The New York Post is reporting that CBGB, the legendary downtown club that ushered in American punk rock is in danger of being priced out of its longtime haunt.
CBGB is facing the prospect of shutting down when its lease expires in August — and its annual rent could reach nearly half a million dollars.
For more than 30 years, CBGB has anchored the Bowery with its eclectic mix of live bands.
When owner Hilly Kristal opened the club in 1972, rent was a mere $600 a month for the space under a Bowery flophouse.
But now that the neighborhood has become chic — that is, pricey — Kristal's rent could reach almost $40,000 a month, twice what the Village Voice says is now $20,000.
Supporters of the club have said CBGB was a vital force in bettering the neighborhood it may now have to leave.
Punks and professors alike have jammed into the grungy CBGB to hear headliners like a wacky punk group from Forest Hills, Queens, called THE RAMONES, and THE STILETTOS, better known by their later name, BLONDIE.
Despite the astronomic rent — and an insurance tab the Voice reported at $80,000 a year — the club's management hopes to stick it out.
"We're not closing," said Lisa Kristal, Hilly's daughter. "We're trying to negotiate." Read more.
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