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View Full Version : Where was Slugs located in NYC?



Finger Poppin'
March 21st, 2003, 10:00 AM
All those who love Lee Morgan's music, knows this was club he was playing at on Feb 12, 1972 when we was killed by his common law wife.
I am wondering where about was this club?
Does anyone remember? I wonder what is there today?

Valerie
March 21st, 2003, 10:12 AM
To the best of my vague memory, it was in the East Village on 3rd Street, maybe between Avenues B and C, on the south side of the street.

Brownian Movement
March 21st, 2003, 10:36 AM
Sounds right to me. A very dark funky little club. And the Chicken Shack was just up the street.

RonF
March 21st, 2003, 10:54 AM
I think Valerie got the address right. I remember a cold night in January, 1971, hearing Joe Farrell with Elvin Jones (can't recall the bassist). My NYC friends were half afraid to even go there. Man, that little dive was cooking! Never forget it. :cool:

Usual Channels
March 22nd, 2003, 03:11 PM
Am I crazy? Isn't it still there? (Look, could be VERY WRONG, but somehow I don't think I am...)

Harold_Z
March 22nd, 2003, 05:40 PM
I think Valerie's got it right, also.

Funky little joint.

Valerie
March 22nd, 2003, 07:59 PM
Originally posted by Usual Channels
Am I crazy? Isn't it still there? (Look, could be VERY WRONG, but somehow I don't think I am...)

I am under the impression that it closed many, many years ago.

I actually met my then husband-to-be there in the mid-'60s; maybe that has something to do with my remembering the location!! :)

Mailman
March 23rd, 2003, 04:07 PM
Val is right about the location. As I recall Slugs closed shortly after the Lee Morgan killing. The place was really scary to get to because at the time the neighborhood was really really bad. frankly it was a little scary inside that place as well. As a side note my wife worked there briefly long before I met her.:cool:

Duophonic
March 25th, 2003, 08:26 PM
What the hell. Slugs has to have been the greatest place on Earth...in its demise to be replaced by NOTHING. You guys are lucky. You get to see Sun Ra and his Astro Infinity Arkestra every Monday and the rest of the week seen Lee Morgan, Hank Mobley, Larry Young, Albert Ayler, Joe Henderson, Freddie Hubbard and whoever else played there on a regular basis AND hook up with the waitresses. You guys are so lucky.

sidewinder
March 27th, 2003, 02:55 PM
Charles Tolliver's Music Inc. too !:)

brownie
March 28th, 2003, 08:14 AM
Went to Slugs pretty often when I visited New York in the mid-sixties. I don't recall the area as being dangerous at the time. Dark? yes. Crazy? yes. Dangerous? no.
The bar was on the left after you walked into the place. The bandstand was in the back. No lights (or almost), splendid music.
Lots of great memories there.
Jackie McLean and his group is among the great memories (Cecil Taylor was attending that). Also long plus ear-and-mind-shattering evenings with the Sun Ra Arkestra.
Missed Hank Mobley there on a return visit (had a good reason). I have never forgiven myself.

John Arnold
March 28th, 2003, 12:02 PM
Some background on Slugs
http://www.tribecapac.org/ljs/slugs_history.html

Valerie
March 29th, 2003, 10:08 AM
Originally posted by brownie
Went to Slugs pretty often when I visited New York in the mid-sixties. I don't recall the area as being dangerous at the time. Dark? yes. Crazy? yes. Dangerous? no.

That's my memory of the area in the sixties as well, Brownie! I would walk from my apartment on 6th Street between 1st and 2nd Avenues in the wee small hours of the morning, sometimes by myself.

Hardbop
March 29th, 2003, 12:27 PM
Originally posted by Valerie


That's my memory of the area in the sixties as well, Brownie! I would walk from my apartment on 6th Street between 1st and 2nd Avenues in the wee small hours of the morning, sometimes by myself.

So you lived on the block with all the Indian restaurants! You must have eaten well if those restaurants were there when you lived on the block.

Valerie
March 29th, 2003, 12:43 PM
Originally posted by Hardbop


So you lived on the block with all the Indian restaurants! You must have eaten well if those restaurants were there when you lived on the block.

No, Hardbop, there were no Indian restaurants on that block in the sixties! Neither were there any other restaurants on the block at that time. All we had were Ted Curson and Bill Barron. LOL!!

Chuck Nessa
March 29th, 2003, 07:29 PM
My last visit to Slugs was to hear a Bill Hardman group with (possibly) Ramon Morris on tenor. Sadly I don't remember the rhythm section.

brownie
March 30th, 2003, 01:19 AM
Slug's had opened before 1966. My first visit to New York was in 1965 and I went there a number of times. A lot of musicians were hanging there.
For those who missed the place, here is a very partial list of groupes who played the week there:
1965:
- July Charles Lloyd, then Kenny Dorham

1966:
- August Joe Henderson, Yusef Lateef, Blue Mitchell (with Junior Cook, Cedar Walton, Gene Taylor and Mickey Roker), Shirley Scott/Stanley Turrentine,

1967:
- June 28-July 2 Blue Mitchell,
- July 4-9 Jackie McLean,
- July 11-16 Archie Shepp,
- July 18-23 Art Farmer,
- August Hank Mobley Quintet (with Charles Tolliver), then Grant Green and John Patton, the
Cecil Taylor Unit, Freddie Hubbard, then Albert Ayler,
- October Hank Mobley and the Wynton Kelly trio (Cecil McBee and Jimmy Cobb), then Sonny Red (with Tommy Turrentine and Bobby Timmons).

Strange that with all this activity, no recordings surfaced except for the Charles Tolliver session and the Albert Ayler at Slug's bootlegs (the Ayler session was taped during a Sunday afternoon gig on May 1, 1966).

Yes, Valerie, the area was pretty safe in the mid-sixties. I walked from the place at 3AM or 4AM
quite a number of times and do not recall having been hassled. It was 'peace and love' then. I understand the area became rough a few years after.

Mailman
March 30th, 2003, 08:32 AM
I lived on Avenue B between 6th and 7th streets from 1969-1970. At the time the neighborhood had become very dangerous. It was infested by junkies and the peace and love days were over in alphabet city. Today the area is infested with yuppies. Almost as bad.lol:cool:

makpjazz57
March 30th, 2003, 10:29 AM
Hmmmm...OK Valerie and others familiar with the location of Slug's. Back in the late 70's/early 80's, I was still taking saxophone lessons from a musician who lived in an apartment right outside of the Holland Tunnel. I begged him to show me where Slug's used to be. At that time, he pointed out a Spanish grocery store that was the location of Slugs. So, now the 'hood is "yuppified" and all the folks who lived in that area have been displaced.

I also remember another little place around 10th or 11th at either Avenue A, B, or C called the Life Cafe - featured jazz from time to time? Anybody remember that place?

Also, was fortunate in that I was able to hear Steve Grossman, Cameron Brown, etc. at the 55 Grand Bar - assume that is no longer there?

thanks,
marla

Hardbop
March 31st, 2003, 01:26 AM
Originally posted by Valerie


No, Hardbop, there were no Indian restaurants on that block in the sixties! Neither were there any other restaurants on the block at that time. All we had were Ted Curson and Bill Barron. LOL!!

You and other denizens of the East Village also then must have walked over to the Five Spot, which had two locations; the first I believe was on Third Avenue and the second location, which I believe is more famous, was on St. Marks somewhere near Cooper Union.

That was well before my time. I moved to NYC in '92 and made my first visit to the Vanguard around '94 (to see Wynton!) and have been a regular habitue of the jazz clubs since September '90.

I remember the East Village in the 1980s being really bad when you got over to Alphabet City. You wouldn't even walk over to Avenues C & D. It looked like what Baghdad looks like now. It is beyond believe what has happened to the East Village. I remember when I first moved here I was checking out apartments in '82 and someone had one listed in the East Village and I kept walking east and the neighborhood kept getting worse and worse and I remember walking by the NYC Chapter of the Hell's Angels HQ. When the signs on the bodegas started to appear in Spanish only I said to myself "I don't think I'm interested in this apartment" and did a 180.

Valerie
March 31st, 2003, 10:06 AM
Originally posted by Hardbop


You and other denizens of the East Village also then must have walked over to the Five Spot, which had two locations; the first I believe was on Third Avenue and the second location, which I believe is more famous, was on St. Marks somewhere near Cooper Union.

What's amazing but true is that the first time I visited the original Five Spot on Third Avenue (area known then as The Bowery), I saw both Thelonious Monk and Charles Mingus appearing! That was in approximately 1961. By the time the club moved to the southeast corner of Third Avenue and St. Marks Place, it was my second home! It was in that clubroom that I first declared my love for my husband-to-be!! LOL!!

Just to give you a sense of what the times were like, my apartment was at 306 East 6th St., fifth floor walkup, standing tub in the kitchen, slept in the living room as other room was used for a closet, and rent was $53.50/mo.!! Fun days there until the apartment was robbed. Biggest loss was two winter coats (still had the tags on them) my parents had just bought me and most of my record collection (lots of Johnny Mathis and Chet Baker at the time)!! Some junkie must have been real happy!!

Valerie
March 31st, 2003, 12:31 PM
Originally posted by David Gitin
I recall seeing Walter Bishop, Jr. with Jimmy Garrison (pre-Coltrane) at old Five Spot, and great memories of Mingus with Clifford Jordan, Monk, et al. at the 'newer' one.

