From the “things-that-make-Joey-Ramone-cry department…”
After the Plaza closes, what’s next? Well, CBGB Might-Be-Going-Bye-Bye. This due to a long-standing rent dispute with the current owners. The Bitter End went through similar gyrations recently, but managed to save itself at the last minute. Let’s hope we see a similar miracle here…
This from the NY Times story:
In an arrangement known to few of the club’s patrons, CBGB subleases its spaces at 313 and 315 Bowery from the organization, which shelters 175 homeless people in the floors above the club. In 2001, the organization began efforts to collect more than $300,000 in back rent from the club. Although much of that has now been paid, the club faces eviction over remaining debts of about $75,000, both parties say.
Both organizations have dug in their heels and claim a moral right to the property.
“We’re an institution,” said Hilly Kristal, the grandfatherly 73-year-old who started CBGB – with plans to stage “country, bluegrass and blues,” not punk – in late 1973. “I think we’re an important part of this community. The city uses us in their Olympics ad, along with the Statue of Liberty.”
The story doesn’t mention whether the homeless people also happen to be deaf. Better come visit NYC while it’s still here!