Friday, August 11, 2006

That I Remember....


Every time I scroll through my archive and see this photo of the B Girls with Debbie Harry and Nigel Harrison of Blondie, I remember something different about the night I shot this photo.

Suffice it to say that this show was THE show of the night, and probably the week. Besides members of Blondie, Rodney Bingenheimer was there, as was a fresh-faced Jeffrey Lee Pierce. Stiv Bators was doing double duty with the ladies, as Cynthia B-Girl was his girlfriend and earlier in the year, he had squired her around town, helping to set up this very successful B-Girls gig by his presence. Then there was super groupie Sabel Starr who was hanging out - she was friends with Debbie...but she and Stiv posed for photos that ended up in Playboy, of all places. not that I object at all to having a photo in Playboy - it was my first REAL editorial inclusion. Rolling Stone, Creem, Music Life, Circus, Rock Scene, and the trades were niche magazines at the time.... Playboy was the big time!

Another person I met on this night was John Browner, who was a friend of Mumps guitarist, Rob duPrey from Washington, DC who, like Rob, had migrated north to NYC during the punk rock days. He had written a book called "Death of a Punk" which is a real crime/detective story that revolved around the 1977 CBGB scene. He knew all the people and got the details totally right. The detective stuff seemed pretty normal and de rigeur. The book is now out of print, and I think I probably have it stashed away in my garage. It wasn't until 2000 that I even heard of another work of fiction name-checking any popular band - that would be by the popular detective author (and fellow Greek) George Pelecanos. He had referenced an actual tour I worked on (Echo & the Bunnymen/The Church, 1985) and name-checked the actual venue. In the same novel, he also name-checked LA's Paisley Underground leaders, The Dream Syndicate. Of course, it was Dream Syndicate songwriter/singer/guitarist, Steve Wynn who brought that to my attention for the variety of reasons that I just mentioned.

Thinking of that today, I came upon this section on Bomp's website all about Music Fiction. Why don't you check it out!

Music in Fiction on the Bomp site. Scour garage sales, and thrift stores.... "Death of a Punk" was an enjoyable read for me... perhaps because I knew everyone involved, including the author... but mostly because it felt like our thing meant enough to Pocket Books to have invested a print run on our little corner of rock n roll.

It's summer.... a good time to get some reading done!

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