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Folklore: The Gate of Horn

SINSULL 02 Mar 06 - 09:09 AM
Rapparee 02 Mar 06 - 09:11 AM
GUEST,dax 02 Mar 06 - 03:38 PM
GUEST,Art Thieme 03 Mar 06 - 12:57 AM
SINSULL 03 Mar 06 - 08:51 AM
Little Hawk 03 Mar 06 - 12:04 PM
Little Robyn 04 Mar 06 - 02:04 AM
Sandy Paton 04 Mar 06 - 05:33 PM
SINSULL 05 Mar 06 - 08:02 AM
SINSULL 10 Mar 06 - 01:55 PM
GUEST,Art Thieme 11 Mar 06 - 11:53 AM
Deckman 11 Mar 06 - 01:21 PM
Sandy Paton 11 Mar 06 - 04:20 PM
GUEST,Art Thieme 11 Mar 06 - 07:59 PM
GUEST,Jaze 12 Mar 06 - 03:07 PM
SINSULL 12 Mar 06 - 03:26 PM
Charley Noble 12 Mar 06 - 07:56 PM
GUEST,Art Thieme 13 Mar 06 - 12:11 AM
GUEST,Art Thieme 13 Mar 06 - 12:23 AM
Big Al Whittle 13 Mar 06 - 01:46 PM
Mark Ross 13 Mar 06 - 07:06 PM
SINSULL 09 Dec 06 - 10:24 PM
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Subject: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: SINSULL
Date: 02 Mar 06 - 09:09 AM

I picked up an old paperback, "American Folk Tales and Songs", and a postcard fell out.It was the early October schedule for The Gate Of Horn in Chicago and announced Odetta Felious for October 30, 1956, Tom O'Horgan for October 3, and Bob Gibson/Marilyn Child as "Continuing Engagement".
Does it bring back any memories? Will it trigger another Walt Robertson type thread?
Does anyone want the postcard? Art Thieme has first dibs if he wants it.
SINS


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: Rapparee
Date: 02 Mar 06 - 09:11 AM

Dear lord does that bring back memories....


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: GUEST,dax
Date: 02 Mar 06 - 03:38 PM

I have heard her called Holms as well as Felious. Was one a married name?
I guess Odetta was all she ever needed anyway.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: GUEST,Art Thieme
Date: 03 Mar 06 - 12:57 AM

WOW !!! That is amazing. I would love to have it!! I have the perfect frame to put it in!!!!! And a great spot on our wall!!!!!! Thanks a ton...

Art


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: SINSULL
Date: 03 Mar 06 - 08:51 AM

It's yours, Art.
But I demand a tale or two in return.
I lived in Chicago in 1979 and it was one of the saddest, loneliest years of my life. Wish I had known then that I wasn't the only one who loved folk music. So - tell me what I missed.
Mary


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: Little Hawk
Date: 03 Mar 06 - 12:04 PM

Wow. I would get chills looking at that. I was eight years old in '56, but was listening to folk music by about '59. Did Baez ever play the Gate of Horn?


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: Little Robyn
Date: 04 Mar 06 - 02:04 AM

I have the LP record 'Gibson and Camp at the Gate of Horn'
Robyn


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: Sandy Paton
Date: 04 Mar 06 - 05:33 PM

