Viewing entries tagged
greenwich village

Comment

"Like"

Our latest 5 star review, just posted on Trip Advisor,:

                   An excellent walking tour...even for a native New Yorker!
I thoroughly enjoyed the Save the Village Tour and learned a great deal about the history of Greenwich Village. I've been a New Yorker my entire life and live in Chelsea, and still found it informative. The tour makes you aware of how much the Village has changed and evolved. I loved the tidbits of facts and photos taken by our tour guide's father. I highly recommend this tour even if you think you already know about the Village; you will learn more. The distance covered by the tour isn't too great and it moves at a nice relaxed pace."

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g60763-d8498033-Reviews-Save_The_Village_Tours-New_York_City_New_York.html

Comment

Comment

HBD, BD!

(Photo by Fred W. McDarrah/Getty Images)

(Photo by Fred W. McDarrah/Getty Images)

Happy 76th Birthday, Robert!

Here's Bob with, from left, his old musical director Rob Stoner, Joan Baez and Eric Andersen on stage at Gerde's Folk City, 130 West 3rd Street, New York, October 23, 1975.

They were singing Happy Birthday to club owner Mike Porco on his 61st birthday. The rest of the impromptu performance was in effect a dry run for Dylan's Rolling Thunder Revue concert tour, which began a few days later.

Porco's grandson Mike Porco hosed a 75th birthday party for Dylan in the same space last year.

The location, the whole story, and so much more about Dylan, are on the Save the Village tours.

Book one today!

Comment

Comment

Celeb Central

  Last season, tour groups ran into all kinds of recognizable faces, from Daniel Day Lewis to Philip Glass to some celebrity chefs (Batali, Bouloud).

  Here is one guy the tour won't run into: the late John Belushi, snapped by Fred W. McDarrah in front of Belusi's pad at 376 Bleecker St. (there is now a Cynthia Rowley store on the ground floor there).

  Book a 2017 tour today at SavetheVillagetours.com.

Comment

Comment

NYU. P-U.

Just like Disneyland! An historic recreation.

Just like Disneyland! An historic recreation.

  The evil real estate company known as NYU has a long history of indiscriminately tearing down important and historic Greenwich Village buildings so they can make money and build a needless dorm or another out of place faculty office building, hotel, or coffee bar.

  On East 3rd St., they razed Edgar Allan Poe's house, and put up a plaque congratulating themselves for recreating the facade of the place.

  An historic reenactment! Just like Disneyland!

  NYU will perhaps one day realize that part of the reason they can get away with charging $60,000 in tuition is not that you get a good education, but because kids want to be in Greenwich Village.

  And when they have fully destroyed things, and their paid attendance drops, they will have no idea why.

  See many, many places that NYU has torched in favor of "progress" on a Save the Village tour.

Looks can be deceiving.

Looks can be deceiving.

Comment

Comment

Take A Tour Today!

In the wake of the Nobel Prize announcement this week, it may be a good time to consider this: "Save the Village: Walking Tours of the Photographs of Fred W. McDarrah - The Beats and Bob Dylan."

This is the ONLY regularly scheduled Dylan-themed walking tour in New York. It runs every Tuesday at 2 pm, or privately by appointment

For each of the four Save the Village tours, walkers get a keepsake multi-postcard set of classic images by Fred W. McDarrah, the first photographer for the Village Voice. The tours go to the same locations as where the photos were taken, to see how things have changed, how they are the same and to hear the stories behind the famous photos.

Tickets and info are here: http://www.savethevillagetours.com/

See you there!

Comment

OLD/New: Dom Edition

Above: Outside The Dom (from 'Polski Dom Narodowy' or 'Polish National Home', 23 St. Marks Place), where a banner advertises 'Warhol; Live; The Velvet Underground; Live Dancing; Films; Party Event Now,' part of Andy's Exploding Plastic Inevitable series of staged, multimedia events. March 31, 1966. Below: Same spot in February 2016. Photos copyright Estate of Fred W. McDarrah.

