Photos: Punk Rock Exhibit at Arlington Central Library

by ARLnow.com April 4, 2012 at 12:24 pm 6,426 30 Comments

Arlington Central Library is hosting an exhibit of posters and memorabilia from the D.C. area punk rock scene of the 1970s, 80s and 90s.

The exhibit was curated from the personal collection of a library employee who “in true punk fashion… wants to keep a low profile,” according to library spokesman Peter Golkin. The employee, who works in the library materials department, was a “very active participant in the scene at the time.”

“[He] put out some records on his label, designed some of the posters and is friends with some of the more well-known names like the guys in Fugazi,” Golkin said.

In a blog post, Golkin noted that Arlington played a key role in the region’s vibrant punk rock scene.

“Arlington County was a well-known base of operations for many of the musicians and music labels that created a straightforward Mid-Atlantic sound best known through now-legendary bands like Slickee Boys, Minor Threat, Government Issue and later Fugazi,” he wrote.

The exhibit, which is still in the process of being built, is located near the center of the second floor of Arlington Central Library (1015 N. Quincy Street).

Central Library will also be hosting a pair of punk-related events this month. At 7:00 p.m. on April 18, the library will be screening a documentary about Fugazi, called “Instrument — Ten Years with the Band Fugazi.” On April 26 at 7:00 p.m., author Jennifer Egan will be speaking about her Pulitzer Prize-winning novel “A Visit from the Goon Squad,” which recounts the 1970s San Francisco punk scene.

  • nunya


    • Clarendon

      Bad Brains !

    • MC 703

      Minor Threat!

    • MC 703

      The great documentary ‘American Hardcore’ gives DC some props too.

  • Corey

    In before the haters – this is actually really, very cool. A lot of younger folks, especially, don’t know that the area had a very well-developed punk scene.

    • Clarendon

      Who can hate DC hardcore ? It’s one of the few actual American cultural influences that had a major component here. I have the “Instrument” DVD and it’s very nice. Especially if you had been to any of the shows and love the old venues. Cynthia Connolly compiled a great photo collection in the book “Banned in DC”.

  • 22207

    That was the original 9:30 Club, for all the recent transplants.

    • Julio

      Loved that place. I used to watch Metal acts there and at The Bayou in Georgetown.

  • Josh

    So open yet or not?

    • Public Information, Arlington Public Library

      Open. The last panels were installed today. Thanks for asking and hope we see you for the exhibit, the Fugazi film on April 18 and for Jennifer Egan on April 26. Those who were there say she definitely captured the S.F. punk scene.

  • Steamboat Willie

    Agree that this is very cool. I’m not a big punk aficionado, but I really respect its significance and artistic importance. Kudos to Central Library – another reminder of how great we have it here in Arlington.

  • Arlingtonian

    This is awesome. I’m going to have to check it out with a few relatives – one was a big participant in the scene back in the day and has some mementos of her own.

  • x

    Arlington is cool.

    • DL


  • Stitch_Jones

    Love Arlington and love these bands.

    That said – there is nothing less punk rock than Arlington as it currently exists.

    • Geezer

      except outside of the 7-11 at 4 in the morning

  • FrenchyB

    Nice. Did anyone else here hit the Saturday afternoon all-ages shows at the Safari Club in the 80s?

  • drax

    This party sucks!

    • FrenchyB


  • DarkHeart

    Central Library is cool.

  • JimPB

    ARLCo library scores again with its unbounded innovativeness.

  • 9353

    These guys used to play 930 all the time back in the early 1980s. I wonder what ever happened them.


    • Elderly Fan

      Bruce & Vance are still around. Dan lives in Brooklyn and Jason lives in the SF Bay area.

      • Bruce and Vance have put the finishing touches on a NEW 9353 album, which is currently being mixed. I heard the rough mixes, and IT IS AWESOME. Keep a look-out, kids!

  • DarkHeart

    “The employee, who works in the library materials department, was a ‘very active participant in the scene at the time.'”

    There is the guy who works at Central that looks a little like Geddy Lee.

  • demonfafa

    Oh hells yes.

    This is my first stop before classes @ Mason tomorrow.

  • John


  • Paul

    Those were the good ‘ol days.

    The Slickee Boys still rockin’ today!

    9353: New album in the works…..

    Lotsa great times!

  • U ROY

    I want that photo of VOID for my living room.

  • Wiz Garber

    this has come up before. back in the day i recall at the Wammies the Slickees were nominated for best hardcore punk act. to my knowledge i don’t think even the Slickees themselves would call themselves punk, letalone hardcore. yes they played at the club. and this is not to say that i don’t enjoy them, but i don’t think we can say that the Slickees are a D.C. punk act. what are they? i’d call ’em a new age surf party band.


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