
06/02/74 Rags
06/05/74 Black Orchid/ Bandit/ The House/ Jasper & the Catfish Band
06/06/74 Cotton/ Black Orchid/ The House
06/07/74 The Brats/ Behemoth/ Chesapeake/ First/ Jasper & the Catfish Band
06/08/74 The Brats/ Behemoth/ Chesapeake/ First/ Jasper & the Catfish Band
06/09/74 Sun Spirit
06/12/74 Buzzy Linhart/ Dictators/ Battle Axe
06/14/74 Buzzy Linhart/ Dictators/ Battle Axe
06/15/74 Dictators
06/18/74 Behemoth/ The House/ Pandora
06/19/74 Novac, Phantom of the Organ/ Actress/ Palace/ Pandora
06/20/74 Bandit/ The Dogs/ The House
06/21/74 Teenage Lust/The Brats/Harlots of 42nd Street
06/22/74 Teenage Lust/The Brats/Harlots of 42nd Street
06/23/74 Sun Spirit/ Black Orchid/ Guests
06/25/74 Jasper & the Catfish Band/ Guests
06/26/74 Legs Latreau/ Big Jive/ Rags/ Wild Honey
06/27/74 Sniper/ Sweet Revenge
06/28/74 Exuma/ Canon/ Sniffles & The Malt Shop Men/ Blues Band
06/29/74 Exuma/ Canon/ Sniffles & The Malt Shop Men/ Blues Band
06/30/74 Benefit for U.F.W. - 3 Groups
07/01/74 Closed for Private Party
07/02/74 The Dandies
07/03/74 Semanon/ Aloft
07/04/74 Tulano/ Special Guest
07/05/74 Canon/ Rags/ Sweet Revenge/ The House
07/06/74 Canon/ Rags/ Sweet Revenge/ The House
07/07/74 Rags/ Special Guest
07/09/74 Surprise Group
07/10/74 Dogs/ 2 Guest Groups
07/12/74 Screaming Jay Hawkins/ Sunrise & the Dogs
07/13/74 Screaming Jay Hawkins/ Sunrise & the Dogs
07/17/74 New York/ Last Chapter
07/18/74 New York/ Guests
07/19/74 Harlots of 42nd Street/ Sniper/ Dandies
07/20/74 Harlots of 42nd Street/ Sniper/ Dandies
07/21/74 Sniper
07/25/74 New York/ First/ Black Orchid
07/26/74 Street Punk/ First/ August Rock Band/ New York
07/27/74 Street Punk/ First/ August Rock Band/ New York
07/28/74 Street Punk/ First/ August Rock Band/ New York
07/31/74 Blaze/ Black Orchid
08/01/74 Eclipse/ Black Orchid
08/02/74 Elephants Memory/ Aftermath/ Bogart
08/03/74 Elephants Memory/ Aftermath/ Bogart
08/04/74 Bogart/ Guests
08/08/74 Slam/ Special Guest
08/09/74 The Brats/ Five Dollar Shoes/ Listen/ S.P.X.
08/10/74 The Brats/ Five Dollar Shoes/ Listen/ Guest
08/11/74 The Brats/ Five Dollar Shoes/ Listen/ Guest
08/16/74 Danny Kalb Group/ Canon/ Lust/ Segrundie
08/17/74 Danny Kalb Group/ Canon/ Battle Axe
08/18/74 Battle Axe
08/21/74 Bogart/ Sweet Revenge
08/22/74 Tivoli
08/23/74 Lust/ Bogart/ Sweet Revenge
08/24/74 Lust/ Bogart/ Sweet Revenge
08/25/74 Lust/ Bogart/ Sweet Revenge
08/29/74 Dandies
08/30/74 Harlots/ Whiskey/ Sniper
08/31/74 Harlots/ Whiskey/ Sniper
09/01/74 Harlots/ Whiskey/ Sniper
09/04/74 Lefities Rabble/ Hot Lights Light Show
09/05/74 Lefties Rabble/ Guest
