George Brossard and I drove out to L’Amour where we parked on a deserted street.
“George, where we going?”
“Don’t worry Red, just follow me.”
I walked behind George down a dark street filled with auto repair shops. Up ahead I saw a long line of people. I also heard some music being played. The closer we got, the more I realized we were going to a club.
“Yo George, what kind of place is this?” I asked nervously.
“Don’t worry about it, just follow me.”
I did as I was told. We walked past all the people lined up and headed straight to the front.
“Me and the bouncer went to Ford together,” George said.
As we approached the front door, people on line were dressed in jeans, black leather jackets and a few were smoking cigarettes. And they seemed pissed at us for passing them.
“Brossard, what’s up my man?” said a huge dude with Popeye forearms.
“What’s up my man,” George answered as they shook hands. I watched George’s hand disappear inside the bouncer’s hand, it was huge and the bouncer’s hand.
“This is my buddy Red,” George said to the bouncer as he tapped me on the shoulder.
“Hey Red, nice to meet you.” We shook hands, his grip was incredible.
George’s bouncer friend opened the velvet ropes and escorted us inside the club.
“Have a good time fella’s,” the Mighty Hulk said as he went back outside and left us alone.
The music was blasting. I recognized the song; it was ‘LA Woman’ by the Doors.
The club was dark. I could barely see in front of me.
“You want something to drink?” George screamed at me.
I looked at him and said, “WHAT?
“DO YOU WANT SOMETHING TO DRINK?”
“SURE, GET ME A BEER!” I shouted back to him.
George walked away and disappeared into the crowd..
I looked around the club and saw a lot of people; mostly dudes but I did notice a few babes. There was a stage where it looked like a band was setting up and about to perform.
A few minutes later, George was back.
“HERE YA GO!” George screamed as he handed me a bottle of beer.
“CHEERS.” George said as we raised our bottles and toasted.
As I sipped the beer I wondered if they had Wild Irish Rose?
We stood there and watched all the action. Girls passed by and I would stare at them; they were gorgeous. We watched people dance to LA Woman and then the band got on stage and began to play. They were actually pretty good.
“HOW YA LIKE IT SO FAR?” George shouted in my ear over the loud music.
“IT’S GREAT, THANKS FOR BRINGING ME!”
Just then a pretty girl came up to us carrying a black tray above her head wearing a ton of makeup and a really tight black top.
“Can I get you guys anything?”
“No we’re good,” George answered.
She smiled and walked away. I watched her make her way to another group of people. I couldn’t take my eyes off her. She was amazing looking. Her ass was amazing in her black tights.
After a few songs by the band, the DJ came back on and began to play some more great music. People began to dance; actually I wouldn’t call it dancing, they were jumping around having a great time. I kept my eye on the waitress.
“Red, go rap to one of these babes.” George said to me as he pointed to a group of girls standing in a circle drinking and talking.
I looked at him and smiled as we watched a ton of people dance to Stray Cat Strut.
“GO DANCE!” He shouted as he gave me a slight nudge.
I looked out on the dance floor and spotted a pretty girl dancing with her friend.
George began to push me even harder.
“Stop man, I’ll go, give me some time.” I said to him.
The music seemed to get louder and louder as the night went on. After a few numbers, panic set in. I looked around and couldn’t find George. It was close to 1 A.M.
Did he leave?
How was I gonna get home?
Shit, I was screwed.
The DJ was spinning Black Sabbath’s ‘Crazy Train’. Every time I heard this song I got juiced up.
I walked around the club and tried to find him. I checked the bathrooms. I even went outside the club to ask his bouncer friend.
“You see George?”
“Nah man, haven’t seen him all night.”
I went back in and kept on looking for him. Three different times the pretty waitress I had my eye on walked past me smiling, asking if I needed a drink.
“I’m looking for my friend, have you seen him?” I asked her.
“Sorry sweetie, there are a lot of guys in here, I don’t know what your friend looks like.”
“Thanks.” I said.
She walked away, this time I didn’t look at her ass.
Finally at about 1:30, I stood over by the bar looking out on the dance floor. I spotted George. I quickly ran over to him and came up behind him.
“George, where ya been man?”
He turned around and his eyes were glassy.
“RED, what’s up my man?”
“George, what time we leaving.” I asked.
He looked at his watch.
“We got a couple of more hours,” he assured me.
I enjoyed L’Amour so much I started going every weekend…without George. I liked it so much I took the train there one night! George’s bouncer friend recognized me and let me right in.
“Yo Red, what’s up my man?”
The big fella opened the velvet ropes for me and I got right in without waiting on the long line. I felt important.
The DJ played rock songs that everyone danced to; it was amazing. I listened to Roadhouse Blues by the Doors, We Got the Beat by the Go-Go’s and many others.
The girls were amazing. They wore halter tops and short shorts.
Afterwards, when is was too late to take the train back home I hopped in a Car Service outside the club. L’Amour became my favorite spot, I’d go out every chance I could, it was the place to be on the weekends.
