On Friday night, I read that the White Stripes were going to play a “secret show” at Irving Plaza in NYC on Tuesday the 19th. Even though I had all the albums, I just never got around to seeing them live. Now, on the verge of the release of Icky Thump, they’re a huge act scheduled to play Madison Square Garden in July.
The chance to see them in a small club might not come again. All I had to do was get a ticket.
To prevent scalpers, tickets were only on sale at the box office the next day, starting at 10 am. Cash only. Two ticket maximum. $30. Which means if I got there at 8, the line would already be around the block, and I’d never get a ticket.
I’ve been to CBGBs plenty of times. Hell, I’ve even played there three times. The place hasn’t been attracting big name bands for years, but since they lost their lease all the bands that cut their teeth at the club have been coming out in droves to show their love and respect for Hilly Krystal and the little club he opened 33 years ago.
Tickets for this last show sold out in 8 minutes on October 1, and I didn’t have one. I figured I’d stay home and listen to the live satellite radio broadcast and enjoy it that way, but this past week as the end came closer I thought I should go and attempt to bullshit my way into the show.
I got to CBGBs on Sunday at five o’clock pm and there were 30 people in line already. Doors were scheduled to open at 8. There were dozens of news trucks, camera crews and press in front of the club. Patti arrived around 6 and everyone broke into applause. I didn’t know she was so tiny. She came out a while later taking photos of the front of the club as the press swarmed around her and she answered their questions. It seemed everyone has a camera these days and wanted their picture taken in front of the club. I did it too.