Above: Outside The Dom (from 'Polski Dom Narodowy' or 'Polish National Home', 23 St. Marks Place), where a banner advertises 'Warhol; Live; The Velvet Underground; Live Dancing; Films; Party Event Now,' part of Andy's Exploding Plastic Inevitable series of staged, multimedia events. March 31, 1966. Below: Same spot in February 2016. Photos copyright Estate of Fred W. McDarrah.

  With all the buzz lately about the new book about St. Mark's Place (see our November 3, 2015 blog post), thought we'd do an old/new from the hallowed grounds.

   Pretty self explanatory... Pictures do indeed sometimes take the place of one thousand words.

   But to hear the stories behind the Dom, the Electric Circus, the All Saints rehab and the rest of the street, you need to come on one of the Save the Village tours. Both The Artist's World and East Village reference this famous address.

The People You Run Into. Hi, Jeff!

  Gallery hopping after the Artist's World tour, who'd we run into but... an artist!

  The brilliant but not entirely humble Jeff Koons was milling around at his Gagosian show in Chelsea the other Saturday. Dude posed for selfies with tourists, answered high falutin' questions from grad students nearing an art history degree, explained his work to the curious and was entirely polite to everyone.

   

Very Full-Phil-ing, the people you run into

Chuck Close, Phil/Watercolor, 1977. The original is about 6 feet by 6 feet. Watercolor and acrylic on paper. © Chuck Close, via PaceWildenstein, New York. Photo by Ellen Labenski.

Chuck Close, Phil/Watercolor, 1977. The original is about 6 feet by 6 feet. Watercolor and acrylic on paper. © Chuck Close, via PaceWildenstein, New York. Photo by Ellen Labenski.

  One sees a lot of famous faces in the Village. As a former gossip columnist who still keeps up on things and looks at a lot of photos, I still miss plenty, of course.

  At dinner recently I saw Alan Cumming - at a low end red sauce joint in the East Village. Another dinner had Tony Danza one table away (alas, no Alyssa Milano!).

  Lily Tomlin (!) walked up to me on Prince St. and asked for directions. Kim and Kayne have an apartment right across the street from me (can't they afford better!?).

  Bob Dylan is no stranger to my elevator. No necessarily recently, but an old pal of his still does live upstairs.

  As a kid, I'd play with Naomi Wolf, Robert Downey Jr. and Matthew Broderick in Washington Square Park.

  David Byrne, Steve van Zandt, Susan Sarandon, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Lou Reed and Philip Seymour Hoffman (before they both died): always out and about.

  Though really, who cares. Celebrities are people too. Generally.

  But today I stopped, stared, chatted, and asked to take a photo of one. On 14th St., just off the Save the Village tour route, while heading from the Greenmarket to the gym, I was passing the Guitar Center music emporium and saw the legendary minimalist composer Philip Glass.

  OK, not Sean Lennon or Julia Roberts or Sofia Coppola or Alec Baldwin (all Village denizens).

  This guy, however, is better: one of the most influential music makers of the late 20th century. He has been part of the downtown scene since about 1967. Compositions like The Photographer and Einstein on the Beach should be familiar to people, and he has composed everything from operas to Academy Award nominated movie scores and other orchestral works. 

  Polite too, to a jackass who had just stopped him on the street. Last time I had bumped into him was at Tower Records, I gushed, when I introduced him to my son, and showed the kid Glass' records in the rack. He said he remembered, as "really, I don't get recognized very often." But he may have just been being polite. And I had interviewed him in the distant past.

  Anyway, I let him flee, which he did, into the Guitar Center. After publishing his memoir, Words Without Music, earlier this year, he's back to making music.

  Go listen to it.    

Philip Glass on 14th St., December 9, 2015.

Philip Glass on 14th St., December 9, 2015.

  

Re-Joice. Sort of.

The stretch of Christopher Street where the Lion's Head bar once served ink stained wretches and the folks they covered was renamed after its former owner in 1999.