Basketball, Bay Ridge, Boogie, Budweiser, Car, Chuck Taylor, Clubs, Fuller Place, George Brossard, Hollywood, Howard place, LA Woman, La'Mour, McBears, Music, Prospect Avenue, Rock Capital of Brooklyn, Schoolyard, Stray Cat Strut, The Doors, Windsor Place
Well, I just got into town about an hour ago
Took a look around, see which way the wind blow
Where the little girls in their Hollywood bungalows…
When I was seventeen I went to L’Amour. (Better known as “Lamorz“.) Yes, I was underage but remember back in the day it didn’t matter. Plus the guy I was with had a lot of juice at the front door.
The late George Brossard introduced me to the club scene. After getting a taste of L’Amour I turned into a “club kid.”
L’Amour was a club with live rock bands performing but in between sets a D.J. spun vinyl for the crowd; I recall ‘Stray Cat Strut’ or the Doors, ‘LA Woman’. Two outstanding jams.
L’Amour was billed as “The Rock Capital of Brooklyn.”
What many people fail to realize is that the club started out playing disco music. Gloria Gaynor was the first performer singing her smash hit, “I Will Survive.” Bands like Crystal Ship, Sticky Fingers, Metallica and Twisted Sister all rocked the house at L’Amour.
Like most clubs around the city, L’Amour was dark inside. Most patrons seemed to be wearing black and the one thing I can’t forget is the waitresses with their black trays scooting around taking drink orders. I may add they were awfully attractive too.
Coming off a tough break-up with my first girlfriend Maureen was difficult. I was having a hard time keeping a conversation with someone of the opposite sex. That all changed for me after I started going to clubs in the city.
It was a warm, Friday night in June, somewhere around eight o’clock. After playing basketball down at East fifth street I was walking up Prospect Avenue past McBears. George was hanging out outside with a few other guys.
George was a great guy. He had long black hair and an Adam’s apple that was extra pointy. George was a little over six feet tall and was skinny; he couldn’t have been more than 150 pounds soaking wet. His nickname was ‘Chicken George’. For some reason, George took a liking to me; he always had a positive comment for me. Whenever I’d see him around the neighborhood we’d always talk sports.
“Hey Red, how was the run down East fifth?”
“It was good.” I answered as I kept dribbling my basketball.
“You wanna go out tonight?” he asked me.
“Go out where”?
“Don’t worry, just meet me back here later tonight at ten.” George didn’t wait for my response. He hopped in his car and drove off.
I stood there and watched him having no idea where George planned on taking me. I had heard guys talk about going out on the weekends from spending time in the schoolyard eavesdropping.
Arriving home I turned on the TV in my bedroom and watched a baseball game. Sitting on my bed I kept glancing up at the clock on the wall. Time was going so slow. My mother was on the phone in the kitchen chatting with a friend. A little after nine I got up and started looking through my dresser drawer for some clothes. I had no idea what to wear.
Grabbing a pair of wrinkled blue jeans, a sky blue Mark Elliot polo shirt; I was ready to go. I slipped on my white, high top Chuck Taylor’s but before heading out, I grabbed a toothbrush and cleaned the sneakers off. I splashed some Brut cologne on my neck and felt like a million dollars.
As mom chatted away on the phone in the kitchen I looked around for her purse. Spotting it on the couch I made my way over towards it. Sitting on a chair in the kitchen Mom had her back to me as she smoked a Salem cigarette. While she was engaged in her conversation, I kept an eye on her and slid my hand in her purse to grab any bills I could feel. As I pulled a few out, I looked at them, noticed a couple of tens and stuffed them in my pockets.
“See ya later,” I shouted to her as I walked out of the apartment.
She didn’t even hear me; she kept on talking on the phone.
Downstairs I waited on the corner of Windsor and ninth for the light to turn green. Muggsy was walking by with his radio in his arm listening to a song by the Who.
“What’s up Muggsy?”
Like usual, all Muggsy did was nod his head.
“I’m goin’ out,” I said to him as I crossed the avenue.
Without missing a beat he looked back and shouted, “BOOGIE TILL YA PUKE!”
Muggsy was a cool dude who was into rock-and-roll. Whenever you saw him on the avenue he was always playing rock tunes. You’d never hear any disco coming from his box.
As I walked down Prospect Avenue towards McBears I started to get butterflies in my stomach. I made my way past the schoolyard on Howard Place and noticed a few kids in the schoolyard shooting around. Down one block at Fuller Place there were some people hanging out on the corner.
“Yo, look at Red, he is all dressed up,” someone said. I put my head down and walked faster. Another kid said, “Yeah, all dressed up and nowhere to go.”
“Fuck you!” I fired back.
Approaching McBears I could see a couple of people hanging out outside. I spotted George sitting in his car waiting on the corner of tenth avenue.
“C’mon Red, hop in.”
I looked around, opened the front door of his car and got in.
“I picked up something for us,” George said as he showed me a six-pack of Budwesier.
It was Friday night, the weather was great, I was feeling great, it was going to be a great night.