Every time I catch up on the digests in my "World Class Rock" folder I swear I'm going to keep up with this group better. And then I look again and there's a week or more piled up. Abject apologies for my late response.
The conversation about a month ago about The Golden Bear in Huntington Beach
brought back some memories for me, of the building and the neighborhood anyway. I grew up and still live in downtown HB (an old high school friend likes to give me a hard time for still having the same phone number I did then), walking distance from where it used to be. One regret I have is that The Golden Bear closed before I was old enough to attend a concert there. I had been looking forward to it; I remember seeing the names of all kinds of performers I would have loved to have seen at the time. I always liked the mural of famous musicians on the side of the building - I think it was by Wyland ( the guy who does all the whales).
When they built the godawful buildings that are there now (that are supposed to look like lighthouses, but you can't even see them from the ocean) there was originally a venue in the back (under the movie theaters). I think it was even called the The New Golden Bear, but I'm not sure. The original bear sculpture and the columns that were topped with sculptures of poultry framed the doors, painted as they used to be when attached to the original building. Piss poor planning; you could hear the music during the movies upstairs and of course the neighbors in the condos next door complained about the noise. It didn't last long. Having lived in Huntington Beach most of my life, I've come to the conclusion they do stuff like this on purpose when there's some kind of a business they want to get rid of. And I agree with Shep, it was a tragedy what the city did to downtown - but the HB City Council was ever thus. They were practically drooling at the thought of a Walmart coming to town.
It was replaced by a pool hall, quieter, and the decorations were still there, but painted terra cotta to match the rest of the building.
My kids and I took a walk downtown and out to the end of the pier the other night, and on the way back, I thought I'd walk by there and snap some pics of the sculptures, just to show you guys what was left of the Golden Bear. As far as I knew they were still there. That side of the building gets very little foot traffic, and I swear any businesses situated there are cursed - they never last very long. I got out my camera, walked under the escalator, turned corner....and was horrified to see the pool hall had been replaced by what appeared to be a real estate office (probably the only kind of business the city really approves of) and Curves studio. I wonder what happened to the sculptures?
About the only original thing left down there is Perq's - I've never really been in there, not really being the bar type, but I'm glad to know it still exists. I hear interesting things coming out when I walk by, but I always seem to have kids with me, so I can't go in.
And Jeanne, yes, I think Lucky John's Two is still there, if it's the one at Beach and Yorktown. I used to work across the street at the Carl's Jr., a couple of decades ago. Three and Four are farther up Beach Bvld, or at least they used to be.
Wanted to post this last night, but my boys were hogging the computer playing Cartoon Network games. It's past Wednesday, but:
NP - WinAmp is shuffling between the last disk of Les Miserables - International Cast and Yoko Kanno/Cowboy Bebop MP3s on my flash drive
ND - a large mug of Trader Joe's Sencha Green Tea (been trying to drink more green tea lately)
NE - a Ginger PeopleTM
Ginger Chew - love 'em, but since some recent dental work, man, do they stick to my teeth!
As ever, vicariously enjoying all the recent concert reviews, and you guys exposing me to new music.
This is a group for listeners of a now-defunct L.A. radio station, started by a former DJ. However, they're open to new members and they discuss a wide range of music and concerts. A few members were formerly in the music or radio biz and it's neat to get their insider view on things...
Click to join worldclassrock