watch Yeah Yeah Yeahs video from their first show at Mercury Lounge, 20 years ago
Yeah Yeah Yeahs are looking back at their beginnings: twenty years ago today (9/24), they played their first show, at Lower East Side venue Mercury Lounge, with Candy Darlings, Kid Congo Powers... and The White Stripes (who had released their self-titled debut just a few months ago at the time). To celebrate the occasion, they've shared a video of them playing the "Crimson and Clover"-interpolating "Our Time," which would be on their debut EP, which had yet to be released. Here's what they have to say about it:
On this day in the year 2000 we made our debut performance at the Mercury Lounge on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, we celebrate the date as our official birthday so it’s our party we can cry if we want to! We shared the bill that night with local favorites Candy Darlings, Kid Congo Powers, and up and comers from Detroit The White Stripes.
Special thanks to Dave Burton for getting us our first NY gig! Jack Martin for being our guest guitarist! The bartender who was feeding us way too many margaritas! And to our dear friend Helen Park for documenting it, all 4 songs we played ha! This is OUR TIME, can’t hear shit but what a treasure. Stay tuned more birthday stuff to come!
Where were you when you first heard we existed?? Luv YYYs
For their tenth anniversary, in September of 2010, Yeah Yeah Yeahs played a series of small venue shows in NYC, including Secret Project Robot, Don Hills, Monster Island, and Mercury Lounge, the latter of which was a private show for friends and family followed by a party at 75 Clarkson. It's easy, but painful, to imagine how they might've celebrated 20 years, perhaps with more intimate shows, if shows were happening right now.
You can, however, catch Yeah Yeah Yeahs' drummer Brian Chase on the "Bowl Hashanah" livestream, which observes Kol Nidre and Yom Kippur this weekend.