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  #56341  
Old Posted Jan 27, 2021, 6:51 AM
Lorendoc Lorendoc is offline
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507 S Flower

Quote:
Originally Posted by ethereal_reality View Post
.
Late night mystery location.

Los Angeles


eBay

Does anyone have an idea where this might be?. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .That might be a corner of a park on the right - - - - - >. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Now, look up.


He looks like my uncle when he was young.




.
...was the locus for a number of car rental agencies in the 1956 CD.
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  #56342  
Old Posted Jan 27, 2021, 10:15 AM
CaliNative CaliNative is offline
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Originally Posted by CityBoyDoug View Post
The Los Angeles City Council removed most of the trees, grass and benches from Pershing Square because they didn't want undesirables and homeless hanging around the Square all day and sleeping there at night. So now its an ugly concrete wasteland. The local office workers even avoid the place at their lunchtime. The beautiful oasis we see in the old photos is long gone.
We pay these guys and gals that run the city? Of course the developers pay them too

Last edited by CaliNative; Jan 27, 2021 at 10:40 AM.
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  #56343  
Old Posted Jan 27, 2021, 5:47 PM
Martin Pal Martin Pal is offline
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In the photo above the above post, what is that guy doing? (Hiding whatever's at the end of his lanyard?) And holding? (A camera?)
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  #56344  
Old Posted Jan 27, 2021, 6:23 PM
quickstop quickstop is offline
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Originally Posted by Martin Pal View Post
In the photo above the above post, what is that guy doing? (Hiding whatever's at the end of his lanyard?) And holding? (A camera?)
In those days, maybe a light meter, since the other hand is a camera
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  #56345  
Old Posted Jan 27, 2021, 8:04 PM
Martin Pal Martin Pal is offline
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^^^
Thanks!

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Originally Posted by Martin Pal View Post
Moving on down the block... (to be continued)
_________________________________________________________________
After London Fog, to the east we come to 8917 Sunset Blvd.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HossC View Post
The Golden Violin restaurant was at 8917 Sunset Boulevard. From jhgraham.com:
Little Hungary, also known as Little Gypsy, was open here by November 1937, featuring Hungarian food and the music of gypsy violins.

Though it changed names in 1960, the restaurant retained the same theme as The Golden Violin, owned by Rose Dietch. Dietch went a different direction in 1964, changing the name to The Galaxy, which it remained into 1969.
The article has a couple of photos of Little Hungary also known as Little Gypsy but none of the Golden Violin or The Galaxy.
_______________________________________________________________________________________

Starting with the Little Hungary aka Little Gypsy (opened in 1937) photos:

jhgraham

Not long ago, this past June, a man named David Carlson commented on the post and wrote: This restaurant also featured two grand pianos. I was one of the pianists there in about 1956. My favorite memory is the night Jean Simmons sat at my elbow at the piano bar and requested I play “Don’t Blame Me” which I gladly did.


Now there's this pretty remarkable video on Getty Media Images from the WPA Film Library. It's dated as 1935 and runs 2 mins. and 40 seconds. It's camera footage traveling west on Sunset Blvd., from just before Clark Street until just past Doheny. Camera is to the north side of Sunset. Early on, the camera will pass the Little Hungary/Little Gypsy restaurant.

https://media.gettyimages.com/videos...eo-id114084750


It starts at Hollywood Press print shop at 8859 Sunset Blvd.

Hollywood Press Print Shop | passes a barber shop and liquor store | Shell Oil billboard | Shell gas station replete with service attendants in white uniforms (this station is there well into the 1960's)

(camera passes Clark Street)

Bank of America (Whisky-a-Gogo) | Rex Eats (steaks and chili) | an unreadable "Agency" | another storefront | Little Hungary restaurant (banner on awning says Gypsy Music) [at 0:40] | several places under the banner of Hampton Shops (Antiques \ Gifts) This is where Hamburger Hamlet will be.

