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Thread: 1990's Prog Nights on Bleecker Street

  1. #1
    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    1990's Prog Nights on Bleecker Street

    Anyone here go to any of those Prog Nights at the Rock 'n' Roll Cafe on Bleecker Street in Greenwich Village in the 90's? They were organized by "The Professor of Prog," Robert Wolf. (Robert may lurk here, BTW, so let's keep it civil). I know some of you at least knew of them. I actually remember posting notices about them on rec.music.progressive! I feel pretty sure I spoke with 3rDegree Robert at at least one of the shows, but Robert's always been around at NYC shows so I'm not positive. Also, Sebastian from Braindance lived around the corner, so he was at some. We became pretty friendly.

    I saw some good shows there, although I can't remember too many. Ars Nova from Japan played. Deus ex Machina was supposed to play but they were missing a keyboard or something. Salem Hill, the Tull Tribute band gone original. I think Boud Deun. I can't remember if Braindance played there in one of those shows but I might have seen them there. Also a guy who played solo keyboard music and had released a CD - I can't remember his name and sadly he's no longer with us.

    It was a fun scene, and also sort of magical that it happened at all. I always thought there should have been more of that stuff going on in NYC but at the time it wasn't an easy undertaking, I think. Now of course there are lots of shows I should go to in NYC but don't manage to. I go to the shows that life and logistics allow. But this was before I had kids and I could leave my wife home alone without too much of a guilty conscience. I took her to one of these - I don't think she was too enthused. Good times
    "Of course you are allowed to trumpet your profound ignorance by disagreeing with me." -- Facelift

  2. #2
    Yes, sir! I, of course, remember the Prog Nights, considering we (Myriad) performed with Boud Deun, and Louis Mastro (R.I.P.). Lou opened that night, then Boud Deun performed (because, if memory serves me well, they traveled all the way up from Virginia), and we had headlined. I used to attend many a night, back in the day. Fun times. I used to sit with Jim Pitulski (Ex-Dream Theater manager), Jens Johansson (Keyboardist extraordinaire), and several others. Bob Wolf is a great guy.

    Ed
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    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    I do remember Myriad, and I might remember you too, or someone from your band. Embarrassingly, whoever it was from Myriad I remember, I've sometimes had sort of confused with Robert from 3rDegree - only because both were very friendly, and maybe looked a bit alike? And it was a long time ago!

    There was another band that had some sort of Marillion related name I think, who played there, and they briefly were using the name Mistress Quickly - I always liked that name.

    I think I remember Jim Pitulski being around, but again I was never sure exactly which guy he was. Was he the manager for the band that opened for Fish on his first solo US tour? I can't remember that band's name either.

    It's all lost in the fog of time! Certain things from all this I remember well, but some of it is hazy.

    But I didn't ever know that Jens Johansson was there - that's cool!! Come to think of it, I remember that Mastermind opened for Fish on that tour (I know Bill Berends pretty well - now I'm thinking there was ANOTHER opening act at the same show and that's the one whose name I can't remember. Cat something or other?), so maybe Jim Pitulski was also Mastermind's manager? And since Jens Johansson worked with Mastermind, maybe that's the connection.

    Or did I dream it...?
    "Of course you are allowed to trumpet your profound ignorance by disagreeing with me." -- Facelift

  4. #4
    Not sure about the guy named Robert from 3rDegree. I would have to look at his picture to see. I am familiar with their name, however.

    Not sure about Mistress Quickly. Cool name, though.

    Not sure if Jim was the manager for the band who had opened for Fish. We did speak about a lot of things progressive, at that time.

    I'm sure you didn't dream it. After all, you seem to remember enough from that time.

    Ed
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  5. #5
    I played there; I think it would have been 1996. Solo keyboards, opening for a band that I canít remember. I think I have a flyer somewhere for the show. Iíll see if I can find it tomorrow.

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    Member paythesnuka's Avatar
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    I have fond memories of the NYC Prog Nights. In fact, it has connections to my wedding. I met my friend Andres (a contributor here, but I forget his PE name) at the very first one, IIRC. I think I was also at the Boud Deun/Myriad/Mastro show before I knew Myried (I might have even ducked out before Myriad played. D'oh.). Both Andres and Myried (Hi Eddie!) were at my wedding!

