"The Twist was a form of therapy for a convalescing nation."
October 5, 2014 5:03 PM   Subscribe

Music historian/nerd Neil Transpontine's blog "History is made at night" covers the "politics of dancing and musicking" -- from the riots at Lou Reed's concerts in Italy in 1975, demonstrations against the "anti-rave" Criminal Justice & Public Order Act of 1994 (UK) to present-day protests in New Orleans against a proposed noise ordinance.

Though Transpontine is UK-based, he also includes fascinating tidbits from the American experience of race & music, including the Octoroon Balls and Eldridge Cleaver on the rise of black music in white America. (The blog's previous MeFi appearances: Argentine floggers, the 1981 Brixton riots, and Zazous)
posted by spamandkimchi (7 comments total) 16 users marked this as a favorite
I'd ask you to twist again like we did last summer, but then we've only just met.
posted by angerbot at 5:55 PM on October 5, 2014

I never thought twice about 'The Twist', but to me 'Let's Twist Again' is a great melancholy song, basically a remake of the original, but completely nostalgic and centered around a sad longing. "Do you remember when things were really hummin'?... Come on let's twist again...".
posted by SafetyPirate at 6:04 PM on October 5, 2014 [1 favorite]

Anyone know what's the current status of the anti-noise statute in NOLA? Cause that's a serious bummer, if they're gonna enforce that for real.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:04 PM on October 5, 2014

Great great stuff on this blog.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 8:43 PM on October 5, 2014

I was at the 1994 Hyde Park CJA gig 20 years ago. It all started off relatively well, with some nice sound systems and pleasant low-key dancing through the day, but there were an increasing number of mounted cop charges through the park throughout the day that really spoiled the mood. The irony is when a few police lines tried some version of a proto-kettle, the squeezed mob broke through and while most of them went to trash Oxford Street, quite a few ended up on the Downing Street gates, yanking them back and forth with a nice beat in the background. I got to climb up on the gates to pose for a photo, which was a treat. There are some representative scenes from the 1994 CJA gig excerpted at the the start of Human Traffic.
posted by meehawl at 9:33 PM on October 5, 2014

One thing that always deeply upsets me about noise ordinances: it seems as if churches are allowed to violate them at will. Not everyone sleeps 'normal' hours so a loud bell going off at 9am every Sunday (that can be heard for *blocks*) always upsets me.

If I were to play music that could be heard for blocks, I'd be shut down real quick like, but churches are always allowed to blast their awful summoning of followers.
posted by el io at 9:44 PM on October 5, 2014

Anyone know what's the current status of the anti-noise statute in NOLA? Cause that's a serious bummer, if they're gonna enforce that for real.

Looks like it didn't pass (Best of New Orleans.com, "Autopsy of the noise ordinance")
On May 7, City Attorney Sharonda Williams announced that the city cannot and will not enforce the curfew, though it — along with the nearly 60-year-old, unenforceable noise ordinance — remains on the books.
The article is pretty interesting, if you want to get more into local politics.
posted by filthy light thief at 9:57 AM on October 6, 2014

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