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Definitive Story of CBGB: The Home of US Punk
     

The Definitive Story of CBGB: The Home of US Punk

 
The New York City landmark CBGB closed its doors for good in the fall of 2006 after a remarkable 33-year run that saw the dingy Bowery dive become immortalized for its role in fostering the punk rock revolution of the 1970s. Owner Hilly Kristal never intended to showcase rock bands when he opened the club (its full name, CBGB & OMFUG, actually stands for Country,

Overview

The New York City landmark CBGB closed its doors for good in the fall of 2006 after a remarkable 33-year run that saw the dingy Bowery dive become immortalized for its role in fostering the punk rock revolution of the 1970s. Owner Hilly Kristal never intended to showcase rock bands when he opened the club (its full name, CBGB & OMFUG, actually stands for Country, Bluegrass, Blues and Other Music for Uplifting Gormandizers), but when he allowed young new aggressive bands like the Ramones and Television to work on their acts and the crowds grew larger, he stuck with the format and history followed. The Definitive Story of CBGB is one compilation that not only lives up to its title but goes beyond by defining a time and place. Not all of the bands showcased on the two CDs actually played the club -- there's a section at the start of disc two devoted to influences the New York Dolls, MC5, the Stooges, and the Velvet Underground -- but nearly every band that did contribute to the legend of CB's is represented here (Talking Heads is the only major pioneering CB's band that's MIA; of the somewhat major bands, Richard Hell & the Voidoids are the only striking omission). As such, the collection stands as one of the tightest, most filler-free, and most exciting summations of '70s/'80s punk and new wave music ever assembled. Patti Smith, the poet/goddess who helped the club gain notice, turns up not with a track from her groundbreaking Arista Records debut but the indie single that preceded it, "Piss Factory," a stark, freestyle word jam unlike anything else going on in popular music at the time. Blondie, fronted by punk's other major frontwoman, Deborah Harry, also checks in with an early single, "X Offender," which combined the girl group ethos of the early '60s with driving pop and Chris Stein's surf-esque guitar. The Ramones, Television, the Shirts, the Dead Boys, Tuff Darts, the Dictators, Johnny Thunders & the Heartbreakers, and the soulful Mink DeVille (who were not punk at all but a vital part of the scene nonetheless) were all key New York-based bands that find a home on the collection. As punk took on other attributes, such as funk and free jazz, bands like Pere Ubu, James Chance & the Contortions, Lydia Lunch's Teenage Jesus & the Jerks, and the Bush Tetras found popularity among the open-minded CB's audience, as did electronic extremists Suicide and the rockabilly-inspired Cramps. Bands that would in time go on to great fame by incorporating strong visual elements into their acts, among them the B-52's and Devo, made music in their early days -- "Planet Claire" and "Jocko Homo," respectively, are the two tracks repping those bands here -- that still sounds wholly original decades later. The first stirrings of hardcore -- punk taken to the next level of speed and outrageousness -- became entrenched in the early '80s and CBGB was on it from the start: the Bad Brains, who also included reggae in their unique mix, show up here with "Pay to Cum," and the Wendy O. Williams-led Plasmatics, whose over-the-top theatricality found them blowing up cars as part of their shtick, sound tamer now on their early single "Butcher Baby" than when it was new. Kristal himself closes out the album with a country-flavored novelty tune, "Mud," that was released as a Christmas single in 1976. It's not punk by any means, but then, maybe in its own way, it is.

Product Details

Release Date:
10/24/2006
Label:
Salvo
UPC:
0698458820228
catalogNumber:
202

Tracks

Album Credits

Technical Credits

Joan Jett   Composer
Lydia Lunch   Composer
Ramones   Composer
David Thomas   Composer
Stiv Bators   Composer
Kim Fowley   Composer
Martin Rev   Composer
Alan Vega   Composer
Johnny Blitz   Composer
Cheetah Chrome   Composer
Brian Eno   Producer
Jeff Magnum   Composer
Robert Racioppo   Composer
Greg Shaw   Producer
Andy Shernoff   Composer
Jimmy Zero   Composer
Lance Loud   Composer
Joe Cushley   Sleeve Notes
Ed Bahlman   Producer
Deville-Maine-Judah   Composer
Iggy Pop   Composer

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