I was right in front and my buddy is on the
other side in the front (wearing glasses and smoking). Sitting on a stool on
the side of the stage in the corner is Patti's assistant, Andi Ostrowe.
Patti came on with a neck brace and the kind of
cap that is in style these days.....
Another highlight was Patti's cover of Hey Joe --
which was the b-side of her first independent single in 1974; only time I've ever heard it done live.
Oh, and there was only ONE bathroom at GBGB's
back then -- it was unisex.
More on CBGB's and the Seventies in NYC
Johnny recalls more on CBGB's and the
They sure were great times. I spent a lot of
time at CBGB's in 1976 and 1977 -- half the time I was under age (18 was the
drinking age in those days), but CBGB's let anyone in....
I was far from cool -- a naive kid from Long
Island seeing a lot of things for the first time. I remember seeing Dee Dee Ramone screaming at some gal in the bathroom.
Saw some great shows: John Cale and Television
used to open up for Patti. I saw Television many times before their first
album came out. Saw them play 4 shows at CBGB's (2 per night) the weekend that
their debut album, Marquee Moon, was released. Tom Verlaine and Richard Loyd
are great guitar players. I saw the Talking Heads when they were a three-person
band (Pre-Jerry Harrison), The Ramones, Richard Hell and the Void-oids and
Blondie several times. Debbie Harry and Patti did not care for one another.
I usually visited on the weekends. One night,
William Burroughs was there and we spoke briefly. Paul Simon came to see
11 Memories of CBGB's in the
by Johnny Treplow
Dee Dee Ramone fooling around with some gal in the mens room
when I was trying to take a piss.
2) William Burroughs
attending Patti shows there -- in a jacket and tie.
3) Patti and
Debbie Harry seemed to resent one another -- although they get
along fine these days.
4) Seeing Television,
The Ramones, and The
Talking Heads -- all before they recorded their first album.
5) Patti playing CBGB's
after a short UK tour -- and raving about the CLASH - -especially
6) Patti ripping up Lou
O'Neil Jr's NY Post rock article from the stage because it was an
Helen Reddy is not ROCK, said Patti.
Johnny Thunders at the Bar -- sadly, never saw him play live.
Joey Ramone would hang out at Blondie shows a lot.
8) Hilly Crystal had a
dog that hung out there -- kind of a hound dog. We'd feed him chilli
-- one of the few types of food they had there -- and the dog would
9) Dead Boys were
interesting -- had never heard them before sitting thru 2 sets of
theirs and the Damned (from the UK) while waiting for Patti to play
on Easter night, 1977 (Billed as "La Ressurection" in the Village
10) This guy -- Jim
Brawley -- taped every Patti show in
NYC. He passed away a few years ago and Lenny Kaye told me
that Jim left the tapes to him (Lenny). Lenny plans on giving them
Rock and Roll hall of fame.
Todd Rundgren and a very pregnant Bebe Buell showed up to a
Patti (Smith) show in June 77. Hilly's daughter Lisa (or Linda -
can't recall her name) worked the door and wouldn't let them in
because it was over capacity. Patti had put her old friend Todd on
the guest list, so I ran back and told her then-manager (Jane
Friedman) that Lisa/Linda wouldn't allow Todd in. Next thing I knew,
Todd and Bebe were being led backstage to see Patti. Soon after,
Bebe gave birth to daughter
Liv Tyler (that memory makes me feel old).