(camera pans by Hilldale Ave. -- as it does, there is a lovely looking house behind the Hampton Shops building, with a two color striped umbrella and nice greenery. Those places in back of this strip of buildings look to become parking lots etc. in the years to follow)

[The above portion is of the block of buildings I've been writing about, but the rest of the video is worth looking at.)

[at 1:00] Building (still there) with hard to read lettering. One can make out DARRIN and below left of that words which I first thought said Please Bitch. Heh! Can't really make out the words. | billboard promoting Durling column in the L.A. Examiner | vacant lots | (on a hill) a billboard that says "Merry Christmas food shopping begins at the Farmer's Market W. 3rd & Fairfax/set back from the billboard an unnamed building | another vacant lot | bungalow office [at 1:25] | steak house restaurant (can't read name) | The Westside Market | Mermaid Club (what do you suppose is all that on the left of the building when we pass by?) | unreadable house looking building (name is on the front, one word might be music) a lot of rocks on the property

(camera pans by Wetherly Dr.)

Cafe La Maze | Bellows and Company | Prince Rare Books | Doheny Smoke Shop | Flower Fair | Bit of Sweden restaurant | Nori ? | Karole's Salon of Beauty | KLA Publications

(camera pans by Doheny Drive [at 2:15])

Maxime's | Contempo | Landi-Kennell Corp. | Villa Nova

_________________________________________________________________

In 1960 the Little Hungary/Little Gypsy restaurant kept the same theme, but changed names to The Golden Violin.

This source says: In 1960 [the space] became “The Golden Violin”, later in 1960 officially changing the name to “Paginini’s Golden Violin”. The interior had ivory and gold walls and with the sound of violin music as the diners ate. According to a review of the restaurant in 1960, the ambiance was very tasteful and needed in West Hollywood, but the service wasn't very good. Between 1960-1964, the owner, Rose Deitch, closed the restaurant and reopened it as the Galaxy, dedicated to dancing and live entertainment.

I can't locate anything with the name Paginini's Golden Violin nor where the above found it's source.

There's a small photo that shows the restaurants "golden" sign. Hard to see, but it's near the telephone pole:



It keeps surprising me these clubs were also restaurants.
vvvvvv..........
Here's a November 1964 ad for The Galaxy, the year it opened: findglocal..........The Twist and Watusi anyone?

Photos featuring The Galaxy...these are from the London Fog Facebook Page:

This photo is from the back over of Arthur Blessitt's LP: "Soul Session at His Place", released in 1969.






The following photo was taken from the film Mondo Freudo, 1966. Footage from it here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EESz...ature=youtu.be



Notice on the right above next door to The Galaxy it says Galaxy Overflow. The London Fog Facebook site administrator asked: "I have been getting questions about the interior, plus how the "overflow" worked. I'm stumped! Anyone?"

One person answered about the interior of the Galaxy, but didn't answer about how the "overflow" worked, so we're still stumped: "When you entered the Galaxy the stage was on the opposite wall. The bar was on the right and a small dance floor in the middle of the room. On the left wall were booths with a mirrored wall behind them. Believe tables and chairs were also around the dance floor. At the end of the bar there was an opening to a room that had tables and chairs. Rose Deitch sure booked some great acts there. I remember seeing Little Richard and Ike and Tine Turner."

Whether true or not, someone else posited that the "Overflow" might have been used more when the police were cracking down on underage patrons in the clubs and a certain signal of some sort would tell them to get into the Overlflow room. Remember the age back then was 21 to buy alcohol and enter bars.

And there's the London Fog photo on my previous post HERE that shows a great color view of The Galaxy and the Galaxy Overflow next door. Is that a Mustang "truck" parked out front behind, I think, the Chevy Impala? Did Mustang make pick-up trucks? At the link, there's also a photo of a Galaxy sidewalk view behind the Opera House awning.