David, I was at the "newer" Five Spot for just about every Mingus et al. gig during the '60s!! Takes my breath away just to type that!!

liamw
March 31st, 2003, 01:33 PM
Does anyone remember a night at the St Marks Place 5 Spot when Mingus had fired most of his band & ended up playing duets with Ben Webster? Sometimes I think I just dreamt this.

Finger Poppin'
March 31st, 2003, 02:21 PM
Sad to see all these clubs are long gone, the 5 Spot, Slugs. If only someone would have thought to record some of these players when they were at Slugs or the 5 Spot.

At least the Village Vangard will never close. It is a New York Landmark. Still can see some great shows. Lou Donaldson is coming in May. I believe the Heath Brothers are there starting April 1st.

Noj
March 31st, 2003, 02:26 PM
Having never seen any of my jazz heroes live, my jealousy is palpable. Thanks for sharing these memories, everyone.:D

Hardbop
March 31st, 2003, 02:35 PM
Every year Manhattan Community College has a concert series where they feature "Lost Jazz Shrines" and book bands with some connection to the venue and they have panel discussions prior to the concert where musicians and other reminisce about the venue. Frequently people in the audience are the most elucidating with their comments and recollections. So far MCC has done series on the Half Note, the Five Spot and most recently Slugs. On one panel they had one of the original owners and the other co-owner wasn't on the panel, but was in the audience. They had given the club to someone else right before Morgan was shot. The neighborhood had deteriorated too much. One night Charlie Haden had gone there right after he got out of drug rehab and left his bass in his car. Well, the bass didn't last long in the car. He did recover his bass in a pawn shop in Harlem.

Valerie
March 31st, 2003, 09:33 PM
Originally posted by liamw
Does anyone remember a night at the St Marks Place 5 Spot when Mingus had fired most of his band & ended up playing duets with Ben Webster? Sometimes I think I just dreamt this.

I surely wasn't there that night! Do you have any idea what year that might have been?

liamw
April 1st, 2003, 09:20 AM
Originally posted by liamw
Does anyone remember a night at the St Marks Place 5 Spot when Mingus had fired most of his band & ended up playing duets with Ben Webster? Sometimes I think I just dreamt this.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------



I surely wasn't there that night! Do you have any idea what year that might have been?

* * *

Would have to have been either 1963 (after August, when I turned 18 & was allowed in) or '64. I wish I could remember more details. I would have been there for the early set. Seems to me that some of Mingus' band showed up (Roland Hanna, I think, & Danny Richmond) for the later set or sets, but I had to catch a bus back to New Jersey ...

alankin
April 1st, 2003, 12:38 PM
I have a copy of a Slugs' handbill from 1967, which lists their Sept to 1st week of Oct. concerts. For six nights each group (looks like Tuesday through Sunday) they list:

Larry Young Quartet
Albert Ayler Quintet
Lee Morgan Quintet
The Jazz Communicators featuring Freddie Hubbard, Joe Henderson, Louis Hayes
Sonny Red Quintet featuring Bobby Timmons & Tommy Turrentine

and every Monday night:
Sun Ra and His Astro-Infinity Music

Sun-Fri 9:30 pm - 4 am & Sat 8:30pm - 3 am

!!!

Hardbop
April 1st, 2003, 04:56 PM
It is funny that two of the legendary jazz clubs -- Slugs and the Five Spot -- were opened in the East Village. There isn't a jazz club over there now. No one can seem to make a go of it. The folks who own Birdland in the early 1990s tried to start a club called "Yardbird Suite" right on Third Avenue/The Bowery between E. 5th & E 6th Streets I believe. It was on the East Side of the street. They couldn't make a go of it and it wasn't open for much more than a year or two. I did get a chance to see some swingin' music. I know I caught ex-Messenger Duck Harrison, the late (and great) Jaki Byard and the TanaReid band at that venue, among others.

It was a great place to go because no one was ever there so it was quiet. It was a full restaurant to. The Birdland owners must have taken a real bath on this one.

I think the Tin Palace was gone by the time I moved to New York or it was certainly long gone by the time I caught the jazz jones. I heard this was on Lafayette around Houston, but I don't know exactly where. Stanley Crouch ran this place, for awhile anyway. There is a poster of someone -- I forget who -- who gigged at the TP hanging on the stairwell of the Jazz Gallery.

Mailman
April 1st, 2003, 06:28 PM
I used to go to the Tim Palace a lot in the late seventies. Heard a lot of great music there. Didn't realize Crouch had anything to do with the place. Also I recall the Five Spot reopenig for a while in that same period on St. Marks off Third Ave. Heard Ornette there and I think maybe Jackie Mclean and some others. So long ago and the memory is not so great anymore. I'm another one with CRS disease-can't remember stuff.:cool:

kdd
April 2nd, 2003, 12:06 PM
The Tin Palace was on the corner of 2nd street and the Bowery (northeast corner) , nice club, heard a lot of good music there. Must have closed in the early '80s. Crouch hung there a lot (this was in his avant-garde days) but I don't recall if he had anything to do with the booking.

Hardbop
April 2nd, 2003, 01:13 PM
I think Crouch actually managed the Tin Palace. Once, I heard, to break up a fight Crouch, in lieu of fighting the guy, challenged the guy to a footrace and reportedly they did just that. I will have to walk by the block to see what is on that corner now. I don't remember the Tin Palace, but I wasn't a jazz fan back in '82 when I moved to the city. You wouldn't believe how gentrifed that area has become.

pmichael
January 1st, 2007, 12:56 AM
I worked as a waitress at Slug's in the late sixties. What was then a rather grueling job I now look back on as a great gift. The place was on 3rd between B and C. I lived on 4th and B and walked home in the wee hours every night for over a year without incident. A different world. Sigh.

erling
January 1st, 2007, 09:13 AM
There's a bootleg out there from March 31, 1970 with Mingus, Dannie, Jimmy Vass and Charles McPherson on altos, Bill Hardman on trumpet.
At the time I was staying with Booker Ervin on East 13th Street. I was attending Berklee in those days and my friend Mick (an alto player) and I wanted to catch Mingus at Slug's before going back to Boston after school recess, which we had spent with Booker and his family. Booker didn't want us to walk over there in the middle of the night, looking very out of place and even carrying our horns. We insisted, couldn't let this opportunity of catching Mingus live pass us by. Mingus had just been back about half a year from his hiatus away from music. Booker looked very worried, and cautioned us. So we bid the family goodnight and walked, following his instructions, down the darkening and more and more desolate streets, trying to look as tall, vicious and self-confident and belonging there, as we could. We finally got there, no mishaps, 3rd Street between Ave’s B & C, but kind of scared. 11 pm-ish we entered Slug's. Only a few patrons there, so we got a good table to the left of the passageway with a clear view of the petite stage. We ordered our standard two cokes (all we could afford) and waited. I had been arranging my Norelco tape-recorder under my jacket with the microphone just inside the left arm sleeve before we entered the joint. I just HAD to record that event (I used to carry this cheap, lo-fi thing with me all the time, recording everybody I would get a chance to, like Thad & Mel at the Vanguard. Cats like Jimmy Knepper and Eddie Bert, very good friends, knew what I was up to but didn’t seem to mind. Just laughed and understood – but Mingus? I knew he would probably kick my butt and be furious. I was always very discreet about it, you can imagine). I had my back towards the entrance, my left arm resting on the top of my trombone case, relaxed like, and we were waiting for the band to arrive for quite a while, when all of a sudden Mick looked all intense, bent over with his eyes focused behind me, whispering: “There’s Mingus!” I looked over my right shoulder and there he was, squat, imposing body, carrying Dannie’s trap-case raised above his head. What a sight! Eventually they were all there, set up and finally ready for what turned out to be three long sets.
Mingus looked heavy, tired, and beat. Hadn’t seen him since his Copenhagen concert (with Dolphy – the sextet) in April of 1964 when he was slim, ferocious and PRESENT! Mingus only played a few solos, but caught fire a couple of times. Most of the time he seemed kind of not really there. Dannie however was everywhere, on fire, taking care of business for his old boss. (After getting back to Boston I wrote a piece of music, featuring Mick’s alto, for Mingus, inspired by the experience at Slug’s, called The Tortured Heavyweight, which has been part of my repertoire ever since and which I’ve recorded twice with my quintets (1970 and 1999)).
At one point, in the third set, Bill Hardman eyed my trombone case, came over to our table and asked me if I’d like to sit in! I was in shock! There I was, microphone in hand recording Mingus, ready to be caught red-handed. I’d always dreamt of playing with Mingus and here was my great chance . . . what to do? Run to the bathroom, getting rid of the darned thing . . . a million thoughts raced through my mind . . . I finally had to excuse myself, desperately mumbling something about being on vacation and out of shape . . . Bill Hardman looked at me, a little hurt, uncomprehending, like he was disappointed and irritated that I would turn down the offer to sit in. Then he walked back on stage. Man, did I feel like an idiot, at the same time relieved (coward!) ‘cause those cats would have eaten me alive. I mean, I was not a bad trombone player, but so not in their league, back then. Still to this day my stomach ties into a knot thinking back at this. How could I pass up such a chance? Would have been fantastic - and served me right - to be eaten alive my Mingus and his band. Did I blow it! –
- Later on, in 1972, I got a second chance to play with Mingus, who was appearing at the famed Montmartre in Copenhagen. He was touring with a sextet, but Bobby Jones and Lonnie Hillyer had split, leaving McPherson as the sole horn. Knowing my infatuation with Mingus’ music, the arrangers called me to play with Mingus that same evening. This time I didn’t turn the possibility down. I was scared, but prepared. A few hours before the scheduled concert the arrangers called me back. Mingus had realized that his old pal from the West Coast, Dexter Gordon, who lived in Copenhagen then, was free, so he wanted to play with him. Bummer! I of course attended the concert, let down, but also very happy for my old pal Dexter and Mingus enjoying playing together again. Dexter of course didn’t know the music, but it was great anyways. -
Skip to the late nineties, I’m in Paris browsing through Mingus cds at Fnac when I see two cds, Mingus at Slug’s - what? I recognize the titles, the personnel, the date even. Those are my recordings, or somebody else was sneak-recording that evening too. I bought the cds and checked them out at home – they most certainly contained my recordings, down to the tape-hiss. Never leaking any bootleg recordings I did of my heroes, I remembered letting one dude having a copy of this in exchange for some unavailable Jimmy Knepper. We trusted each other completely to never pass anything on to anybody else. However turned out I should never have trusted this guy (luckily it was the only time I ever did let anybody have copies of my bootlegs). At the same time Sue Mingus was working on her commendable Revenge program of officially re-releasing bootleg recordings of Mingus and wanted to know about other bootlegs not known to her. So I promptly emailed her, telling her about these recordings – and my unfortunate involvement in them, to alert her. I never heard from her, though.
As a document of the Slug’s and Mingus’ music at the time, they are invaluable and probably still ‘out there’.

