Read Dance of Days: Two Decades of Punk in the Nation's Capital by Mark Andersen Mark Jenkins Online


Examines the history of the Washington D.C. punk rock music scene that led to the rise of such bands as Positive Force, Riot Grrrl, Fugazi, and Bikini Kill....

Title : Dance of Days: Two Decades of Punk in the Nation's Capital
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781888451443
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 437 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Dance of Days: Two Decades of Punk in the Nation's Capital Reviews

  • justin
    2019-05-04 14:37

    Despite giving a comprehensive account of the mid to late 70s DC music scene, this book is (as can be expected) more or less dominated by the plight of Ian Mackaye and Dischord Records. No huge surprise, given the title of the book (Or the photographs of two Mackaye bands on the front and back cover out of four pictures total). Nevertheless, the man is my hero so i loved reading this. Lots of great coverage on other well known and lesser known DC or DC-related bands, including the interesting trajectories of HR from Bad Brains and Brian Baker. Overall, very entertaining and inspiring...that is until Mark Anderson blows it by including 5 pages on the significance of Good Charlotte in the afterword. Oh you think I'm joking?

  • Scott
    2019-04-28 21:22

    There have been many other books that have either been written specifically about the Washington D.C. punk/hardcore scene (“Banned in D.C.”) or that have touched on it significantly in the course of a wider discussion (“American Hardcore”, “Our Band Could Be Your Life”), but no others provide as much detail and depth as “Dance of Days”. From the earliest beginnings of punk rock in the D.C. area through modern times, this book, written by long-time scene insider Mark Andersen, has everything. It manages to be thorough and easy to read (a hard balance to pull off), although more casual fans could skip the very first and very last chapters and get right to the good stuff (the 80’s and 90’s). When this book was new, I remember many reviewers & scenesters complaining that the author clearly had a bias, if not an outright axe to grind about certain events and organizations. However, my sense is that it will probably sail right over your head unless you are from D.C. and /or intimately familiar with the bands & people involved. It has been some years since I read this, but I don’t remembering feeling that I was being hit over the head with bias. My only real complaint with “Dance of Days” (and it is minor) is that the broad scope of the book means that some stories come across as incomplete. If you want to get the full story of Bad Brains, for example (one of the most interesting bands of all time, both sonically and on paper), you still have to combine what you find here with material from other books, despite the fact that they were one of the biggest players in the D.C. scene. For example, as I recall Andersen barely mentions the Bad Brains/MDC feud – an important event that goes along way to explain why people felt the way they did about Bad Brains at the time. To be fair, maybe it was in there & I’m just not remembering it, but when I read “American Hardcore” years later, I remember being surprised that I hadn’t previously read about that event and thinking “why wasn’t this in “Dance of Days?” Still though, overall this is an excellent book that covers bands and time periods you won’t find discussed with as much depth anywhere else (Revolution Summer anyone?). Especially recommended for fans of “Emo” who want to know where the term and sound originate from.

  • Lbkyle
    2019-05-20 14:30

    Shoots into the Atmosphere of Obscurity Mid 70's Era of DC, Late 70's Era with a Cracked out HR, then into the Sprungnation of Flex Your head and all the greatness surrounding this, then into the Revolutionary summer, Late 80's of one Rollins Band, Hopping along into the nineties of Fugazi and pushing forward into the Future. Not at all a bad read, Alot of Untold Stories, more informative than most.

  • Leslie
    2019-04-26 17:20

    Mark Andersen interviewed me for this book, along w/ pretty much everyone else on the scene at the time. Mark worked very hard and spent years putting this book together, and it's dense with detail about what people were thinking, doing, arguing, in the process of forming bands, record labels, etc. I read this immediately after it was published, and my reaction was that it was too respectful--and I say this from the point of view of someone who knew and liked--in some cases, loves--the people and the scene he's writing about. The spirit I remember from that time is mostly missing from this book. But I was--am--grateful that Mark wrote this. He thought this scene and the music made there was important, and I agree. Being part of something and reading about it later are two very different things.

  • Sonicage
    2019-05-21 21:37

    Don't make the mistake of thinking that this is some encyclopedia of DC punk. It's not. It's the story of a specific group of connections with its center being Mark Andersen (mostly as an avid observer, but often as a political ally). Anyone positively touched by these particular connections will enjoy this book. There are many other books to be written about DC music. And if you don't like Fugazi, this book most likely is not for you.

  • Jennifer
    2019-04-27 19:17

    Great book on DC hardcore scene. Loved the DC music scene, though I wasn't old enough to experience the "glory" days of it. It of course was cool that I knew and hung out with a few of the people in it. Did learn some stuff I didn't know, like the fact Joy Division was supposed to inaugurate the 930Club (F St.). Oh the memories there. A must read for anyone that is into the DC hardcore scene.