This particular website:
https://www.setlist.fm/venue/galaxy-...-73d39285.html
...has info that says The Galaxy "Later became the Thelma Theater". Open November 12, 1969 - 1970. Also known as The Thelma, Thelma, Thelma Club.

Moving on down the block... (to be continued)

Last edited by Martin Pal; Jan 27, 2021 at 11:13 PM.
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  #56346  
Old Posted Jan 27, 2021, 8:43 PM
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Bristolian Bristolian is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin Pal View Post
And there's the London Fog photo on my previous post HERE that shows a great color view of The Galaxy and the Galaxy Overflow next door. Is that a Mustang "truck" parked out front behind, I think, the Chevy Impala? Did Mustang make pick-up trucks? There's also a Galaxy sidewalk view behind the Opera House awning.
Ranchero Mustang?

That is a Mustang parked behind a couple of Thunderbirds. It does look like it has a pickup bed but I believe it's just a fastback Mustang and some sort of optical illusion. Ford never made a truck version of the Mustang.
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  #56347  
Old Posted Jan 27, 2021, 9:11 PM
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HossC HossC is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin Pal View Post

London Fog, 8919 Sunset Blvd.
Despite it's notoriety, it opened in 1965 and closed in 1966.

DoorsHistory
Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin Pal View Post

Is that a Mustang "truck" parked out front behind, I think, the Chevy Impala? Did Mustang make pick-up trucks?
Ford themselves never made a truck version of the Mustang, but, in 1966, Beverly Hills Ford made 50 examples of a car they called the "Mustero". They were priced well above a standard Mustang, but they've held their value well.

Video Link


I don't know if Martin Pal's picture above shows one of these rare cars, or if it's just a regular Mustang caught at an odd angle.
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  #56348  
Old Posted Jan 27, 2021, 11:21 PM
Martin Pal Martin Pal is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HossC View Post
...in 1966, Beverly Hills Ford made 50 examples of a car they called the "Mustero". They were priced well above a standard Mustang, but they've held their value well.

I don't know if Martin Pal's picture above shows one of these rare cars, or if it's just a regular Mustang caught at an odd angle.
Well, it's the right year [1966] and location [near Beverly Hills]!
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  #56349  
Old Posted Jan 28, 2021, 1:41 AM
Godzilla Godzilla is offline
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Originally Posted by BifRayRock View Post


Distantly related to J.J.Newberrys is its cousin, Britt's Department Store.

Newberrys had a store located on Third Street across from the Farmer's Market possibly in the '50s and '60s. 6314 W 3rd Street. According to the '73 Directory, next door at 6310 W. 3rd Street was Britts Department Store. http://rescarta.lapl.org:8080/ResCar...rch_doc=brittsBritts was operated by parent company, JJ Newberry & Co. This building is recognizable today as "KMart." (JJNewberry once worked for Kresge, from which sprang KMArt.)

There is some slight difference of opinion regarding the history of this building since two people claiming familiarity with the building 30 years ago volunteered that the same building was operated as a private Hospital. As evidence, they claimed that the top floor "allegedly" retains the look of a large maternity ward, including related- equipment(?). Having never seen the place, I have no idea if any of this true.



Quote:
Attention Kmart Shoppers! Today we are continuing our series of posts on California locations with a two level Kmart store in the Los Angeles area.

This Kmart store is an 135,000 square foot, two floor store located on the busy West 3rd Street in Los Angeles. It was originally built as a Britt's Department Store in 1963, which was a subsidiary of the JJ Newberry company. After the JJ Newberry company decided to phase out and close their Britt's locations, Kmart stepped in and did an extensive remodel of the store and opened for business on October 5, 1978. One thing to note is that according to news articles when the building was a Britt's, it was a three level store but now in it's current form it's a two level store. When you view the side of the store in Google street view, you can see the windows that are located on third floor level. The third level is completely closed off since it became a Kmart. It is unknown what the third level is used for but it could be a storage and stock area now or just empty. I am unsure how this third level is accessed as there is no escalator that leads up to it. https://www.kmartworld.com/2017/
https://2.bp.blogspot.com/-p0L2sjByX...600/britts.jpg






https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-cxzrNO3B6...martbritts.jpg







https://2.bp.blogspot.com/-qzTIbEZRT..._141222rev.jpg




https://4.bp.blogspot.com/-OXbkNrp_2...722_142058.jpg
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  #56350  
Old Posted Jan 28, 2021, 2:23 AM
Noir_Noir Noir_Noir is offline
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Deleted Post.