Valerie
January 1st, 2007, 12:44 PM
erling: thank you so much for sharing those interesting vignettes. enjoyed them enormously! happy 2007 to you.

valerie bishop

justHerb
January 1st, 2007, 04:23 PM
Someone mentioned The Half Note...I work across the street and have been in the deli that's there now many times. I was actually in there getting coffee on the morning of 9/11. Every time I go in there I think, "if these walls could talk." Being in the Music Business it's cool to be able to point out the window of our conference room and say see that deli down there, it used to be the Half Note.

David D. Gitin
January 1st, 2007, 05:22 PM
Looking back on The Half Note, I'd say some of the best nights of my life were spent there listening to Ben Webster, Lucky Thompson, Sonny Rollins, Lennie Tristano (with Konitz and Marsh), John Coltrane, Zoot & Al, Terry-Brookmeyer, et al.

Valerie
January 1st, 2007, 05:37 PM
Looking back on The Half Note, I'd say some of the best nights of my life were spent there listening to Ben Webster, Lucky Thompson, Sonny Rollins, Lennie Tristano (with Konitz and Marsh), John Coltrane, Zoot & Al, Terry-Brookmeyer, et al.

we may have already covered this in previous threads, but do you remember that wild and crazy waiter, al, from those years at the half note?!?

i have vivid memories of seeing monk dancing his dance on that raised stage!!

David D. Gitin
January 1st, 2007, 05:49 PM
Al was not a man one forgets, especially his Paladin-like fastest-draw-in-the-east manipulation of his lighter if someone even began to raise an unlit cigarette anywhere in the room!

Valerie
January 1st, 2007, 06:29 PM
Al was not a man one forgets, especially his Paladin-like fastest-draw-in-the-east manipulation of his lighter if someone even began to raise an unlit cigarette anywhere in the room!

:lol: and then immediately after the lightning-fast draw and lighting of your cigarette was his line, "sorry ya hadda wait"!!!

David D. Gitin
January 1st, 2007, 06:39 PM
Yes, yes, yes

cdog
January 1st, 2007, 08:50 PM
This is a great posting of some fine memories long gone............that you one and all.

Chris A
January 1st, 2007, 08:52 PM
I used to spend a lot of time at the Half Note and my recollection of this waiter is that he pulled a lit match from inside his jacket.

Valerie
January 1st, 2007, 08:56 PM
I used to spend a lot of time at the Half Note and my recollection of this waiter is that he pulled a lit match from inside his jacket.

i think you're right, chris!! :light:

David D. Gitin
January 1st, 2007, 09:12 PM
I remember it as a lighter on a long chain worn at his waist.
(but I suppose we could do Rashomon changes on almost anything,
"ah yes...I remember it well")


With reference to Slug's, although I heard some fine music there (Jackie McLean, Ornette's trio, Sun Ra), I enjoyed the Half Note much more

rico martinez
January 4th, 2007, 02:17 PM
I've got to say I've really enjoyed reading this thread. I went to have a look at Charlie Parker's old apartment a couple of years ago, and if I'd known of the location of Slugs I would've gone and had a look at that too. At least took a picture of the street. Pathetic no?
It still doesn't look all that salubrious of an area even now, alphabet city. It must've been grim in the 70's. A really great thread though.

justHerb
January 4th, 2007, 04:22 PM
http://i124.photobucket.com/albums/p31/justherb/DSC01943.jpg

The Half Note, NYC
Spring & Hudson

cdog
January 4th, 2007, 10:03 PM
Thx for the Half Note Pic~!!!

marxmarvelous
January 5th, 2007, 12:20 PM
The Half Note, NYC
Spring & Hudson

That's directly across the street from the Jazz Gallery, right? On the other side of Hudson.

David D. Gitin
January 5th, 2007, 12:28 PM
The club Jazz Gallery was around the corner form the old Five Spot, and down the block from the newer one. I recall hearing Miles Davis with J.J. Johnson, Hank Mobley (+ Sonny Stitt sitting in), Kelly, Chambers, Cobb. Opening for them was Teddy Wilson.

justHerb
January 5th, 2007, 01:01 PM
That's directly across the street from the Jazz Gallery, right? On the other side of Hudson.

Yes. This picture is a year and half or so old. They mention the deli in the liner note for One Up, One Down. Someone has actually moved into the second floor space, looks like a small company of some sort.

elbajo999
April 1st, 2007, 06:35 PM
does any one remmember "sam the plumber"?
am told he is still alive?

kh1958
April 1st, 2007, 09:09 PM
The club Jazz Gallery was around the corner form the old Five Spot, and down the block from the newer one. I recall hearing Miles Davis with J.J. Johnson, Hank Mobley (+ Sonny Stitt sitting in), Kelly, Chambers, Cobb. Opening for them was Teddy Wilson.

There is a performance venue called the Jazz Gallery which is operating right now. That's the one opposite to the photo.

kh1958
October 22nd, 2008, 04:16 PM
To the best of my vague memory, it was in the East Village on 3rd Street, maybe between Avenues B and C, on the south side of the street.

This past Sunday, I had occasion to visit The Stone for the first time, which I now realize is quite close to where Slugs used to be located--The Stone is on Avenue C and Second Street.

128Bit_Encryption
October 31st, 2008, 11:49 AM
With reference to Slug's, although I heard some fine music there (Jackie McLean, Ornette's trio, Sun Ra), I enjoyed the Half Note much more

I envy your experiences. Lotta music as happening back in those days. Love those Charles Tolliver "Live at Slugs", (Strata East) recordings. Are you referring to the Five Spot back in the 1950's or 1970's? Just curious.....

Vic J
November 2nd, 2008, 09:37 AM
I played a gig a few eves ago and Mike Canterino, an old friend of mine and the former owner of the old Half Note, stops in with his wife Judy for dinner..They were celebrating their 48th anniversary..........I remember the Scary walk to SLUGS in the early 70's.....East 3rd st in the far east, ya had to walk past the Hell's Angels to get there...When you did arrive there were all these college looking hippy types offering congrats for your effort....The floor was covered with sawdust. I had my first Lowenbrau on tap there....I heard Keith with Dewey....Larry Coryell's band and many others....Fantastic place with an elevated bandstand

Marcello
November 2nd, 2008, 11:45 AM
anniversary..........I remember the Scary walk to SLUGS in the early 70's.....East 3rd st in the far east, ya had to walk past the Hell's Angels to get there...When you did arrive there were all these college looking hippy types offering congrats for your effort....

Yeah, but I remember that the Angels had the whole block lit up with Klieg lights so they could see who was coming!

Valerie
November 2nd, 2008, 01:56 PM
I played a gig a few eves ago and Mike Canterino, an old friend of mine and the former owner of the old Half Note, stops in with his wife Judy for dinner..They were celebrating their 48th anniversary..........I remember the Scary walk to SLUGS in the early 70's.....East 3rd st in the far east, ya had to walk past the Hell's Angels to get there...When you did arrive there were all these college looking hippy types offering congrats for your effort....The floor was covered with sawdust. I had my first Lowenbrau on tap there....I heard Keith with Dewey....Larry Coryell's band and many others....Fantastic place with an elevated bandstand

so glad to know that Mike and his wife are still around!! i have wonderful mem-o-ries!!

i also used to take that walk in the mid-60's but don't remember feeling but a little anxiety. probably because i was young and stupid!

Eulipion
January 13th, 2009, 06:09 PM
Slugs was located in Manhattan on the lower east side in so-called "alphabet city" at 242 East 3rd Street, between avenues B and C

Valerie
January 13th, 2009, 06:24 PM
Slugs was located in Manhattan on the lower east side in so-called "alphabet city" at 242 East 3rd Street, between avenues B and C

looks like my memory served me very well (see post #2). :)

Jay Dubz
March 5th, 2009, 09:21 PM
I remember when I lived at the La Mama's Theater back in the late 70's (which is now the Nuyorican Poets Cafe - 236 East Third Street) that the storefront which formerly housed Slugs was then a small mom & pops confectionery then owned by a Puerto Rican family. We would stop in that store on a regular basis...I see it's now a Plumbing company.

