arts 06.4.04

Songwriters

TIN PAN ALLEY
Tin Pan Alley was the heart of the music publishing business and popular music in the early part of the last century. Located around 28th and Broadway, it is said to have gotten its name this way (though accounts vary): a songwriter, Monroe Rosenfeld, walked into Harry von Tilzer's office on 28th Street. Von Tilzer, also a songwriter, was playing the piano, but the piano had been muted. Von Tilzer explained that because there were so many composers around, residents had started requesting that they somehow keep the noise down. Von Tilzer responded by sliding newspaper beneath the strings of the piano. Rosenfeld remarked that "it sounds like a tin pan," to which von Tilzer replied, "I guess this is tin pan alley."

The music publishing business gradually moved uptown to 37th Street and then again to the Brill Building at 1619 Broadway [49th]. The Brill Building in the '60s was very much like the original Tin Pan Alley except that the offices went vertically instead of horizontally down the block. Jack Dempsey, the boxer, had his restaurant on street level for many years, but eventually the building fell into disrepair. Lorne Michaels, producer of Saturday Night Live, brought his Broadway Video company into the Brill and restored its luster.

SONGWRITERS HALL OF FAME
The Songwriters Hall of Fame hosts its 50th New Writers Showcase on Thursday, June 24th, 8pm, at the Cutting Room, 19 W. 24th [Bway/6th] 212.691.4065. For $10 and a one-drink minimum you get to hear the following National Academy of Popular Music songwriters, each performing two original songs:

Allison Cipris, Julia Darling, Emiko, David Ippolito, Brendan James, Stori James, L*A*W, Dan Lotti & Kay Story

NY SONGWRITERS' CIRCLE
You can catch the
NY Songwriters' Circle as its members periodically perform their material at the Bitter End, 147 Bleecker [Thompson/LaGuardia] 212.673.7030. Billboard called these performances "one of the best showcases for original music in New York City." The next one is Monday, June 21st at 8pm. $7.

The ARChive of Contemporary Music, 54 White [Church/Bway] is having one of their amazing sales starting tomorrow, running through 6/13, every day from 11-6. You'll find new (mostly pop and rock) CDs, LPs, cassettes, posters, and books. Most new CDs are $4.
The ARChive of Contemporary Music, 54 White [Church/Bway] is having one of their amazing sales starting tomorrow, running through 6/13, every day from 11-6. You'll find new (mostly pop and rock) CDs, LPs, cassettes, posters, and books. Most new CDs are $4.

More music from our archives:
Sondre Lerche
John Bucchino
Reflex Editions
Two Songs on the Aftermath of September 11th
A New York Soundtrack


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