Last edited by Noir_Noir; Jan 28, 2021 at 10:13 AM. Reason: Jumped the gun.
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  #56351  
Old Posted Jan 28, 2021, 5:25 AM
Martin Pal Martin Pal is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Noir_Noir View Post
Hamburger Hamlet to Whisky A Go-Go sequence from Ed Ruscha - June 1966.
_________________________________________________________________
^^^

Hey, that was going to be my last post!

_________________



Hey, NOIR NOIR, that's okay, you didn't need to delete your post!!! I just noticed you did that...

Last edited by Martin Pal; Jan 28, 2021 at 8:41 PM.
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  #56352  
Old Posted Jan 28, 2021, 6:08 AM
Martin Pal Martin Pal is offline
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Originally Posted by Martin Pal View Post
Moving on down the block... (to be continued)

Moving east from The Galaxy and Galaxy Overflow, we come to the location that in 1955 opened as The Unicorn Book Loft/Coffee House at 8907 Sunset Blvd. It's said to be one of the first coffee houses in LA.

Here's a beatnik style poster of The Unicorn. Something tells me it's probably a recreation or artist's rendering of the original place.



CLICK ON THE POSTER FOR A LARGER, MORE READABLE, BUT LESS COLORFUL VERSION.

The following has been attributed to Domenic Priore, author of "Riot on Sunset Strip: Rock 'n' Roll's Last Stand in the 60's":
Unicorn was opened by Herb Cohen and Victor Maymudes in 1955. It was the first beatnik coffee house in Los Angeles. It was a place where the young rebels of the day congregated to drink coffee, listen to live music, conduct poetry readings and play chess. The walls inside of the Unicorn were painted dark with paintings of nude women (hung upside down) and photos of beatnik heroes covering the walls. The waitresses were hip, beautiful, blunt and mean!
It was ground zero of the emerging counter-culture in the late '50s and early '60s and advertised itself with slogans such as "Where casual craznicks climb circular charcoal curbs for cool calculated confabulations". The young kids would come together to discuss poetry, politics and religion, all while sipping their brandy flavored latte's.


They also sold books in the upstairs loft. I know there was a bookstore in West Hollywood at 8920 Santa Monica Blvd. called The Unicorn. I don't know when it opened but it was there in the late 70's. I wonder if when the coffee house closed they opened a bookstore with the loft bookshop? See HERE.

Warner Bros. album from 1958. The cover photo was taken inside The Unicorn. If you look at the upper right of this photo, behind the chandelier, you can see the "Unicorn" sign on the back wall.

Discogs

CLICK THE ALBUM COVER FOR A LARGER SIZE VERSION.

Here is a rare 1959 photo taken at The Unicorn's entrance: (The Unicorn looks more like a bull to me.)




I discovered this small Unicorn photo (for sale or already sold?) on WorthPoint today! Another RARE photo!
And thanks to the kindness of HossC, , I can post it here now!


WorthPoint and HossC

The writing on the back says "Side view of The Unicorn, a coffee house on Sunset Strip. 1-11-59" (!)
The photo is taken from the opposite direction to the one above.
On the photo itself is the writing "Hamburger Heaven" and an arrow to a spot in the distance on the photo. (I'm guessing they meant Hamburger Hamlet.)




Priore: In 1963, Lenny Bruce was booked to play a show at the Unicorn and was arrested after the performance for violating California's obscenity law and put on trial for that performance.