There were some older Puerto Rican women in the neighborhood who remembered when Lee Morgan was shot to death while performing.

JAZZART
March 7th, 2009, 10:53 AM
: Wow how can i forget slugs it was my hangout as a kid. The club was located between avenues B and C third street and not a good neigborhood either at that time ./ I used to live in the Bronx and take the train with a couple of my other jazz friends once evrey month to check cats out.

I was about 17 years old ,and playing myself what a place slugs was to catch the great jazz artist at that time. I remember the cover charge was two dollars then. When you walked in the floor was covered with some kind of saw dust it reminded me of being in a butcher place I never new the reason for that ,maybe the sound effects for the room, I caught Mcoy tyner trio With Eric gravait on Drums and Cecil Mcbee on Bass. I don;t know if anybody is familer with Eric gravait he used to be in weather reoport for a while a great underrated drummer played with fire like Tony Williams. I also caught SUN RA what an experiance that was and many more yes Slugs was the place in the sixties to go as a young kid for me i wish it was still in exsistence but unfortunitly :mad: it;s gone like many other great jazz places. :mad: The atmosphere was great in slugs also. Thanks everybody for the wonderful memories.


JAZZART JOE

kh1958
March 7th, 2009, 02:34 PM
: Wow how can i forget slugs it was my hangout as a kid. The club was located between avenues B and C third street and not a good neigborhood either at that time ./ I used to live in the Bronx and take the train with a couple of my other jazz friends once evrey month to check cats out.

I was about 17 years old ,and playing myself what a place slugs was to catch the great jazz artist at that time. I remember the cover charge was two dollars then. When you walked in the floor was covered with some kind of saw dust it reminded me of being in a butcher place I never new the reason for that ,maybe the sound effects for the room, I caught Mcoy tyner trio With Eric gravait on Drums and Cecil Mcbee on Bass. I don;t know if anybody is familer with Eric gravait he used to be in weather reoport for a while a great underrated drummer played with fire like Tony Williams. I also caught SUN RA what an experiance that was and many more yes Slugs was the place in the sixties to go as a young kid for me i wish it was still in exsistence but unfortunitly :mad: it;s gone like many other great jazz places. :mad: The atmosphere was great in slugs also. Thanks everybody for the wonderful memories.


JAZZART JOE

Eric Gravatt is back playing drums with McCoy Tyner, for the last two or three years.

128Bit_Encryption
March 10th, 2009, 10:25 PM
Wow! Great stories about Slugs guys. I really can appreciate your musings and stories. Closest I every came to it was listening to Charles Tollivers "Live At Slugs". But I love hearing stories about clubs that showcased many outstanding artists. Anyone got any stories about the Five Spot when it was jammin' back in the 70's?

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_Ml_Yj8KBM7A/R-5kV2gC_FI/AAAAAAAAAfg/JZ4y7t3wALc/s320/music_inc_slugs2.jpg

Valerie
March 11th, 2009, 12:52 AM
Wow! Great stories about Slugs guys. I really can appreciate your musings and stories. Closest I every came to it was listening to Charles Tollivers "Live At Slugs". But I love hearing stories about clubs that showcased many outstanding artists. Anyone got any stories about the Five Spot when it was jammin' back in the 70's?

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_Ml_Yj8KBM7A/R-5kV2gC_FI/AAAAAAAAAfg/JZ4y7t3wALc/s320/music_inc_slugs2.jpg

well, i can attest to the fact that the Five Spot was jammin' in the 60's too! used to go hear Mingus there on a regular basis, among many others.

128Bit_Encryption
March 11th, 2009, 10:16 AM
Yeah, but I remember that the Angels had the whole block lit up with Klieg lights so they could see who was coming!

Hells Angels? Wow. Did they ever harass or mess with anyone during their transit through the area?

JAZZART
March 12th, 2009, 07:36 PM
I have to say i never encounted a problem with them and i was real young when i used to go to slugs. We used to pass right by them and they were cool. I new better not to mess around with those guys.
JAZZART JOE

Marcello
March 12th, 2009, 07:48 PM
Hells Angels? Wow. Did they ever harass or mess with anyone during their transit through the area?

As long as you keep moving at didn't **** with their bikes, you were cool.

engelbach
April 5th, 2009, 10:17 PM
What's amazing but true is that the first time I visited the original Five Spot on Third Avenue (area known then as The Bowery), I saw both Thelonious Monk and Charles Mingus appearing! That was in approximately 1961. By the time the club moved to the southeast corner of Third Avenue and St. Marks Place, it was my second home! It was in that clubroom that I first declared my love for my husband-to-be!! LOL!!

Just to give you a sense of what the times were like, my apartment was at 306 East 6th St., fifth floor walkup, standing tub in the kitchen, slept in the living room as other room was used for a closet, and rent was $53.50/mo.!! Fun days there until the apartment was robbed. Biggest loss was two winter coats (still had the tags on them) my parents had just bought me and most of my record collection (lots of Johnny Mathis and Chet Baker at the time)!! Some junkie must have been real happy!!
I'm a little late to the partty. I don't browse this Forum section often.

Valerie,

I lived around the corner from you at 218 East Fifth Street. I lived in the back of a storefront in which I had an art dealership called the Fifth Street Gallery (no relation to a later business that took the same name). It was luxury digs at the regal price of $80/month.

I was also burglarized several times on the Lower East Side, though not when I lived at the gallery.

The Five Spot
It was Monk's second home. I heard him at the second Five Spot, on St. Mark's, just a block from my home. The acoustics there were not all that good, but you could hang out at the bar and chat with the owners, Joe and Iggy I believe were their names, while Monk was getting high backstage in preparation for the next set.

I saw Mingus there one night with Danny Richmond. It was not Mingus's regular sextet. The trumpet player (not Ted Curzon, Johnny Coles, or Lonnie Hillyer) was somebody who found out that night that he was playing his final gig with the band. At one point Mingus got into a conversation with someone in the audience, and said "I'm firing everyone except him, him, him, and him," pointing to each band member in turn except the trumpet player.

The pianist was a young replacement, a white kid whose name I never knew, and when Mingus started ad libbing impromptu bass heads on standards like Stormy Weather the pianist was lost. When someone asked, "Why isn't the piano playing?" Mingus looked at the audience and said, "He isn't good eneough."

Mingus spent more time talking to friends who came into the club and to people in the crowd who were clinking their ice cubes too loudly than he did playing music. An old friend of mine is now married to Mingus's son, Charles Mingus III (Charlie Mingus was actually a Jr.).

Slug's Saloon
I was a frequent vistor to Slug's, before and after it became a jazz club. It was a favorite hangout for undercover cops, and there were many drug busts just outside.

Left out of someone else's list for Slug's in 1966 or 1967 was Pharoah Sanders, whom I knew at the time, with Don Pullen on piano.

JPF
April 7th, 2009, 02:37 AM
I only went to Slug's once, in the 60's, and it was to see Tony Scott. He had Jaki Byard on piano, Rashied Ali on drums, and I think Milt Hinton on bass. How's that for a mixture of styles!

Valerie Bishop and I just finished exchanging tales of clubs in Boston and New York on another forum (the Lennie's On The Turnpike thread on JazzCorner, if you're interested). Here's a slightly edited version of one of my recollections of Mingus at the Five Spot from that discussion:

"I have lots of memories of him at the Five Spot. I remember one night when I was surprised to find that he had Roy Brooks instead of Dannie Richmond playing with him. After a few tunes, he asked Brooks to leave, but was kidding with him as Brooks went to sit in the audience, calling him a "crazy motherf....r" (which unfortunately, he turned out to be). Then Mingus said, "And now we'd like to bring up a special guest, Dannie Richmond." Dannie came out of the crowd with a grim look on his face, played the next tune which finished with a furious (literally) drum solo, threw his sticks on the floor, kicked over part of his drum set and stomped off. Fun and games at the Five Spot."

I also recall another Mingus night at the Five Spot. He had been kind of grumpy earlier in the night, but hadn't exploded or fired anyone. They finished a tune and Mingus, who was sitting on a stool playing his bass, turned to the group and said, "What'll we play?" There was no immediate reply and suddenly, a loud drunken voice comes out of the half-full club - "Play Tenderly!" Everybody froze (after all, this was a drunk yelling a tune request to Charles Mingus!). I thought, Oh God, I'm going to witness a murder. Mingus, with a slight smile, says to the guy "What did you say?" The guy repeats, "Play Tenderly!" Mingus hesitates a few seconds, turns to the group and indicates that, yes, they should play Tenderly and adds a few words which I couldn't hear. And the tune begins. Now, if you've seen Mingus a lot, you know that occasionally, when he was in a quirky mood, he would play a tune in a super-sweet, Guy Lombardo-on-steroids style. And that's what they did. Charles McPherson played with an extremely wide vibrato, Lonnie Hillyer did wah-wah things with a mute, and Mingus played slap bass; it was hilarious. I about fell off my barstool laughing. And the guy loved it! They play it for about 10 minutes, finish the tune and Mingus, with a big smile on his face says, "I like that - let's play it again." And that's just what they do, same exaggerated Lombardo style, and this time, Mingus invites the guy up to sing! The guy (a 40-ish, plaid shirt-wearing, working man type) weaves up to the stage, sings a couple of choruses, the band plays even longer this time, and it's finally over (to great laughter and applause from the small crowd). Mingus was happy the rest of the night and needless to say, so was I.

engelbach
April 7th, 2009, 06:51 AM
I only went to Slug's once, in the 60's, and it was to see Tony Scott. He had Jaki Byard on piano, Rashied Ali on drums, and I think Milt Hinton on bass. How's that for a mixture of styles!