Okay, Mary, I'll get it rolling:
    1did three engagements at the "old" Gate of Horn, before it moved to fancier digs on nightclub row. It was a fine place to play. If anyone was being noisy in the music room, the management would politely move them into the bar area. Bob Gibson was the prime performer there for a long time. Frank Hamilton was the union-required house musician.
    My first gig at the Gate was as the opening act for Odetta. We got along wonderfully well although her audience was not mine at all. I learned not to try to match her power, but always opened as quietly as I could with something like "Dear Companion" or "Come All You Fair and Tender Ladies." Caroline and I were invited to and happily attended her wedding to Danny Gordon (I hope I'm remembering his name correctly – we never met him again), but the marriage, apparently was not destined to last.
    My second week at the Gate was with Martha Schlamme. Her audiences were much better for me, but the bar receipts dropped dramatically, I'm told. She brought in a quiet, attentive, appreciative crowd, but they came to hear the music, not to drink. Good for us, but bad for business.
    My third engagement started off with Carolyn Hester. I think it may have been her first significant engagement. She did a sort of Susan Reed thing -- very pretty girl in a pinafore, singing sweetly while perched on a stool. They let her go after a few evenings, to tell you the truth, and brought in Char Daniels as a replacement, at my suggestion. Char had been a guitar student of mine in Toledo when I was working the cocktail lounge at the Park Lane Hotel – Lord, that must have been back about 1954 or 1955 (I'm terrible with dates). Char had a delightfully bawdy sense of humor and her singing style had a real country twang. I remember her adjusting herself to her first guitar and asking "Don't they make these in a D-cup?" (She was amply endowed.) We had a ball for those final few evenings. I never saw Carolyn again, but she went on to an impressive career in folk music, a brief marriage to Richard Farina, and now she seems to be the dearly loved "folk godmother" of the Texas Kerrville crowd. Good for her! Pictures I've seen recently indicate that she is still a very lovely woman. An amusing memory: one of the young owner/partners/managers at the Gate (not Al Grossman) suggesting to Carolyn that she sang like a damned virgin and offering to assist her, somehow, in counteracting that impression. We were left to interpret his treatment as we might. As I think about it now, that exchange may well have been a primary factor in her early departure.
    I've met up with Odetta on numerous occasions since we worked together. At the 50th Anniversary get together honoring the Archive of Folk Culture at the Library of Congress, Washington, DC. Odetta gave me a hug that like to broke my back! Left me gasping for breath! It's not only her performances that are powerful. Take it from me, that's one very strong woman!
    It was at a special Sunday afternoon program at the old Gate that I first met Bob and Evelyne Beers. Bob did a superb entrance bit, alone, in costume & makeup, as an old country fiddler. Pantomimed the role beautifully, then fiddled up a storm before removing the gray wig and hat, the scruffy old coat, and introducing himself and his wife to sing and play a regular set of Beers family songs. A very effective bit of acting, that. Later, of course, they started the wonderful Fox Hollow Folk Festival in Petersburg, New York, where so many of us met every year and sang our hearts out all night long.
    After the Gate moved uptown (or down, or over, I'm not good with Chicago directions), I was there only for one afternoon program, sharing the bill with none other than Memphis Slim. Memorable! I will never forget his dynamic rendition of "If You See Kay." But nightclub row was not for me, and I guess the Gate had to become a bit less folksy to attract the uptown drinking crowd. The new room was all polished and fancy, but it just wasn't the same joint that I had known and enjoyed. I did see Bob Gibson and Hamilton (then known as Bob) Camp in the new place one night. The less polite refer to the recording (menrioned above) from that evening as "The Bobbsey Twins at the Gate of Horn." I recall that they did a hyper-effeminate send-up of "Johnny Has Gone for a Soldier" that the nightclub audience loved. I didn't.
    I had known Gibson a bit when I was working the Limelite in Aspen, Colorado, in the summer of 1959. Bob was practically a fixture at the Jerome Hotel there, as he was at the Gate during the rest of the year. Then, when Caroline and I moved Folk-Legacy to Sharon, Connecticut, some ten years later, I was surprised to meet him in the local drug store. (No wise cracks, guys!) It seems that he and his wife, Rose, were living in Kent, first town to the south of us. She was working as a waitress, their daughters were in elementary school here, and he was supposed to be writing songs for his publisher, but confessed that he was stuck in a terrible dry spell. He'd blown the advance and was having a hard time. He offered to build some bookcases for me. Brought in a lot of fancy power equipment (table saw, etc.), worked for hours getting it all carefully leveled and set up in the garage, then he and I sat in the kitchen and talked "old times" all night. This happened a few times, and then, well, he sort of disappeared. A couple of months later, Rose came up with a strong teen-ager to help, and took all the power gear back to Kent. That was the last I ever saw of Bob.
    Gate of Horn memories? Lots of 'em. Now it's Art's turn to contribute.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: SINSULL
Date: 05 Mar 06 - 08:02 AM

Sang like a virgin??? Conjures all sorts of images. Thanks, Sandy.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: SINSULL
Date: 10 Mar 06 - 01:55 PM

December 5,1962 - Lenny Bruce was arrested at The Gate Of Horn on obscenity charges. He was convicted and the Illinois Supreme Court upheld the conviction only to reverse it later. August of '66 he died of a drug overdose.
Were there drugs at The Gate Of Horn?

I want my pound of flesh, Art!


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: GUEST,Art Thieme
Date: 11 Mar 06 - 11:53 AM

Sinsull,

Thank you so much for the G.O.H. ad card. As I said, it's in a frame now.

To answer your question: If Bob Gibson was at the Gate Of Horn, THERE WERE DRUGS THERE!

Putting folk music into bars, with the accompanying acceptance of it by Hugh Hefner's Playboy's Penthouse TV show, (both Bob Gibson and
Pete Seeger were quests) allowed folkie doings to assume the mantle of jazz, jazz nightlife lifestyle --- with all that that entailed. Some of us then, who were hanging there by in '59 when I was 17 years old, we chose to avoid that side of it for the most-part, and amazingly, get into the scene for the music!

