Daily Archives: November 16, 2005

Hitsville U.K.

In the early 1980’s in Passaic NJ there was a New Wave club called Hitsville. The theme of the club was black and white checkerboard. I enjoyed the club. I wasn’t allowed in being underage, but I had my brother Brian’s License. I only used it to get into bars. This was before photo ID’s. Brian and I looked enough alike and were close enough in age for me to pass.

I became a member of the club which got me nothing but invitations in the mail. There were some pretty big names there in the little underground new wave/post punk scene. I saw Bauhaus, who were just too pretty and posey for my tastes, Stiff Little fingers, who thought I worked at Hitsville (and the staff at Hitsville thought I worked for the band).

The band that sticks out most in my mind were Siouxsie and the Banshees. I had seen them in 1980 on their first American date at the Palladium. I was a fan, I really enjoyed their first record. I went with Laszlo Papp and one or two of his friends. It was a great show, she was on top that night.

I figured that what people did after the show was head back to the suburbs. Boy, was I surprised.

As we walked back to the car, Laszlo said that we were going to the Mudd Club. I didn’t want to go. It was not on my list of things to do. I was pretty much straight edge in 1980. Didn’t drink much and never did drugs.

I said to Laszlo that we couldn’t go to the Mudd Club. I had to get home. ‘Tough shit. Take a subway to the Port Authority and get a bus home.’ I couldn’t believe this. I was freaking out. I was still very much a babe in the woods concerning how to get around the city. Or more likely how to get around anywhere.

But I got in the car. We drove down to White Street from the Palladium and parked around the corner. It wouldn’t be too cool to pull up in front of the club in a muscle car with Jersey Plates.

I must’ve looked like I was on a bad acid trip. I tagged along with Laszlo and wandered around while his friends hung out with the Banshees. I kept thinking about my mother being worried. I heard Kiss Kiss Kiss by Yoko Ono in the club. John and Yoko had just released it as the B-Side of the new single.

But I couldn’t get into the swing of the night. I was such a pussy. I was still very much in Lodi. Mind, body and soul. I walked around the club, not really talking to anyone, and drinking cokes. After Laszlo and his friends had enough of the Banshees and the Banshees more than likely had enough of Laszlo and his friends, we piled in the car for the drive back to New Jersey.

The sun was creepin’ up.

Laszlo dropped me off in front of my house and I tried to sneak inside. My mother, who had been up all night in the living room, stage whispered, “Where the hell have you been?”

I told her I went to the concert and then to a club. Then I went to my bed and slept. Two hours later, my mother shouted upstairs to wake me up. I said I wasn’t going to work. She said I was.