Valerie Bishop and I just finished exchanging tales of clubs in Boston and New York on another forum (the Lennie's On The Turnpike thread on JazzCorner, if you're interested). Here's a slightly edited version of one of my recollections of Mingus at the Five Spot from that discussion:

"I have lots of memories of him at the Five Spot. I remember one night when I was surprised to find that he had Roy Brooks instead of Dannie Richmond playing with him. After a few tunes, he asked Brooks to leave, but was kidding with him as Brooks went to sit in the audience, calling him a "crazy motherf....r" (which unfortunately, he turned out to be). Then Mingus said, "And now we'd like to bring up a special guest, Dannie Richmond." Dannie came out of the crowd with a grim look on his face, played the next tune which finished with a furious (literally) drum solo, threw his sticks on the floor, kicked over part of his drum set and stomped off. Fun and games at the Five Spot."

I also recall another Mingus night at the Five Spot. He had been kind of grumpy earlier in the night, but hadn't exploded or fired anyone. They finished a tune and Mingus, who was sitting on a stool playing his bass, turned to the group and said, "What'll we play?" There was no immediate reply and suddenly, a loud drunken voice comes out of the half-full club - "Play Tenderly!" Everybody froze (after all, this was a drunk yelling a tune request to Charles Mingus!). I thought, Oh God, I'm going to witness a murder. Mingus, with a slight smile, says to the guy "What did you say?" The guy repeats, "Play Tenderly!" Mingus hesitates a few seconds, turns to the group and indicates that, yes, they should play Tenderly and adds a few words which I couldn't hear. And the tune begins. Now, if you've seen Mingus a lot, you know that occasionally, when he was in a quirky mood, he would play a tune in a super-sweet, Guy Lombardo-on-steroids style. And that's what they did. Charles McPherson played with an extremely wide vibrato, Lonnie Hillyer did wah-wah things with a mute, and Mingus played slap bass; it was hilarious. I about fell off my barstool laughing. And the guy loved it! They play it for about 10 minutes, finish the tune and Mingus, with a big smile on his face says, "I like that - let's play it again." And that's just what they do, same exaggerated Lombardo style, and this time, Mingus invites the guy up to sing! The guy (a 40-ish, plaid shirt-wearing, working man type) weaves up to the stage, sings a couple of choruses, the band plays even longer this time, and it's finally over (to great laughter and applause from the small crowd). Mingus was happy the rest of the night and needless to say, so was I.
Great story!

This may have been during the same run at the Five Spot when I saw Mingus. He was there for a really long run, I think in 1964, so he probabaly had quite a few subs playing for him.

This was during his anti-jazz club crusade (even though he was playing in one). He would regularly stop playing when people were talking or, his favorite beef, when they were clinking the ice cubes in their drinks. This can be heard on at least one of his live albums. I think a lot of us went to hear him hoping to see some kind of incident.

macky
June 23rd, 2011, 01:52 PM
Was there in the 60's and early 70's.... heard some greats: Lee Morgan, Pharaoh Saunders, Leon Thomas, Elvin Jones ....mind bending introduction to live jazz in that small club (and then uptown to hear Rahsaan at the Vanguard, Donald Byrd & the Voices...I think at Carnegie Hall, performing his New Perspective releases).... what a privilege to hear these artists live.

PeterO
January 21st, 2012, 12:36 PM
I started going to Slugs' (the proper spelling is s-apostrophe, as in plural possessive--I got this from the owners and it's a long story why) in 1966 after I moved to NYC. I was going to school and couldn't afford the dorm so shared an apt on East 3rd St & Bowery. It was just a 4-block walk to the club--past the (then) Alien Nomads (later inducted into Hell's Angels MC), and the usual junkie brigade. But it was cool once we were in the club. It just had a relaxed atmosphere that was different from the Vanguard or the Gate--no visiting businessmen getting drunk and screaming over the music. Maybe it was the original saloon-like setup with the sawdust on the floor, the brick walls (were they brick?). I wonder if anyone has a photo of the interior. I'm writing about my experiences there and at other clubs of that era and later--the Tin Palace, Five Spot (on St. Mark's), and lofts like Studio Rivbea, Ladies' Fort, Environ, etc. It was a hothouse atmosphere in that whole area, from Slugs' in the Far East to the Bowery, Bond St. Broadway and NoHo for a good two decades when rents were cheap. You could discover such great new sounds opn any given night.

good rhythms
January 22nd, 2012, 05:44 AM
before i moved to new york in 78, i would make a once a year trip to new york to feel it out to see if i could live there...

coming from chicago, i was all hyped up about being in the apple

in the late 60's , i caught chico hamilton at slugs...

in my later visits in 76 and 77, i would stay at the 47th street ymca

except on one occaision, i decided to go catch cecil taylor at the five spot and then stay at that hotel above it for a night...

i remember being really exited seeing prostitutes outside trying to attract cars and , inside the hotel, you would see them walking around, i remember one with an enourmous ass, it just stuck in my memory

later i would go to the tin palace to catch music

new york was intoxicating back then if you wanted to be a jazz musician

in 78, everyone else was moving out of new york because it was crashing, and i was moving there to play jazz

PeterO
January 22nd, 2012, 09:07 AM
>an enourmous ass, it just stuck in my memory

Now there's a funny image!
I never knew there was a hotel above the Five Spot, although it did have several iterations. Its original location on Cooper Square in the late 1950s was known for Cecil Taylor, Monk's 7-month stint with Coltrane, Mingus, & another long stay by Ornette w/Don Cherry. SOmetime around 1971 it moved from 4th-5th Sts to St Mark's Place (East 8th St to the uninitiated). That was the only version I experienced, hearing not only Mingus and Monk but also newer arrivals like the Art Ensemble of Chicago, and Sun Ra (not exactly new, as Sun had been in residence at Slugs' since March 1966). I reviewed the Arkestra's performance there in 1975 for the Soho News, so it lasted there at least that long. It was a lovely place to meet young musicians who were there to dig their idols, but by then it probably lacked the incendiary effect of those months-long residencies of Monk and Ornette.

David D. Gitin
January 22nd, 2012, 12:42 PM
Both Five Spots, the (brief) Jazz Gallery, Slugs and the West side spots like Half Note, Village Gate, and so on still loom large in my memory. In addition, I'll never forget Bud Powell at Birdland, Coltrane & Dolphy at Carnegie Hall (on a bill with Sonny Rollins w Jim Hall), another era...

Valerie
January 22nd, 2012, 01:50 PM
>an enourmous ass, it just stuck in my memory

Now there's a funny image!
I never knew there was a hotel above the Five Spot, although it did have several iterations. Its original location on Cooper Square in the late 1950s was known for Cecil Taylor, Monk's 7-month stint with Coltrane, Mingus, & another long stay by Ornette w/Don Cherry. SOmetime around 1971 it moved from 4th-5th Sts to St Mark's Place (East 8th St to the uninitiated). That was the only version I experienced, hearing not only Mingus and Monk but also newer arrivals like the Art Ensemble of Chicago, and Sun Ra (not exactly new, as Sun had been in residence at Slugs' since March 1966). I reviewed the Arkestra's performance there in 1975 for the Soho News, so it lasted there at least that long. It was a lovely place to meet young musicians who were there to dig their idols, but by then it probably lacked the incendiary effect of those months-long residencies of Monk and Ornette.

The Five Spot moved from Third Ave. (Bowery) to St. Mark's Place in the early part of the '60s. i sometimes thought i spent more time there than in my own apt. i only visited the first location once in the very early '60s when Monk and Mingus were there.

k4kafka
January 27th, 2012, 01:26 PM
Found the exact address for the non-defunct "Slug's" (242 E.3rd St. New York,N.Y.)listed in the "New Grove Dictionary of Jazz",an invaluable source of accurate information.Today Google Maps shows a bakery now at that location, right next to the Tompkins Sq. Post Office.

