Todd Pendu Says Yes!: An interview with the man behind Pendu Org and NY Eye and Ear

Perhaps we needed a publication like Showpaper to gather all of the evidence on one page, but we can sense it just by keeping our ears peeled when wandering around the industrial waterfront of North Brooklyn at night: more and more young people in New York are taking the city’s musical culture into their own hands, booking the artists they want to see in buildings that condo developers never cared about anyway and eschewing the institutionalized age discrimination that keeps people who can’t drink away from live music. And the increased police crackdown on semi-legal concert venues (founded, apparently, on completely wrongheaded suspicions of weapon and drug possession, in addition to under-age drinking) doesn’t seem to be stopping anyone. New all-ages performances spaces still seem to be cropping up every month, sometimes attracting critical masses in the hundreds, and upstart show promoters looking to realize their unique artistic visions are practically ubiquitous. We might even call it a new chapter in the city’s cultural history if some of the people who built it with their own hands were willing and able to articulate it as such–and to explain how it might cohere as a generational worldview. With Brooklyn curator Todd Pendu, founder of the first large-scale festival devoted exclusively to grassroots cultural production in New York, we may very well have our man.

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