  • Edwina
    2019-05-12 19:29

    an excellent book that tells how the hardcore punk scene started and thrived for twenty years in Washington, DC. Bands such as Rites of Spring, Teen Idles, Minor Threat, Fugazi, Dg Nasty, Government Issue, Bad Brains stories are told by the members themselves and people who were involved in the scene at the time.

  • Patrick
    2019-04-27 19:25

    I thought it was a good read, but I can see how people who are a) not into punk rock or b) aren't from DC could get a bit bored with it all. The best parts are in the middle, when Minor Threat is really in their prime, through the start of "emo" and then to Fugazi. The start is a bit slow.

  • Davi Lanna
    2019-05-13 17:19

    Eu ganhei esse livro de aniversário e no começo achei que ele seria meio maçante, por se tratar do punk em uma comunidade específica, abordando bandas que em sua maioria não me interessam muito musicalmente. Eu já conhecia e gosto de Fugazi, Minor Threat, Embrace(todas do Ian Mckaye), Bad Brains, Rollins Band...Acontece que esse livro, apesar de espicaçar minuciosamente o movimento em DC - o autor fazia parte da Positive Force, uma comunidade em torno da ideologia punk - coloca o punk como fenômeno particular que se expande para se tornar universal nos anos 90; como uma árvore, com seus ramos podres(nazismo, corporativismo, fanatismo) e outros vigorosos(riot grrrl, Revolution Summer, grunge, "emo", lutas sociais). Me ajudou a compreender o punk e esquecer tudo o que aprendi com blasés que se consideram superiores por gostarem de ramones, iggy pop, Cramps, The Clash, New York Dolls, ou qualquer banda morta e canonizada...o punk é um organismo vivo, que morreu diversas vezes e precisou ser reinventado em diversas formas - sim, até no emo, mesmo com todo o fascismo homofóbico que o circunda. Dentre os temas mais interessantes, estão a luta do Bikini Kill e outras bandas femininas num espaço predominantemente "macho", com os pogos violentos; a banda Bad Brains e como a mente perturbada de seu vocalista; as primeiras bandas do Dave Grohl(que já tinha sido guitarrista) sua trajetória até o Nirvana, que chamou a atenção do mundo para um movimento de atitude anti-capitalista, vendendo-o para as massas; a Dischord Records, Ian Mckaye e seus amigos, e uma banda chamada Fugazi, que sobreviveu aos anos 90 sendo independente, fazendo ao invés de falar, sem abrir mão de suas ideias. Este não e um livro moralista, e não condena especificamente ninguém por ter vendido nada. Mas remove ilusões, frescuras e megalomanias em torno do punk, dando um grande passo na compreensão de seu desenvolvimento em DC nos anos 80, e um grande foda-se para os abutres.

  • Mitch Grady
    2019-04-30 19:36

    Eventually it devolves into a history of Fugazi. Which is fine and to a degree understandable, but I imagine other bands in the DC scene weren't too happy about it.

  • East Bay J
    2019-05-15 19:44

    Having been into bands like Bad Brains, Minor Threat, Scream, Fugazi, Void, Bikini Kill, Nation Of Ulysses, etc., I bought Dance Of Days shortly after it was published in 2001. I devoured the book at the time and I can remember being moved by the narrative, especially the actions not words mentality of the D.C. scene.I have always thought the D.C. scene was amazing. I know there were other scenes full of active, motivated people but, for me, D.C. stands as the epitome of the form. Perhaps it’s because I’ve never been part of a scene like that. Growing up, there were always intensely motivated individuals but the only movement was at shows, on stage and in the pit.Re-reading Dance Of Days, I was once again stricken and inspired by the actions and ideas of the people involved. I was thrilled to read about Bad Brains, Minor Threat and Fugazi. I was moved to tears at times by the events described. This is a really good read for anyone interested in the D.C. scene, hardcore, punk, politics, political activism, etc.However, I think Mark Andersen may have been too close to the subject matter. I suppose that he was there and saw so much of it go down makes him qualified, but I got tired of his sidebars about Postive Force and his personal journey. PF absolutely should have been included, as this is a history of twenty years of D.C. punk. It’s just that Andersen kind of throws off the whole flow and balance by going into some soap opera that went down between him and some other PF member or explaining his private disillusionment with the scene. I started to just skip his sidebars because I found myself completely uninterested. I don’t know how much Mark Jenkins had to do with the writing of Dance Of Days but I think it’s safe to say it wasn’t enough.Andersen is also a bit clumsy with the language. Some of his sentences are awkward enough to demand a second read for comprehension and he occasionally slips into trite almost-cliches. This doesn’t ruin the book at all but it doesn’t help. Some thorough editing would have.That Andersen and Jenkins were able to cover so much ground is impressive. The story of D.C. punk is an incredible story that speaks to the human condition and struggle. Dance Of Days tells this story very well.

