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« Yes I Said Yes I Will Yes | Main | Venti Venting »

July 17, 2008



Very poignant. Nicely done, Alex.

EV Grieve

Wow, I love these photos. Bravo, Alex.

The 14th photo down...the "rot gut" sign on the fence...Where is that?

And I second the Joy Division recommendation. It's a thing of beauty.

Andy M.

Great stuff, Alex! Have you thought about putting these on flickr?

Alex in NYC

The "rot gut" sign was on the adjacent chain-link fence of 295 Bowery (also seen in the fouth pic down), which was the former site of McGurk's Suicide Hall. That very spot is currently occupied by the "Blue & Creme" boutique, I believe.

Paul Williams

Alex, I'm guessing the Rawkus graffiti promoted the hip hop record label. Was this some kind of HQ? If so, where?

Alex in NYC

Regarding the Rawkus graffitti mural, that adorned the building that formerly stood to the immediate north of Max Fish on Ludlow street. It's since been torn down, of course. I don't know what the backstory of that particular artwork is, but I can tell you that it was taken in 1999, if that helps contextualize it at all.

julie Wilson

Great photos! scan stuff bigger next time so we can see details!
I love your blog! I check it out all the time. thanks.


Alex, this is all wonderful. You know, my boss is a Libra and he's going to be moving away from my team now with another project and a baby on the way and I had to tell him thanks for saving my sanity so many times. I'm going to miss him. He just smoothes the rough edges out, man. Peace.

Anyway these pictures are grate I love guys in Cure shirts etc.

But I'd give anything to know what you think of my new favourite song. Rick James "New York Town":

Do you think it's cheesy? But I love it so much. Rick James grew up in Buffalo and he beats Prince anyday.

I am about to come to New York for the first time to see Echo & Bunnymen do "Ocean Rain" with an orchestra, Oct 1 at Radio City Music Hall. I know nothing about New York. Be gentle with me. I can't afford to be there very long because my job is really crazy at that time. I have to be at work so I won't be in NYC very long.

Okay I'm drunk, I admit it.

Pat S.

Good stuff. When did Katz's and the Washington Square Park fountain go away? Man, I am out of the loop.

Alex in NYC

Well, Katz's is still there, but the open, spacious air around it is gone. It's now surrounded by massive condo towers. You would never recognize Ludlow Street today.

Washington Square Park has been under radical re-development for a few months now. It's awful.


Is that Lee's Sportswear still there? An homage to Paul's Boutique? I would like to see that in person. I think it's on Rivington.


I love the diner shots. I love those classic diners. Those are few and far between as well in NYC and beyond. This one is in my neck of the woods.

Alex in NYC

Lee's Sportswear on Ludlow Street is long, long gone. For those not geeked out to recognize it, it's the shop that adorns the cover of the Beastie Boys' second album, Paul's Boutique. For a little while, it became a cafe called -- -wait for it -- Paul's Boutique, but it's now an eatery called Three Monkeys, somewhat inexplicably.

That picture was taken in 1995. Here's what I had to say about it ten years later (three years ago):

I keep meaning to write up the backstories of each of the photos above, but haven't found the time. Maybe I should do that.


Yes now I recall. You can write an entire page on Paul's Boutique. The whole thing was a joke and people still think it was a real place. But they do have that radio ad on their album, I wonder what that was all about? own that Lee's Sportswear store sign now would be a cool piece of nerdy rock memorabilia right there.


Oh my god - forgot about the warlock shop/magikal childe- I always thought that the developers would be too scared to push them out. The pic of the Moondance really hurts...

Thanks for putting these up. They make me sad, but its nice to look back. You wouldn't have any of Queens/LIC by the way? I am looking for a swingline neon sign pic. Jst thought I'd ask.


8 from the top, with the crown of the statue of liberty. where was that?

Alex in NYC

That's El Teddy's down in TriBeCa. Don't bother lookin' for it -- they tore it down and replaced it with some bland box of a building. In any case, it was a restaurant.


I was lucky enough to spend a lot of time in NYC in the eighties and nineties and even this decade as well. So much has changed but I hold those older times especially close to my heart. For some reason I would always hang out at Magickal Childe and was privy to some verrry interesting conversations there. Anyway, this is great work that brings back great memories. Will be back in NYC in 2 weeks. Maybe I will visit some of my old haunts that don't exist anymore...

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