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Delancey Street is one of the main thoroughfares of Manhattan's Lower East Side, running east from the Bowery to connect to the Williamsburg Bridge to Brooklyn. It is an eight-lane, median divided street.
Businesses range from delis to check-cashing stores to bars. Delancey Street has long been known for its discount and bargain clothing stores. Famous establishments include the Bowery Ballroom, built in 1929, Ratner's kosher restaurant (now closed), and the Essex Street Market, which was built by Mayor Fiorello La Guardia to avoid pushcart congestion on the neighborhood's narrow streets. As the Lower East Side becomes gentrified, more upscale retail and nightlife establishments have moved in.
Delancey Street is named, for James De Lancey, Sr., whose farm was located in what is now the Lower East Side.
The IND Sixth Avenue Line and BMT Nassau Street Line of the New York City Subway stop at Delancey Street – Essex Street (F J M Z trains), and the Nassau Street trains also stop at Bowery (J Z trains). The M9, M14, and M15 NYCTA buses stop on Delancey Street.
Delancey Street used to be one of the main shopping streets in the predominantly-Jewish Lower East Side. As of 2009, the neighborhood around Delancey is a mix of young professionals and artists along with working-class African Americans, Puerto Ricans, Dominicans, and Chinese. Delancey Street is considered by many to be the unofficial northern border of Manhattan's Chinatown.
From west to east, Delancey Street starts from the Bowery, intersects Chrystie Street, Forsyth Street, Eldridge Street, Allen Street, Orchard Street, Ludlow Street, Essex Street, Norfolk Street, Suffolk Street, Clinton Street, Attorney Street, Ridge Street, Pitt Street, Willett Street, Sheriff Street, Columbia Street (Bialystoker Place), Lewis Street, Baruch Drive, and Mangin Place, and ends at the FDR East River Drive. The street continues as Kenmare Street west of the Bowery.
Delancey Street In art and pop culture
Delancey Street Comic Books
Yancy Street was the home of The Thing of the Fantastic Four. Stan Lee and Jack Kirby gave an homage to Delancey street by using it as Yancy. In the Marvel Universe it crosses Tenth Avenue as seen in Fantastic Four #15 (June, 1963)
Delancey Street Movies Film and TV
The 1988 film Crossing Delancey is a romantic comedy focusing on the different shades of urban life in the area.
A 1974 episode of the TV series McCloud was titled "Shivaree on Delancey Street".
"Chrystie Delancey" is thought to be a woman's name by several characters in the 2000 film Happy Accidents, starring Vincent D'Onofrio and Marisa Tomei, until it is revealed to be a reference to the corner of Chrystie and Delancey streets.
In the 1988 Disney animated film Oliver and Company, the song sung by Dodger (Billy Joel), "Why Should I Worry", mentions the street: "One minute I'm in Central Park, then I'm down on Delancey Street."
In the 1992 Disney film Newsies, the song Carry the Banner contains the line, "Harlem to Delancey."
Delancey Street Music
Rachael Sage's 9th release in 2010 is entitled Delancey Street
The Age of Rockets mentioned Delancey Street in the track "What Story Down There Awaits Its End?" along with "Stitches To Show Something Is Missing" on their album Hannah. "Delancey Street trembles beneath/as you rise to meet the day"
The well-known song "Manhattan" by Rodgers and Hart informs: "It's very fancy/ On old Delancey/ Street, you know."
The Desi Arnaz song "Cuban Pete" (sung by Lucille Ball) features the verse "They call me Sally Sweet, I'm the Queen of Delancey Street".
The cover of Jesse Malin's solo debut album The Fine Art of Self Destruction was filmed at the Delancey Street subway station.
Regina Spektor mentions Delancey Street in her song "That Time", from the 2006 release Begin to Hope: "Hey, remember that time I found a human tooth, down on Delancey?"
DJ Kool Herc, the man widely acknowledged as the "inventor" of Hip-Hop, DJ'd his first party August 1973 in effort to raise money for his sister, Cindy Campbell, to buy back-to-school clothes from Delancey Street. As Cindy says in Jeff Chang's book Can't Stop, Won't Stop: "I was saving my money, because what you want to do for back to school is go down to Delancey Street instead of going to Fordham Road, because you can get the newest things that a lot of people don't have. And when you go back to school, you want to go with things that nobody has so you could look nice and fresh..."
In the song "Delancey Street" (1986), 80's rapper Dana Dane raps:
"Now this little story's called Delancey Street/
It's the place where clothes are bought and people meet/
Each city has a place that's quite the same/
Even though it might go by a different name."
The 1987 Sonic Youth song "Stereo Sanctity" refers to "satellites flashing down Orchard and Delancey."
Harlem rapper Cam'ron mentions it in his cover of "Weekend Girl": "Dated Nancy Niece, we did Delancey Street".
The 1996 song "Lazybones" by Soul Coughing (with lead singer Mike Doughty) refers to "Cameraman sways to remember how the eye dances, drunkenness is a hand-held scrambling down Delancey, I come stumbling".
The song "Sunken-Eyed Girl" off of the album Haughty Melodic by Mike Doughty is about a "sunken-eyed girl on Delancey Street".
The Fun Lovin' Criminals' song "South Side" contains a chorus which revolves around Delancey Street.
Delancey Street Theater
"Brighton Beach Memoirs" by Neil Simon, character JACK says "You live in a cold water flat on Delancey Street, bankruptcy is the one thing God spares you.".