David Johansen talks to the audience at the Friars Club Gala who honoured the Icon Award to Martin Scorsese held at Cipriani, 55 Wall Street, Manhattan, New York, United States - Wednesday 21st September 2016
David Johansen and honoree Little Jimmy Scott - David Johansen and honoree Little Jimmy Scott New York City, USA - The Jazz Foundation of America's 9th Annual A Great Night in Harlem Gala and Concert at The Apollo Theater Thursday 20th May 2010
Most of the literature and documentaries on punk tend to start out in the same place, talking about how in the mid-1970s music had become this bloated, big-business monster, with pretentious arena rock bands playing 20-minute solos and so on - and then came The Ramones to shatter all that. Letts - a former producer and icon in the scene, as well as director of the authoritative documentary on The Clash, Westway to the World - digs deeper than that, going back to the 1960s and early '70s, finding the root of the coming musical uprising not just in expected places like The Velvet Underground, MC5, and Iggy Pop, but also in the jaggedly poppy sounds of many now mostly forgotten garage bands (whose sound is still inspiring post-punkers like The Hives). In describing the ascent of punk later in the '70s, Dead Kennedys frontman Jello Biafra talks about how just about every smaller town and city had one guy who was into The Stooges and The Velvet Underground who then moved to the bigger cities, met up with all the other like-minded small-town new arrivals, and started bands.
Continue reading: Punk: Attitude Review