The very first issue of Gambit featured ads from such familiar local businesses as Adler's, Tipitina's, Le Bon Temps Roule, the Maple Leaf ("On Our Jukebox — Ragtime, Dixieland"), Rubenstein Brothers (now Rubensteins), Arnaud's and some hippie-looking joint called the Whole Food Co. (which would be swallowed up by Austin, Texas-based Whole Foods Market in 1988). Even much of the music was familiar: For the month of December 1980, Tipitina's featured Marcia Ball, Li'l Queenie, the Neville Brothers, Dr. John, and the Radiators.
But some things have changed a lot in the last three decades. WWIW 1450 AM (now WBYU, Radio Disney) promised a lineup of "Sinatra • Streisand • Basie • Manilow • Dorsey • Carpenters." WGSO News-Talk 1280 (now WODT, a gospel station), featured Dr. Jane Stennett, a precursor to radio shrinks like Dr. Laura. And Mushroom Records had five of-the-moment recordings on sale, in your choice of "LP or tape": Barbra Streisand's Guilty, Bruce Springsteen's The River, Rockpile's Seconds of Pleasure, Cheap Trick's All Shook Up and Boz Scaggs' Hits!.
You want to talk cheap? Gambit had bargains galore. A Sony Trinitron TV at Alterman Audio was "only $533" for 19 inches of viewing pleasure, and Overseas Motors on Canal Street was offering the subcompact Le Car for the low, low price of $4,295.