The ad at top for the Unicorn announces Bruce's upcoming performance:


In 1966, the Paul Butterfield Blues Band recorded a live album at the Unicorn.



The Unicorn closed in 1966 and it became Sneeky Pete's.

1966: You can see the striped awning for it below, behind the telephone pole. (Apparently Pete's moved the entrance to the left side of the premises, whereas The Unicorn used the right side as an entrance.)

............................



You can see the striped awning for it in the distance from this 1967 photo looking through the Whiskee á-Go Go's awning. And notice, yes, it is spelled "Sneeky."

VintageLos Angeles

As for the spelling of Whiskee, someone writes: "The City pressured them into changing the spelling to Whiskee to avoid the liquor connotation of the original and present Whisky spelling to the younger crowd (under 21) that they were trying to keep out of the clubs. This was around the time of the Sunset Strip Riots."

I have to say, changing the spelling of Whisky or Whiskey to Whiskee isn't going to fool any reasonably intelligent teenager, is it? Advertisers have been doing those cute spellings for their products as far back as I can remember.



A color photo I hadn't seen before of the 1966 Sunset Strip protests around these times:


An original Sneeky Pete's Menu:



Several sources say that, apparently, Pete's was a mob hangout.

Allison Martino writes: Sneeky Pete’s was popular with wise-guys (there was even a photo of Al Capone in the men’s rest room). It was also popular for show biz entertainers like Miles Davis and Johnny Carson. In fact Johnny used to sit in on the drums. | VLA/Facebook


Sneeky Pete's was around until the late 1970's. A 1973 photo:


By 1973 it looks like all the places on that block to the west that I've been covering so far are now gone!

Moving on down the block...(to be continued)

Last edited by Martin Pal; Jan 28, 2021 at 8:28 PM. Reason: inserted new photos
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  #56353  
Old Posted Jan 28, 2021, 1:13 PM
CaliNative CaliNative is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin Pal View Post
Moving east from The Galaxy and Galaxy Overflow, we come to the location that in 1955 opened as The Unicorn Book Loft/Coffee House at 8907 Sunset Blvd. It's said to be one of the first coffee houses in LA.

Here's a beatnik style poster of The Unicorn. Something tells me it's probably a recreation or artist's rendering of the original place.



CLICK ON THE POSTER FOR A LARGER, MORE READABLE, BUT LESS COLORFUL VERSION.

The following has been attributed to Domenic Priore, author of "Riot on Sunset Strip: Rock 'n' Roll's Last Stand in the 60's":
Unicorn was opened by Herb Cohen and Victor Maymudes in 1955. It was the first beatnik coffee house in Los Angeles. It was a place where the young rebels of the day congregated to drink coffee, listen to live music, conduct poetry readings and play chess. The walls inside of the Unicorn were painted dark with paintings of nude women (hung upside down) and photos of beatnik heroes covering the walls. The waitresses were hip, beautiful, blunt and mean!
It was ground zero of the emerging counter-culture in the late '50s and early '60s and advertised itself with slogans such as "Where casual craznicks climb circular charcoal curbs for cool calculated confabulations". The young kids would come together to discuss poetry, politics and religion, all while sipping their brandy flavored latte's.


They also sold books in the upstairs loft. I know there was a bookstore in West Hollywood at 8920 Santa Monica Blvd. called The Unicorn. I don't know when it opened but it was there in the late 70's. I wonder if when the coffee house closed they opened a bookstore with the loft bookshop? See HERE.

Warner Bros. album from 1958. The cover photo was taken inside The Unicorn. If you look at the upper right of this photo, behind the chandelier, you can see the "Unicorn" sign on the back wall.

Discogs

CLICK THE ALBUM COVER FOR A LARGER SIZE VERSION.

Here is a rare 1959 photo taken at The Unicorn's entrance: (The Unicorn looks more like a bull to me.)