OutofTune
January 27th, 2012, 03:11 PM
There's a bootleg out there from March 31, 1970 with Mingus, Dannie, Jimmy Vass and Charles McPherson on altos, Bill Hardman on trumpet.
At the time I was staying with Booker Ervin on East 13th Street. I was attending Berklee in those days and my friend Mick (an alto player) and I wanted to catch Mingus at Slug's before going back to Boston after school recess, which we had spent with Booker and his family. Booker didn't want us to walk over there in the middle of the night, looking very out of place and even carrying our horns. We insisted, couldn't let this opportunity of catching Mingus live pass us by. Mingus had just been back about half a year from his hiatus away from music. Booker looked very worried, and cautioned us. So we bid the family goodnight and walked, following his instructions, down the darkening and more and more desolate streets, trying to look as tall, vicious and self-confident and belonging there, as we could. We finally got there, no mishaps, 3rd Street between Ave’s B & C, but kind of scared. 11 pm-ish we entered Slug's. Only a few patrons there, so we got a good table to the left of the passageway with a clear view of the petite stage. We ordered our standard two cokes (all we could afford) and waited. I had been arranging my Norelco tape-recorder under my jacket with the microphone just inside the left arm sleeve before we entered the joint. I just HAD to record that event (I used to carry this cheap, lo-fi thing with me all the time, recording everybody I would get a chance to, like Thad & Mel at the Vanguard. Cats like Jimmy Knepper and Eddie Bert, very good friends, knew what I was up to but didn’t seem to mind. Just laughed and understood – but Mingus? I knew he would probably kick my butt and be furious. I was always very discreet about it, you can imagine). I had my back towards the entrance, my left arm resting on the top of my trombone case, relaxed like, and we were waiting for the band to arrive for quite a while, when all of a sudden Mick looked all intense, bent over with his eyes focused behind me, whispering: “There’s Mingus!” I looked over my right shoulder and there he was, squat, imposing body, carrying Dannie’s trap-case raised above his head. What a sight! Eventually they were all there, set up and finally ready for what turned out to be three long sets.
Mingus looked heavy, tired, and beat. Hadn’t seen him since his Copenhagen concert (with Dolphy – the sextet) in April of 1964 when he was slim, ferocious and PRESENT! Mingus only played a few solos, but caught fire a couple of times. Most of the time he seemed kind of not really there. Dannie however was everywhere, on fire, taking care of business for his old boss. (After getting back to Boston I wrote a piece of music, featuring Mick’s alto, for Mingus, inspired by the experience at Slug’s, called The Tortured Heavyweight, which has been part of my repertoire ever since and which I’ve recorded twice with my quintets (1970 and 1999)).
At one point, in the third set, Bill Hardman eyed my trombone case, came over to our table and asked me if I’d like to sit in! I was in shock! There I was, microphone in hand recording Mingus, ready to be caught red-handed. I’d always dreamt of playing with Mingus and here was my great chance . . . what to do? Run to the bathroom, getting rid of the darned thing . . . a million thoughts raced through my mind . . . I finally had to excuse myself, desperately mumbling something about being on vacation and out of shape . . . Bill Hardman looked at me, a little hurt, uncomprehending, like he was disappointed and irritated that I would turn down the offer to sit in. Then he walked back on stage. Man, did I feel like an idiot, at the same time relieved (coward!) ‘cause those cats would have eaten me alive. I mean, I was not a bad trombone player, but so not in their league, back then. Still to this day my stomach ties into a knot thinking back at this. How could I pass up such a chance? Would have been fantastic - and served me right - to be eaten alive my Mingus and his band. Did I blow it! –
- Later on, in 1972, I got a second chance to play with Mingus, who was appearing at the famed Montmartre in Copenhagen. He was touring with a sextet, but Bobby Jones and Lonnie Hillyer had split, leaving McPherson as the sole horn. Knowing my infatuation with Mingus’ music, the arrangers called me to play with Mingus that same evening. This time I didn’t turn the possibility down. I was scared, but prepared. A few hours before the scheduled concert the arrangers called me back. Mingus had realized that his old pal from the West Coast, Dexter Gordon, who lived in Copenhagen then, was free, so he wanted to play with him. Bummer! I of course attended the concert, let down, but also very happy for my old pal Dexter and Mingus enjoying playing together again. Dexter of course didn’t know the music, but it was great anyways. -
Skip to the late nineties, I’m in Paris browsing through Mingus cds at Fnac when I see two cds, Mingus at Slug’s - what? I recognize the titles, the personnel, the date even. Those are my recordings, or somebody else was sneak-recording that evening too. I bought the cds and checked them out at home – they most certainly contained my recordings, down to the tape-hiss. Never leaking any bootleg recordings I did of my heroes, I remembered letting one dude having a copy of this in exchange for some unavailable Jimmy Knepper. We trusted each other completely to never pass anything on to anybody else. However turned out I should never have trusted this guy (luckily it was the only time I ever did let anybody have copies of my bootlegs). At the same time Sue Mingus was working on her commendable Revenge program of officially re-releasing bootleg recordings of Mingus and wanted to know about other bootlegs not known to her. So I promptly emailed her, telling her about these recordings – and my unfortunate involvement in them, to alert her. I never heard from her, though.
As a document of the Slug’s and Mingus’ music at the time, they are invaluable and probably still ‘out there’.

Bumping this. Very interesting thread. I would love more threads about old venues, or mayby i have missed some?

This very informative reply was by the great Danish trombone player Erling Kroner. He sadly passed away last year, march 2011.
He is deeply missed on the Danish jazz scene and around the world...

blueNgreen
January 27th, 2012, 07:05 PM
slugs was on EAst 3rd street, between Ave. B and C. right across the street from the old reliable, a cool bar/theater/poets hangout and right next door to the "chicken coup" a fried chicken joint that always tasted great

engelbach
January 27th, 2012, 08:05 PM
I lived on the Lower East Side for many years, the last time on East 6th Street. Slug's and The Old Reliable were regular hangouts.

Outside of these bars there were extraordinary number of drug busts (i.e., for marijuana) by plainclothes cops dressed as hippies.

Valerie
January 28th, 2012, 01:25 AM
I lived on the Lower East Side for many years, the last time on East 6th Street. Slug's and The Old Reliable were regular hangouts.

Outside of these bars there were extraordinary number of drug busts (i.e., for marijuana) by plainclothes cops dressed as hippies.

curious as to when you lived there. i was at E. 6th & Second Ave. in the early 60's.

engelbach
January 28th, 2012, 09:57 AM
curious as to when you lived there. i was at E. 6th & Second Ave. in the early 60's.
We probably passed each other on the street. I lived on East 11th Street, East 5th Street, and East 6th Street from 1961 to 1968, when I moved to SoHo.

Valerie
January 28th, 2012, 02:40 PM
We probably passed each other on the street. I lived on East 11th Street, East 5th Street, and East 6th Street from 1961 to 1968, when I moved to SoHo.

i also lived on East 1st near First Ave. before moving to the Upper Westside when i started working for the College Board near Columbia U. they were fabulous, fun years, and i still have a soft spot for the East Village.

David D. Gitin
January 28th, 2012, 04:33 PM
The Five Spot moved from Third Ave. (Bowery) to St. Mark's Place in the early part of the '60s. i sometimes thought i spent more time there than in my own apt. i only visited the first location once in the very early '60s when Monk and Mingus were there.

I remember going there to hear Walter Bishop, Jr. with Jimmy Garrison!

Valerie
January 28th, 2012, 05:55 PM
I remember going there to hear Walter Bishop, Jr. with Jimmy Garrison!

i actually first met Walter at Slug's!!! after that, i heard him play at the Five Spot on St. Mark's many times. i certainly heard lots of great music in that club throughout the '60s, especially when Mingus was there.

tpt1
January 28th, 2012, 06:37 PM
This very informative reply was by the great Danish trombone player Erling Kroner. He sadly passed away last year, march 2011.
He is deeply missed on the Danish jazz scene and around the world...I am very saddened to read this. I always enjoyed reading Erling's posts and stories. He was a great trombone player. RIP Erling Kroner.

engelbach
January 29th, 2012, 09:48 AM
The very last time I was at Slug's, some time in the late 1960s, it was to hear Pharoah Sanders, whom I knew slightly, and Don Pullen, one of my all-time favorite pianists.

Last October I was back in New York briefly and found too many things different about the Lower East Side (we never called it the East Village -- that was a real estate marketing label) to feel at home.

We (artists, dopeheads, various alternative people) were in the minority in the 1960s, after Ukrainians, Puerto Ricans, and other immigrants. Now it feels like a period theme park.

good rhythms
January 30th, 2012, 11:23 PM
i sure miss bish

that was about as close to bud powel as you could get

there is just something about his touch that you wont hear in many of the younger players who became influenced by chick, jarret and herbie

i miss him

Valerie
January 31st, 2012, 02:47 AM
i sure miss bish

that was about as close to bud powel as you could get

there is just something about his touch that you wont hear in many of the younger players who became influenced by chick, jarret and herbie

i miss him

do you like Bennie Green?

good rhythms
January 31st, 2012, 06:59 AM
well, i dont know his work like i know walter's work...

i worked for bish, my second gig in new york was with bish at club wells in harlem ( my first gig in new york was with alex foster and mike wolff at erics) , with marcus miller on bass, carmen lundy singing and mayra casalas on percusion

and when you are playing bebop next to a guy like bish, you feel a differant touch than with piano players who came later

bish didnt just play bebop, he could play funk and sound like herbie hancock

but, man, sometimes i would be next to him, or recording something in the studio with him, and it would feel like it was an old well preserved style of how to swing that just isnt replicated ... i mean you can play bebop but, doing it with someone who lived it , who kept their fire, who played with bird, there is just something that is really special...actualy, what i mean to say is that, bish was special...