The stretch of Christopher Street where the Lion's Head bar once served ink stained wretches and the folks they covered was renamed after its former owner in 1999.

After Bobby Kennedy was shot, Pete Hamill, who was next to him when it happened, wrote about it in the June 13, 1968 Village Voice:

"We knew then that America had struck again. In this slimy little indoor alley in the back of a gaudy ballroom, in this shabby reality behind the glittering facade, Americans were doing what they do best: killing and dying, and cursing because hope doesn't last very long among us."

La plus ca change, huh? Americans doing what they do best. Kill people.

The tie here is that Kennedy's career in electoral politics is due to Hamill, Jack Newfield, the Village Voice and the Lion's Head.

And Wes Joice, who owned the bar from the early 1960s until 1994, before dying of lung cancer in 1997.  

All discussed on the Save the Village tour.

In his book "A Drinking Life," Hamill wrote about the Lion's Head:

"I don’t think many New York bars ever had such a glorious mixture of newspapermen, painters, musicians, seamen, ex-communists, priests and nuns, athletes, stockbrokers, politicians and folksingers, bound together in the leveling democracy of drink."

It was in Joice's joint - steps away from the offices of the Voice - that Hamill and Newfield convinced Kennedy to make the surprise move to run for the Senate from New York in 1964.  (Some say Kennedy decided to run for the Presidency there as well, but these are likely altered versions of the Senate story, as he made that decision after meeting with a hunger-striking Ceasar Chavez in California in early 1968.)

Pete and Jack wrote for the Voice, knew Kennedy well, all were Irish and enjoyed an occasional pint, and the deed was done.

One of Kennedy's biggest campaign rallies that fall was also in the Village, captured by Voice photographer Fred W. McDarrah. Kennedy evoked Beatlemania by Balducci's when he leaped  on the back of a flatbed truck with local pol Assemblyman William Passannante during a campaign event.

First, go and read this.

http://www.villagevoice.com/news/pete-hamills-eyewitness-account-of-robert-kennedys-assassination-6692381

Then take the Save the Village tour.  

Neighborly

Taped to a bench in Washington Square Park the other day.

Taped to a bench in Washington Square Park the other day.

Don't know if the owner ever got his/her bike back, but someone did seem to make a mighty effort to reunite them!

All clean. In its own inimitable way.

The famous Stonewall Inn,  sans  scaffolding once again.

The famous Stonewall Inn, sans scaffolding once again.

  In addition to the sparkling exterior, a lot of the interior art - mainly pages of photos taken from the 1994 McDarrah opus "Gay Pride: Photos from Stonewall to Today" which marked the 25th anniversary of the uprising - have spiffy new frames.

  Go inside and check the place out. All are always welcome.

  And kudos to owner Kurt Kelly for his expert handling/balancing act of not only running a viable working business, but at the same preserving and honoring the bar's tradition, history, meaning and historical importance.

Reuben. Not the sandwich.

61 Fourth Avenue today.

61 Fourth Avenue today.

  The Reuben Gallery was a pioneering gallery of Happenings, events and new media art that ran from 1959 to 1961.

  Opened by Anita Reuben in the summer of 1959, at 61 Fourth Avenue, between 9th and 10th Sts., the first public event was Allan Kaprow’s 18 Happenings in 6 Parts (October 4–10, 1959), which inaugurated the term “Happenings.”

  Reuben’s husband, Max Baker, an advertising executive, saw potential in the word.

  The building - now likely to be converted to.... wait for it.... luxury loft condos, is part of the Artist's World tour. Come on the tour to hear more.

Arch-ly

A shot the tourists love - arch framing the Empire State. Next week it'll be blocked by the Christmas tree.

A shot the tourists love - arch framing the Empire State. Next week it'll be blocked by the Christmas tree.

  One of the most photographed icons in New York City, other than - for the time being - Donald Trump, is the Washington Square Arch.

  Erected to mark the 100th anniversary of George Washington being inaugurated (as president, in 1889... as he was not inauguratred for anything else if memory serves) and originally made out of wood, the marble Sanford White version that is there now was dedicated in 1895.

