Press "Enter" to skip to content

Police pull plug on R&B band in Washington Square Park

BY EVERYNIGHT CHARLEY CRESPO | Leroy Webb spent a good part of the summer evenings singing rhythm and blues and playing his electric piano by the fountain in Washington Square Park. Webb now leads a quartet which, he announced, plays in the park every Thursday night.

Leroy Webb and his R&B band performing before police shut them down. (Photo by Everynight Charley Crespo)

Last Thursday night, however, two police officers came by about 10:20 p.m. and ordered the musicians to stop playing amplified music and pack their instruments. The police also shut down someone who was playing recorded music from a 4-foot-tall boom box inside the fountain, which is now dry and draws skateboarders.

Technically, performers need to obtain a permit to play amplified music in the city’s parks. The officers explained this to Webb, adding that, even if he had a permit, he could not play after 10 p.m.


  1. Going mental Going mental December 10, 2020

    And he’s god awful. Tone deaf. No talent. James Brown without a sense of actual rhythm.

    • Charley Crespo Charley Crespo December 11, 2020

      Leroy is a talented rhythm and blues singer, keyboardist and entertainer. What might be his weakness is that rather than sing tight songs, much of his arrangements are soulful grooves with a few lyrics and then extended with lots of improvisational singing and audience interaction. Sometimes it seems like the songs are overdue for a proper ending. This is party music, however, not a recital, and sometimes these grooves get people dancing in the park. We have to allow for tastes and opinions, but the reader’s description of Webb as James Brown without a sense of proper rhythm is an unfair critique. Neither Webb’s singing nor his music is in the style of James Brown’s horn section-driven funk and, contrarily, Webb relies way too much on his rhythm. I do sympathize with the neighbors, however; I usually know when Webb is performing because I can hear the volume even before I enter the park.

      • Leroy Webb Leroy Webb July 11, 2022

        Thank you Charley to other guy is just out of step and out of time, and selfish and cannot see the overall benefit of having music all of my life in my family. I intentionally use improvisation because it allows for the music to soak into the people enjoying it, this is my style and if he does not like it too bad, it’s just not for him. But for sure there are other issues that i addressed just for him, so that he can get the gist of why music is done in the first place. I’m not James Brown and I don’t want to be James Brown, but people label me with James brown because they think that all music is black, but music is not black “it’s like they all look alike, and sound alike” without proper analysis, and that’s really a poor human being with no cultural reality at all. When someone like yourself can see the difference then my job is halfway done. Appreciate the fact that I have enough courage to heal people with music and the devils don’t like that. They rather be miserable and count their stupid money, where they are so lacking in all other areas. This is what lust for money can do for people, which is why i exist in the first place. To put a cap on those things and bring the funk and the thunder. I have nothing to prove and i certainly love people and especially those young people who can get influence from what i do as an artist. I graduated college just like everyone else but i put my college training to work in the street. No one can stop the music, not even negative comments.

    • Leroy Webb Leroy Webb July 11, 2022

      You’re gawd awful, cause you don’t have no talent at all. Second I’m famous for my music but if you did the research, racist, then you would know that fact already. From the way that you commented, lets me know that you are so jealous and envious and with no talent with maybe a degree, and i have a degree too and i’ve worked in your “god,” corporate america, which is not shit to me. So go and get a life. I thought by going to college and getting a degree and working for this esteemed “corporate america, idealism was good for me and it was not” ’cause it’s stupid idiots like you who try to come in and say what you want to say with your hate and get away with it, but not this time. I did a movie and it made me famous but i’m not vain and i’m not greedy. The white people who came to enjoy the music are the heroes, not some slum white people who lives miserable all of the days of his existence and can’t see his way through. Your’re a sad excuse for a human being. What’s in you is hate and degradation and i’m addressing this in your face. Get a life. I grew up with Motown and the Church and Jesus Christ and God, so the spirit of life is inside of me. But for you, you grew up with vanity and hate and wanting to be selfish, which is why you are a loser. Talk to my feet, which is where you need to be — under me.

  2. Jane Doh Jane Doh December 10, 2020

    PLEASE make this stop. My kids can’t sleep. You can hear this band in the back rooms of apartments two blocks away. It’s not fair to residents. It must stop. Leroy Webb, if you are reading this, understand that there are hard-working people in the neighborhood that deserve peace and quiet. It is selfish. It is a nuisance. It is noise. After jackhammers in the street all day doing construction, this is just an insult and could truly make someone go mental.

