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A Guide to the Artwork on the Manhattan CD or LP

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Joined: 05 Jan 2006
Posts: 456

PostPosted: Sat Aug 06, 2016 6:43 pm    Post subject: A Guide to the Artwork on the Manhattan CD or LP Reply with quote

This is for the you guys who aren't from Manhattan and may miss some of the brilliance and wit of this art work because you don't know the references. It's all about evolution, what was, what's now extinct, and what used to be.
The design on the CD cover than says "Good for Nothin"" is an old subway token that used to be dropped in a slot to get past a turnstile. Now we use plastic Metrocards. Actually, the token won't get you to Brooklyn but they sell as collectors items on ebay. People asked me to buy them to collect when they went extinct.
The fold out insert shows the evolution of life on this planet starting with the Paramecium and single celled organisms, proceeding forward through to different subway cars with the various forms of life, now extinct, to the homo sapiens Dutch Man who bought Manhattan from the Indians (I mean, Native Americans) for $24 worth of trinkets. All these now extinct animals speak unintelligibly but may be complaining about a minimal amount of rent, which gets up to $50 in Beatnik Jazz days. After that it goes through the roof, as rents in Manhattan now are. I don't recognize the final creature in evolution.
Parallel to the parade of animal life are drawings of the all the wonderful stores & restaurants forced out of business in the East Village by skyrocketing rents. First is Ed Sanders Peace Eye Bookstore of hippy days with its Egyptian Eye of Horus on the window. Next, Leshko's coffee shop, a small Polish restaurant where people in the neighborhood had breakfast or pierogi. Next The Mars Bar, a club, then an Italian bakery, a hippy gear boutique called Love Saves the Day, the country music club with the Iguana on top was The Lone Star Cafe, another little restaurant with home made pierogi and deli, a Collective i don't recognize, probably activist, the 2nd Ave Deli, a kosher delicatessen with huge pastrami sandwiches, and Kim's Video, a place that used to sell VHS, bootlegs and porn too.Pearl Paint was a huge well stocked multistory art supply store that it was fun to browse, Venus Records, ane of many LP stores on St, Marks Place, a Polish meat store that hung sausages in the window, Tower Records, a titantic multi story music store, maybe the inspiration for Leonard Cohen's "Tower of Song."The Bottom Line, a very famous club where all the best NY acts in the 60s, 70s, and 80s, played. Ninth Street East Village Bakery, home made breads and cakes, The Palladium, a big theater, first place I saw Laurie Anderson, Kings copy shop, and the last one I never heard of ,must be a Jeffrey invention showing how today's technology is bound to become "ye olde" at some time in the future.
Rats are below and comment on the tracks (double meaning.)
On the reverse side, Bleeckest Street is a play on Bleeker Street, a subway stop and Greenwich Village Street made famous by the Simon and Garfunkel song by that name.
Jeff and h is band are shown busking in the subway. T he names of songs on the album are on posters. The last panel shows two Native Americcans , statues from the museum come to life with beer cans in their hands. The Pigeon posters says "The Feather Underground" a play on "The Weather Underground," notorious 60s revolutionaries.
Feel free to add your insights or ask questions.
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Joined: 26 May 2009
Posts: 129

PostPosted: Sun Aug 07, 2016 3:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the elaboration! I had guessed as much, but having the detailed explanation is really cool! Translation for what the Dutch man says: "It used to be great before, and my rent was $2.01, but now everything that's cool is disappearing..." Which made me think that actually everyone is saying the same thing, but in their own language! Made me really giggle when I found that out.
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Joined: 21 Nov 2005
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2016 7:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd just like to add that the native americans are holding spray paint cans and sharpie markers, and they are both splattered with some paint... I meant it to look like they were the artists who did all the graffiti of the "lost locations" painted on the subway train... but I realized too late that the images of the stores on the sides of the train don't quite look like graffiti, the images look a bit too clean, I should have made the stores/places look more "drippy" and "painted"...
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Joined: 05 Jan 2006
Posts: 456

PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2016 3:25 pm    Post subject: native american grafitti artists Reply with quote

I thought the beer cans referred to the native Americans love of alcohol, like drunken Ira Hayes. I would never have guessed they were doing the art wark. It wasn't clear to me that it was graffitti which tends to be messy. I'm glad those images are precise. What a history of vanishing or evolving New York's East Village!
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