It was the summer of ’75, when a garbage strike left tons of stinking trash piled high on flat-broke Gotham’s sweltering streets. Five-dollar hookers and fur-coat-clad pimps strutted around the Lower East Side, and junkies turned abandoned slums into squalid shooting galleries.
But amid that dystopian nightmare sat a grungy dive on the Bowery called CBGB that was home to bikers, neighborhood drunks and the seeds of a musical revolution that changed the future of music — punk rock.
Chris Frantz, drummer of the seminal new-wave band Talking Heads, had a front-row seat along with his now-wife, bassist Tina Weymouth, guitarist/lead singer David Byrne, and the original Ramones: Joey, Johnny, Dee Dee and Tommy, all four of whom died way too early.
Decades later, the UK is staging a yearlong 40th anniversary celebration — dubbed Punk London — but the scene across the Atlantic blossomed only after the Big Apple’s was in full bloom.