Washington, D.C. hardcore

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"harDCore" redirects here. For the genre of hardcore punk in general, see Hardcore punk. For other uses, see Hardcore.

Washington, D.C. has had one of the first and most influential hardcore punk scenes in the United States since the early 1980s.

Among the earliest DC punk bands were the Bad Brains, Slickee Boys, Teen Idles, Minor Threat, S.O.A., Chalk Circle, Iron Cross, Velvet Monkeys, Void, The Faith, Youth Brigade, Government Issue, Untouchables, Scream, all of which formed in the late 1970s and early 1980s. In the mid-1980s during a time period quoted by some as "Revolution Summer," bands like Gray Matter, Embrace, Rites of Spring, Soulside, Three, and Rain emerged. Other DC hardcore bands from this time period are Fire Party and Dag Nasty. Aside from Black Market Baby and the few suburban punk bands that followed, the majority of the DC hardcore bands were made up of middle/upper class private school educated children of diplomats[citation needed][dubious ] and other members of the Washington establishment[clarification needed] at the time.[citation needed][examples needed] Many grew up in the Georgetown and Northwest areas of DC, where they developed a sense of social justice by witnessing its injustices[clarification needed][examples needed] first hand - they were rich kids living in a privileged world, a social elite.[dubious ][citation needed]

Dischord Records, owned and run by Jeff Nelson, drummer for Minor Threat and Ian MacKaye, the frontman for Minor Threat, and later Embrace, Fugazi and The Evens put out records by many of these bands. Due to Dischord's popularity and influence, very few D.C.-based bands who were not on Dischord have received much attention from outside of the DC metro area.

Hardcore in D.C grew a large following in the late '80s and the '90s: Swiz, Battery, Ashes, Smart Went Crazy, and Damnation A.D., with a majority of these bands releasing albums on Jade Tree Records and Art Monk Construction.

Today,[when?] the hardcore scene is still quite popular within the Capital Beltway, having produced such bands as Crispus Attucks, The Aftermath, Striking Distance, along with more recent bands like Coke Bust.

See also[edit]


  • Andersen, Mark and Mark Jenkins (2003). Dance of Days: Two Decades of Punk in the Nation's Capital. Akashic Books. ISBN 1-888451-44-0
  • Blush, Steven (2001). American Hardcore: A Tribal History. Part Two. "DC: Flex Your Head". Feral House. ISBN 0-922915-71-7

External links[edit]