Uber-punk club CBGB is about to be shut down, and a cadre of rockers are rallying around the dank landmark to save it from certain eviction on Aug. 31.
Seems it’s the victim of the plague of gentrification, which has long been rampant in New York and is spreading to almost every corner of the country where someone stands to make a buck by bringing in Starbucks and Baby Gap to adjacent corners.
It was only a matter of time before CBGB’s tony digs on Bowery (the address being the desirable element, certainly not the black gooey interior!) caused the cash-induced salivation, but, am I being completely blasphemous here by pointing out that those desperate to save the rocking institution are themselves on the way out?
(Or at least their girdles are out — whoa! Debbie! I think you got the order mixed up!)
Oh wait. I shouldn’t slam them — I’m not far behind!
Either way, the almost certain demise of a rock’n’roll institution should not be taken lightly, and the pocketbook behind it — "a $25 million dollar a year group that receives over $15 million dollars from the city and state," according to the Save CBGB Web site — seems more interested in the bottom line than a good bass line.
Of course, part of the irony is that this effort is to save a punk venue, the very notion of trying to preserve punk reeks of, oh I don’t know, teenygoth’r mega-mall mecca Hot Topic instead of sweat, beer and cigarettes (slash that last one, goddamned anti-smoking lobby!).
Those trying to save the past should probably be careful, or they could wind up with CBGB’s Hard Punk Rock Cafe!