Vulture

Skip to content, or skip to search.

tube junkie

CBGB Founder Hilly Kristal Dies at 75


Hilly Kristal, founder of East Village rock club CBGB, died this morning of lung cancer at age 75. His legendary venue helped launch the careers of punk luminaries like the Ramones, Blondie, Television, and Talking Heads, though in later years it became just as famous for the unsanitary conditions of its bathrooms and Kristal's losing battle with the landlord over unpaid back rent (CBGB closed last October). The above YouTube video, shot in 1977, captures Hilly's club in its still-unfaded glory as the Ramones blaze through "Judy Is a Punk."

Update: Daily Intel has Hilly Kristal's last interview
Related: Between Punk Rock and a Hard Place [NYM]