  • Scott
    2019-04-24 21:38

    Aight.This book was seriously my bible when I was nineteen and an asshole. I just loved DC music culture detritus. This book is full of it. There are some great pictures and some good vignettes from the DC underground.The overall narrative of the book is shaped by Mark Andersen with a bit on early DC punk stuff by the much more interesting Mark Jenkins. Andersen is clearly involved emotionally in the arc he's telling, but probably a bit too much so. The central plot is essentially geared toward the foundation and popular "success" of Fugazi. The allows there to be a lot said about the less interesting aspects in the lives of the members of the group while other bands with less political-positive-punk aesthetics get reduced to a few paragraphs. Andersen perhaps rightfully inserts himself into the narrative, but every time he does it comes off as either didactic, cloying, or well... sorry, but... emo. Maybe overly dramatic would be politically correct.Needless to say, this book couldn't have been perfect considering the great deal of ground DC alternative music has covered over the years. But having read this book an EMBARRASSING number of times, I find myself wondering about the bands that merit barely a sentence, especially ones involving folks I've met since (the obscure Kids for Cash and Sharon Cheslow's various bands).It's my problem that the book overwhelmingly reminds me of an unnecessarily polemic time in my life due to a colossal misreading of the ideologies of the bands contained herein (I also blame HeartAttack, Kent McClard, et al.), but still I can't imagine approaching this book as somebody who is not a complete dyed in the wool punk record NERD. Which makes it, as a book, kind of bad, right?

  • Steven
    2019-05-02 18:29

    A non-fiction account of the Washington, DC punk/hardcore scene from it's inception until nearly present day. This book carefully traces the foundation of what would become and is still today one of the most viable and thriving scenes in the country.As someone who has followed the bands and record labels from this community for the last 20 years, it was nice to have some of the gaps in time filled in and learn new facts about how certain bands came to be or broke up. This book is detailed in it's description of events and almost assumes a prior knowledge of the key players in this scene. This book is probably best suited for someone who has a knowledge and interest in the minutiae involved with personnel changes in bands and clubs coming and going.One of my main problems with this book is it's judgmental tone towards those who chose to sign to major labels or leave DC to go to college. It seems to paint those people as giving up on the punk scene, or selling out. Granted it is hard to see bands that you love sign onto a corporate label, but this book is supposed to be a document of what happened in that scene. Mark Anderson often lets his personal feeling get in the way of delivering the facts. Still, Dance of Days is a great read for a likely very small group of people. If you have an interest in these events, it is worth looking for.

  • Ryan Mishap
    2019-05-01 19:37

    Finally picked this up after being hesitant for so long. I got into punk with the help of the early D.C. scene, but I didn’t think a book centered around one city would be that interesting. I was wrong, but, celebrating one scene out of hundreds seems, well, not punk. Especially since D.C. and the hardcore spawned there is already elevated and on a pedestal. Given the sheer amount of punk rock history around the world, each scene probably deserves its own book, and Andersen has collected D.C.’s.The main focus, unsurprisingly, is Dischord and Ian MacKaye, along with Bad Brains and Rollins (somewhat surprisingly). The weakest parts of the book are the recountings of various bands whose members went on to form others, although it is fairly interesting to hear of the bands preceding the ones we all know. Talk of venues, scene unity and disruption, protests, fights, gossip, bad feelings, unity again…. Familiar tales, no doubt, to many of us. The best parts of the book are the personal bits from Andersen and the stories about political events, as well as various people remembering youth as a crazy time. I also liked the conscious effort by the author and various interviewees to keep “hardcore” within the punk landscape. As someone who prefers just using “punk” I was stoked.

  • Venessa
    2019-05-17 19:30

    I finally finished this excellent book, which took me so long to read because having grown up listening to harDCore, this book really brought memories back, some hard to deal with. (It also got me writing about them, which while painful, was a truly cathartic process - and now I have some solid material I'm proud of having written.) Anyone who appreciates punk music should read this book, which traces the history of the DC hardcore scene, not only the music, but the activism and politics.I really loved the last chapter of this edition, in which the author struggles with whether this book is contributing to mainstream consumerist culture or entombing harDCore into a stuffy dead museum via the printed form just by its existence. I don't think so - as long as you are careful not to get swept away by its powerful, seductive force. And I appreciated learning more about the people behind the music that truly changed my life and can still get me motivated to enact some change of my own.Long live harDCore music! (Putting on The Evens latest album, The Odds, now in celebration....)

