L'Amour (music venue)
L'Amour was a music venue in Brooklyn, New York, run by Mike and George Parente. L'Amour opened as a disco club in 1978, transformed into a rock club in 1981 and closed in February 2004. It was promoted as the "Rock Capitol of Brooklyn". Commonly pronounced "La-Morz" by patrons, the venue hosted many of hard rock and heavy metal's biggest artists, including Iron Maiden, Kiss, Megadeth and Metallica, as well as frequently featuring underground bands from across the country and across the globe. The original L'Amour in Brooklyn remained a relevant part of the rock-metal scene for almost 25 years.
Some notable acts that performed at the venue included: Accept, Amorphis, Anthrax, Anvil, Blue Öyster Cult (under their original name Soft White Underbelly), Cannibal Corpse, Carnivore, Cheap Trick, Corrosion of Conformity, Covenant, Cro-Mags, Dirty Rotten Imbeciles, Dream Theater, Entombed, Exodus, Faith No More, Fates Warning, Ace Frehley, Godflesh, Guns N' Roses, Hatebreed, Immolation, In Flames, Iron Maiden (performing as Charlotte and the Harlots), Jane's Addiction, King Diamond, Kiss, Kix, Krokus, Lacuna Coil, L.A. Guns, Lillian Axe, Yngwie J. Malmsteen, Manowar, Steve Marriott, Megadeth, Metallica, Moonspell, Motörhead, Murphy's Law, Nightwish, Nuclear Assault, Opeth, Overkill, the Joe Perry Project, Poison, Queensrÿche, Quiet Riot, the Ramones, Raven, Saigon Kick, Savatage, Saxon, Sepultura, Slayer, Soundgarden, Stryper, Testament, Toxik, Trouble, Robin Trower, T.T. Quick, Twisted Sister, Type O Negative, Venom, Vinnie Vincent Invasion, Voivod, W.A.S.P., Whiplash, White Lion and Zebra.
L'Amour spawned two spinoff rock clubs in the mid-1980s: L'Amour East in Queens and L'Amour Far East on Long Island.
L'Amour East, located on Queens Boulevard in Elmhurst, Queens, existed for several years (circa 1983–1988), riding the coattails of the Brooklyn club's fame. The Queens club not only showcased rock performers and some of the top glam metal bands of the era, but as a dance club, also hosted many freestyle music acts.
L'Amour Far East, situated in Commack on Long Island, folded soon after its 1987 opening.
The historic Paramount Theatre in Staten Island, which opened as a cinema in 1930, was converted to a rock venue in 1980, operated by the owners of L'Amour. The club enjoyed success for several years, hosting bands like Venom, Metallica, the Rods and Vandenberg during 1982 and 1983. When the Paramount closed after several years, the owners opened L'Amour East.
- Alex Kayne is considered L'Amour's most popular and influential DJ. The Brooklyn native came to L'Amour in 1979 as a regular, began as resident DJ there from 1980 to 1985, and subsequently deejayed there on and off until the venue closed. He was the venue's original metal DJ, its first VJ, and its longest resident DJ. Kayne also worked at L'Amour East, and was the only resident DJ at the Staten Island L'Amour. Noting his influence, Metal Hammer said that Kayne "played a big part in breaking American and European metal bands". Kayne continues working the U.S. club and concert venue scene.
- Chuck Kaye, a local metal DJ from Staten Island, was known as the "Roar of L'Amour". Kaye was the house DJ at L'Amour from 1985 to 1988. As Jagger Kaye, he is now an acting coach.
- Joseph Galgano, known as JoRoxstaar, was the first DJ for L'Amour East in Queens from its opening, after being taught how to spin by Kayne at L'Amour in Brooklyn. Galgano later went on to DJ at the Cat Club in Manhattan, handing the DJing gig at L'Amour East to Alex Rude, who spun for about one year, followed by DJ Taso.
- Michel Gutman was L'Amour Far East's only DJ (after the opening night, when WBAB's Fingers hosted the show), spinning a mixture of all types of metal and hard rock.
Impact on NYHC
In its later life, L'Amour gave rise to many of the most promising acts in the hardcore scene, including Agnostic Front, Biohazard, Candiria, Full Blown Chaos, Madball, Most Precious Blood, Pro-Pain, Sick of it All and Sworn Enemy.
L'Amour in print: L'Amour: Rock Capital of Brooklyn
Longtime L'Amour DJ Alex Kayne recalled the tales of his time at L'Amour and documented the history of the club in an as-yet unpublished book, L'Amour: Rock Capital of Brooklyn, including interviews, photos and fan materials.
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