New York City Feelings

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A Rock ‘n Roll Map of Manhattan


[EN] If you’re sick of hearing Frank Sinatra tell you that he wants to be a part of it, or Alicia Keys gushing about how these streets will make you feel brand new, then rejoice – here’s an alternative musical history of the Big Apple. Ladies and gentlemen, get your walking shoes on for a journey through Flavorpill’s essential Manhattan lyrical topography. Click here for a larger version of our rock ‘n roll map of the borough and take our guided tour after the jump.


Harlem
Harlem’s rich musical history is well-documented, as is the fact that it was where Lou Reed used to go to score smack. The blocks north of 110th Street feature prominently in all sorts of songs – including, of course, “Across 110th Street.”

“Up to Lexington, 125/Feeling sick and dirty/More dead than alive…”
The Velvet Underground, “I’m Waiting for the Man”
We confess to having taken a photo on this corner, under the street signs.

“Get as high as you can on Saturday night/Go to church on Sunday to set things right…”
Gil Scott-Heron, “Small Talk at 125th and Lenox”
A landmark album in many ways, Scott-Heron’s 1970 masterpiece references his adopted home of Harlem in its title and several of its lyrics.

“I am sitting/In the morning/At the diner/On the corner…”
Suzanne Vega, “Tom’s Diner”
The real Tom’s Restaurant – as also featured in Seinfeld – is on 112th and Broadway.

“Across 110th Street’s a hell of a tester…”
Bobby Womack, “Across 110th Street”

Midtown
It’s not just Frank who wanted to be a part of it. The neon lights of Broadway – and the grim reality that remains when the lights go out – have inspired and fascinated in equal measures. There’s also the occasional lyric to recall when things weren’t quite as rosy as they are today – like the Ramones’ “53rd and 3rd”, a fairly sordid tale of turning tricks for smack on that particular corner. Good luck trying that these days.

“On the Upper East Side I’ll call you again…”
Experimental Aircraft, “Upper East Side”
This Austin band really ought to be more well-known than they are.

“I can’t give it away on 7th Avenue!”
Rolling Stones, “Shattered”
The last track off Some Girls and the beginning of the end for the Stones’ fertile ‘70s period. Soon, Mick wouldn’t be able to give it away anywhere.

“Is it raining in New York?/Down 5th Ave and off Broadway after dark/You love the lights, don’t you?/I could walk you through the park/If you’re feeling blue…”
Roxy Music, “To Turn You On”

“Broadway looked so medieval/It seemed to flap, like little pages…”
Television, “Venus”

“53rd and 3rd, standing on the street/53rd and 3rd, I’m trying to turn a trick…”
Ramones, “53rd and 3rd”

“Take a walk around Times Square/With a pistol in my suitcase/And my eyes on the TV…”
Marianne Faithfull, “Times Square”

“Sha da do wop, da shaman do way/We like Birdland…”
Patti Smith, “Birdland”
Quite how much this lyric – inspired, apparently, by Peter Reich’s A Book of Dreams – has to do with the Birdland jazz club on West 44th Street is open to debate. But good God, what a song.

“Up on the roof/It’s almost dawn/See the water towers/Look so forlorn…”
Luna, “Great Jones Street”

The East Village and the Lower East SideThe east side blocks below 14th Street have long been the hub of Manhattan’s artistic community, both in the East Village and the area south of Houston. Of course, no one who’s an artist can afford to live there anymore – like the rest of the island, the area has cleaned up considerably since its days as a crumbling, rent-controlled junkie haven. Still, there are plenty of lyrics that recall the area’s former “glory.”

“Then, as I walked down Second Avenue towards St Mark’s Place/Where all those people sell used books and other junk on the street/I saw my penis lying on a blanket/Next to a broken toaster oven.”
King Missile, “Detachable Penis”
You can probably still buy dicks on St Mark’s Place. Or sell things to them.

“The boys from Avenue B and the girls from Avenue D/A Tinkerbell in tights…”
Lou Reed, “Halloween Parade”
Reed’s catalogue of the missing figures at the Halloween Parade is a beautiful and sad evocation of the toll wrought on New York’s gay community in the ’80s by the AIDS virus.

“Sitting in the Russian bath house on the Avenue B/No matter how much we sweat we just can’t agree…”
Gogol Bordello, “Avenue B”
Gogol Bordello’s history is tied to the East Village – it was here they first came together in the late ‘90s, and here that Eugene Hutz still occasionally breaks out one of his legendarily mental DJ sets.

“Sleeping in a van between A & B/Sucking dick for ecstasy…”
The Moldy Peaches, “Downloading Porn With Davo”
They probably did, too.

“Alphabet City is haunted/Constantina feels right at home…”
Elliott Smith, “Alphabet Town”

“From Bowery to Broome to Greene, I’m a walking lizard…”
Sonic Youth, “Hyperstation”

“New York is cold but I like where I’m living/There’s music on Clinton Street all through the evening…”
Leonard Cohen, “Famous Blue Raincoat”

“Walking by myself/Down avenues that reek of time to kill…”
Santigold, “LES Artistes”
Back when she was Santogold, Santi White dedicated her debut single to a lyrical impalement of pretentious Lower East Side types. Right on.




