“It was a time of a shifting cultural landscape: the PMRC, Jesse Helms and the forces of censorship waged war on the arts, including punk, metal and hip-hop, with the likes of Judas Priest and 2 Live Crew squarely in their sights. Into those crosshairs came Michael Plumides, who’d come up through the ranks of college radio to operate Charlotte’s controversial 4808 Club.
In his memoir, KILL THE MUSIC, Plumides describes the highs and lows of running a venue, from sleazy sexual liaisons with horny patrons and butting heads with overachieving alcohol and vice agents, to backroom intrigue at the hands of a rival club owner, and the outrageous musical personalities who walked (or staggered) through the loading-dock doors of the club. Things came to a head in September, 1990, when theatrical metal maestros GWAR were booked for a high-profile, all-ages show at the 4808 – it was the opportunity local authorities had been waiting for. Not only is the book a lively read, brimming with memorable, true-life characters (Soundgarden, Bad Brains, Danzig, Corrosion of Conformity, Black Crowes, L.A. Guns, Widespread Panic, Motorhead, Megadeth, Hootie and the Blowfish), it is also a crucial snapshot of a place and time that hasn’t really been documented all that thoroughly.
When Mike Plumides opened up the 4808 Club, the circus officially came to town in Charlotte, and when he was finally forced to shut it down a few short years later, the circus pulled up stakes and left. If you ask some of the locals who still live in Charlotte, by some measures that circus has never come back.”
Fred Mills – Managing Editor – Blurt Magazine