Manhattan Beat: Sally Can’t Dance at Bowery Electric

Sally•Can’t•Dance: Tribute to Sticky Fingers/The Bowery Electric/February 17, 2019

Sally•Can’t•Dance is a thematic rock ‘n’ roll party at the Bowery Electric which features performances by many current scene makers. Usually starting around midnight, each party is dedicated to paying tribute to a particular group, artist, or album. Past events have featured the work of David Bowie, Motorhead, the Stooges, Talking Heads, the Ramones, the Cramps, Suicide, the Rolling Stones’ Some Girls, and on this occasion, Sticky Fingers. The house band plays, and guest vocalists charge on stage in quick succession.

Sticky Fingers, first released in 1971, was given classic traction by modern artists. James Maddock, Mike Montali (Hollis Brown), Amanda Cross, Mick Stitch (LES Stitches, the Threads), Dina Regine, David Patillo, Cait O’Riordan (the Pogues, Elvis Costello, Bitchface), Sam Hariss (the Sweet Things), Alexandra Blair (the Silk War), Richard Dev Greene (the Pale Moon Gang, Palmyra Delran), Alfonso Velez, Josh Brocki (Night Spins, the Boobies), and Shannon Conley (Lez Zeppelin, Hedwig & the Angry Inch) all sang Rolling Stones covers.

Alexandra Blair

Michael T. (Michael T. & the Vanities) was the host for the evening, and Miss Guy (the Toilet Boys) was the disc jockey. The house band, led by guitarist Derek Cruz of Jesse Malin’s band, featured guitarist Jonathan Bonilla (Hollis Brown), keyboardist Rob Clores (Jesse Malin), bassist Brett Bass (Gregg Allman, David Kolker Band, Lizzie and the Makers), drummer Dave Purcell (Michael T. & the Vanities), and backing vocalists Emma Craig (Michael T. & the Vanitites, Rocky Horror Picture Show) and Dina Regine. Guitarist David Immerglück (Counting Crows, Camper Van Beethoven) and saxophonist Danny Ray came on stage and improvised on several songs.

The set list for the evening was as follows:

Sticky Fingers

“Brown Sugar” featuring James Maddock

“Sway” featuring Mike Montali

“Wild Horses” featuring Amanda Cross

“Can’t You Hear Me Knocking” featuring Mick Stitch

“You Gotta Move” featuring Dina Regine

“Bitch” featuring David Patillo

“I Got the Blues” featuring Mike Montali

“Sister Morphine” featuring Cait O’Riordan

“Dead Flowers” featuring Sam Hariss

“Moonlight Mile” featuring Alexandra Blair

Additional Stones covers performed were:

“Honky Tonk Women” featuring Richard Dev Greene

“19th Nervous Breakdown” featuring Alfonso Velez

“Street Fighting Man” featuring Josh Brocki

“It’s Only Rock n Roll” featuring Shannon Conley & David Patillo

Richard Dev Greene


Alfonso Velez


“Suicide Sally”/The Bowery Electric/February 27, 2019


Martin Rev and Cynthia Ross

Nearly two weeks after the Sticky Fingers tribute, Sally•Can’t•Dance presented “Suicide Sally,” its second annual tribute to the legendary band, Suicide. Martin Rev (Suicide), Eugene Hütz (Gogol Bordello), Kid Congo Powers (the Gun Club, the Cramps, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds), Lydia Lunch, Luke Jenner (the Rapture), Jesse Malin, Mr. Pharmacist, Liz Lamere (widow of Suicide’s Alan Vega), Dante Vega (son of Alan Vega and Liz Lamere), Peter Zaremba and Keith Streng (the Fleshtones), Mick Collins (the Gories), Ian Wilson (Star Spangles), Dave W (White Hills), Stu Spasm (Lubricated Goat), Andrea (Twin Guns), actors Matthew McAuley and Johnny Scuotto, and leather shop owner Chuck Bones all sang Suicide songs live. Mr. Pharmacist (aka Gregg Foreman), bassist Cynthia Ross (New York Junk, the B-Girls), and drummer Roger Schrager (Jesse Malin) comprised the house band. Kid Congo Powers was the host, Jonathan Toubin (Soul Clap) was the DJ in the downstairs room, and Genesis Breyer P-Orridge (Throbbing Gristle, Psychic TV) was the DJ in the upstairs room.

Kid Congo Powers


Jesse Malin

The “Suicide Sally” tribute also was an advance release party for a new limited edition Alan Vega 12″ single, “Too Many Teardrops.” It features one of Vega’s last recordings, “You Pay” (produced and co-written with Mr. Pharmacist), and features remixes by Jim Sclavunos (Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds) and Jim Thirlwell (Foetus), with contributions from Nick Zinner (Yeah Yeah Yeahs) and White Hills. Proceeds of the sale benefited children’s music education programs (the recordings were officially released on March 8).

Mr. Pharmacist

Vocalist Alan Vega and instrumentalist Martin Rev formed the experimental electronic duo Suicide in 1970 and performed and recorded intermittently until Vega’s death in 2016. Rev used primitive synthesizers and drum machines to create minimalist electronic instrumentation. Now a cult favorite, Suicide had little commercial success in its time but was influential in the development of industrial, techno, and other modern electronic music. Rev continues to perform and record under his own name.

The set list for the evening was as follows:

Set 1:

“Harlem” featuring Lydia Lunch

“Kid Congo” featuring Kid Congo Powers

“Jukebox Baby” featuring Johnny Scuotto

“Cheree” featuring Luke Jenner

“I Remember” featuring Dave W.

“Child It’s a New World” featuring Matt McAuley

“Fast Money” featuring Stu Spasm

“Wild in Blue” featuring Liz Lamere

“Frankie Teardrop” featuring Jesse Malin

Set 2:

“Johnny” featuring The Fleshtones

“Diamonds Fur” featuring Kid Congo Powers

“Surrender” featuring Andrea

“Magdelena” featuring Chuck Bones

“Girl” featuring Mr. Pharmacist

“Too Fine for You” featuring Ian WIlson

“Misery Train” featuring Dante Vega

“Ghost Rider” featuring Eugene Hütz

“Love So Lovely”*

“Rocket USA”*

“Dream Baby Dream”*

* Featuring Martin Rev

Lead Photo: Danny Ray (left), David Immerglück (right)

All photos by Charley Crespo