Remember the days when the early history of Milwaukee’s punk scene was grossly undocumented and uncelebrated? Milwaukee Record remembers. Happily, those days are long gone. The last five years or so have seen an explosion of websites, books, documentaries, and other media dedicated to keeping the old-school flame alive: MKE Punk; the “Lest We Forget” concert; an oral history of the scene called The Cease Is Increase; an upcoming oral history of Die Kreuzen called The Crossing; etc. Add to that list Taking The City By Storm: The Birth Of Milwaukee’s Punk Scene, an in-the-works documentary that promises a “slice-of-life” look at the city’s burgeoning punk, new wave, and alternative music scene from 1975 to 1985.
Directed by Doug LaValliere (ex-Prosecutors) and produced by Judy Simonds and Clancy Carroll (ex-“Clancy Carroll’s Kookie Corner” columnist for Milk Magazine), Taking The City By Storm will narrow its focus on “the ups and downs of the early pioneers of the scene during those exciting and turbulent years,” and explore “a deep-rooted Midwestern blue collar work ethic [that] influenced club owners and musicians, [and] lead to the prolific production of DIY 45s and LPs.” The crew has already talked to notable figures like former Starship owner Kenny Baldwin and former Zak’s owner Damian Zak, and will be interviewing musicians and others throughout the summer.
Have some pictures or (even better) video or film from the early days of Milwaukee’s punk scene? The filmmakers would love to hear from you, and can be contacted via the film’s Facebook page. Taking The City By Storm is slated for a 2017 release. In the meantime, check out a teaser trailer below.