Valerie
January 31st, 2012, 01:56 PM
well, i dont know his work like i know walter's work...

i worked for bish, my second gig in new york was with bish at club wells in harlem ( my first gig in new york was with alex foster and mike wolff at erics) , with marcus miller on bass, carmen lundy singing and mayra casalas on percusion

and when you are playing bebop next to a guy like bish, you feel a differant touch than with piano players who came later

bish didnt just play bebop, he could play funk and sound like herbie hancock

but, man, sometimes i would be next to him, or recording something in the studio with him, and it would feel like it was an old well preserved style of how to swing that just isnt replicated ... i mean you can play bebop but, doing it with someone who lived it , who kept their fire, who played with bird, there is just something that is really special...actualy, what i mean to say is that, bish was special...

curious as to what years you're talking about?

good rhythms
January 31st, 2012, 07:39 PM
i worked on and off with bish between 78 and 86...i would work sometimes for him, sometimes we accompanied a singer, sometimes he would work for me, and we recorded a couple of things ....the best stuff never got out...

it wasnt like i was first call for bish

the higlights included the club wells gig, in harlem, jazz cruise, substituting for mike carvan who couldnt make it because he was sick, with john ore on bass and backing cecilia payne, cecils sister, a great tap dancer as well...
subbing for michael carvin again at the tenor battle with ricky ford, and dave schnitter, at seventh ave south , with marcus on bass ( yes,he can bop well..), recordings with nannette natal and two tracks for me on two recordings...

i learned a lot from bish, without him saying a word..

Valerie
January 31st, 2012, 10:57 PM
i worked on and off with bish between 78 and 86...i would work sometimes for him, sometimes we accompanied a singer, sometimes he would work for me, and we recorded a couple of things ....the best stuff never got out...

it wasnt like i was first call for bish

the higlights included the club wells gig, in harlem, jazz cruise, substituting for mike carvan who couldnt make it because he was sick, with john ore on bass and backing cecilia payne, cecils sister, a great tap dancer as well...
subbing for michael carvin again at the tenor battle with ricky ford, and dave schnitter, at seventh ave south , with marcus on bass ( yes,he can bop well..), recordings with nannette natal and two tracks for me on two recordings...

i learned a lot from bish, without him saying a word..

thanks for the clarification. glad you enjoyed your times with Walter. i did as well!! LOL

good rhythms
February 1st, 2012, 03:50 AM
ha, valorie, please dont hesitate to share any stories about bish that you have....id sure be interested

Valerie
February 1st, 2012, 08:25 PM
ha, valorie, please dont hesitate to share any stories about bish that you have....id sure be interested

all i'd be willing to share here are basically statistics. we met in 1965 at Slugs, got engaged in 1966 and were married in 1967 by dear Rev. Gensel. we moved to LA in 1969 and we separated around 1975. he returned to NY not very long after and i remained here. we became friends again soon thereafter and remained so until his last breath. had the best of times and the worst of times. i will always miss him. i'm still close with his remaining family members.

that's the very short (general audience) version! ;)

good rhythms
February 2nd, 2012, 07:36 AM
valerie, valerie !!

ohhh, thank you so much for sharing that !!

sorry i didnt recognise your name, i know bish reffered to you ( i would sometimes hang with him at his manhattan plaza apartment since i was sharing an apartment with a girlfreind there at the manhattan plaza, for five years ), and, where i dont remember any specific things he said i know it was all positive .

i met the girl he married and divorced from after that, unfortunatly i cant remember her name now ( aging memory loss).

you mentioned bennei green, what is the connection ?

thanks again for sharing , id love to hear lots of stories about bish, because he was an inspiration to be around. a very real contact with someone who lived the bebop era and represented it very well, as well as being very proficiant in other styles also

good rhythms
February 2nd, 2012, 07:51 AM
...and by the way, valerie, you look very good in your picture there, is it a recent photo ?

i tip my hat to you for your time with bish as his wife and a freind until the end.

yeah, i understand that on an internet forum a person shouldnt go into any deep details of their personal life

what a treat to hear some words about your experiances in new york and about your relationship with walter

Valerie
February 2nd, 2012, 02:06 PM
valerie, valerie !!

ohhh, thank you so much for sharing that !!

sorry i didnt recognise your name, i know bish reffered to you ( i would sometimes hang with him at his manhattan plaza apartment since i was sharing an apartment with a girlfreind there at the manhattan plaza, for five years ), and, where i dont remember any specific things he said i know it was all positive .

i met the girl he married and divorced from after that, unfortunatly i cant remember her name now ( aging memory loss).

you mentioned bennei green, what is the connection ?

thanks again for sharing , id love to hear lots of stories about bish, because he was an inspiration to be around. a very real contact with someone who lived the bebop era and represented it very well, as well as being very proficiant in other styles also

do you think i would recognize your name?

Walter's second wife's name escapes me too. she was a very lovely person but they just didn't have much in common. they were married for a very brief time.

i mentioned Bennie Green because he not only adored Walter but studied with him for years.

in terms of my current avatar, it's with Cannonball, taken in the early '70s. Walter was there the day it was taken. we were hanging around a friend's pool. i WISH i looked like that now!! LOL

good rhythms
February 2nd, 2012, 03:52 PM
valerie

no, you wouldnt..

im one of those musicians who has done many things similar to any name musician out there , played with recognised names, recorded with them and have gotten small successes, did , and do small touring, hit the billboard charts, played jazz festivals in front of 75,000 people...etc etc

and im languishing in obscurity if you judge a jazz musicians worth if they are a media name or how much they get written about...because some of my heaviest work has been the small independent stuff that wont get a shot in the media

but im still very active , playing and recording ( on small independent projects)with some top musicians in brazil and new york, and doing a show with a brazilian dance and street dance theme...im the musical director

you still look good, i saw your picture with sonny rollins....man, i didnt know that was cannonball...was michael wolff playing with him at that time ? mike and alex foster gave me my first gig in new york

Valerie
February 2nd, 2012, 04:48 PM
valerie

no, you wouldnt..

im one of those musicians who has done many things similar to any name musician out there , played with recognised names, recorded with them and have gotten small successes, did , and do small touring, hit the billboard charts, played jazz festivals in front of 75,000 people...etc etc

and im languishing in obscurity if you judge a jazz musicians worth if they are a media name or how much they get written about...because some of my heaviest work has been the small independent stuff that wont get a shot in the media

but im still very active , playing and recording ( on small independent projects)with some top musicians in brazil and new york, and doing a show with a brazilian dance and street dance theme...im the musical director

you still look good, i saw your picture with sonny rollins....man, i didnt know that was cannonball...was michael wolff playing with him at that time ? mike and alex foster gave me my first gig in new york

the most important thing is that you're doing your thing!! Walter and probably millions of other big talents never really got their due. Walter sure wasn't any "household name"!! but making the music and keeping a roof over your head, etc. are the essentials!!

btw, Brazilian music is my heart and soul!

Joe Zawinul was Cannon's pianist at that time. later it was George Duke, i think. i know and love Michael and his work. saw him recently in L.A.

i'm going to send you my email address as i'm starting to feel guilty about taking up this thread with our personal stuff. just keep on, keepin' on, good rhythms!!

Evolution
February 28th, 2012, 10:49 PM
Hi All

Don't know whether this already was answered but Slug's was at 242 East 3rd Street between Avenues B and C in the Far East.

I heard so much great music there when I was a college, high school and junior high school student including Freddie Hubbard, McCoy Tyner with Sonny Fortune and Herbie Hancock's Mwandishi band. Sun Ra played Monday nights. Ornette Coleman had a standing gig every Labor Day weekend.

Jazz012
February 29th, 2012, 08:02 PM
Hi to all; I am new to this site but I am also an avid Jazz fan. In the early to mid 60's I played drums at clubs in Atlantic City. Places such as Reggie Edgehills Wonder Gardens, Club Harlem and I had the honor of playing a matinee set with Jimmy Smith at The Wonder Garden. I've gotten older now and I'm retired in Orlando, Fl. Why I am writing is to ask if anyone of you who was a regular at Slugs at the time when Lee Morgan was there remember Mr. Claude Benjamin Bolden, he was also a regular there to. Back then I was told that he was a Jazz DJ on WFUV,90.7 FM at Fordham University and had a program called Jazz in America Hertiage. Him and Robert Morgan formed Benjamin Morgan Productions and produced concerts including a tribute to Lee Morgan. I understand that a lot of top name Jazz performers was there.
Well I was informed that he passed away last month in New York City. He was married to my Cousin and he had been ill for some time. She sent me the Obituary and it mentioned all that he had did at Slugs. It must have been a popular place during it's time. I'm hoping Valerie can help. I have been reading all of the comments that are posted here and it seems that Valerie knows lot about the history of Slugs. I want to thank you all for any information that I can get. I will pass it on to his wife Elizabeth ( Well the good things I will ,lol ). I can be contacted by E-Mail at rdeberry@cfl.rr.com. Thanks again. Robert;;

Valerie
February 29th, 2012, 11:15 PM
Hi to all; I am new to this site but I am also an avid Jazz fan. In the early to mid 60's I played drums at clubs in Atlantic City. Places such as Reggie Edgehills Wonder Gardens, Club Harlem and I had the honor of playing a matinee set with Jimmy Smith at The Wonder Garden. I've gotten older now and I'm retired in Orlando, Fl. Why I am writing is to ask if anyone of you who was a regular at Slugs at the time when Lee Morgan was there remember Mr. Claude Benjamin Bolden, he was also a regular there to. Back then I was told that he was a Jazz DJ on WFUV,90.7 FM at Fordham University and had a program called Jazz in America Hertiage. Him and Robert Morgan formed Benjamin Morgan Productions and produced concerts including a tribute to Lee Morgan. I understand that a lot of top name Jazz performers was there.
Well I was informed that he passed away last month in New York City. He was married to my Cousin and he had been ill for some time. She sent me the Obituary and it mentioned all that he had did at Slugs. It must have been a popular place during it's time. I'm hoping Valerie can help. I have been reading all of the comments that are posted here and it seems that Valerie knows lot about the history of Slugs. I want to thank you all for any information that I can get. I will pass it on to his wife Elizabeth ( Well the good things I will ,lol ). I can be contacted by E-Mail at rdeberry@cfl.rr.com. Thanks again. Robert;;

i am very sorry to disappoint you, Jazz012, but unfortunately i have no information or memory of Mr. Bolden. please accept my condolences and i hope that someone else can help you with this request.

