Bell-Bottom Blues

Stripper Candy Love is arrested for going topless in front of City Hall in a one-person protest.

If being there once wasn’t more than enough, or if you dare take a first visit, now you can travel back to that time and place of bell-bottom follies, political rude awakenings, disco hysteria, economic depression, and related cultural upheavals: NYC in the angst-riddled 1970s.

Photographer Allan Tannenbaum’s New York of the 1970s: Soho Blues is a collection of photographs for your viewing delight. Freestyle sex, copious drugs, riotous street gangs, disco divas, political hacks, wretched homeless persons, mercurial celebrities, rebellious musicians, enterprising hookers,…and literally every other person, place and thing that went down (and often further down) during that decade are amongst the images included.

The book contains a preface written by the dilettantish Yoko Ono and a foreword by the gonzo journalist P.J. O’Rourke.

I had long thought (or, at least, hoped) that I had only imagined most of this stuff; it’s a pleasant if shocking discovery to realize that my memories are so disturbingly accurate.