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nyc pop!
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peas & carrots
what does a popkid do in new york city?

one of the main ways to find out what's going on in nyc, music-related or otherwise, is to read the village voice. they are now online, so check there for nyc info!

for a long time now i've been wondering if there's a way to expand this page to include upcoming shows in nyc that doesn't involve me manually typing in the listings from the voice of all of the shows. well, i've finally found an answer. check out citysearch nyc for music club listings in new york city! this area is organized by club, so to make it easier here's the names of the clubs where indiepop-type bands tend to play (or at least places where i've seen pop bands over the past few years!): acme underground, arlene grocery, bowery ballroom, brownies, the cooler, fez, irving plaza, knitting factory, luna lounge, maxwell's, mercury lounge, tramps. hope this helps!

here is a link to the site for the metropolitan transit authority, home of subway and bus maps and schedules for getting around the city. also, here's a handy tip: when you're riding the subway, uptown=north and downtown=south. here's how to not lose your direction when you get off the train and emerge from underground: when you get off the train, remember in which direction the train was going, and then you can tell which direction you're walking when you go for the exit. for example, if you're on a downtown train, and when you get off you make a left and then a right and then another right up the stairs, when you get to the street you'll be pointing west. get it? try it, it really works!

also, for the popfest in january of '97 i compiled a list of nyc hotels and hostels for those coming in from out of town. so, you might want to check it out!

P.S. PLEASE NOTE that i'm not really adding to this page much lately, so not all info will necessarily be correct. (sorry, i'm just too busy!)

buildingsnyc indiepop (-ish) record stores:

  • kim's underground, bleecker st. and laguardia st. in greenwich village: mostly new stuff, mostly cd's and 7"s although they're starting to get some vinyl. lots of indie here, so bring your cash! (this used to be my favorite record store in the city, but see below...)

  • other music, 4th st. between broadway and lafayette in greenwich village: this store is cool if only because it faces the evil corporate entity of tower! this store was started pretty recently by some people from kim's underground and has *lots* of good indie stuff, both new and used. this store is also my new favorite record store in nyc; because of the cool ex-kim's folks who work there they stock fabulous amounts of indiepop pop pop!!! also they have instore performances. and now (NEW for fall '98!) they have a website:!

  • generations records, thompson st. between bleecker and 3rd sts. in greenwich village: mostly new cd's and 7"s and used records, although they have some used cd's. lots of bootlegs (both cd and video) if that is your thing. good prices but kind of hit and miss, although the plus side is that, as my friend mike said once, since it's kind of a punker store they don't know the value of indiepop, and therefore tend to price it fairly low!

  • venus records, st. mark's st. (which is really 8th st.) between 2nd and 3rd aves. in the east village: lots of used cd's and records. can be hit and miss but you can occasionally get good things there for really cheap. has new stuff too and some zines.

  • kim's west, bleecker and west 10th sts. in the west village: not as big of a selection as kim's underground but has used stuff where kim's underground does not, but otherwise they're fairly similar.

  • there is also a newer kim's called mondo kim's on st. mark's (really 8th st.) between 3rd and 2nd aves. in the east village: it's big and really not all that impressive. not a must-miss, but not a must-see either! also they buy all sorts of cds, even the ones you're too embarassed to admit you own!

  • tower records, 4th st. and broadway in greenwich village: just like tower anywhere else - massive and huge, sometimes has good stuff, sometimes has good sales. i prefer the smaller stores though, as tower can have wicked lines and tends to be pricey when their stuff isn't on sale.

  • tower clearance outlet, 4th st, and lafayette in greenwich village: massively discounted stuff from the whole tower conglomerate: records, books and video. hit or miss but sometimes you can find a gem!

  • downstairs records, west 43rd st. in midtown: this recommendation was sent to me by will from the indiepop list, and here's what he has to say about it: "it is superb, with 7"s upon 7"s all around the store, and has lots of old guys in sitting in comfy chairs." so there you have it! i will check it out myself when i get a chance.

buildingsother fun pop places to go in nyc:

  • see hear, st. mark's st. (really 8th st.) between 1st and 2nd aves. in the east village: this has lotsa music books and 'zines. i've heard that this store is the only place in the entire country which carries single issues of the trade version of cmj, the really expensive one. definitely worth a visit.

  • alphabets, ave. a between 7th st. and st. mark's st. (really 8th st.) in the east village (also there is one on greenwich ave. (really 8th st.) west of 6th ave. in the west village, but i've never been to that one): a fun store...has mostly toys and trinkets, but notable stuff is a small section of sanrio stuff, mostly hello kitty and keroppi, as well as some fun t-shirts like a spam one and an astroboy one!

  • anime crash, 4th st. between broadway and lafayette st. in greenwich village: a japanimation store. mostly comics and videos, but some sanrio (i got my keroppi t-shirt and badtz maru wallet there!).

  • also for cool sanrio stuff and other random items, you simply must trek down to chinatown! there are some great places down there, and they usually don't mark up the prices like other places do. i don't know the names of any of the stores, but i know that there's one good one on hester st. (1 block north of canal st.) between elizabeth st. and the bowery (got my keroppi mouse pad there!), and another good one on mott st. just south of canal st. (that one has machines with sanrio and totoro trading cards right outside the store!). happy hunting!

  • love saves the day, 7th st. and 2nd ave. in the east village: some nyc trivia: this is the store in which madonna traded in her jacket for those excellent boots in the movie "desperately seeking susan!" this place has lots of "vintage" toys like star wars figures and lunchboxes, as well as some used clothes and some cool barbie postcards. overpriced but fun to look!

  • pop shop, lafayette st. between houston and prince sts. in little italy/soho: the keith haring store. lotsa fun t-shirts and stuff, all with the trademark little baby and other keith haring designs. got a wooden baby yo-yo there recently, which rules!

  • forbidden planet, corner of 13th st. and broadway in greenwich village: sci-fi/fantasy/horror books and comics and toys. pretty big, but not so great always. a crapshoot.

  • the strand, corner of 12th st. and broadway in greenwich village: this store apparently has something like 5 miles of used books! massive. definitely take your time in here.

  • tower books, corner of 4th and lafayette sts. in greenwich village: actually this is a pretty good book store. they have lots of magazines and some 'zines too, and papers from all over the world.

i hope that people find this useful! please send me mail at mas at mauraweb dot com if you think i'm missing some major fun places here!

13may96 (originally, with updates)

copyright © maura a. smale