New York City has a ton of bars and some of those bars have great jukeboxes. I thought every couple of weeks I’d visit one and spotlight the jukebox there. Tonight’s destination not only houses a great jukebox, it’s owned by the legendary, proto-punk lead singer of the Dictators and Sirius radio host, Handsome Dick Manitoba. When my friends, Britta and Tom came to town last year, we stopped for a drink at Manitoba’s and met Handsome Dick and took a photo with him. Let’s go see if he’s there tonight!
And we're off, we'll take the familiar trek down 14th Street to the East Village.
One of the great things about Manitoba's is that it's just a few blocks from Tompkins Square Bagels! Let's go get something to eat.
Here's Juan making my sandwich, everyone in here is always very friendly.
I thought I'd try an experiment, if you remember from the last time I was in here, I ordered the Shawn Chittle and Shawn magically appeared. Tonight I got a grilled cheese onion bagel, let's see if anyone shows up with this order...
It's Shawn Chittle, truly a man for all bagels!
After my sandwich, TSB owner Chris, took Shawn and I downstairs to see the bagels as they are hand-rolled by an expert.
Chris introduced us to Celestino who hand rolls each and every bagel for the shop. There's an art to this and Celestino has been doing it for years.
It's amazing how fast he can roll and entire tray of bagels from the raw dough. These are ready for the ovens and I'm ready for a drink or three!
And here we are, Manitoba's on Avenue B.
It's early on a Monday evening, so there's plenty of seats at the bar.
Sean's the bartender on duty and he happily serves up a bottle of Budweiser. He said we had just missed seeing Handsome Dick, he had just left to go do his radio show. Oh well, maybe next time!
A "Welcome to Manitoba's" sign is painted above the bar.
And below it is Handsome Dick merchandise piled above the vintage jukebox.
Here's a long shot of the wooden bar.
We didn't sit at the bar though, we got a table in the back because we were joined by...
Goggla! It appears we've got a mini cash mob going on here at Manitoba's!
Okay, time to check out the jukebox in the back.
It's not the fanciest or most complex jukebox in town, but it's stocked with some great tunes from AC-DC to Johnny Cash to Frank Sinatra to, of course, The Dictators. Let's crank out some songs on this, click on the following links and you can listen to the tunes I picked: The Damned, Johnny and June Carter Cash, Cheap Trick, The Kinks, The Beatles...
Tina put on some songs after I did. I asked if she had a favorite song on Manitoba's jukebox and she just said, "All of them." I agree! Great selection of songs to be listened to in here.
In addition to the jukebox, the walls are plastered with classic rock and roll photos, most of them from the late '70's punk era. That Handsome Dick was a part of.
Here's Handsome Dick and Joan Jett back in the day.
Gabba Gabba Hey, it's the Ramones!
Here's a signed record sleeve from Little Steven. It says, "To Handsome Dick, Who Loves Ya?"
This is a classic shot of Handsome Dick and a friend in front of CBGB's. My photo is a little fuzzy, click here to see the photo in all its glory.
A framed cover of Punk Magazine featuring the Dictators.
I love the hand-painted bathroom doors in here.
And one glance out the window and it's time to call it a night.
And as I venture out, I see the night has fallen on Manhattan, you got to love that! See you tomorrow!