Private school go-go goes public
“Decisions, decisions” tweeted DGN20. “[O]mg im tryin to decide b/t those too,” echoed Kayynicolee.
It was a May 1, a Saturday night, and area teens faced a tough choice: stay in and watch Floyd Mayweather and “Sugar” Shane Mosley duke it out on HBO or hit a Northwest D.C. go-go to see X.I.B. and ABM. As it turned out, those who chose the go-go over the fight actually ended up getting a taste of both.
According to police, 300-400 kids had to be turned away from the packed go-go, and three people in the surrounding area were robbed for their tickets. No one was seriously hurt, but according to an e-mail from D.C. Police Assistant Chief Diane Groomes, at least one robbery victim was beaten. The Fire Department and police were deployed to handle the overflow, and, in the end, the venue was served with a reported $2,000 bill for the drain on police resources.
The police said the organizers should’ve informed them of the event; organizers insist they took the proper precautions. Either way, it seemed no one expected such issues at an event at Tenleytown’s Georgetown Day School.
Go-go bands have played private school shows regularly since the early ’80s, but because prep school go-gos typically aren’t formally promoted, they usually more closely resemble an average high school dance than, say, a Friday night at the Tradewinds. In the case of the GDS go-go, however, kids were talking about it on online for days beforehand.
“There was Facebook, Twitter, and my friends as well,” writes Joey Green, a student at Northwest D.C.’s Field School who attended the event, in an e-mail. “People were excited for it. I was one of the many people that was excited.”
“It was at a school that doesn’t get go-gos like that, and with everybody talking, telling everybody — they didn’t expect that many people,” says Michael Harrison, who manages X.I.B. “They didn’t have as many tickets, they weren’t ready with the security…and the Internet, texting, Facebook, Twitter — that’s a big factor. A lot of people post what they’re doing that day. If you don’t know what you’re doing that night and you see everyone on Facebook is going to this spot, then everyone ends up in one place.
”Thanks to the tweets and wall posts that keep kids in D.C. connected, the only thing private about these go-gos is where they take place.
“In this day and age, with Facebook, cats will come in from Virginia, as far as Dumfries to go to something,” says Kevin “Kato” Hammond of the online publications TMOTT Go-Go and TMOTT Media. “And if they can’t get in, it’s not like they’re not going to say ‘OK, let’s go play some Madden,’ and then get in the car and go home.”
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We couldn't find anyone who went to a prep school go-go in the '80s or '90s who could talk to us on the record — they all have jobs that prohibit that! So good for them, but we still would love to hear your stories and/or see your pictures if you've got a couple of these in your past.Send us photos, videos, and any additional information about this story »
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