Monday, July 4, 2011

The Different Drummer

Peter Max poster
In the late 60's, The Different Drummer was a popular hippie clothing store/boutique located at 792 Lexington Ave between 61st and 62nd St in NYC (across from the doll hospital), frequented by hippies, rock stars and hip Mets players and broadcasters. My mother would occasionally deposit my 2 brothers and I there (or their East Village sister-store) to outfit us in the latest in nehru shirts, hippie beads and bell bottoms. More importantly, they also sold underground comix, so we could get our ZAP comix/R. Crumb fix.

This "far out", "psychedelic", "cosmic 60's" poster was designed for the store in 1968 by the unavoidable artist of the moment, "King of the dorm rooms",  Peter Max (Finkelstein).

But I vastly preferred this poster, also offered by The Different Drummer...

Shit poster
This large poster featuring Paul Sigenlaub, one of the owners of the Differnet Drummer,  hung in my Great Neck boyhood bedroom bathroom door for several years, upsetting, disturbing and confusing frequent adult guests, including my grandmother, and our housekeeper Mrs. Sullivan, and her friends and relatives. To all of them, I'm truly sorry.

"SCREWED"
a third Different Drummer poster
Just what NYC needed, another Sushi restaurant. 792 Lexington Ave today (Actually, it's supposed to be very good.)

17 comments:

  1. That poster went far beyond the eyes of anyone who would ever actually visit the Different Drummer -- making it the Wall Drugs of the era. Though, come to think of it, I guess Wall Drugs bumperstickers started popping up everywhere about then, too. So it was ALSO the Wall Drugs of the era. No, that doesn't sound right ... never mind ...

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  2. Dar Drew, By any chance do you have images or something from this store? I found a photo on the Web that I could show you. It's a Live Mannequin with leather fringed clothing and in the back at least 4 or 5 posters of the Different Drummer. It's very old so I guess probably it's the store in NY that sold the posters.

    Ed, www.themaxcollector.com

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    Replies
    1. Ed, I'd love to see the photo, thanks.

      Drewings@ptd.net

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    2. Hi Ed,

      I am Paul Sigenlaub's daughter (the guy on the photo and one of the owners of the Different Drummer). Unfortunately all their photos from that time were ruined in a fire and I have been trying to find other photos, but haven't been able to.

      I would love to see the photo as well. My email is yanna@sigenlaub.com.

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  3. man!! I had that "shit" poster on my wall, too! I bought it at a record store here in Pensacola, Florida around '70 or '71. I was about 18. I bought it because it looked like my room mate, Dwight.

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  4. The person In the poster was/is one of the owners of The Different Drummer. I've forgotten his name, but he used to date the model "Verisha." I used to occasionally date one of the other owners Eddie Rabkin. If themaxcollector is interested I have some Peter Max silk scarves from that time (70's). Thanks for the memories! Drew, love you work and the blog.
    Susan.

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  5. His name is/was Paul. I used to work there and he was a very cool stoner and a wonderful employer (he dated "Verushka" - look her up, she was stunning). There was a third owner, Todd, who was married to then model/actress Susie Blakely. Todd was a former ass't DA who became a criminal lawyer. When asked why he crossed over to the "dark side", he'd reply that he had more in common with criminals (oops, i meant to say defendants) than "the law". The three of them were very cool, refused to sell out to the chains (they had plenty of offers) and flew their freak flag high. It was a remarkable place to be in the late '60's and early '70's, and then, like the ethereal time in which it was set, it was gone.

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  6. Billy:

    Yeah: I worked there from 1968 to about 1970... I've actually being trying to reach out to some of the people that I ran with at the time .....

    I just got to say though that this wasn't really a hippy haven as most of the previous posters have stated ..... This was a sort of portal to the NY Rock and Roll Sean which was underground at the time...
    Actually 2 members of the NY Dolls started out there.....
    one of my favorite things was to be able to sing the latest English releases to the customers.....
    There were a lot of good times and of course some bad as well...


    if there's anyone that remembers these days and would like to reminisce a little. Contact me wrowe@nj.rr.com

    Cheers Billy

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  7. oh this was just the coolest store. and down the block from Joe Namath Bachelors III. Wish i still had my Superman T Shirt and all the other great hippy gear. ps yes Sylvain Sylvain started out there...

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  8. I was just looking for some info on the posters and came across your blog. I have both hanging on my wall and the slob was my dad Paul Sigenlaub. Sadly he passed away 2 years ago.

    He always had great stories to tell about the Different Drummer days... all their pictures and stuff saved was unfortunately ruined in a fire shortly after they sold the store, so if anyone has pictures from that time I would love to see them.

    Thanks -- Yanna (yanna@sigenlaub.com

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  9. Drew-
    For years and years, this poster hung in our rehearsal space while working on songs for our band, The Immigrants. It sat behind my Gretsch drum-kit.
    I tried to be The Different Drummer.

    Now I've gone and written a short satire inspired by this same poster, but I looked and looked and could not find it anywhere...

    Unfortunately, all I could find was a photo of my brother Bill holding his Rickenbacker guitar - in the background you can see The Different Drummer Poster. See http://www.theimmigrants.com >gallery

    Drew, can I have permission to download this image of The Different Drummer for my sure-to-be-rejected-satire to TNY?

    Rodney Dangerfield's Tombstone: There goes The Neighborhood!

    Thanks for posting this memorable image!

    Dan Sheridan
    Writer/inept drummer The Immigrants.

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  10. Drew-
    For years and years, this poster hung in our rehearsal space while working on songs for our band, The Immigrants. It sat behind my Gretsch drum-kit.
    I tried to be The Different Drummer.

    Now I've gone and written a short satire inspired by this same poster, but I looked and looked and could not find it anywhere...

    Unfortunately, all I could find was a photo of my brother Bill holding his Rickenbacker guitar - in the background you can see The Different Drummer Poster. See http://www.theimmigrants.com >gallery

    Drew, can I have permission to download this image of The Different Drummer for my sure-to-be-rejected-satire to TNY?

    Rodney Dangerfield's Tombstone: There goes The Neighborhood!

    Thanks for posting this memorable image!

    Dan Sheridan
    Writer/inept drummer The Immigrants.

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  11. yes, you certainly have permission.

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  12. Awesome, many thanks Drew!
    I had the honor of meeting Sid Caesar long ago working at Nathan's on Central Ave in Yonkers - best job I ever had... best benefit - free hot dogs each night. What the hey!

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  13. I remember you Billy Rowe, I worked there around 1970-71. Are you in touch with anyone else like Chris or Phil Saks? Contact me on Facebook

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  14. I have a copy of the "same old shit" poster and am ready to sell it. It has old tape marks on the corners and a taped tear on top, otherwise in good condition. Anyone know what its worth, or want it ?

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