The Shirts are a New York-based American punk band, which was formed in 1975. The band’s early existence (1975 to 1981) was closely linked with CBGB, a music club in theBowery, but it reformed with many of the early members in 2003 and is currently active.
The Shirts had their roots in Brooklyn, where Robert Racioppo and Artie Lamonica had been playing together on and off as early as 1970. Members of the band were gradually added (including lead singer Annie Golden) in the next three years. The band got its name when Racioppo, having just broken up his existing band, asserted his desire to form a new one, and his indifference to its name: "call it anything ... shirts ... pants ... shoes ... The Shirts!" The newly named band, eventually including nine musicians, played covers at small venues in New York until, in 1975, they went to a show at CBGB featuring Patti Smith and were inspired to play there using only their original material.