    The NYC Prog shows were also where I first met Rob from 3rdDegree and Bill and Rich from Mastermind. I remember the Conn.-based Soundscape also played a Prog Night. Braindance, I am pretty sure, played a Prog Night; if not, I saw them somewhere else because Sebastian Elliott was always handing out flyers or postcards at the shows.

    I'm also pretty sure all of the bands signed to Bob Wolff's label played a Prog Night or two.

    Fun times.
    "It's such a fine line between stupid and... clever" -- David St. Hubbins & Derek Smalls, Spinal Tap

  7. #7
    Yes of course I was there Jared, silly question this is where I met Adam. Ars Nova from Japan was granted an encore. I saw crucible in one of the showcases. The other band I remember is magus vaguely. Good times watching bob Wolfe trying to eat popcorn during the sets.

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    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by paythesnuka View Post
    I have fond memories of the NYC Prog Nights. In fact, it has connections to my wedding. I met my friend Andres (a contributor here, but I forget his PE name) at the very first one, IIRC. I think I was also at the Boud Deun/Myriad/Mastro show before I knew Myried (I might have even ducked out before Myriad played. D'oh.). Both Andres and Myried (Hi Eddie!) were at my wedding!

    The NYC Prog shows were also where I first met Rob from 3rdDegree and Bill and Rich from Mastermind. I remember the Conn.-based Soundscape also played a Prog Night. Braindance, I am pretty sure, played a Prog Night; if not, I saw them somewhere else because Sebastian Elliott was always handing out flyers or postcards at the shows.

    I'm also pretty sure all of the bands signed to Bob Wolff's label played a Prog Night or two.

    Fun times.
    Andres is a good dude.
    "If you want to see the true nature of humanity, just look at the internet."

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    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AMP2112 View Post
    The other band I remember is magus vaguely. Good times watching bob Wolfe trying to eat popcorn during the sets.
    I was trying to remember the name of Magus - I remember buying the first CD at one of the shows, but wasn't Magus PE member the winter tree, and wasn't it a one-man project? But maybe he had a band together for this, or I'm just incorrect.
    "Of course you are allowed to trumpet your profound ignorance by disagreeing with me." -- Facelift

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    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    Magus is now The Winter Tree, you are correct.

  11. #11
    Andrew Robinsonís band Magus before winter tree. The time traveler album was good I remember buying that. I think Andrew practiced blood on the rooftops before his gig. Good times indeed.

  12. #12
    Went to a prog night in 1996. May have been one of the last. Iluvatar played after the Children album came out. Probably went with paythesnuka.

    Don't remember any other bands playing that night. Great show.

    Andy

  13. #13
    Iím really sorry I missed that one.

  14. #14
    The venue is now called wicked willieís a pirate themed dive bar. Which is a little sad. I did see strawberry fields with my ex girlfriend around the time of the prog shows.

  15. #15
    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AMP2112 View Post
    The venue is now called wicked willie’s a pirate themed dive bar. Which is a little sad. I did see strawberry fields with my ex girlfriend around the time of the prog shows.
    I haven't been on Bleecker Street in quite a while. Last time was to see a show at Le Poisson Rouge, either Magma or Bush Tetras.
    "Of course you are allowed to trumpet your profound ignorance by disagreeing with me." -- Facelift

  16. #16
    We in Grey Lady Down played on Bleecker Street with Tristan Park under Bob Wolf's wing in November 1996, although I'm certain the venue was actually Kenny's Castaways...

  17. #17
    I was at the magma show on April 1. Great show

  18. #18
    The rock n roll cafe has that narrow corridor for moving equipment in and out. It was also a few step walk down. You can imagine the chaos of moving prog items in and out between sets.

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    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Obarmoth View Post
    We in Grey Lady Down played on Bleecker Street with Tristan Park under Bob Wolf's wing in November 1996, although I'm certain the venue was actually Kenny's Castaways...
    Wow, I don't know how I missed that, because I was (and am!) a GLD fan. I must have been away or something. I don't remember any of Robert Wolf's shows being at Kenny's, but it could be. Now that I think about it, RnR Cafe and Kenny's Castaway were sort of like mirror images of each other. But as AMP2112 mentions about, RnR had those steps down into the venue, which you'd probably remember if you'd had to lug your gear down there.
    "Of course you are allowed to trumpet your profound ignorance by disagreeing with me." -- Facelift

  20. #20
    Kennyís castaways was where Steve Rothery from marillion, did a promo concert for the release of the album somewhere else. Kennyís had an upper floor where you can look down at the band.