  • Martin Sertich
    2019-05-15 16:14

    I was 12/13(around 1983) when I first discovered Minor Threat and started following most of the records DISCHORD was putting out. $3.50 for a full album with an insert and another insert with the records that were still in press? I was sold. Quality, which still holds true today. I'll admit that I lost some interest in the mid-90s until the remasters of my favorites. The book itself(what I'm supposed to be reviewing is thorough and exhausting(in a good way. 5 stars on everything except that I wish the book was shaped like a normal book(horizonically it's longer which gets a bit annoying, I read it so frequently that I'm going to pick up another copy). All in all, too good to be true. I'm really looking forward to the 'Salad Days' documentary. Thanks Jeff, Ian, Cynthia and the whole Dischord/DC scene.

  • Andrea
    2019-05-07 17:23

    This is either a very in-depth account of the DC Music Scene or a love letter to Fugazi. I can't decide. Since I really don't like Fugazi, I'm going with the former. Kidding aside, this is a phenomenal historical account of what were some very heady days, and what turned out to be a highly influential and far-reaching musical sub-culture.Living in the 'burbs outside of DC, I was fortunate enough to get a slight taste of it. If you weren't, or just can't let it go, then this book is for you.Ah, stupid youth.

  • Brad
    2019-05-09 17:27

    A meticulously well-detailed history of the DC punk movement. Not just about the aesthetic and the bands, but also the motivations of those involved and the social/physical environment in which they existed/exist. I came up in the DC punk scene of the late-80s and early 90s and this book really helped me put it all in perspective. The 2 Marks do a great job of trying to see it from all angles, and clearly spent a lot of time researching it...well indexed too.

  • Chris Landry
    2019-05-22 21:17

    I'm disappointed to report that I didn't actually read this. It was leant to me. The forward makes a big deal about the fact that at hardcore shows hippies with long hair were ridiculed for not being 'with it'. I'm sure I'd learn about a lot of great bands by reading this. But I just want to listen to 'Let England Shake' by PJ Harvey and read books that seem more vital to me. I don't care about how DC show-goers wore their hair in 1982.

  • Anton
    2019-05-17 22:15

    Written from an insiders' perspective, this is a great tale of the rise of the record label dischord, which is a local Washington D.C. construct of significant musical importance. The later chapters fall rather flat for me, but I suppose that for someone with more interest in the late 80s and early 90s indie rock-ish scene it might read differently. I was much more engrossed by the early 80s and the formative years of what we've come to know as U.S. hardcore punk.

  • Ed Wagemann
    2019-04-24 19:30

    Why Everything You Think You Know About Punk Is Completely Wrong:

  • Tomas Moniz
    2019-05-10 16:15

    I initially started this for the section on riot grrrl, but quickly got pulled into the narrative of the growth of hardcore and the history of things like the x on the hand, the term moshing and slam dancing; it was a very nicely paced book, weaving various stories of groups together. the only part the slowed down was the mid 80s when it seemed to really be too closely focused on the DC scene...but a great story and history.

  • Carlos Panhoca Da silva
    2019-05-18 19:38

    Fica bem claro que um dos autores tá sendo racional e o outro está emotivamente envolvido com a história para narrar ela imparcialmente. O entusiasmo que ele narra o empenho em resolver os problemas contrasta com a narrativa corrida dos problemas que são gerados. Mesmo assim, o livro é bom.Não leia se você não goste de Fugazi, foca principalmente neles.

  • Paul
    2019-04-23 17:38

    another great book about the underground written by someone who was actually involved in it. very comprehensive history of dc harDCore dating from the mid/late-70's all the way up through the end of the 90's. worth it for the bad brains information alone. ian mackaye is the godfather of artistic and moral integrity.

  • Kami
    2019-04-23 20:26

    This history of the harDCore scene made me realize that I was born a decade too late. The tales are personal and real. While memory and forgetting obviously plays a role, it seems honest without being overly nostalgic. Made me wish there was a force around these parts strong enough to recreate Revolution Summer.

  • Thomas
    2019-05-17 14:30

    Punk has been so important to me and specifically that from Dischord Records. An incredible book with rich photography, quotes and stories that help to prove and validate how a small (60+ square mile) area could have such a strong (and positive) effect on music and the people that heard the music.

  • Chi Chi
    2019-05-20 22:17

    A decent overview of the DC punk scene. I think it would help more if I was more into that music, but I'm not, so this was mostly an academic read. I just wish more of this guys had a sense of humor.

  • Geoff
    2019-04-22 21:16

    A really good article on H.R. from the city paper, written by Anderson, sad but also really interesting:

  • Nicholas
    2019-04-30 17:39

    Made me love being a Punk even more when I was 17 ! Looks at more than just the music, but the progression of a community..

  • Eric
    2019-05-20 15:41

    This is an interesting look at the DC scene from Anderson's point of view. Good histories of punk and hardcore are a bit hard to find. This one is pretty good.