[ES] Si estas harto de oir a Frank Sinatra contarte que él quiere ser parte de la ciudad, o de Alicia Keys hablando de las calles te hacen sentir nuevo, como recién salida de fábrica, aquí traemos una historia alternativa sobre la música de la Gran Manzana. Señoras y señores, poneos zapatos cómodos porque vamos a dar un largo paseo por la topografía musical de Manhattan.

Harlem
La rica historia de la música de Harlem está más que bien documentada, como el hecho de que aquí Lou Reed solía ser arrestado por la policía. Los bloques norte de la calle 110th sirvieron de inspiración para muchas canciones, incluida, por supuesto para “Across 110th Street.”

“Up to Lexington, 125/Feeling sick and dirty/More dead than alive…”
The Velvet Underground, “I’m Waiting for the Man”
He de confesar haberme hecho fotos en esta esquina, bajo la placa de la calle.

125 lexington Ave


“Get as high as you can on Saturday night/Go to church on Sunday to set things right…”
Gil Scott-Heron, “Small Talk at 125th and Lenox”
Otra vez la famosa 125th con Lexington Ave, un hito a visitar en la ciudad, sin lugar a dudas.

“I am sitting/In the morning/At the diner/On the corner…”
Suzanne Vega, “Tom’s Diner”
El restaurante Tom's, que solía aparecer en la serie de TV "Seinfeld" está en la 112th con Broadway Ave.

“Across 110th Street’s a hell of a tester…”
Bobby Womack, “Across 110th Street”

Midtown
Sinatra no es el único que quería ser parte de ella. Las luces de neón de Broadway
It’s not just Frank who wanted to be a part of it. The neon lights of Broadway –y la cruda realidad que queda cuando se apagan las luces - han inspirado y fascinado por partes iguales. También hay letras para recordar cuandolos tiempos no fueron tan buenos como lo son hoy - como los Ramones "53rd & 3rd", una historia bastante sórdida de trucos para golpear en esa esquina en particular. Buena suerte tratándose de esos días.

“On the Upper East Side I’ll call you again…”
Experimental Aircraft, “Upper East Side”
Esta banda de Austin debería ser más conocida de lo que son.

“I can’t give it away on 7th Avenue!”
Rolling Stones, “Shattered”
La última canción para algunas chicas y el principio del fin para el período fértil de los Stones 70. Al poco tiempo, Mick no sería capaz de regalarnos nada más.


“Is it raining in New York?/Down 5th Ave and off Broadway after dark/You love the lights, don’t you?/I could walk you through the park/If you’re feeling blue…”
Roxy Music, “To Turn You On”

“Broadway looked so medieval/It seemed to flap, like little pages…”
Television, “Venus”

“53rd and 3rd, standing on the street/53rd and 3rd, I’m trying to turn a trick…”
Ramones, “53rd and 3rd”
 Ramones | 53rd and 3rd


“Take a walk around Times Square/With a pistol in my suitcase/And my eyes on the TV…”
Marianne Faithfull, “Times Square”

“Sha da do wop, da shaman do way/We like Birdland…”
Patti Smith, “Birdland”
Por lo que se cuenta, la letra de esta canción usó como inspiración por el libro "A Book of Dreams" de Peter Reich, y tiene también bastante que ver con el club de Jazz "Birdland" situado en la 44 St.

“Up on the roof/It’s almost dawn/See the water towers/Look so forlorn…”
Luna, “Great Jones Street”

The East Village and the Lower East SideLos bloques de lado este por debajo de la 14 St son desde hace mucho tiempo el centro de la comunidad artística de Manhattan, tanto en el East Village como el SoHo. Por supuesto, nadie que sea artista puede permitirse el lujo de vivir allí - como en el resto de Manhattan, la zona se ha limpiado mucho desde quellos días refugio de drogadictos. Sin embargo, hay un montón de letras que recuerdan la "gloria" de la zona antigua .

“Then, as I walked down Second Avenue towards St Mark’s Place/Where all those people sell used books and other junk on the street/I saw my penis lying on a blanket/Next to a broken toaster oven.”
King Missile, “Detachable Penis”

“The boys from Avenue B and the girls from Avenue D/A Tinkerbell in tights…”
Lou Reed, “Halloween Parade”
El catálogo de figuras perdidas en este desfile de Halloween de Lou Reed es una triste evocación de lo que supuso para la comunidad gay de Nueva York en los años 80 la lacra del SIDA.

“Sitting in the Russian bath house on the Avenue B/No matter how much we sweat we just can’t agree…”
Gogol Bordello, “Avenue B”
La historia de Gogol Bordello está unida al East Village, - fue aquí donde por primera vez se reunieron a finales de los 90, y aquí Eugene Hutz de vez en cuando realiza una de sus legendarias sesiones de DJ.

“Sleeping in a van between A & B/Sucking dick for ecstasy…”
The Moldy Peaches, “Downloading Porn With Davo”
Seguramente lo hizo, también!

“Alphabet City is haunted/Constantina feels right at home…”
Elliott Smith, “Alphabet Town”

“From Bowery to Broome to Greene, I’m a walking lizard…”
Sonic Youth, “Hyperstation”

“New York is cold but I like where I’m living/There’s music on Clinton Street all through the evening…”
Leonard Cohen, “Famous Blue Raincoat”

“Walking by myself/Down avenues that reek of time to kill…”
Santigold, “LES Artistes”
Santi Blanco dedicó su primer single al Lower East Side.

Original Post | Tom Hawking on flavorwire


#MAPS #MUSIC #EASTVILLAGE #LES



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