Posted by themusicsover on August 28, 2010
September 23, 1931 – August 28, 2007
Hilly Kristal with Little Steven
Opened in 1973, Hilly Kristal’s CBGB became the epicenter of the punk and new wave movement thanks to his early bookings of such acts as Blondie, Talking Heads, New York Dolls, Patti Smith, Television and the Ramones. After moving to New York City after serving in the Marines, Kristal became manager of the storied Village Vanguard jazz club where he booked such acts as Miles Davis. In 1968, he co-founded the Central Park’s Schaefer Music Festival which, over the next decade, hosted the likes of the Who, Led Zeppelin, Bruce Springsteen, the Doors and Aerosmith. In 1973, he opened CBGB – OMFUG, which stood for “Country, BlueGrass, Blues and Other Music For Uplifting Gormandizers.” He closed the club during a much publicized rent dispute in 2006. Hilly Kristal died of lung cancer at the age of 75.
Posted in Club Owner, New Wave, Punk, Rock | Tagged: Aerosmith, Blondie, Bruce Springsteen, Hilly Kristal, Led Zeppelin, Little Steven, Miles Davis, New York Dolls, Patti Smith, Talking Heads, Television, The Doors, The Ramones, the who | Leave a Comment »
Posted by themusicsover on August 14, 2010
August 13, 1917 – August 14, 2005
Esther Wong was a Chinese immigrant who landed in Los Angeles in 1949. By the mid ’70s, Wong and her husband were running Chinese restaurant that presented a Polynesian floor show in L.A.’s Chinatown. When business started to slow down by the end of the decade, Wong reluctantly allowed a local promoter to start booking local punk bands on her stage. At the time, most of the city’s venues were banning such acts. The promoter and Wong soon parted company and Wong started bringing music she enjoyed – the more pop leaning new wave. In 1985, the club was seriously damaged in a fire and within a few years, Wong opened Madame Wong’s West in Santa Monica where she continued building her reputation as the “Godmother of Punk.” The list of acts that played Madam Wong’s during their early years includes Guns ‘N Roses, Black Flag, Blondie, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Oingo Boingo, Fear, the Ramones, the Go-Gos, and the Police. Esther Wong died of emphysema on August 14, 2005, the day after her 88th birthday.
Posted in Club Owner, New Wave, Punk | Tagged: Black Flag, Blondie, Esther Wong, Fear, Guns N Roses, Madam Wong's, Oingo Boingo, The Go Gos, The Police, The Ramones, The Red Hot Chili Peppers | Leave a Comment »
Posted by themusicsover on August 13, 2010
Charley Sherwood Cryer
September 2, 1926 – August 13, 2009
Photo by Christopher Gray
Along with partner Mickey Gilley, Sherwood Cryer owned the Pasadena, Texas honky-tonk, Gilley’s which became world-renowned thanks to the hit 1980 film Urban Cowboy, starring John Travolta and Debra Winger. Cryer discovered Gilley performing in a local club and convinced him to open up the club in 1971. With Gilley on stage, cold Lone Star beer, and several mechanical bulls, the club helped launch a pop-culture phenomenon that was second only to disco less than a decade earlier. During its heyday, the bar’s stage featured some of the biggest names in country music. Gilley, himself becoming one of those stars, thanks in part to Cryer’s business savvy. When the Urban Cowboy filmmakers wanted to recreate the bar on a sound stage, it was Cryer who convinced them to film the now-famous scenes right there in the club. After the movie’s release, Gilley’s became one of the biggest tourist attractions in Texas. Unfortunately, the club’s new popularity drove away the regulars, and eventually caused the break-up of Cryer and Gilley’s partnership and the closure of the bar. The building burned down in 1989 in what was ruled arson. Sherwood Cryer passed away at the age of 81. Cause of death was not immediately released.
Posted in Club Owner, Country | Tagged: Debra Winger, John Travolta, Mickey Gilley, Sherwood Cryer | 2 Comments »
Posted by themusicsover on August 12, 2010
Rashied Ali (Born Robert Patterson)
July 1, 1935 – August 12, 2009
Born into a musical family, jazz drummer Rashied Ali began to come into his own after moving to New York City in his late 20s. Within a short time, he was playing behind the likes of James Blood Ulmer, Pharoah Sanders, and eventually John Coltrane. He played on Coltrane’s final recordings. Ali went on to become one of world’s highest regarded avant garde jazz musicians. During the ’70s he opened a Ali’s Alley, a popular jazz club in New York while continuing to play with the likes of Don Cherry and Bill Laswell. Ali continued to play and record up until his passing on August 12, 2009. He died after a heart attack during heart surgery.
Thanks to reader James Dean for the assist
Posted in Club Owner, Jazz, Musician | Tagged: Bill Laswell, James Blood Ulmer, John Coltrane, Pharoah Sanders, Rashied Ali | Leave a Comment »
Posted by themusicsover on August 10, 2010
February 20, 1950 – August 10, 2007
A man of many hats, Tony Wilson is best remembered as co-owner of Factory Records, home the one-time home of Joy Division, New Order and OMD. He also owned The Hacienda, which became the epicenter of the Manchester music scene of the late ’80s and early ’90s. Before his foray into music, Wilson was a journalist and BBC television peronaility, most notably hosting So It Goes and After Dark. Suffering from advance stages of renal cancer, Wilson, age 57, died of a heart attack in a Manchester hospital.
Posted in Club Owner, Journalist, Manager, Record Label | Tagged: Joy Division, New Order, OMD, Tony Wilson | Leave a Comment »