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Ian MacKaye's Surprise 50th Birthday Party Looks Like A Lot Of Post-Punk Fun

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IAN MACKAYE
Ian MacKaye greets well-wishers at his surprise 50th birthday party. | WTOP/Mina Devadas

WASHINGTON -- Legendary D.C. musician Ian MacKaye's surprise 50th birthday party "was like all the D.C. punks paying tribute to the Don Corleone of the D.C. scene," an attendee told WTOP's Neal Augenstein.

The party -- thrown by MacKaye's wife and fellow musician Amy Farina and by Jeff Nelson, a musician and co-founder, with MacKaye, of Dischord Records -- took place this weekend at Saint Stephen & Incarnation Church in Columbia Heights. Guests at Saturday's event were served vegetarian food, soft drinks and cakes the size of 7-inch records, reports Augenstein:

"They'd prepared 50 cakes for Ian - each the size of a 7-inch record," says the insider. 7-inch records were the format of MacKaye's bands' first releases.

Guests included fellow musicians and members of the 70s and 80s punk scene, many who hadn't seen each other in more than 20 years.

A DJ played music for guests until MacKaye's arrival. Bands performing included MacKaye's brother Alec and Minor Threat guitarist and bassist Brian Baker and Brendan Canty, who played with MacKaye in Fugazi.

Washington City Paper's Jonathan Fischer reports on the party's other musical acts, which included Ted Leo, Kid Congo Powers, Chain and the Gang and Mary Timony, with Ian Svenonius DJing.

CORRECTION: This post has been updated to reflect the correct spelling of Augenstein's first name.