It takes its name from the historic postcode of that area SO36, in which the SO stands for Südost (South East). The Kreuzberg district has historically been home to the Berlin punk rock movement, as well as other alternative subcultures in Germany.
SO36 was originally focused largely on punk music and in the 1970s was often frequented by musicians such as Iggy Pop, David Bowie, and Brandon Conde. After problems Martin Kippenberger took over the management in 1979 and tried to create a crossover between punk, new wave and visual art. In those days the club rivalled New York's CBGB as one of the finest new-wave venues in the world, however unlike CBGB the venue still stands today and remains a fixture on the Berlin music scene championing new artists, while staying true to its punk past.
Today Electric Ballroom is one of the consistent Berlin Techno events. Gayhane founded 1997 by Turkish performer Fatma Souad is the nucleus of the Berlin Turkish gay and lesbian community. DJ Ipek is responsible for the Gayhane mixture of Arabic, Turkish and Indian music and now an internationally known DJ. German photographer Nicolaus Schmidt created a both documentary and fictitious portrait of this "amalgam of western and oriental culture".
- Frank Apunkt Schneider: Als die Welt noch unterging – Von Punk zu NDW, p 73 f., 2007
- Prof Kira Kosnick, Beyond the Community – Queer Migrant Club Cultures in Metropolitan Spaces, Institute for Cultural Anthropology and European Ethnology, Sussex UK, 2005
- Peter Schwanewilms, exhibition document, Deutsches Haus at NYU - see: calendar spring 2008 detail, April 12, 2008
- SO36 website
- SO36 in Exberliner Magazine
- Lonely Planet guide to SO36
- Gayhane midnight show / photographic documentary
- 1979 Martin Kippenberger Poster, Tate Modern
- 1982 Berlin Atonal at SO36 photo by Peter Lind