  21. #21
    sourdough advocate
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    Quote Originally Posted by JKL2000 View Post
    I do remember Myriad, and I might remember you too, or someone from your band. Embarrassingly, whoever it was from Myriad I remember, I've sometimes had sort of confused with Robert from 3rDegree - only because both were very friendly, and maybe looked a bit alike? And it was a long time ago!

    There was another band that had some sort of Marillion related name I think, who played there, and they briefly were using the name Mistress Quickly - I always liked that name.

    I think I remember Jim Pitulski being around, but again I was never sure exactly which guy he was. Was he the manager for the band that opened for Fish on his first solo US tour? I can't remember that band's name either.

    It's all lost in the fog of time! Certain things from all this I remember well, but some of it is hazy.

    But I didn't ever know that Jens Johansson was there - that's cool!! Come to think of it, I remember that Mastermind opened for Fish on that tour (I know Bill Berends pretty well - now I'm thinking there was ANOTHER opening act at the same show and that's the one whose name I can't remember. Cat something or other?), so maybe Jim Pitulski was also Mastermind's manager? And since Jens Johansson worked with Mastermind, maybe that's the connection.

    Or did I dream it...?
    You didn't dream it. The other band was called E-motive. I think Jay Taussig sang for them. They opened for Fish at Trammps and Club Bene down in Jersey. I don't remember if Mastermind was at either of those shows, but they were at Danbury and Poughkeepsie. I remember speaking with Bill Berends and his bandmates for awhile after buying a couple of their CDs.

    I remember both the RnR Cafe and Kenny's being hubs for good music back then (not just prog). The Bottom Line was only a few blocks away too. The first time I saw Hackett solo was there.

    Great memories! Thanks for stirring them up!
    When in doubt....

  22. #22
    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AMP2112 View Post
    Kenny’s castaways was where Steve Rothery from marillion, did a promo concert for the release of the album somewhere else. Kenny’s had an upper floor where you can look down at the band.
    I actually think that was somewhere other than Kenny's Castaway. We need Adam's help on this!
    "Of course you are allowed to trumpet your profound ignorance by disagreeing with me." -- Facelift

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    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Johnkil View Post
    You didn't dream it. The other band was called E-motive. I think Jay Taussig sang for them. They opened for Fish at Trammps and Club Bene down in Jersey. I don't remember if Mastermind was at either of those shows, but they were at Danbury and Poughkeepsie. I remember speaking with Bill Berends and his bandmates for awhile after buying a couple of their CDs.

    I remember both the RnR Cafe and Kenny's being hubs for good music back then (not just prog). The Bottom Line was only a few blocks away too. The first time I saw Hackett solo was there.

    Great memories! Thanks for stirring them up!
    The show I was remembering where Mastermind and E-motive opened for Fish was in Philly at the Theater of Living Arts. They probably didn't open for him at Trammp's or I'd have been there for their performance. I either skipped E-motive at Trammp's or was busy chatting with people.
    "Of course you are allowed to trumpet your profound ignorance by disagreeing with me." -- Facelift

  24. #24
    That was the marbles pre launch get together at an Irish pub on first avenue and 16th street. It was snowing that day and a lot of fans traveling to the listening party missed out.

  25. #25
    Member paythesnuka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JKL2000 View Post
    I actually think that was somewhere other than Kenny's Castaway. We need Adam's help on this!
    I remember an in-store at Tower Records, a listening party for "Radiation" (IIRC) with Rothery and Trewavas, and a small concert with Rothery at a venue close to the World Trade Center. I'm positive you were at the last one, Jed.

    None of those were at Kenny's. There may have been one at Kenny's that I missed though.

    I also remember that Grey Lady Down concert. What a great show from a somewhat forgotten band.
    "It's such a fine line between stupid and... clever" -- David St. Hubbins & Derek Smalls, Spinal Tap

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