  It is still the center of the known universe to an awful lot of people.

  Last week there was an impromptu memorial to the Paris tragedy underneath.

  Now it is back to bums and performers (see below). 

On December 1, the holiday tree was installed, while some street people took up residence on the west side of the arch and a banjo player entertained them from the east side.

On December 1, the holiday tree was installed, while some street people took up residence on the west side of the arch and a banjo player entertained them from the east side.

 

Art tour ready to go

420 West Broadway, the first big time SoHo gallery building, on Thanksgiving 2015.

420 West Broadway, the first big time SoHo gallery building, on Thanksgiving 2015.

420 West Broadway, the first big time SoHo gallery building, on opening day in 1971. Photo by Fred W. McDarrah

420 West Broadway, the first big time SoHo gallery building, on opening day in 1971. Photo by Fred W. McDarrah

   Save the Village: The Artist's World, a new walking tour of the photos of Fred W. McDarrah, kicks off December 5.

   Virtually every important postwar art trend matriculated below Manhattan's 14th St. 

   The Abstract Expressionists and the New York School, the nascent Soho and use of repurposed industrial spaces as studio and gallery for Pop artists, performance and site-specific installations, the East Village graffiti galleries and Edward Hopper's Nighthawks - arguably the most famous American painting of them all - all happened within walking distance of each other.

   Fred W. McDarrah, the longtime Village Voice photographer and picture editor, was right there with his camera as it happened. His iconic art world photos are the basis for this new walking tour.

   See where Robert Rauschenberg inadvertently started the sushi craze in New York City over 40 years ago. What other tour can offer you that!?

  While McDarrah's 250,000-image archive is an encyclopedic catalog of the people, places, movements, trends and events of the New York scene over the second half of the 20th century, his collection of photographs of artists is truly unique and often the sole visual record of a special time and place in the history of American art.

  The Artist's World tour, based on a 2015 exhibition at Chelsea's Steven Kasher Gallery that featured vintage photos from McDarrah's seminal 1961 book The Artist's World, is the third in a series of four Greenwich Village Walking Tours based on the photographs of McDarrah, including the ongoing Save The Village and The Beats and Bob Dylan tours, and starting later this fall, the St. Marks Place/East Village tour.

  Tickets are $25 (Adult) and $15 (Students, seniors, individuals with a valid library card, or a membership in a Historic Preservation Society, Group or Association) and every ticket includes a keepsake postcard packet.

   All tours are available for private bookings; custom or combination tours can be arranged. For tour schedules, to make reservations and for more information, go to SaveTheVillageTours.com.

 

The Iceman Cameth... So others did too

Plaque in Golden Swan Park at corner of West 4th St. and Avenue of the Americas. It is the same West 4th St. that Bob Dylan sings about and lived on.

Plaque in Golden Swan Park at corner of West 4th St. and Avenue of the Americas. It is the same West 4th St. that Bob Dylan sings about and lived on.

Big reason folks like the Beats and Bob Dylan came to the Village was to follow in the achieving creative footsteps of folks like Eugene O'Neill.

As the plaque above says, the bar that was the inspiration for "The Iceman Cometh" and the off Broadway venue that hosted its premiere were both in Greenwich Village.

The Beats and Bob Dylan Walking Tour passes by this corner and many other important locations in the Village literary canon.

Special holiday tour added Saturday November 28th at 12 noon.  

The location of the former Hell Hole is now a park often used to host recycling efforts.

The location of the former Hell Hole is now a park often used to host recycling efforts.

Dylan and Beats tour announcement

Dylan Salutes, Christopher Park, Sheridan Square, January 22, 1965. Photo by Fred W. McDarrah.

Dylan Salutes, Christopher Park, Sheridan Square, January 22, 1965. Photo by Fred W. McDarrah.

