Life and Death on the New York Dance Floor, 1980-1983
Tim Lawrence is Professor of Cultural Studies at the University of East London and the author of Love Saves the Day: A History of American Dance Music Culture, 1970–1979 and Hold On to Your Dreams: Arthur Russell and the Downtown Music Scene, 1973–1992, both also published by Duke University Press.
1982: Dance Culture Seizes the City
The live music scene fractured as smaller venues complained that they were being bullied by larger spots such as the Ritz and the Peppermint Lounge. An air of decline hung over the Mudd Club while Club 57 slipped into a somewhat darker, more chaotic rhythm. These developments were overshadowed by the reopening of Danceteria on 21st Street. The venue retained its multifloor entertainment trajectory but within months Rudolf Piper and manager John Argento forced out Jim Fouratt, claiming he was too difficult to work with. A legal dispute ensued while Ruth Polsky took on the role of hiring live bands.