Help! Right before I was going to post, I discovered this small Unicorn photo (for sale or already sold?) on WorthPoint. I cannot host it to any photo site now. (Could anyone else?) It's a great little snapshot. It's got writing on the back. It's dated 1-11-59.

It has some writing on the front, too. Along the edge it says Hamburger Heaven and an arrow to a spot in the distance on the photo. (I'm guessing they meant Hamburger Hamlet.)

https://www.worthpoint.com/worthoped...ffee-440655762
...........................................



Priore: In 1963, Lenny Bruce was booked to play a show at the Unicorn and was arrested after the performance for violating California's obscenity law and put on trial for that performance.

The ad at top for the Unicorn announces Bruce's upcoming performance:


In 1966, the Paul Butterfield Blues Band recorded a live album at the Unicorn.



The Unicorn closed in 1966 and it became Sneeky Pete's.

1966: You can see the striped awning for it below, behind the telephone pole. (Apparently Pete's moved the entrance to the left side of the premises, whereas The Unicorn used the right side as an entrance.)

............................



You can see the striped awning for it in the distance from this 1967 photo looking through the Whiskee á-Go Go's awning. And notice, yes, it is spelled "Sneeky."

VintageLos Angeles

As for the spelling of Whiskee, someone writes: "The City pressured them into changing the spelling to Whiskee to avoid the liquor connotation of the original and present Whisky spelling to the younger crowd (under 21) that they were trying to keep out of the clubs. This was around the time of the Sunset Strip Riots."

I have to say, changing the spelling of Whisky or Whiskey to Whiskee isn't going to fool any reasonably intelligent teenager, is it? Advertisers have been doing those cute spellings for their products as far back as I can remember.

A color photo I hadn't seen before of the 1966 Sunset Strip protests around these times:


An original Sneeky Pete's Menu:



Several sources say that, apparently, Pete's was a mob hangout.

Allison Martino writes: Sneeky Pete’s was popular with wise-guys (there was even a photo of Al Capone in the men’s rest room). It was also popular for show biz entertainers like Miles Davis and Johnny Carson. In fact Johnny used to sit in on the drums. | VLA/Facebook


Sneeky Pete's was around until the late 1970's. A 1973 photo:


By 1973 it looks like all the places on that block to the west that I've been covering so far are now gone!

Moving on down the block...(to be continued)
General impression of Social/youth/bohemian/entertainment centers in L.A. over the years (pre-pandemic):

Pre 1940: downtown, Hollywood
1940-60: Hollywood
1950-1970: Hollywood, Sunset Strip
1970-90: Westwood, Santa Monica and Beach towns, Beverly Hills
1990-present: downtown, westside, Pasadena, Hollywood, WeHo, Silver Lake, Ktown, Santa Monica & Beach towns including OC

Is this fairly correct? Any new hotpots? Westwood used to be a big gathering center, but it sort of fell out of favor in the 1990s after some gang violence. Is the "Sunset Strip" making a comeback?

Last edited by CaliNative; Jan 28, 2021 at 1:33 PM.
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  #56354  
Old Posted Jan 28, 2021, 3:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaliNative View Post
General impression of Social/youth/bohemian/entertainment centers in L.A. over the years (pre-pandemic):

Pre 1940: downtown, Hollywood
1940-60: Hollywood
1950-1970: Hollywood, Sunset Strip
1970-90: Westwood, Santa Monica and Beach towns, Beverly Hills
1990-present: downtown, westside, Pasadena, Hollywood, WeHo, Silver Lake, Ktown, Santa Monica & Beach towns including OC

Is this fairly correct? Any new hotpots? Westwood used to be a big gathering center, but it sort of fell out of favor in the 1990s after some gang violence. Is the "Sunset Strip" making a comeback?
I was a teenager in the 90's, and i have to say that "Melrose" was a huge center. I know it's considered Hollywood, but it was it's own area for a very long time.
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  #56355  
Old Posted Jan 28, 2021, 5:20 PM
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GaylordWilshire GaylordWilshire is offline
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GSV


I've discovered that the forlorn 112-year-old house at 1575 West Adams was the babyhood home of prolific Hollywood composer Jerry Goldsmith, whose amazing oeuvre includes the music for 1974's Chinatown, for which he was famously given just 10 days to complete after a previous score was rejected.