09/06/74 Sun Spirit/ Hot Tramp/ Scarecrow
09/07/74 Sun Spirit/ Hot Tramp/ Scarecrow
09/08/74 Sun Spirit/ Hot Tramp/ Scarecrow
09/11/74 Life/ Lefties Rabble/ Shamos
09/12/74 Shamos/ Lefties Rabble
09/13/74 Rags/ New York/ Big Jive
09/14/74 Rags/ New York/ Big Jive
09/15/74 Rags/ New York/ Big Jive
09/17/74 Hot Tramp
09/18/74 Hanibal
09/19/74 Lefties Rabble
09/20/74 Brats/ August Rock Band/ Surprise Group
09/21/74 Brats/ August Rock Band/ Surprise Group
09/24/74 Hanibal
09/25/74 Hanibal/ Blackbird/ Bacchus
09/26/74 Lefties Rabble/ Hanibal
09/27/74 Hidden Strength/ Brother Theodore/ Sniffles & the Malt Shop Men/ Sniper
09/28/74 Hidden Strength/ Brother Theodore/ Sniffles & the Malt Shop Men/ Sniper
10/01/74 Bacchus
10/02/74 Scarecrow/ Guest
10/03/74 Lefties Rabble
10/04/74 Andy Kaufman/ Hidden Strength/ Scarecrow
10/05/74 Andy Kaufman/ Hidden Strength/ Scarecrow/ Sniper
10/06/74 Sniper
10/09/74 Cog & Nasty
10/10/74 UFOnics
10/11/74 Exuma/ Whiz Kids
10/12/74 Exuma/ Whiz Kids
10/16/74 Happy Fat/ 2 Guest Groups
10/17/74 Blue Love
10/18/74 Exuma/ Blue Love
10/19/74 Exuma/ Blue Love
10/23/74 Live Groups
10/24/74 Fantasy
10/25/74 Euphonics/ Fantasy
10/26/74 Euphonics/ Fantasy
10/27/74 Euphonics/ Fantasy
10/30/74 Chain Reaction/ Michael Massler Band
10/31/74 Lee Rweller/ Looney Tunes/ Skydive/ Brass On Wheels/ Trisha Mercy/ Spunky
11/01/74 Canon/ Pace/ Lefties Rabble
11/02/74 Canon/ Pace/ Lefties Rabble
11/03/74 Four Directions
11/05/74 Fusion
11/06/74 Spunky
11/07/74 Hot Tramp
11/08/74 Lucky (Formerly New York Central)/ Sniper
11/09/74 Lucky (Formerly New York Central)/ Sniper
11/10/74 Lucky (Formerly New York Central)/ Sniper
11/13/74 Key Bag/ Happening
11/15/74 Canon/ Hot Tramp/ Special Surprise Group
11/16/74 Canon/ Hot Tramp/ Special Surprise Group
11/19/74 Herb Salley/ Special Guest
11/20/74 The Fly/ Larry Duzze
11/21/74 Rwandi/ Herb Salley
11/22/74 Harlots/ Offspring
11/23/74 Harlots/ Offspring
11/24/74 Snowtrack/ Offspring
11/26/74 Monti Rock III
11/27/74 Jitterbug Jones/ Sun/ Hennesy
11/28/74 Jitterbug Jones/ Sun/ Hennesy
11/29/74 Blue Love/ Special Guest
11/30/74 Blue Love/ Special Guest
12/01/74 Magpie/ P.J.V. Blues Band
12/04/74 Freedom/ Max Amber/ Jelly Roll
12/05/74 Freedom/ Max Amber/ Jelly Roll
12/06/74 Isis/ Actress
12/07/74 Isis/ Actress
12/08/74 Exuma
12/10/74 Loose Joints
12/12/74 Roy Ayers
12/17/74 Christmas Party /w/ Trish Mercy/ Spunky
12/18/74 Live Groups/ Dart Contest
12/19/74 Live Groups/ Dart Contest
12/20/74 Fantasy/ Wild Honey/ Blue Mystics/ Life
12/21/74 Fantasy/ Wild Honey/ Blue Mystics/ Life
12/22/74 Dictators/LAMF

