Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Café Fifties, Montreal 1983, 1984 Photo: SHAKIN' PYRAMIDS, locals

LOST? GO to the COMPLETE PUNKS & PROVOCATEURS BLOG INDEX which lists BANDS and SUBJECTS on this site BY NAME with DIRECT LINKS.

The Cafe Fifties was a great little after-hours on St.Denis Street, where we'd hang out after shows. A friend in a Montreal rockabilly band, The SNEAKERS, introduced me to it in '83.

Everything runs late in Montreal. People don't leave the house to go out before 11pm. Bars close at 3am- THEN we'd scout for after hours. As I'd make it home to bed, the morning shift at the St.Laurent bakery would be finishing their first batch of sticky buns- the aroma would come wafting into my space 3 doors down. We'd tell the time by a schedule of pastries and breads being baked. I miss that place.

The guy in the photo with the cane was a regular on the scene- very distinctive! Like a lot of people I knew, I don't recall sharing a conversation beyond "salut, ca va bien…", but it was all very amiable. This photo was taken post GBH (at Cargo- see earlier entry) on April 2, 1984.
café fifties1984

Funny thing about this photo- I realized 21 years later while finally enlarging it, that the guy in the background who kissing a girl while on rollerskates, is Erick- the same man I ended up living with a year later! At the time of this photo we hadn't yet met (and when we did, I was by coincidence on rollerskates!) , though I'd apparently already photographed him!

The SNEAKERS opened for a Scottish band called "The SHAKIN' PYRAMIDS" in ‘83 . The venue wouldn’t let me shoot the main act, but we brought them back with us post gig. I photographed them hanging out in the Café Fifties.
The SHAKIN' PYRAMIDS

Visit my INDYFOTO music site for more
SHAKIN' PYRAMIDS photos !

café fifties1988
Bartender at Café Fifties, 1988

MEN WITHOUT HATS

The amazing Ivan of MEN WITHOUT HATS at the Spectrum in 1983. You’ll remember him for, "Safety Dance" . BOYS BRIGADE opened for them- Wayne Lorenz, formerly of the 70s Toronto punk group ANDROIDS, was playing bass.

Peace March 1983
I went to a lot of peace rallies (and still do). In 1980 I'd visited Central and South America and subsequently got involved in actions to oppose the vicious juntas in Central America and oppose US interference in countries such as Nicaragua and El Salvador. Bands such as NO POLICY, seen above, also participated. It generally isn't a problem to get punks to shout loudly about something, though sometimes I questioned whether they understood the actual issues involved. For instance, during the 1985 Quebec City demo against Reagan's visit, the above band was scheduled to play a concert in a local church "following" the protest. It however emerged that the CSN had arranged that the legal protest would expire before Reagan even arrived on site. In effect, undermining our attempt to offer him a noisy greeting. I tried to convince a member of NP to ask the protesters to remain on site for the now illegal demo, to wait for Reagan's arrival. NP would obviously have some sway with their fan base, but he refused, saying that he really wanted the protesters to attend NO POLICY'S gig. He then turned and left for the church with his punk audience in tow. I thought after this, hmmm, appropriate name for the band...

I don't have any photos of NO POLICY performing, but did photograph their one female member, Rebecca Tucker (a great girl with lots of personality!) , at the DK show in April 1985. It is on the NO POLICY Indyfoto site as well as other shots of the band!





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About Me

My photo
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Linda Dawn Hammond,MFA, AKA Dawn One, is a photographer and journalist. As a teenager in 1976, she began covering music events for various magazines. During the late 70s she became involved in punk, documenting an insider's perspective of the music, political and social scenes in Montreal, Toronto, NYC, the UK and Europe, included in this blog as photographs and commentary. Linda Dawn Hammond continues to work as a photojournalist, specializing in music, art and politics. As a fine arts photographer, she has exhibited in galleries been and published widely.