Friday, August 2, 2013

This weekend: 25th Annual Tompkins Square Park Riot Reunion concerts

The 25th Annual Tompkins Square Park Riot Reunion concerts continue this weekend...

Bands performing Saturday:
-Porno Dracula
-Coffin Daggers (Featuring Victor of Nausea)
-David Peel
-Bambi Killers

-Urban Waste
-Sic F*cks
-Reagan Youth

Here is the Facebook event page for more details.

If you can't make these, then there's also a concert Sunday night at the Pyramid...

Also, the Tompkins Square Park riot is one of the subjects covered during the first film festival from The Museum of Reclaimed Urban Space (MoRUS) tomorrow and Sunday ...

August 3: 25th Annual Tompkins Square Riot Reunion Films!
Featuring "Your House is Mine" (filmmaker Carolyn McCaughey in attendance!), "Squat or Rot" and a Paper Tiger TV special on the demolition of the 5th Street squat.
Paper Tiger TV details.
@ MoRUS (155 Avenue C)

August 4: 25th Annual Tompkins Square Riot Reunion Films!
Featuring a special historical slideshow presented by Seth Tobocman and "Tompkins Square Park: Operation Class War on the Lower East Side"
@ MoRUS (155 Avenue C)

For more details about the film festival here.


shmnyc said...

The Pyramid is another of the early gentrifying establishments. It's funny how people's perceptions change with time.

rob said...

shmnyc, the notion of gentrification you're relying on is both simplistic and empirically false. It's a cliche view first circulated among academics, easily disproved: the neighborhood long had countercultural theatrical and club venues in the 1950's, 1960's and 1970's. Real estate investment did not increase, but decreased from 1950 through much of the 1980's. The past is constantly being mythologized, and sociology is a major mythologizer.

Disinvestment and reinvestment in NYC reflect both larger economic pressures as well as local specifics. Throwing a blanket of theory covers the truth with convenient answers.

Max Fish opened well within the edge of upscaling of the neighborhood. Not Pyramid.

rob said...

btw, I appreciate your ciriticism of the occassional inconsistent or knee-jerk complaint here (how many EVers to screw a lightbulb? Two, one to screw it in, the other to complain that it used to be better), but there is a complexity to neighborhoods that the literature doesn't always grasp. Academcis have axes to grind too.

john penley said...

There are a number of people who played large roles in the riot who are not included in this..Peter Missing, Clayton Patterson, Paul Garrin, Jerry the Peddler, and David Sorcher are some of them. Why not ? I have repeated suggested that organizers include a PROTEST in this about the treatment of long time LES activist supporter attorney Lynne Stewart whose petition to be released from Federal Prison because she is dying of cancer but so far no one who is controlling this is listening. Oh well, music with very little involvement of key players who still live in the hood and not enough political content to make this a PROTEST is my complaint. Too Bad !

shmnyc said...

You dispatched that strawman with great aplomb, but are you sure you're responding to my comment about the Pyramid? Check your source.

john penley said...

Lynne Stewart's petition was denied.

Anonymous said...

It's funny how you don't have a fucking clue about Pyramid and its place in East Village history.

Pyramid had NYHC (New York Hardcore) matinees in 1987-88 when CBGB stopped having them (which means it supported local undergorund music when the Tompkins Square Riot went down) and hardcore shows here and there 1989-91 then on and off many years later. Bands from Prong to Poison Idea to Burn to Nirvana among many others played there, so hardly a "gentrifying establishment".


shmnyc said...

Anonymous 2:18,
I went to the Pyramid a few times when it opened, but there's no question about its being an early gentrifying establishment. Gentrification isn't about what you like and don't like, it's about the economic forces at work.

Anonymous said...

Rob consider yourself lucky SMDH moved on to trashing Clayton Patterson on his cut-and-paste gentrification blog. Best not to engage the power troll.

chris flash said...

Anyone who says that the Pyramid is or was a contributing factor in gentrification is talking out of their assess!! The Pyramid was a hot place to catch great shows in the 1980s and we're bringing that back now. The inside looks EXACTLY as it did in the 80s -- it's fucking beautiful!!

Almost all of the bands and performers at our shows in Tompkins Park will be from the good old bad old days 1980s-90s and many of them played Pyramid at one time or another.

These shows are gonna be HUGE!!

rob said...

shm, after Pyramid opened, real estate continued to disinvest for years. End of question.

You're right that gentrification "is about the economic forces at work." Pyramid was not an economic force. Real estate in NYC is.

This neighborhood was targeted for gentrification as far back as 1929, RE just waiting for the opportunity, regardless of clubs like Pyramid. The end of the 80's Reagan/Volcker recession was the opportunity, not Pyramid. The anarchists here knew exactly what was happening and fought it as best they could.