This is the press release that went out the other day about the new tour:

Bob Dylan and the Beat Generation poets - Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, Peter Orlovsky, Gregory Corso and the rest - all were products of a postwar culture that lauded Eisenhower and the Military-Industrial complex, Father Knows Best, the John Birch Society and the KKK.

  In song and in verse, Dylan and the Beats rebelled against that way of life and became touchstones of a new generation.

  Fred W. McDarrah, the longtime Village Voice photographer and picture editor, was right there with his camera as it happened.  


  The worlds of Dylan and the Beat poets overlapped in many ways. The Beats and Bob tour will visit the coffee houses, clubs, and other venues (some remaining, some not) where the Beats made literary history. And when Dylan met Ginsberg in Ted Wilentz's apartment above the 8th St. Bookshop in 1963, the two began a lifelong friendship. Dylan was well familiar with the Beat poets when he left Minnesota for Greenwich Village in 1961. The tour stops at the MacDougal Street club were Dylan first performed, the bars he frequented and often performed at, and some of his Village homes, hangouts and hideouts.

  Every ticket on every tour includes a keepsake postcard packet of iconic McDarrah images and the tours go to the same locations to see how they have changed,  how they are the same, and to hear the stories behind the famous photos.

  The Beats and Bob tour is the second in a series of four Greenwich Village Walking Tours based on the photographs of McDarrah, including the ongoing Save The Village tour, and two tours starting later this fall, the East Village tour and the Artist’s World tour.

  Tickets are $25 (Adult) and $15 (Students, seniors, individuals with a valid library card, or a membership in a Historic Preservation Society, Group or Association) and every ticket includes a keepsake postcard packet.

   All tours are available for private bookings; custom or combination tours can be arranged. For tour schedules, to make reservations and for more information, go to SaveTheVillageTours.com.


  MEETS AT CORNER OF MACDOUGAL ALLEY AND MACDOUGAL STREET


------------------

   The original Save the Village tour now joins the New York Knicks, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and dozens of all you can eat sushi joints, on Groupon.

  https://www.groupon.com/deals/save-the-village-tours

Some neighbors

Plaque outside 82 Washington Place

Plaque outside 82 Washington Place

Willa Cather and Richard Wright both lived at 82 Washington Place.

John Philip Sousa lived next door at 80 Washington Place.

Diane Arbus was across the street at 71 Washington Place.

At 88 Washington Place was where "Ashcan" painter John French Sloan lived. This was also the location of the Fronton, a speakeasy from 1923-26 that was popular with New York Mayor Jimmy Walker and poet Edna St. Vincent Millay. Both lived within walking distance. Walker on St. Luke's Place and St. Vincent Millay on Bedford. Her middle names comes from the former hospital on West 11th St., where she was born. Fronton proprietors Jack Kriendler and Charlie Berns, moved uptown and founded the famed 21 Club. 

Just another single block on a quiet Village street, with a noisy history. 

Been musing with some local folks about a Bob Dylan plaque. The Beats and Bob Dylan walking tour passes a plaque for Poe, who Dylan and Ginsberg read, a plaque for the San Remo, where both drank, and 10 other spots significant in the Dylan canon (plus dozens of other plaques for everyone from baseball player Hank Greenberg to American Revolution figure Tom Paine).

As the tour shows, Dylan was all over the Village for a very long time. Still casts a long shadow.

Thomas Paine wrote "Common Sense" at 59 Grove St.

Thomas Paine wrote "Common Sense" at 59 Grove St.

Thomas Paine's old house at 59 Grove St.

Thomas Paine's old house at 59 Grove St.


82 Washington Place the other night.

82 Washington Place the other night.

Lousy photo of plaque outside 80 Washington Place, where John Philip Sousa lived back when Woodrow Wilson was president.  

Lousy photo of plaque outside 80 Washington Place, where John Philip Sousa lived back when Woodrow Wilson was president.  

