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NYC’s Premier Rock ‘N Roll Tours

Let music veteran Bob Sarlin show you New York City in a rockin' new way.

As a record executive, Bob helped guide the careers of such artists as Michael Jackson, Bruce Springsteen, James Brown and Don McLean.

And now Bob can help guide YOU through the rock of New York.

Rock Around the Block offers three fun-filled walking tours about the rock heroes you love most, and the places where they made music history – from Elvis to Lady Gaga! 


“Bob has such a personal passion
for both New York and rock music and his life could fill a big book. Take the tour and don’t hesitate to invite a friend who isn’t a music person. You’ll all enjoy!”
Allison R., Austin TX

trip advisor
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On your Rock Around the Block tour, Bob will share his intimate stories from his days as Director of Publicity for Epic, Polydor and Lifesong Records, and as a rock journalist covering superstars for Rolling Stone.

Bob was there the day Bruce Springsteen signed his very first record contract with Columbia Records.

He organized the press announcement of Michael Jackson’s signing to Epic Records.

(That's Bruce standing on a table at CBS, with Bob in the background.)

He publicized Sly Stone’s wedding on stage at Madison Square Garden and Patti Labelle’s groundbreaking concert at the Metropolitan Opera.

For Bob’s groundbreaking book , “Turn It Up (I Can’t Hear the Words) , he interviewed Jerry Garcia, Randy Newman, Don McLean and many others.

movie theater

I highly recommend this tour for anyone who enjoys looking at historical rock and roll sites and listening to personal stories from a person who has lived life as a contributor to the rock scene and can relate it an interesting way. TRIP ADVISOR
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Rock'n Reviews

Where Rock's Roots are Strong By Sam Blum, Upper West Side News & Community

If there are two things the former music executive is passionate about, it's the Upper West Side and rock and roll. The Upper West Sider decided to share his vast knowledge of both topics through "Rock Around The Block Tours," which he started six months ago.
Sarlin's walking tour examines the neighborhood's rich pop musical history and the contributions that it has made to rock music. The tour takes you from Pythian Temple to Strawberry Fields in Central Park, which honors the memory of John Lennon.

Sarlin said that the tour represents the entire life and death of the record business, from its prosperous glory days through to the digital era, which has virtually ended record companies. The tour stops at about a dozen musical landmarks—including the Ansonia Hotel on West 72nd Street, which was once a gay bathhouse in which Bette Midler made a name for herself singing to the men inside.
"New York is a stage on which many dreams have played out and many fascinating personalities have made great art," Sarlin said
He began his professional career in the music industry after graduating from Queens College.

at publications such as the New York Post, where he was one of the first people to write about the Grateful Dead. He also wrote for Rolling Stone, the Village Voice and other publications before becoming a publicist for Don McLean, who wrote "American Pie." He continued working in media relations until 1978. Over the years he served as director of publicity for Epic and Polydor Records.
Sarlin is also author of Turn It Up! (I Can't Hear the Words), which is "a study of what I called 'songpoets,' singer-songwriters of the 1960s and 70s who took a new, more personal view of what a song could be."

made his television debut. He was also the person who made the public announcement of Michael Jackson signing with Epic Records and wrote one of the first articles ever about Bruce Springsteen while working for CBS' Playback Magazine.
"My favorite was Bruce Springsteen. He was a really, 'what you see is what you get' type of guy," Sarlin said.However, not all of the artists he encountered were as friendly.
"I learned to not to expect someone who is a very good musician to be a very good person," he said.
The Rock Around the Block Tour ends at the Dakota building and Strawberry Fields. While there, Sarlin explained about the day that John Lennon died and how Yoko Ono later gathered contributions from many countries to build the Imagine mosaic so that there would be a shrine to the peace that Lennon dreamed of.
In addition to his Upper West Side tour, Sarlin does two other rock and roll tours, one in Greenwich Village, where Sarlin went to school, and another in Times Square.


It's all in the details -we take the time to do it right so you don't have to worry about it

  • “The tour was full of music history -- on every block     
    that we passed, Bob had a series of stories, all of  
    which really brought the area to life.  This experience 
    was so much more than just a tour.”                                      -Ted W. 36, Brooklyn NY

  • “My son and I took the Rock Around the Block Tour of the Upper West Side on a beautiful day this past Spring and we're so glad that we did. There were fascinating stories about musicians and the music business to be told on every corner. Thanks Bob!” Evan W. 66, Santa Rosa CA

  • "What made this experience so memorable is Bob's personal experiences with the people and places that he took me to see. Bob is a wealth of rock and roll knowledge and a kind soul to boot." TRIP ADVISOR
    Click for more reviews

Rock'n Roll Tours Ater that tour, New York will sing to you

Explore where Dylan, Hendrix and Blondie made history

Discover where Bob Dylan lived; Jimi Hendrix recorded, and the Ramones and Blondie burst out of the club scene and onto the world stage. zerve

Greenwich Village is where the best folk rock, punk rock and glam rock were born, and it’s all at your feet within a few fascinating blocks.

Long famous for its bohemian character, Greenwich Village continues to entrance visitors with its offbeat charm.  Walk the streets where the Grateful Dead, the Jefferson Airplane, the Allman Brothers and Eric Clapton rocked the house, Dylan wrote his most famous songs, and Jimi Hendrix’s Electric Lady changed rock forever.

Bob’s insider stories will make these shrines of rock history come alive!


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From Elvis to MTV: here's the heart of rock music

There’s no place like Times Square, the center of the world’s music industry.  zerve

Now you can see where Elvis and The Beatles made TV history, where MTV broadcasts its latest rock sensations, and where Tupac Shakur was shot five times – and lived.

Stand where young songwriters Carole King and Neal Diamond wrote hit after hit, and the best-loved songs of Elvis Presley, the Righteous Brothers and the Ronettes were created.

Discover a club so hip that Jimi Hendrix and Jim Morrison jammed into the wee hours, with John Lennon and Paul McCartney cheering them on.

Bob Sarlin will share his insider insights into the beating heart of rock n roll, and how it grew from a teenage fad to a multi-billion dollar industry. 

Come discover where the soundtrack of your life was born!

time square

From Madonna to Lennon to Gaga: where they live, love & rock

Rock'n roll romances, heartbreaking tragedy and record-shattering success: it all happened on the Upper West Side. zerve

Walk with music business insider Bob Sarlin and see where Buddy Holly, Madonna, Sting, Paul Simon and Michael Jackson have made their mark.

Visit the unlikely site of the most extravagant rock party of all time - held beneath the world’s biggest whale.

Discover where Bette Midler shimmied to fame in a gay bathhouse, and where Bill Haley and the Comets recorded the first great rock hit, inside an eccentric temple.

See where the careers of The Ramones, Police and Talking Heads were launched - and hear of the shocking fate of one of their record company’s founders.

And, of course, you'll visit The Dakota, where John Lennon lived and died, and Strawberry Fields, his living memorial.

Bob Sarlin will give you the incredible inside scoop - all within a few Upper West Side blocks!

John LennonYoko

John Lennon-Mind Games _ bebepanda


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