If you have bought the “Party Monster” documentary, then you probably have watched the extra documentary about Nelson Sullivan, one of the very first vloggers, way before Blossom and the invention of the “selfie” or Youtube. Nicknamed “The Video Vampire”, Sullivan videotaped the gay night life of NYC in the 1980’s. The end of this film is pretty sad because you see how many people died young from drug overdoses or AIDS.
Nelson Sullivan recorded his video using a VHS portable camera and deck until 1987 and then with a handheld 8mm camcorder. Nelson lived in a large townhouse at 5 Ninth Avenue in the Meatmarket area of New York City and his houseguests over the years included Lady Bunny, RuPaul, Larry Tee, Michael Alig and the Club Kids, Sylvia Miles, Michael Musto, Albert Crudo, John Sex, and his dear friend the tortured transvestite Christina. Nelson’s videos span across Downtown NYC from the eccentric performances at the Pyramid Club to the production numbers at the Limelight and Palladium. Nelson’s friendships with the emerging artists of that day like RuPaul, Deee-lite, Scott Wittman & Marc Shamen give Nelson’s videos an intimacy that allows the viewer an in-crowd look at the past.