Watch TV-CBGB – A Punk Sitcom From 1981

In December 1981, CBGB began to broadcast its own cable TV show

In November 1982, Billboard reviewed a CBGB-produced cable access show to “include interviews, comedy skits, and live performances”. Stuart Newman, a member of the The Roustabouts, one of the groups featured on the show – along with Idiot Savant, The Hard, Jo Marshall, Shrapnel and Sic Fucks – uploaded a YouTube video of an episode of TV-CBGB. (There could be more out there from CBGB’s Manhattan Public Access TV Show.)



The show begins with a song by All For The Love Of Rock & Roll by Tuff Darts. Then Jo Thompson (Wendy Walker) strolls through the New York club introducing us to some CBGB employees while they pose as mannequins and the club’s owner Hillel Kristal (September 23, 1931 – August 28, 2007), who famously named the place in an abbreviation of the music he planned to showcase (Country, Bluegrass, Blues and Other Music For Uplifting Gourmandizers).

Then to the sitcom – which is more of punk version of High Hefner’s Playboy After Dark – in which Hilly plays himself and others share a taste of what it’s like to work at CBGBs to a laugh track.



Ed Caraballo adds:

This was one of my first directing jobs at 19. Hilly was great to work with. He was such a kind and gentle man. Brenda Bergmen and Lisa Yapp did an awesome job. I sing some of these songs to this day, 36 years later. Ariel Lucas Produced this, and Lew Grimes Executive Produced. We had a steadicam and three cameras for the performances. Good times.

Here’s the show. Does anyone know where the rest of them are?


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