On March 15th, NYHC pioneers Cro-Mags were supposed to support Ice-T's metal band Body Count at a one-off show at New York's Webster Hall, but the event got called off last second due to the spread of the coronavirus and a resulting city-wide ban on all gatherings of 500 people or more. Cro-Mags frontman Harley Flanagan was none too happy about it so he took matters into his own hands and announced a special livestream of what was supposed to be the group's opening set, fitting dubbed "Cro-Mags: The Quarantine Show." The performance aired on the 15th via Breal.TV and Cro-Mags' social platforms, but if you missed the live broadcast, you can watch above now.
Flanagan grew up about three blocks from Webster Hall, on 12th Street between 1st and Ave A, and remembers when the venue reopened as the Ritz in 1980. "It had been closed down when I was a kid," he recalled. "I played there that same year with my band the Stimulators — I was just 13 years old. I got to play there several more times in the Eighties with the Cro-Mags in several different incarnations. We did some legendary shows with bands I was honored to play with. We even headlined a show on the Best Wishes tour where we premiered many of the songs from that record at Webster Hall. It was always a great place to go see shows and an even better place to play."
He added, "Years later, there were some unfortunate events that took place there that sadly overshadowed many of my great memories. But now I get to reclaim and restore that feeling of positive energy once and for all, and it's a beautiful thing."
Flanagan reflected on the current crisis and the importance of doing this show. "I am very unhappy that the show with Body Count this weekend was canceled by Governor Cuomo," he said. "I was really looking forward to it, but I am more sad for the many people who are going to be out of work for who knows how long, and for those who have become ill from this terrible disease. We all must take extra precautions these days, but we will learn how to deal with this like we have learned how to deal with deadly diseases in the past. Be safe, be strong and be smart. The show will be rescheduled, and life will go on. Eventually we will all be 'killed by death' — just ask Lemmy. If it's not one thing it will be another, but life will go on. And so will this show."