Premiere: Friday, March 21 at 10 p.m. ET/PT
Crime and blight in New York City were rampant in 1978. The arts scene, however, was expanding and thriving. It was a time when rich creativity and grinding poverty and drug abuse were hand in hand on the sidewalks of the Lower East side. Out of this unique and troubled time and place, emerged a legendary band and one of the best-selling albums of all time, Parallel Lines. Its music and lyrics celebrate and capture this vibrant and edgy chemistry.
At the time, the members of Blondie had two punk albums behind them and were establishing a name for themselves at the famed Lower East side club CBGB together with groundbreaking bands such as the Ramones, Television and Johnny Thunder. Then Chrysalis Records executive Terry Ellis saw them and spent a million dollars to buy out their recording contract. Needing his investment to pay off, he had to ensure that their next album was a hit. He brought in maverick Australian record producer Mike Chapman, who would help turn this crew of New York punks into world stars. The result, Parallel Lines, defined a time and place, and launched lead singer and former Playboy Bunny Debbie Harry as a superstar and fashion icon.