Village Voice Concert Review (Date N/A) - by Kirby
"Dictators(4)-Songs-48Mins.Coventry, Sunnyside, LI, NY"
The Dictators, from the Bronx, are one of Gotham's better and most ear-shattering of rock combos. Quartet, ages 19-22, have been together for about a year and already have a disk pact, being signed by Epic.

Volume sometimes impedes vocal clarity but the Dictators never flag in excitement. Lead guitarist Ross Friedman and bass guitarist Andy (Adny) Shernoff impress in their instrumental work with strog support from drummer Stu Boyking and rhythm guitarist Scott Kempner.

Shernoff also capably handles vocal lead with support from Friedman and Kempner but the voices at times have to battle the instrumental power. Set moves. A novelty has a roadie joining the group to sing early rocker, "Wild Thing." The Dictators could do it.

12/25/74 Oz/ Acne
12/26/74 Oz/ Acne
12/27/74 Canon/ Theater Of Madness/ Loose Joints/ Jelly Roll
12/28/74 Canon/ Theater Of Madness/ Loose Joints/ Jelly Roll
12/29/74 Flash Perkins presents Rock & Roll Review
12/31/74 Wayne County & the Backstreet Boys/ Exuma/ Harlots/ Fantasy/ Doc West/ Loose Joints


01/04/75 Actress/ Slug/ Acne/ TBA
01/05/75 Actress/ Slug/ Acne/ TBA
01/08/75 Doc West *Cyndi Lauper was a member of Doc West.

Cyndi Lauper - Doc West, Solo Artist
Excerpt from:
Kiss Alive Forever: The Complete Touring History
by Curt Gooch & Jeff Suhs [p. 17]

Coventry was a big glitter club. I was in a band called Doc West, and we would play at Coventry at the tail end of [the] glitter [movement]. We played on dead nights sometimes for just five people.

01/09/75 Oz
01/10/75 Canon/Age/Decadence/Hyway
01/11/75 Canon/Age/Decadence/Hyway
01/12/75 Moose Cool
01/17/75 New York Dolls/Age/Sniper/Dictators
01/18/75 New York Dolls/Age/Sniper/Dictators
01/19/75 Determination
01/22/75 The Steve Lyons Eyeshow/ Doc West/ Photon God Of Silver/ Chrome Dragon
01/23/75 White Lightning/ Fantasy
01/24/75 Wayne County/ Sniper/ Moose Cool
01/25/75 Wayne County/ Sniper/ Moose Cool
01/26/75 Exuma
01/29/75 Nasty/ Whiskey
01/30/75 Whiskey/ Fantasy
01/31/75 *Benefit Concert /w/ Cannon/ Wayne County/ Exuma/ Harlots/ Sniper/ Age/ The Dictators
02/01/75 *Benefit Concert continues /w/ Brats/ Lucky/ Moose Cool/ Fantasy/ Spike
02/02/75 *Benefit Concert continues /w/ above bands
02/05/75 Blake/ Photon God Of Silver
02/06/75 Alexis/ Moose Cool
02/07/75 Benefit /w/ Exuma/ Sniper/ Fantasy/ Tablet/ Planets/ Moose Cool/ Jellyroll/ Determination
02/08/75 Benefit /w/ Lucky/ Special Guests
02/12/75 Music/ Determination
02/13/75 Jelly Roll/ Music
02/14/75 Wayne County and the Backstreet Boys/ Age/ Triton/ Planets/ Oz/ Ensemble
02/15/75 Wayne County and the Backstreet Boys/ Age/ Triton/ Planets/ Oz/ Ensemble
02/16/75 Planets/ Oz/ Age/ TBA
02/18/75 Joe Lee Wilson/ Plus 5
02/19/75 Humbolt/ Mercedes
02/20/75 Lefties/ Rabble/ Music
02/21/75 Armadillo
02/22/75 Humbolt/ Lefties/ Rabble/ Spike/ Magpie
02/23/75 Surprise Groups
03/26/75 Drwon Dragon/ Movement/ Exqusite Hugh Man
03/27/75 Secrets
03/28/75 Cannon/ Sniper/ Planets
03/29/75 Cannon/ Sniper/ Planets
03/30/75 Easter Party/ Canon/ Brats
04/02/75 Chrome Dragon/ Mammoth
04/03/75 Sucker/ Honesty
04/04/75 Alexis Bushe Pooka
04/05/75 Alexis Bushe Pooka
04/06/75 Alexis Bushe Pooka
04/10/75 Phase
04/11/75 Harlots Of 42nd Street/ Sniffles & the Malt Shop Men/ Alexis/ Magpie
04/12/75 Harlots Of 42nd Street/ Sniffles & the Malt Shop Men/ Alexis/ Magpie
04/13/75 Harlots Of 42nd Street/ Sniffles & the Malt Shop Men/ Alexis/ Magpie
04/16/75 Silent Partners/ Unicorn
04/17/75 Lush/ Crash
04/18/75 Canon/ Alexis/ U.S.S./ Planets/ Chrome Dragon
04/19/75 Canon/ Alexis/ U.S.S./ Planets/ Chrome Dragon
04/23/75 Magpie
04/24/75 Sorceors Apprentice
04/25/75 Fathom/ Magpie/ Humbolt/ Mercedes
04/26/75 Fathom/ Magpie/ Humbolt/ Mercedes
04/27/75 Fathom/ Magpie/ Humbolt
04/30/75 Lefties/ Rabble/ Alexis
05/01/75 Lefties/ Rabble/ Alexis
05/02/75 Canon/ Alexis/ Sniper/ U.S.S.
05/03/75 Canon/ Alexis/ Sniper/ U.S.S.
05/04/75 Alexis
05/07/75 Nightshade/ Hybrid Ice
05/08/75 Mama Rock Band/ Alexis
05/09/75 Magpie/ Mercedes/ Guest
05/10/75 Magpie/ Mercedes/ Guest
05/14/75 U.S.S.
05/15/75 U.S.S.
05/16/75 Harlots/ Alexis/ Joe Cool
05/17/75 Harlots/ Alexis/ Joe Cool
05/18/75 Alexis
05/21/75 Armstrong
05/22/75 Fat Lydia/ Mantis
05/23/75 Nightshade/ Magpie/ U.S.S.
05/24/75 Nightshade/ Magpie/ U.S.S.
05/29/75 Dictators
05/29/75 The Heartbreakers *Rehearsals
05/30/75 The Heartbreakers/ Elephants Memory/ New York/ Bohemos/ Battle Axe
05/31/75 The Heartbreakers/ Elephants Memory/ New York/ Bohemos/ Battle Axe
06/01/75 The Heartbreakers/ Guests

