Tonight (25), No Slam Dancing, No Stage Diving, No Spikes: An Oral History of the Legendary City Gardens authors Amy Yates Wuelfling and Steven DiLodovico will be appearing on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart to talk about their book. There’s a reason for that, as Stewart was once a bartender at the long-shuttered music venue and bar in Trenton NJ. We caught up with DiLodovico, an old friend of mine, last week for an interview about the book and the club. The book, an oral history of the club, is an entertaining read, featuring stories from not just the venue’s booker and staff, but many of the artists that played there in the ’80s and ’90s. One of those bands that cut their teeth there was GWAR, who initially played there on April 9, 1988, opening Danzig’s first show ever. While that show is covered in the book as well, they returned in August, this time headlining, with Murphy’s Law and Mentors opening. Here’s Brockie’s memory of confusing the hardcore kids there to see Murphy’s Law.
At this point they were putting us with some of the wilder bands, so it didn’t really matter that we were getting shit all over the place. Murphy’s Law are still really good friends of ours. Jimmy Gestapo is a good buddy. We see him every no and then in New York. He’s more into running his tattoo parlor, but Murphy’s Law is still playing shows. That show was the only time we ever had a problem there. There were tons of New York skinheads at that show, and they really didn’t know what to make of GWAR. They were not really into us squirting shit on them. So at one point they all pulled back from the stage, formed the “wall of death,” and charged. We were totally ready for them, and we fucking hosed them with a fucking barrage of spew! They all crashed into the stage and milled around in a confused blob while we hosed them blind. I think at that point, through osmosis, they realized this was actually fun, you know? We never had a problem with any punk or skinhead or gang element. Anyone who has a problem with GWAR realizes pretty quickly it’s like getting angry about The Simpsons.
No Slam Dancing, No Stage Diving, No Spikes: An Oral History of the Legendary City Gardens is available now. If you’re in the New York/New Jersey/Pennsylvania area, Wuelfling and DiLodovico may be doing book signings in your area.