Crisco Disco

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The Crisco Disco was a New York City discotheque notable in the history of modern dance, LGBT and nightclub cultures.[1] The venue was an important gay club[1] located at 15th Street and 10th Avenue in the "Meatpacking district", a neighborhood in Manhattan that runs roughly from West 14th Street south to Gansevoort Street, and from the Hudson River east to Hudson Street.[2]

It operated from the 1970s to the 1980s during the disco era, and it has been compared in importance to other NYC clubs such as Paradise Garage.[1] In 2015, Michael Musto listed Crisco Disco as one of the eight "...edgiest [NYC venues] that shall never be recaptured."[1] The club had a large DJ booth where DJs would mix records for the dancers. As a DJ booth, the club constructed a mock, giant vintage can of Crisco shortening.[1] According to Drew Sawyer, in the 1970s, cans of Crisco were "...so synonymous with gay sex [(it was used as a lubricant by gay men who engaged in fisting)] that discos and bars around the world took on the name, such as Crisco Disco in New York City, one of the premiere clubs during the 1970s and early 1980s."[3]

A 1998 book entitled Gay Macho: The Life and Death of the Homosexual Clone states that "many circuit bars, discos, and sex clubs had names that evoked sexual experience", including "Cockring, a popular nonmembership dance club".[4] Bill Brewster's history of DJ culture states that in New York City clubs such as Crisco Disco, Mineshaft and Anvil, "...dancing took second place to sex".[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Musto, Michael. "8 Forgotten Hangouts That Made NYC Special". In Paper, 02/18/15. Available online at: http://www.papermag.com/8-forgotten-hangouts-that-made-nyc-special-1427513337.html, accessed 8 March, 2016
  2. ^ McPherson, Coco (December 24, 2002). "Close-Up on: The Meatpacking District". Village Voice. Retrieved 2008-02-28.
  3. ^ Sawyer, Drew. "Crisco or how to do queer with things". Available online at: http://www.columbia.edu/~sf2220/TT2007/web-content/Pages/drew2.html
  4. ^ Levine, Martin P. Gay Macho: The Life and Death of the Homosexual Clone. NYU Press, 1998. p. 67
  5. ^ Brewster, Bill. Last Night a DJ Saved My Life: The History of the Disc Jockey. Grove Press, 2014. p. 222