If you want to find blame for gentrification, look to the middle-class types that fill the community boards. They supported the curfew in the service of the real estate industry.

This 'art canard' that artistic/musical activity gentrify neighborhoods is a blame-the-victim myth that conveniently exculpates the RE industry. Why repeat it?

shmnyc said...

Regarding gentrification in general: One block, one building even, can be revalorized while the next block, or adjacent building is devalorized. I'm sure I don't need to tell anyone that gentrification doesn't happen all at once.
Regarding The Pyramid: It's not that it was a contributing factor, it's that it was an early example of the revalorization that is gentrification. Either a bank or a broker saw the opportunity to make money there, even while pulling money out of other buildings. When I went to the Pyramid, I didn't live in this neighborhood. I'm sure that's exactly what the investors desired.

Anonymous said...

Pyramid, along with any other art/music venue in the last 40 years that catered to anyone who wasn't from here contributed to future changes in the neighborhood, even if they didn't intend to. You can't deny that.

You open a club, you start a scene, you bring people in, people create symbolic capital, that capital is later monetized/co-opted by other outsiders. Simple.

rob said...

2:19 Simply false. There were many popular venues in the LES in the 50's and 60's (Les Deux Megots, 5 Spot, Charles Theater Electric Circus, Duo Theater) while real estate values declined. The only difference in the 80's was the real estate industry's interest and the mayor's full throttle effort to gentrify the neighborhood with RE tax breaks and subsidies, police presence and evictions of the homeless. Without the city's participation, Pyramid's non local patrons would have remained "visitors from outside." You can deny that, but you'd be wrong.

vzabuser said...

The pyramid is the East Village.
And it could be once again.

Anonymous said...

If the Pyramid is part of "gentrification" than there is no place in the East Village that can be said not to contribute to "gentrification." And frankly who wants the East Village of the 1980s back? It was filled with burned out buildings, open hard drug use and dealers, and violence to the point it was way too dangerous to venture east of Ave. B. If cleaning that sh*t up is gentrification, so be it.

rob said...

For what it's worth, 2:19 (aka Smith-Harvey-Marx), approaching history from theory can at best provide necessary but not always sufficient conditions. Useful, but partial.

11:32 -- Affordable housing and homeless encampments do not contribute to gentrification, which can tolerate the one, but apparently not the other. And some otherwise innocent elements like the arts can be capitalized by it: Art around the Park was promoted by a realtor.

I moved east of B on 11th in 78, maybe the scariest street around then. No doubt many in the drug trade were harmed. I was never harmed. Once, after I had some disagreement in the street, my keys were pickpocketed and my bike stolen from my apt. The keys were quietly returned to me in the street the very next day. The pickpocket did not know where my apt was. But Freddy did. That community cannot be conceived of from outside, for better or worse.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone remember "New York New York" by Nina Hagen?
But before we hit East 7th Street
We are going to another disco
AMPM, Pyramid, Roxy, Mudd Club, Danceteria
The newest club is opening up

shmnyc said...

To portray artists as the victims of gentrification is to mock the plight of the neighborhood's real victims.

rob said...

Interesting non sequitur, shm. The discussion is about whom should gentrification be blamed on -- on the city admin complicit with the real estate industry or on artistic scenes. Those who say the scene is to blame, "victimize" the scene by misplacing blame on a tool (though many artists in the punk movement actually resisted commercialization) not the agents using the tool.

That can be proved by the history: scenes don't always gentrify (50's & 60's); many neighborhoods are being gentrified without a prior scene. A scene is therefore neither necessary nor sufficient for gentrification.

Btw, many tenants in affordable housing including NYCHA were protected from gentrification. Those who bore the brunt of gentrification were the many marginals including substance abusers, vets and of course the homeless.

Much of Loisaida was vacant and NYC has rent regulations both of which tempered displacement. But a lot of the early "gentrifiers" were evicted when the State revoked the restrictions on preferential rents.

Venues like CBGB's were lost to gentrification -- real estate upscaling, not its finances, finally pushed them over the cliff.

shmnyc said...

My comment was in response to your "art canard" remark, therefore, a sequitur!
And the conversation was not about who was to blame for gentrification, but was the Pyramid a gentrifying establishment, and it was.

rob said...

Ah, you misunderstood it! Anyway, 'neither necessary nor sufficient' is sufficiently logical to me to exclude it as a "gentrifying establishment." Maybe we can agree that dense homeless encampments, shooting galleries and crack houses prevent gentrification. In the 19th cen, capital might have dealt with it itself, bringing in the Pinkertons maybe. In the 20th, city admin was indispensible, a necessary condition.