I think it needs a plaque. (The house definitely has needs.)

A history of 1575 West Adams and more on Goldsmith's antecedents is here.
.
.
.
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2021, 9:37 PM
Slauson Slim Slauson Slim is offline
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Pat and Lolly Vegas became the band Redbone. Dino Valente - or Valenti - was in the band Quicksilver Messenger Service and wrote the hippie anthem Get Together.

Sunset Strip clubs of the mid-'60s also included the trip and the Sea Witch.

Whiskee a go go. Also Whisk. The words whisky and whiskey on outdoor signs at one time ran afoul of California liquor laws.
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Old Posted Jan 29, 2021, 12:54 AM
Lwize Lwize is offline
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Quote:
Flash back to the '70s on a L.A. architecture driving tour
https://www.latimes.com/travel/story...e-driving-tour
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Old Posted Jan 29, 2021, 3:09 AM
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Here is a better version of the poster for The Unicorn, designed by Rolly Crump. Crump worked for Walt Disney imagineering and made big contributions to the Haunted Mansion, it's a small world, and Walt Disney's Enchanted Tiki Room.
Photo by Mark Berry, from "The Great Crump Presents His Magic" as reviewed at https://wdwnt.com/2020/03/review-the...f-rolly-crump/

https://www.babytattoo.com/shop/the-...of-rolly-crump


Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin Pal View Post
Moving east from The Galaxy and Galaxy Overflow, we come to the location that in 1955 opened as The Unicorn Book Loft/Coffee House at 8907 Sunset Blvd. It's said to be one of the first coffee houses in LA.

Here's a beatnik style poster of The Unicorn. Something tells me it's probably a recreation or artist's rendering of the original place.



CLICK ON THE POSTER FOR A LARGER, MORE READABLE, BUT LESS COLORFUL VERSION.

The following has been attributed to Domenic Priore, author of "Riot on Sunset Strip: Rock 'n' Roll's Last Stand in the 60's":
Unicorn was opened by Herb Cohen and Victor Maymudes in 1955. It was the first beatnik coffee house in Los Angeles. It was a place where the young rebels of the day congregated to drink coffee, listen to live music, conduct poetry readings and play chess. The walls inside of the Unicorn were painted dark with paintings of nude women (hung upside down) and photos of beatnik heroes covering the walls. The waitresses were hip, beautiful, blunt and mean!
It was ground zero of the emerging counter-culture in the late '50s and early '60s and advertised itself with slogans such as "Where casual craznicks climb circular charcoal curbs for cool calculated confabulations". The young kids would come together to discuss poetry, politics and religion, all while sipping their brandy flavored latte's.


They also sold books in the upstairs loft. I know there was a bookstore in West Hollywood at 8920 Santa Monica Blvd. called The Unicorn. I don't know when it opened but it was there in the late 70's. I wonder if when the coffee house closed they opened a bookstore with the loft bookshop? See HERE.

Warner Bros. album from 1958. The cover photo was taken inside The Unicorn. If you look at the upper right of this photo, behind the chandelier, you can see the "Unicorn" sign on the back wall.

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Here is a rare 1959 photo taken at The Unicorn's entrance: (The Unicorn looks more like a bull to me.)




I discovered this small Unicorn photo (for sale or already sold?) on WorthPoint today! Another RARE photo!
And thanks to the kindness of HossC, , I can post it here now!


WorthPoint and HossC

The writing on the back says "Side view of The Unicorn, a coffee house on Sunset Strip. 1-11-59" (!)
The photo is taken from the opposite direction to the one above.
On the photo itself is the writing "Hamburger Heaven" and an arrow to a spot in the distance on the photo. (I'm guessing they meant Hamburger Hamlet.)




