Café Au Go Go

Art & Culture | History

Historic Venue that Helped Pioneer Free Speech in America

Cafe au go go greenwich village history

About Café Au Go Go

 & why it made the Carpe City list

This building once housed the famous Café Au Go Go. Like The Bitter End, this basement club has numerous claims to fame. One of which is that it was the first New York venue for the Grateful Dead and helped launch careers of musicians and comedians like Jimi Hendrix, Steven Stills, Cream, Jefferson Airplane, Lily Tomlin, George Carlin and more.

It was also the place where the comedian Lenny Bruce was arrested in 1964 on obscenity charges for using words that the undercover police deemed “obscene.” Lenny Bruce is now known as the man who paved the way for free speech in American comedy.

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