Jazz012
March 1st, 2012, 08:41 AM
i am very sorry to disappoint you, Jazz012, but unfortunately i have no information or memory of Mr. Bolden. please accept my condolences and i hope that someone else can help you with this request.

Thank you so much for your response Valerie.

Joan
March 4th, 2012, 11:21 AM
I well remember Slug's Saloon, Third Street between B&C in the(Far) East Village. In 1965-66 it was one of my regular hang outs. My boyfriend at the time and I were great jazz lovers and lived on 11th Street between B&C. We would go to Slug's most nights to hear the jazz greats of the time...Charles Mingus, Art Blakey, Billy Higgins, Sun Ra, Charles LLoyd, Cecil Mc Bee, Herbie Hancock, Bobby Timmons, Lee Morgan,.. etc. to name only a few. Any night the door might open and in would walk Miles or Coltrane to check out the sounds. It was a friendly, relaxed club with sawdust on the floors, brick walls. I recall that one of our friends, James Jackson, carved the wooden Slug's sign outside the club. The East Village (the Lower East Side is south of Houston Street) at that time was always a poor Jewish, Ukranian, Puerto Rican neighborhood but these mid-Sixties were also the days of Flower Power and the streets at night west of Avenue B were always filled with people. However Avenues C&D were dark and isolated at night and kind of scary. I see that no one on this board has mentioned the "greatest little secret" at that time. It was a neighborhood bar diagonally across from Slug's, The Old Reliable. (The poet, Marilyn Hacker, has written a poem about it.) it was a great bar with a dance floor in the back room. Some of the best dancers would show up and some nights you would think the floor would rise the dance energy was so high. The "OR" had FREE "fat"french fries served every half hour, delicious beef stew (when people ate meat) for 50 cents, drinks were 50 cents, the juke box played 8 songs for 25 cents, but if you bumped it just right it would play for "free." These days will always be some of my fondest memories. Life, music, art, writing, style was unparalled. Today it seems that this sort of innovative talent is, sadly, gone forever. I will always remember those winter nights, coming home from Slug's, trudging up Avenue B against the freezing wind, stopping at The Annex between 10th-11th Sts., then home to our cozy and warm one bedroom apartment - which was $65.00 a month. I'm so very glad I was one of the lucky ones who experienced these days.

engelbach
March 4th, 2012, 02:32 PM
I well remember Slug's Saloon, Third Street between B&C in the(Far) East Village. In 1965-66 it was one of my regular hang outs. My boyfriend at the time and I were great jazz lovers and lived on 11th Street between B&C. We would go to Slug's most nights to hear the jazz greats of the time...Charles Mingus, Art Blakey, Billy Higgins, Sun Ra, Charles LLoyd, Cecil Mc Bee, Herbie Hancock, Bobby Timmons, Lee Morgan,.. etc. to name only a few. Any night the door might open and in would walk Miles or Coltrane to check out the sounds. It was a friendly, relaxed club with sawdust on the floors, brick walls. I recall that one of our friends, James Jackson, carved the wooden Slug's sign outside the club. The East Village (the Lower East Side is south of Houston Street) at that time was always a poor Jewish, Ukranian, Puerto Rican neighborhood but these mid-Sixties were also the days of Flower Power and the streets at night west of Avenue B were always filled with people. However Avenues C&D were dark and isolated at night and kind of scary. I see that no one on this board has mentioned the "greatest little secret" at that time. It was a neighborhood bar diagonally across from Slug's, The Old Reliable. (The poet, Marilyn Hacker, has written a poem about it.) it was a great bar with a dance floor in the back room. Some of the best dancers would show up and some nights you would think the floor would rise the dance energy was so high. The "OR" had FREE "fat"french fries served every half hour, delicious beef stew (when people ate meat) for 50 cents, drinks were 50 cents, the juke box played 8 songs for 25 cents, but if you bumped it just right it would play for "free." These days will always be some of my fondest memories. Life, music, art, writing, style was unparalled. Today it seems that this sort of innovative talent is, sadly, gone forever. I will always remember those winter nights, coming home from Slug's, trudging up Avenue B against the freezing wind, stopping at The Annex between 10th-11th Sts., then home to our cozy and warm one bedroom apartment - which was $65.00 a month. I'm so very glad I was one of the lucky ones who experienced these days.
We were probably neighbors.

However, although the Lower East Side was technically farther south, we called our area that, not "East Village." That name came into vogue in the late sixties, with the real estate marketers, by which time I had moved to SoHo.

Thanks for mentioning the Old Reliable. I had forgot about it, but I spent much more time there than I did at Slug's.

Valerie
March 5th, 2012, 01:33 AM
I well remember Slug's Saloon, Third Street between B&C in the(Far) East Village. In 1965-66 it was one of my regular hang outs. My boyfriend at the time and I were great jazz lovers and lived on 11th Street between B&C. We would go to Slug's most nights to hear the jazz greats of the time...Charles Mingus, Art Blakey, Billy Higgins, Sun Ra, Charles LLoyd, Cecil Mc Bee, Herbie Hancock, Bobby Timmons, Lee Morgan,.. etc. to name only a few. Any night the door might open and in would walk Miles or Coltrane to check out the sounds. It was a friendly, relaxed club with sawdust on the floors, brick walls. I recall that one of our friends, James Jackson, carved the wooden Slug's sign outside the club. The East Village (the Lower East Side is south of Houston Street) at that time was always a poor Jewish, Ukranian, Puerto Rican neighborhood but these mid-Sixties were also the days of Flower Power and the streets at night west of Avenue B were always filled with people. However Avenues C&D were dark and isolated at night and kind of scary. I see that no one on this board has mentioned the "greatest little secret" at that time. It was a neighborhood bar diagonally across from Slug's, The Old Reliable. (The poet, Marilyn Hacker, has written a poem about it.) it was a great bar with a dance floor in the back room. Some of the best dancers would show up and some nights you would think the floor would rise the dance energy was so high. The "OR" had FREE "fat"french fries served every half hour, delicious beef stew (when people ate meat) for 50 cents, drinks were 50 cents, the juke box played 8 songs for 25 cents, but if you bumped it just right it would play for "free." These days will always be some of my fondest memories. Life, music, art, writing, style was unparalled. Today it seems that this sort of innovative talent is, sadly, gone forever. I will always remember those winter nights, coming home from Slug's, trudging up Avenue B against the freezing wind, stopping at The Annex between 10th-11th Sts., then home to our cozy and warm one bedroom apartment - which was $65.00 a month. I'm so very glad I was one of the lucky ones who experienced these days.

thanks so much for sharing your memories, Joan. loved reading them. needless to say, i could relate strongly to most of them but i think i was only in the OR once. i'm trying to jog my old memory about The Annex. sounds very familiar. my apt. couldn't even be called a one-bedroom: 5th floor walkup on 6th St. betw. 1st & 2nd Aves. for $53.50/mo.!!! LOL!

Joan
March 5th, 2012, 03:44 PM
Engelbach: Thanks for writing. Gee, I remember us leaving Washington Square Park in 1961-62 to walk over to the "East Village.." for pig ears at the Spanish restaurant. I guess everyone came to neighborhood names at different times. I used to live on Rivington Street and, being south of Houston St., we knew that was the Lower East Side...pickles in barrels...everything closed on Saturday except Christian owned establishments. In those days, I'd come home at 1:00 -2:00 a.m...men would be out playing checkers and dominos on milk boxes...I never felt threatened. It was different world than the one we inhabit today. Joan

Valerie
March 5th, 2012, 08:58 PM
Gee, I remember us leaving Washington Square Park in 1961-62 to walk over to the "East Village.." for pig ears at the Spanish restaurant. I guess everyone came to neighborhood names at different times.

yes, that's when i lived there also: early 61. we knew it as the East Village as well.

Joan: where exactly was The Annex. is that one of the places that Mingus hung out? i remember another bar with sawdust on the floor he used to go but i think it was closer to 8th on the West Side.

shiatoru
March 7th, 2012, 06:00 AM
Inside of Slugs'.....
http://www.aaa.si.edu/assets/images/thombob/fullsize/AAA_thombob_19778.jpg

Outside:
http://29.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_lp9lkdDVtZ1r02r3uo1_400.jpg

Aarfeld
December 5th, 2012, 11:59 PM
Slugs was located at 242 East Third Street, near Avenue B, on the south side of the street. If you place the address into a Google map search you can see what the property looks like today.

Music997
December 6th, 2012, 08:50 PM
It was a great place and it was legendary.

Many people do remember it. It was on East 3rd Street.

I like those pictures above.

Valerie
December 7th, 2012, 02:20 AM
it was a meaningful place to me: i met my husband-to-be there!!! LOL

Aarfeld
March 9th, 2013, 11:02 PM
Slugs was located at 242 East Third Street, between avenues B and C in the East Village. Today it is home to Rossy's Bakery, with the U.S. Post Office, Tompkin Square Station, next door.