Priore: In 1963, Lenny Bruce was booked to play a show at the Unicorn and was arrested after the performance for violating California's obscenity law and put on trial for that performance.

The ad at top for the Unicorn announces Bruce's upcoming performance:


In 1966, the Paul Butterfield Blues Band recorded a live album at the Unicorn.



The Unicorn closed in 1966 and it became Sneeky Pete's.

1966: You can see the striped awning for it below, behind the telephone pole. (Apparently Pete's moved the entrance to the left side of the premises, whereas The Unicorn used the right side as an entrance.)

............................



You can see the striped awning for it in the distance from this 1967 photo looking through the Whiskee á-Go Go's awning. And notice, yes, it is spelled "Sneeky."

VintageLos Angeles

As for the spelling of Whiskee, someone writes: "The City pressured them into changing the spelling to Whiskee to avoid the liquor connotation of the original and present Whisky spelling to the younger crowd (under 21) that they were trying to keep out of the clubs. This was around the time of the Sunset Strip Riots."

I have to say, changing the spelling of Whisky or Whiskey to Whiskee isn't going to fool any reasonably intelligent teenager, is it? Advertisers have been doing those cute spellings for their products as far back as I can remember.



A color photo I hadn't seen before of the 1966 Sunset Strip protests around these times:


An original Sneeky Pete's Menu:



Several sources say that, apparently, Pete's was a mob hangout.

Allison Martino writes: Sneeky Pete’s was popular with wise-guys (there was even a photo of Al Capone in the men’s rest room). It was also popular for show biz entertainers like Miles Davis and Johnny Carson. In fact Johnny used to sit in on the drums. | VLA/Facebook


Sneeky Pete's was around until the late 1970's. A 1973 photo:


By 1973 it looks like all the places on that block to the west that I've been covering so far are now gone!

Moving on down the block...(to be continued)
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  #56359  
Old Posted Jan 29, 2021, 5:09 AM
MartinTurnbull's Avatar
MartinTurnbull MartinTurnbull is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 203
Richfield Tower plaque

On my website, there is a page on which I have a collection of views of the Richfield Tower during the all-too-brief time it stood at 555 South Flower Street in downtown Los Angeles from 1929 to 1969. You can see that collection here: http://bit.ly/RichfieldBuilding


I suppose it was for this reason that I was recently contacted by someone who said that he had the entry plaque into the Richfield Tower building and would I like to see a photo of it? WOULD I EVER?!?! So he sent me this photo and said: “This came to me from a friend of many years. It was given to the foreman of the demolition crew when the demo started in 1967. He had it set in the entry way of his home. After his passing, it was removed and given to my friend and now to me.”

The words “ERECTED 1929” is surrounded by eight discs. Richfield was an oil company (now part of ARCO) so I’m guessing these eight discs represent fields of endeavor in which oil has played a central role. They are: oil wells, airplanes, skyscrapers, small boats, trains, ships, factories, and automobiles. I'm not sure why sea craft are there twice, unless the "small boats” is something else. I am SO glad that someone thought to save something from the jewel in the crown of Los Angeles architecture aside from the two bronze doors.



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  #56360  
Old Posted Jan 29, 2021, 6:16 AM
Martin Pal Martin Pal is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Snix View Post
Here is a better version of the poster for The Unicorn, designed by Rolly Crump. Crump worked for Walt Disney imagineering and made big contributions to the Haunted Mansion, it's a small world, and Walt Disney's Enchanted Tiki Room.Photo by Mark Berry, from "The Great Crump Presents His Magic" as reviewed at https://wdwnt.com/2020/03/review-the...f-rolly-crump/

https://www.babytattoo.com/shop/the-...of-rolly-crump
_________________________________________________________________
Thanks for that info, Snix!
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