NYPD Shocked, Shocked To Find There's Music Going On In Here


The NYPD fun patrol has been on a real power-trip this week. Last Saturday, Brooklyn venue Coco66, a massive converted warehouse that can fit hundreds of revelers at a time (and that probably does economic wonders for the often-deserted Greenpoint backstreets where it's located) was shut down because of…well, no one really knows why exactly, or when it'll re-open. In an unintentional nod to Casablanca, the police even stormed the place mid-set. 

And a couple nights ago, Santos Party House, downtown hipster magnet and project of musician and renowned libertarian philosopher Andrew WK, was "shut down for some reason" (that reason being "drugs," according to early reports). Beloved New York independent music producer Todd Patrick, whose main stage was closed by the cops earlier this year, had a perfect 140-character take on why the NYPD's ability to arbitrarily shutter any party or music venue they want to is actually a huge problem:

WTF City of NY? We're in this economy & closing clubs is yr priority?? 

Places like Studio B, The Shank, Market Hotel, Coco66, and the Santos—all of which have been closed over the past few years—are among the few bright spots in "this economy." They provide hours of cheap entertainment, employ dozens of people, and draw New Yorkers with expendable income to parts of the city they would otherwise have little reason to visit. Live independent music was a growth industry in New York even during the recession's bleakest period: airplane hanger-sized Brooklyn Bowl opened in July of 2009, while remotely-located Gowanus venue The Bell House started hosting shows during the depression-like fall of 2008. Alt capitalism, a phenomenon explored in this 1997 Reason cover story, is alive and well in New York. But the Santos raid, which targeted a venue partially owned by a semi-celebrity, could have a chilling effect on one of the city's enduring cultural and economic highlights.

Not that this sort of thing is all that surprising in Mayor Michael Bloomberg's New York.

NEXT: About That New Police Professionalism

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  1. While I appreciate the “make an argument that might sell”, is the inverse argument here that the police should be focusing on clubs when economic times are good?

    1. Of course they should! How else are we going to get hipsters off our streets and back into their hovels

  2. We need to get Kevin Bacon involved to Fight The Power.


  3. When did New Yorkers become such pussies?

    1. Opinions differ, but certainly no later than the beginning of the Bloomberg administration. I think perhaps at the point where they weren’t getting hustled in Times Square every time they passed through. It took a layer of hardness off them to not have to fend off muggers in the subway after dark on a regular basis.

      1. It has become really retarded since Bloomberg took over, and also post 9-11. Which is why I moved out in 2002, and have no desire to move back.

      2. You’re making the mistake of conflating Manhattan(and now Brooklyn, in parts, Too!) with New York.

        Manhattan has been turned into an antiseptic playground for the super rich and their now-grown trustifarian children. The grit and grime had to go or else there would have been far too many minorities and lower middle class people to ironically confront on a T-shirt.

        The real New York still does survive, in Queens, the Bronx, and the bad parts of Brooklyn, but I fear for the city in the future.

        1. “Real” NYC is not some crime-ridden hellhole. Anyone who longs for the 80’s muggings and crime is retarded.

          Oh noes, Manhattan is expensive! So what? So is Silicon Valley.

          1. The “real” NY is also alive and well where I live in SW Brooklyn and with little of the grime and virtually none of the crime that such people long for.

          2. No, it’s not a crime ridden hell-hole. But the problem is Manhattan has priced out anyone even resembling working class. Not the worst thing in the world, to be sure, but it means that the stereotypical New Yorker, who used to be a big fat working class Italian guy (which is technically more Brooklyn than Manhattan) is now more of a hipster with Ira Glass-es.

            Basically, mostly due to crime, Manhattan had enclaves that were cheap. You could actually be a bohemian artist.

            Once crime went down, upper middle class families poured in, etc. prices went through the roof. So now, Manhattan is full of people who are trying to be very bohemian artists while living on trust and grant money, when all of the great art in New York was made by actual starving artists.

            1. And before anyone mentions it, yes, not only starving artists are great.

              It just seems that Manhattan has been invaded by middle to upper income progressives who want the government to regulate food because Michael Pollan told them to.

              Manhattan has lost the more salt of the earth types who would have smacked those people on the head when they bitched about smoking.

              1. These things go in cycles. Take crime. Homicides are up 15% this year. Before you know it, Manhattan may once again be a stinking, crime-ridden hellhole worth living in again.

  4. ‘Drugs are bad.’

  5. project of musician and renowned libertarian philosopher Andrew WK

    “All right! Andrew W.K., live in our living room!”

  6. Andrew W.K. played my school when I was in college. Fucking awesome.

    Party Party Party

    1. Too slow, you corpulent imbecile. I beat you to the ATHF reference.

      1. Fuck you, you Manowar groupie. Andrew W.K. has sweated on me, so that makes my post better than yours.

        1. Did he at least wear a condom?

          1. No way; Warty likes it bareback all the way.

            1. I did get a foul rash on my arms after that show, so maybe I should have worn a body condom like in The Naked Gun.

              1. You ask:
                what does Warty know
                of the foul rash and boned shop of the heart?
                Warty knows everything
                and that’s why he loves you.

                1. If the foul rash did not exist, Warty would have to create it.

          2. Sure he has a condom. But he would never use it on Epi!

        2. Wait a minute. Is Armin trying to take back his admission of being sweated on by Andrew W.K.? It’s OK, Armin. It makes us practically related.

  7. It has become really retarded since Bloomberg took over, and also post 9-11.

    That’s not when it started.

    I arrived in 1993(? I think), to great disappointment, having visited as a kid in the ’80s and found the city basically like it was in ’70s movies, fun and creepy. I came for that, and it was gone (except in a couple subcultures I’m not in).

    So the root pussification is pre-Giuliani. He just capitalized on it and gave it some street-fightin’ fascist flava. That did its work, and now Bloomberg is lockin’ in the Juche.

  8. Jeez, New Yorkers used to stand up for themselves when the cops tried to fuck with them at their clubs.

    Now they’ve all seemed to have turned into a bunch of metrosexual pussies.

  9. The nagging suspicion somebody, somewhere, et c.

  10. My guess is that, in the end, it will have something to do with non-union workers in the live music business somehow taking business from union clubs.

    I was at a Porcupine Tree show in NYC last month, and Steven Wilson (lead singer) reiterated over and again that they had to be off stage by 11 without exception.

    Turns out it was because of union contracts.

    What a bunch of pussies. “Oh noes!!!!!11!!! we’re not going to get the proper amount of beauty sleep if we let a band on a 1-stop special show at one of the most renown venues in the world play past 11 o’clock! I mean, too bad that the band traveled from Europe just to play this show that people came from around the country to see it, we’re union and don’t give a shit about anyone else.”

  11. was shut down because of…well, no one really knows why exactly

    WTF is wrong with you people – the NYPD shut it down because they hadn’t been properly paid off. There just isn’t a damn thing mysterious about this at all.

  12. Personally, I blame Tipper Gore…

  13. I dislike police raids in almost every instance. But if they’re harassing hipsters, I start to get dangerously close to approval.

  14. Yes, losers who can’t dress themselves / accomplish basic fitness or grooming / can’t get a date / have zero social skills / can’t keep up with culture / etc hate “hipsters.”

    1. You might be surprised at just how much hate there is in the enlightened libertarian universe.

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