Black Label Bike Club

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Attendees of Black Label Bicycle Club's annual event Bike Kill participate in the chicken race

The Black Label Bike Club (BLBC) is an international freak/mutant bicycle organization specializing in tall bikes and choppers.[1]


BLBC was founded in 1992 as the country’s first "outlaw bike club" by Jacob Houle and Per Hanson as the "Hard Times Bike Club" in Minneapolis, Minnesota.[2][3] Inspired by Victorians who used tall bikes, called Lamplighters, to light the street lamps, BLBC is credited as the originators of tall bike jousting, and one of the main contributors to the rise of the tall bike culture.[3][4][5] It has since grown to include chapters in New York City,[6] Reno, Nevada, Austin, Texas, Oakland, California, Stockholm and Malmö, Sweden, New Orleans, Louisiana and a nomad chapter known as "Nowhere."


The New York chapter was featured in a full-length film, B.I.K.E. produced by Fountainhead Films in 2006.[7] The film was directed by Anthony Howard and Jacob Septimus who spent over two years following the club by going to their parties in New York and Minneapolis, as well as the protests of the 2004 Republican National Convention.[8]

In 2018, photographer Julie Glassberg published a photography book documenting the Black Label Bike Club's New York chapter. The book is named after BLBC's annual event, Bike Kill.[9]


  1. ^ Tucker, Karen Iris (March 14, 2006). "Mutant Bike Gangs of New York". Village Voice.
  2. ^ Avidor, Ken (March 7, 2006). "Who rides the tall bikes?". Twin Cities Daily Planet. Retrieved 1 October 2010.
  3. ^ a b Feuer, Alan (2011-07-16). "At Black Label's Bike Kill, 'Freedom Via Mayhem'". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2015-10-29.
  4. ^ "One more ride Sotheby's to hold 3rd motorcycle auction as it scales back Chicago operation". tribunedigital-chicagotribune. Retrieved 2015-10-29.
  5. ^ Weyland, Jocko. "Unstoppable". The New York Times. April 29, 2007
  6. ^ Gross, Matt (May 21, 2005). "Rough Riders". New York Magazine. Retrieved 1 October 2010.
  7. ^ "B.I.K.E." 2006.
  8. ^ "B.I.K.E."
  9. ^ Glassberg, Julie (2018). Bike kill. Ceiba editions. ISBN 9788894196061.

External links[edit]

  • Photo Essay in Chief Magazine of the group's annual Bike Kill event, featuring video of "bike jousting"