Thanks for checking out this blog. I’m still figuring out the ins and outs, so please excuse any oddities while I get this going. It is going to have a lot of my personal views and experiences with music. Including stuff that isn’t known, isn’t said, isn’t popular, and isn’t quiet.
If you aren’t familiar with Venus Records, I’ll give you a little background. I started selling music through mail order in 1976, just as the punk and new wave movement was starting. I had been collecting records for a number of years before that, mostly 50’s rock and 60’s rock (garage type even though it was barely a category at the time).
The music scene basically stunk between around 1973-1975. Then, the New York scene happened. I remember even seeing the Who, and they played a boring show. HUGE disappointment.
I was going to school at the time and just before I left NY for the summer of 1975, some friends brought me to CBGBs. It was a somewhat run down bar, long and narrow, with a little stage at the end of the bar. It was filled with a bunch of mostly geeky guys. No kids, there was noone there with a mohawk and dressed in leather and torn jeans. A lot of the people were ‘alternative music’ and film school students.
The first band on the stage was Milk N Cookies. Unbelievable. Later on, they moved to the UK, and had a single out called Little Lost and Innocent followed by an album. These are nice pop tunes, good but nothing special. But, let me tell you, on stage, in 1975, these guys ruled. They were loud and energetic, with really great songs. Unfortunately, I don’t know of any live tapes of them, so, if you weren’t there, you’ll probably never know just how great this band was.
The next band to come out was even geekier looking than the crowd. There was a tall skinny singer/guitar player, a cute girl playing bass whose eyes seemed to sort of pop in and out of their sockets as she played, and a guy drummer. That was it, just 3 art school types. They started playing, and I couldn’t believe the wall of sound that came out of just these 3 people. The singer looked so nervous I thought he might have a heart attack at any minute. They were playing stuff unlike anything I had ever heard. Oh yeah, they started off the set by stating ‘The name of this band is Talking Heads.’