Tuesday, July 25, 2017

NW Drunk Punk History Volume One

"The Infamous Kitsap Ferry Riot" animated documentary and graphic novel.

The Teen Dance Ordinance of 1985 was put in place to keep underage kids away from organized "adult" events like music venues and dance clubs where they could be subject to sex drugs and rock&roll and other dangers of being a teenager. No one under the age of 21 could go to a show in Seattle unless it was a church sanctioned event.

What this meant was that all ages shows became underground events. The ordinance allowed cops to come in and shut down any shows where underage kids could get in. In January 1986 at Gorilla Gardens in Fremont, the Circle Jerks and Dehumanizers were playing a show. The club was overcrowded and locals called the police and fire department. The show was shut down and the kids were exiting the area, but apparently not quick enough for the police. Cops started going after the show-goers and roughing them up. Angry kids began throwing snowballs at police. Some kids threw bricks at the cops that were attacking them, that's when the Riot Police were called in.

The next day local conservative asshole and KIRO 7 news commentator Lou Guzzo presented an editorial on the news aimed at local teen punks. He urged teens to quit causing trouble and find a nice hobby like hiking or coin collecting... y'know, something respectable.

Umm, yeah right.

The Dehumanizers answered Lou's editorial with a song called "Kill Lou Guzzo." It was an anthem of sorts that sampled Lou's asshole commentary, released as a 7" ep on local Subcore Records. The Dehumanizers were sued by Lou Guzzo and KIRO. Imagine a lawyer giving several 16 and 17 year olds an official Cease and Desist letter. WTF?

Since all ages shows were rare in the Seattle city limits, Natasha's night club over in Bremerton became a haven for all ages thrash metal & punk rock shows. One night in October 1987 after GBH and the Accused played at Natasha's, everyone was heading back to Seattle aboard the M/V Kitsap when things got outta control.

Tensions rose after two overzealous "rent-a-cops" arrested a couple punks for something stupid. Pissed off showgoers chanted "Kill the cops! Kill the cops!" as the kids were taken into custody.

Needless to say, the situation got way out of control and punks started destroying the ferry while the rent-a-cops locked themselves inside a broom closet, scared for their lives.

Remarkably, there were only a few arrests. And 20,000 dollars damage to the M/V Kitsap.