Save CBGB's by buying chocolate

Cbgbboxpins1Call it chocolate for CB's or an odd East-West partnership. Chocolate Bar, a three-year-old chocolate shop in the West Village of New York City, is selling commemorative truffles, trinkets and snack bars to raise money for the legendary East Village hole-in-the-wall, CBGB's, which for months has been battling its landlord in court over back-due rent. The landlord, a non-profit that serves the homeless called the Bowery Residents' Committee, claims that club owner Hilly Kristal owes more than $75,000 in rent due to a bookkeeping mix-up. Kristal says he has the money but won't pay until the club's future lease is secured. The current lease expires in August and Kristal says the BRC wants to nearly double the monthly rent to about $40,000, which he says he can't afford. By holding the $75,000 in escrow, he's hoping to negotiate a lower rent. Meanwhile, Kristal has legal bills to pay. Enter Chocolate Bar, which will fork over the proceeds from its CB's-themed offerings. The truffles and trinkets (key chain, stickers, etc.) come in a brown box stamped with CB's logo that also includes a "postage-paid petition" to save the club. CB's also is planning a month of benefit shows in July that will feature big names who got their start in the narrow den of noise. AdFreak, whose former band, Happyland, used to play there on not-so-coveted Tuesday nights, also is doing its part, holding a lighted Bic to salute the house that Joey Ramone (and Deborah Harry, David Byrne, Eddie Vedder, etc.) built. 

—Posted by Andrew McMains

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