Bob Cicero feeds sheets of poster board through Globe Poster's 82-year-old press, adding one color at a time: first yellow, then orange, pink, and green. While working on orange, he halts the proceedings to hand-mix the ink in a bucket.
"I don't want you to have some B.S. orange," he says to Lincoln Center creative director Martin Schott, who made the trip down from New York to observe this print run, a particularly momentous one. "I want you to have a poppin' orange."
Globe Poster—known for eye-catching, day-glo designs that promoted everyone from James Brown to Run D.M.C.—announced it was closing last year, but Lincoln Center needed posters for its annual Out of Doors Festival and placed an order at the eleventh hour. It was the last job printed by Globe, which opened in 1929.
Like all of Globe's classic work, the Lincoln Center poster was, indeed, poppin'. Designed by Cicero and Typecast Press's Mary Mashburn, who also looks on, it features Globe's trademark splashes of color and bold type. The art will also be used on signs around Lincoln Center and banners hanging over Broadway.
"I never figured my work would be hanging in Manhattan," says Cicero, with a smile. But as the job winds down, he turns pensive.
The past five years have been a struggle, full of economic challenges and health woes. His dad, Joe Sr.—who worked at Globe since 1934—died in 2009. Cicero's eyes moisten as the memories rush by.
"I think about my father and all the people who worked here," he says. "I pray that when I die and go up—or maybe go down, I don't know—and I see my dad, he says, 'Good job.' That's all I care about."
Then, Cicero goes back to the pressroom to run the final color.
It's a little past 8 p.m. on a warm summer Saturday evening and hordes of people are pouring into Power Plant Live!
One group stands out. The people headed to Rams Head Live! seem to have their own fashion sense—one out of another decade, accented by neon track suits, off-the-shoulder sweatshirts, and legwarmers. As is turns out, these '80s refugees are here to see Virginia-based band The Legwarmers, who have a dedicated fan base and play Ram's Head every few months.
Shortly after 9 p.m., the room is packed. The lights dim and, with a loud "Kick it!," the band launches into The Beastie Boys' "Fight For Your Right." From there, they move seamlessly through hits including Nena's "99 Luftballoons," complete with red balloons dropping from the rafters, and Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band's "Glory Days," which the band dedicates to recently deceased E Street Band member Clarence Clemons.
The audience ranges from twentysomethings who weren't around when the songs on the playlist topped the charts, to those in their 30s and 40s, who remember them firsthand. They sing in unison, the older ones a bit more blissful, dancing to the songs of their mulleted/Aquanetted youth, particularly on the set-closer, Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'."
Just after midnight, the venue clears out and many of the assembled head home. An intrepid few venture into the outdoor club, where a DJ plays recent hits, and give the night a 30-year fast-forward.