Seven years ago, I was standing outside the Bug Jar in Rochester dow on the avenue smoking. It was September.
Talking to to a man I know about music. He started kickin’ me some stories about when Johnny Thunders pulled into Rochester.
I fell in love with Johnny’s playing as a teen spinning Dolls records. His guitar playing emobidied every element of his seedy junked-out downtown demeanor. The way he slurred his solos and those giant fuck you chords crashing out the code.
So the story goes like this: Just before he went down to New Orleans where he ODed he stopped off in Rochester.
This tune “Critics Choice” he cut with one of our local greats the Chesterfield Kings backing him. The Kings had covered the New York Dolls’ classic take on the tune “Pills” on the album The Berlin Wall of Sound. Critics Choice got released looking like a weird Japanese import, supposedly to get around problems with his estate.
My friend said he saw Johnny knock off a drunken acoustic gig and score the methadone that mighta done him in before splitting the flower city.
This tune along with his other last demos like the song Disappointed In You are a few of the great what ifs in rock and roll.