06/01/75 Club's Final night in operation under the name "Coventry"

06/06/75 The Heartbreakers @ "The Former Coventry"
06/07/75 The Heartbreakers @ "The Former Coventry"
06/11/75 Yours & Mine/ Just Us/ Show Track @ "Inferno"
06/12/75 Harlots of 42nd Street @ "Inferno"
06/13/75 Harlots of 42nd Street @ "Inferno"
06/14/75 Harlots of 42nd Street @ "Inferno"
06/15/75 Harlots of 42nd Street Birthday Party @ "Inferno"
06/30/75 "Coventry" officially repoens as "Disco Aretama - Queen's Largest All Latin Disco"


07/05/78 Coventry Grand-Reopening /w/ The Corpse Grinders/ The Harletts/ Bitch
07/06/78 The Corpse Grinders/ The Harletts/ Hooker
07/19/78 The Corpse Grinders/ The Max/ Rozz/ The Victims
07/20/78 The Corpse Grinders/ The Max/ Rozz/ The Victims
07/26/78 Scott Miner Band/ Excalibur/ Show Gun/ Y.U.
07/27/78 Scott Miner Band/ Excalibur/ Show Gun/ Y.U.
08/02/78 Bitch/ Come To Papa/ Full Swing/ Paul Stafield & the Mutant Kings
08/09/78 Storyteller/ Epitome/ Miles Road/ Pete Taylor Band/ Fractures
08/16/78 Endgame/ Zehn Archer/ Pete Taylor Band
08/23/78 Chrome Dragon/ The Max/ Loonis Band
08/30/78 Tight Squeeze/ Barlow Sample Band/ Bitch
09/06/78 The Corpse Grinders/ Storyteller/ Jeffe Fields Group/ Pete Taylor Band
09/13/78 Sweaty Tools/ Pete Taylor Band/ Marchheir/ The Cramps
09/20/78 Razar/ Axxe/ Flamingo Road
09/27/78 Puppets/ Stone Free/ Sky/ Sweaty Tools
10/04/78 The Bees/ The Cheeze/ Chrome Dragon/ Wonderland
10/18/78 Razar/ Fracture/ Axxe


As of 2009, according to GoogleMaps, it seems the address 47-03 Queens Boulevard is occupied by a MD's office.

If you were in a band that played at Coventry, or just someone who hung out there digging the scene we'd love to hear from you! Please add your comments/memories by clicking the "Comments" link below.

Special "Thank You" to the following:, CWZ Jr at,,,,,, Television Concert Archives, Goldmine Magazine and Ken Sharp, Curt Gooch & Jeff Suhs.

And most all to thanks to YOU. Thanks for taking the time to read ThisAintTheSummerOfLove and for your continued support.