Happy in the House

Bob Dylan and Allen Ginsberg, among others, pose for a group portrait by Fred W. McDarrah at a recording session, Record Plant studio, New York, November 13, 1971. Pictured are, from left, David Amram, Dylan, Happy Traum, Gregory Corso, Peter Orlovsky (kneeling, fore), Denise Mercedes, Allen Ginsberg, Sadi Kazi, John Sholle, Arthur Russell, and Ed Sanders.

Bob Dylan and Allen Ginsberg, among others, pose for a group portrait by Fred W. McDarrah at a recording session, Record Plant studio, New York, November 13, 1971. Pictured are, from left, David Amram, Dylan, Happy Traum, Gregory Corso, Peter Orlovsky (kneeling, fore), Denise Mercedes, Allen Ginsberg, Sadi Kazi, John Sholle, Arthur Russell, and Ed Sanders.

  The big Folk City show at the Museum of the City of New York has had a handful of concerts to go along with the fabulous exhibit (of lyrics, instruments, maps, recordings, albums, clothing, memorabilia and of course photos by Fred W. McDarrah).

  We ran into one of the above photographed musicians the other night at one of the MCNY concerts. Not Bob Dylan, but Happy Traum.

  Happy is most famously known as one half of Happy and Artie, a duo he began with his brother. They released three albums, Happy and Artie Traum (1970, Capitol), Double Back (1971, Capitol) and Hard Times In The Country (1975, Rounder). He is a folk legend, having first appeared on record at a historic session in 1962 when a group including Phil Ochs, Pete Seeger and Dylan gathered in the Folkways Records studio to record an album called Broadside Ballads, Vol. 1. With his group, The New World Singers, Traum cut the first recoded version of Blowin' in the Wind and sang a duet with Dylan, who performed under the pseudonym Blind Boy Grunt, on his anti-war Let Me Die in My Footsteps.

  On this night at MCNY the performers were The Chapin Sisters and Eric Andersen. The sisters are at best marginally talented and coast along on the memories fans have of the short but brilliant career of their uncle Harry, who died in an accident on the Long Island Expressway in 1981.   

Anderen was accompanied by Michele Gazich on violin and viola, Inge Andersen on harmonies, and Steve Addabbo on electric guitar

Anderen was accompanied by Michele Gazich on violin and viola, Inge Andersen on harmonies, and Steve Addabbo on electric guitar

  Anderson is a genuine talent who performed chestnuts such as Violets of Dawn and Come to My Bedside and the civil rights song Thirsty Boots. He has over the years played with most of the above photographed group and has released about 30 albums. He now lives in Europe where there is a more vibrant folk scene.   

  He spoke between songs about his experiences singing on MacDougal Street and at the Gaslight, one of the stops on the Save the Village: The Beats and Bob (Dylan) tour.  

Andersen came out to meet fans after the performance.

Andersen came out to meet fans after the performance.

Andersen signing autographs.

Andersen signing autographs.

SOME PRESS FOR NEW BEATS / DYLAN TOUR

Both Bob Dylan and his pal Allen Ginsberg would come, separately, to feel the vibe of Edgar Allen Poe. In its infinite wisdom, NYU tore the place down and left a plaque and a façade (below).  

Both Bob Dylan and his pal Allen Ginsberg would come, separately, to feel the vibe of Edgar Allen Poe. In its infinite wisdom, NYU tore the place down and left a plaque and a façade (below).  

The new tour The Beats and Bob (Dylan) kicked off the other day.

So far so good. The connections and relationships between Dylan and Ginsberg, Kerouac and friends are fascinating to explore. And so much took place in the South Village.

http://gvshp.org/blog/2015/11/10/the-historic-south-village-home-of-the-beats-and-bob-dylan/

Our friends at the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation made mention.

The tour passes the pictured Edgar Allen Poe location. Dylan and Ginsberg would both make regular pilgrimages to the spot and meditate about Poe. Both men often referenced Poe in their work.

Dylan's 1965 song "Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues" for example makes reference to "Rue Morgue Avenue" which is a short story by Edgar Allan Poe published in Graham's Magazine in 1841. It has been recognized as the first modern detective story

In the Summer of 1939, when 13-year-old Allen graduated from grammar school he listed Poe as his favorite author.