    • Leroy Webb Leroy Webb July 11, 2022

      I can’t comment on the past-10 pm music loudness, but i can comment on stuck-up people who will use whatever to get people to sympathize with them. I know decibel levels ’cause i have a meter, and 80-85 decimals is not going to go into your bedroom and wake up you kids, it’s just too low. Instead of thinking that you can fool people into believing lies, you need to check with the facts. The fact is that you can’t do music, so instead you complain, and that’s just the way that it is: Most people who are jealous and don’t have no talents except maybe college degrees complain when they are jealous. I know for a fact what levels noise there is because i deal with this issue all of the time. Second, i have a degree in computer science and business, and I’ve worked at the biggest Fortune 500 companies in the world as a consultant. you need to check out my resume and see that i’m a qualified, very well-educated person. Not just someone that you want to villify or demonize. It was necessary to do music because the people were “dying” inside from the horror stories coming across the networks, and those who were reported to be dead from the coronavirus. The music healed them, and i know for a fact that you don’t have this skill set because you are too selfish to see that many people survived the negative because of the music. So what i suggest that you do is get an app with the decibel-level reading and pick out a day when music is going on in the park and go to where you live and see if the music is above 85 decibels on a weighted average of A, and watch what you answer be. In developing computer software, there is just no room for error. Let’s see what you come up with. I know the answer already and it does not pan out that your children (child) is awakened to music being done in the park. You’re just lilly white and want to have privilege, like most white people want, who will lie and cheat and do whatever to achieve this, but “I know you all to well.” Leroy Webb.

  3. Steven Hill Steven Hill December 9, 2020

    Great Job! When Will the Police End the Drug Dealing Heroin/Crack Smoking Oxy/Fentanyl Pill Dealing Mess in the Northwest Corner & West Side of the Park???

    I sent this email to New Deputy of WSQ Park:

    Good Morning,
    It has come to my attention that Park Rangers are now giving tickets to Dog Walkers for the grassy area Pet Violations. I have no problem with tickets of rule violations but I believe the Rangers are usings dog walkers as easy targets for city revenue.
    Why…because the rules of the Park are NOT being enforced equally and this is a NEW Tactic.
    Daily, dozens of Skateboarders Violate Park Rules…No One is Stopping them and they are a danger to Pedestrians. I have nothing against them… There are 3 children’s playgrounds…Teenages should have a skateboard area in the Park…I’m all for that!
    Now WORST VIOLATORS…the Northwest Corner of the Park…Drug Dealers and their Hanger-on Customers…I know the Rangers will do Nothing to stop the Drug Dealing (Police Issue)…but the Rangers deliberately avoid the area. After the complaints they show up for 2 days and disappear. There should be constant monitoring of this area by the Rangers and install a Camera as Well.There are CONSTANT DAILY HOURLY Park VIOLATIONS…Crack pipe smoking, smoking cigarettes, drinking alcohol, gambing, trashing the area (litter) and Public Urination.
    LET’S have EQUAL Enforcement of the Rules. Same Violations goes on in the Chess area as well. & Why Chess Hustlers get to Occupy a table 24/7…there should be a limit for others who of course avoid the area.
    Thanks for your time.

  4. Obiter Dicta Obiter Dicta December 9, 2020

    Many thanks to the fine officers of the 6th Precinct for enforcing the Parks Department prohibition against the use of amplifiers in Washington Square Park at any time without a permit and for the prohibition against the playing of any musical instruments after 10:00 pm. There are a great many of us who use the park in the evenings and live within blocks of the park who have been severely impacted by the deafening volume of music and piercing singing pouring out of high volume loud speakers which can be heard from blocks around. It’s not fair to others in the park who want to enjoy the park without being blasted out of it.

    • Leroy Webb Leroy Webb July 11, 2022

      You’re not serious, it’s because it’s RnB music. The white people around Washington Square Park are “not rich,” though they have lots of money but no spirit for living. They live in their little shells and try and order people around because they are investors and the like who have gotten “rich” material and sold their souls for that and lost their ability to live. This is a story about this. I’m Leroy Webb, and I have a degree in business/computer science, and I saw what money can do to those people. I’m the one leading the people with the band, because if you take music away, then you’re left with these selfish, low-down, greedy devils who have nothing better to do than to try and lie and say the music is so loud you can hear it blocks away when that’s just not possible. I’ve worked for the biggest corporate giants in the world and i know for a fact who these people are, because my career was bent on getting rich. But i rescinded this when i found that i lost my joy, and therefore took music back up. You need to get a life and stop with your ugly ways. i know you and i know who you are, nothing but greedy people who have nothing to offer society but complaints. Leroy Webb.

Leave a Reply

Mission News Theme by Compete Themes.