The Washington, DC punk music scene of the 1980s gave birth to influential bands like Bad Brains, Minor Threat, and Fugazi. Here that era is portrayed in its purest form: an oral history by the creators themselves, including nearly two hundred photographs capturing the power and spirit of this politically progressive corner of American underground music. This stunning and intimate collection features rare images from Jim Saah, Cynthia Connolly, Bert Queiroz, and many others who documented this vibrant community. Compiled by Scott Crawford—whose critically acclaimed film Salad Days provided an unprecedented exploration into the 1980s DC punk scene—Spoke delves deeper into one of the most dynamic movements in US music history.
SCOTT CRAWFORD is a filmmaker, music journalist, and graphic designer. As a teenager, he founded Metrozine, a fanzine dedicated to the DC hardcore punk scene. In 2001, he launched Harp magazine and served as its editor-in-chief for over seven years. His documentary debut, Salad Days, played around the world and received critical accolades from the New York Times to Rolling Stone. He lives in Washington, DC. Spoke is his latest work.
This volume serves as a visual and narrative companion to Salad Days, a 2014 documentary, also by Crawford, that explores the 1980s Washington, D.C., hardcore punk scene. Like the film, the book sheds light on the ways in which the music coming out of the nation’s capital, by bands such as Bad Brains and Fugazi, served as a mode of political and economic critique.