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The Bitter End

The Bitter End holds the prestigious claim to New York's longest running rock club, a beacon of the West Village's golden age. During the early 1960s the club hosted folk music "hootenanies" every Tuesday night. When it opened in 1961, it was known as "The Other End" and that was how Bob Dylan knew it when he visited the club on October 22, 1975. He had come to see David Blue, the folk singer and actor. Bob Dylan had been inspired to reenter live performance after seeing the Rolling Stones play...

The Bitter End holds the prestigious claim to New York's longest running rock club, a beacon of the West Village's golden age. During the early 1960s the club hosted folk music "hootenanies" every Tuesday night. When it opened in 1961, it was known as "The Other End" and that was how Bob Dylan knew it when he visited the club on October 22, 1975. He had come to see David Blue, the folk singer and actor. Bob Dylan had been inspired to reenter live performance after seeing the Rolling Stones play at Madison Square Garden earlier that year and at the end of Blue’s Show, he took the stage along side a new friend he had met in the audience named Ronnee Blakley. Dylan invited both her and David Blue to join his upcoming tour called Rolling Thunder Revue. Though the Rolling Stones had been a crucial inspiration, Dylan's tour differed in its folk spirit. His friend and manager, Lou Kemp, said that Dylan "would go out at night and run into people, and we'd just invite them to come with us. We started out with a relatively small group of musicians and support people, and we ended up with a caravan."

The Bitter End's history as a venue extends even further. Before it hosted rock musicians, it was a popular comedy club of the 1950s. The poet/comedian Hugh Romney, who later became known as Wavy Gravy, read there before becoming a political activist with a clown persona.

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Address:
147 Bleecker Street
New York, NY 10012
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masmith
September 21, 2010
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