In May 1944, he published in the Columbia Jester Review, "A Night in the Village with Edgar Allen Ginsberg" according to Ginsberg's Estate's web site.

And famously, from "Howl".... "who studied Plotinus Poe St John of the Cross telepathy and bop kabbalah because the universe instinctively vibrated at their feet."

"Everything leads to Poe,"\ Ginz once said. "You can trace all literary art to Poe's influence: Burroughs, Baudelaire, Genet, Dylan...It all leads back to Poe."  

Save the Village: Walking Tours of the Photographs of Fred W. McDarrah / The Beats and Bob leaves from the corner of MacDougal Street and MacDougal Alley every Tuesday at 2 pm, or privately by appointment.    

Where Poe never actually lived, but a reasonable copy thereof.

Where Poe never actually lived, but a reasonable copy thereof.




St. Marks is the Place

Adam Horovitz (R) and wife Kathleen Hanna at book party for new book chronicling history of St. Mark's Place

Adam Horovitz (R) and wife Kathleen Hanna at book party for new book chronicling history of St. Mark's Place

Cover of "St. Mark's Is Dead," by Ada Calhoun

Cover of "St. Mark's Is Dead," by Ada Calhoun

The East Village/Save the Village tour, starting this month, all of a sudden has a news peg. Hot new book is out this week about St. Mark's Place. Was excerpted in the New Yorker this week (with the requisite Fred W. McDarrah photo of St. Marks Place denizens in the 1960s http://www.newyorker.com/books/page-turner/the-many-lives-of-st-marks-place). Author Ada Calhoun also had an OpEd piece in the Sunday Times. And she is on the cover of the Village Voice. And...

Of course the book has plenty of McDarrah photos. One that is on this web site - but not in the book - was featured by Calhoun at an event at Cooper Union's Great Hall Monday night. The photo is of Jerry Rubin waving a machine gun on St. Mark's Place.

Sad to say I doubt a lot of the people at tonight's event knew who Jerry Rubin was. There were a lot of old timers there - store owners, junkies, musicians, characters, etc. But for better or (I say) worse, names like Jerry Rubin, the Village Voice or Beat poets don't resonate as much in today's youth culture as I think they should.

Ada Calhoun on the Cooper Union Great Hall stage with a Fred W. McDarrah image of Jerry Rubin on St. Mark's Place on the screen behind her.

Ada Calhoun on the Cooper Union Great Hall stage with a Fred W. McDarrah image of Jerry Rubin on St. Mark's Place on the screen behind her.

(Case in point: I had a cracked tooth pulled the other day. The man with the pliers was a younger guy from the San Francisco Bay area. We chatted about the usual things. Seems he had never heard of the City Lights bookstore WHICH IS IN SAN FRANCISCO, the Beat Generation literary movement or any of its poets, or the Village Voice newspaper. Yes he was a dentist. But a basic cultural education/background just isn't part of the social curriculum anymore it often seems.)

Anyway, Calhoun gave a delightfully brief and funny compact history of the street, then gave way to a band made up of some of her friends, including Beastie Boy Adam Horovitz and his wife Kathleen Hanna and downtown performers like Murray Hill and Bridget Everett, the bawdy cabaret singer.

They did some Ramones songs, King Missile's classic, "Detachable Penis"  and Lydia Lunch's "Saint Marks Place." And some others I did not recognize.

Her young son Oliver joined the band briefly and she pointed out a lot of her friends and other people in the audience that helped her on the making of the book, including her dad, noted art critic Peter Schjeldahl. And Gloria S. McDarrah, who patiently went thru 50 years of St. Mark's Place photos last year for Calhoun to select from.

Anyway, but the book. Read it. And see it come to life by going on the East Village/Save the Village tour.

The St. Mark's Zeroes.

The St. Mark's Zeroes.

Calhoun and son Oliver with her parents right behind her

Calhoun and son Oliver with her parents right behind her