Strangely, about a year ago I was in touch with the then truly beautiful underage lady who was waiting tables at the Gate Of Horn that night when Lenny got busted. It was her underage status then that was the original ploy used by the Chicago police to bust the club in the first place.

Actually, though, it was the original Mayor Daley's anger at Lenny's humorous attacks on the Catholic Church (Richard J> Daley) that provoked the harassment of Mr. Bruce.

Yes, drugs were there---- and that has made all the difference...

Again, thank you!

Art


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: Deckman
Date: 11 Mar 06 - 01:21 PM

WOW! I thought that I was the only olde fart around!

It's so refreshing to hear these tales from the past that made us what we are today. CHEERS, and thanx. bob nelson


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: Sandy Paton
Date: 11 Mar 06 - 04:20 PM

I never saw anyone using drugs at the old Gate, although we all knew Bob was a regular user. None of the people with whom I worked when I was there did any of that stuff. Hell, I didn't even drink -- never did and still don't. Bartenders used to provide me with lemonades, dressed up with a cherry, when audience members wanted to buy me a drink. I assume they were charged for an alcohol-laced beverage, of course, as generous customers always were when I sang in the cocktail lounge of the Park Lane Hotel in Toledo (circa 1954 or 5), my first paid gig. My discomfort among boozers may be part of the reason I decided to give up singing in bars altogether. The Exodus in Denver was among my last such adventures (1960), and I don't even remember whether or not they sold booze there. I shared that gig with Judy Collins and spent all my free time back in the Green Room teaching her songs I'd learned in England and Scotland. Very pleasant memories.
    Sandy


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: GUEST,Art Thieme
Date: 11 Mar 06 - 07:59 PM

I'm going to do a high quality scan of it and ask Bruce Kallick to put it with my other folk scene photos available for viewing on his good site. I'll be uploading some new views of things to be added there also.

http://rudegnu.com/art_thieme.html

Remember to use the lower case word 'mudcat' as both the user name and the password. That will admit you!

Art


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: GUEST,Jaze
Date: 12 Mar 06 - 03:07 PM

Little Hawk, I believe Joan Baez was invited to play at the Gate of Horn by Odetta, sometime in the late 50's. She was there for several weeks with Odetta as her guardian, as Joan was very young at the time. It was there she met Bob Gibson who then invited Joan to Newport. And the rest, as they say, is history.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: SINSULL
Date: 12 Mar 06 - 03:26 PM

Art - I just took a browse through your picture gallery. Is there anyone you didn't perform with? I was fascinated by the number of clubs that are described as "across the street from The Gate of Horn". Did anyone ever cross the street?
When is that book coming out? You have the illustrations down. Enjoy the Postcard. I will have to leaf through some other books and see what else falls out.
Mary


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: Charley Noble
Date: 12 Mar 06 - 07:56 PM

A very nice read.

Thanks!

Charley Noble, who spent only a weekend or two in Chicago in the 1970's and never found his way to a folk club there


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: GUEST,Art Thieme
Date: 13 Mar 06 - 12:11 AM

I saw and definitely HEARD a barefoot waif named Joan Baez open the show for Bob Gibson in 1959 or 60. The voice was unbelievably pure. I was sure it was her first time ever at the Gate, but I could be wrong...

Mary, those are the photos that the Smithsonian Mus. Of American History found and saw on that website. There's another thread here about them asking that I allow them to archive my original slides. They are all bundled up as we speak and I will be sending 'em off one of these days soon.

Glad you are enjoying them!

Art Thieme


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: GUEST,Art Thieme
Date: 13 Mar 06 - 12:23 AM

Mary,

The "book" is here and now in all my posts to Mudcat, and at that photo website. Acdtually writing a book is too lonely --- and as Chuck Berry said in his song, "Too Much Monkey Business For Me To Be Involved In"

I like the good comaraderie of Mudcat--the give and take. It isn't lonely here at all! Plus the instant critiques are good for me ultimately. It's a constant reminder I'm not on the stage any more--where I was often too much of a people pleaser. (My skin is getting thicker as a result... ;-)

Art Thieme


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 13 Mar 06 - 01:46 PM

Its last year since I read it, but wasn't Dave Van Ronk a bit equivocal in his praise of The Gate in the book he did with Elijah Wald.. Please continue though, cos I've heard so much of this legendary place and time. As somebody who arrived when the folk revival was pretty much on its arse - to hear of the sheer electricity of that most creative period is quite inspiring.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: Mark Ross
Date: 13 Mar 06 - 07:06 PM

Dave was specifically talking about A. Grossman, one of the owners. His relationship to Albert was equivocal. Dave's ex-wife told me once that he couldn't record with Grossman in the studio.

Mark ross


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Gate of Horn
From: SINSULL
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 10:24 PM

refresh


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