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1960s TEXAS MUSIC - HOUSTON LIVE MUSIC VENUES

Love Street Light Circus Feel Good Machine
1019 Commerce
Love Street photo courtesy theHAIF.com

love street
Love Street Light Circus Feel Good Machine opened on June 3rd 1967. The bands included the Red Crayola, the Starvation Army Band and Fever Tree. The audiences sat at tables or in the Zonk-Out, a series of cushions with back rests that were comfortable like beds. Despite being open barely three years it hosted a who's who of Texas psych: the Red Krayola, Erickson's Thirteenth Floor Elevators, Johnny Winter, Bubble Puppy, Shiva's Headband, Fever Tree, Gibbons's pre-ZZ Top band Moving Sidewalks and American Blues, featuring his future bandmates Dusty Hill and Frank Beard. Appropriately enough, it was also the site of ZZ Top's first shows on July 4 and 5, 1969.

love street light circus
Love Street building in 2000
David Adickes was the original owner/manager/light show projectionist. Sgt. Cliff Carlin came on board to manage it by late '67. Adickes sold the club outright to Carlin later. By '69 (perhaps earlier) International Artists had a stake in it as well. Love Street tried to branch out into Corpus Christi and San Antonio with little success, and closed down in Houston on June 6, 1970.

The 3-story building which housed Love Street on the third floor is still there on Allen's Landing. It's been empty for many years. From the outside it looks like one of those big storage sheds.



The Living Eye
1493 Silber Road

sixpents at living eye
Six Pents performing at the Living Eye
The Living Eye opened November, 1966 in Spring Branch. Bands played from 8 to 12 and the "age limit" was 15 to 20. That means that, like the Vulcan Gas Company in Austin and a lot of other clubs, they didn't have a liquor license. Bands who often performed were Neil Ford and the Fanatics, the Coastliners and the Lost and Found. Other acts include the Electric Prunes, Question Mark and the Mysterions, and the Lemon Fog.

The building that housed Living Eye burned down a few years ago. It had been a hardware store for years prior to that.
(thanks to Andrew Brown and Dennis)



Jimmie Menutis Lounge and Club
3236 Telephone at Wayside
Demolished

Jimmie Menutis Lounge and Club photo courtesy theHAIF.com


jimmy menutis club card"The Jimmy Menutis Club was as close to a 'nightclub' as anything in Houston at the time in the early sixties. Seemed to me it was owned by gangsters, but maybe that was just implied somehow by the name. I do remember dark short white guys walking around. The place must not have really cared about who they served because I probably looked about 11 when I went there even though I was in high school. It was small, with a stage at one end and red table cloths on the tables; kinda classy. I saw Bo Didley and I think, King Curtis. My favorite memory was of Jimmy Reed of whom I was a giant fan.

Jimmy was to have played one night (I used to have the picture I swiped from the club), but as the night wore on, he continued not to show. Rumors circulated through the club that he was 'sick', then that he'd been to the hospital to have his stomach pumped having been drinking 'wine, screwdrivers, and beer'. He finally came on hours late and it was still great.

The highlight for me, however, and a scene that is branded into my memory, is of him playing along when suddenly his guitar separated from it's strap and plummeted to the floor. The guy next to him, who played the classic 'da Da, da Da, da Da, da Da' rhythm, reached over and grabbed it without missing a beat LIKE IT HAPPENED EVERY NIGHT. It was most interesting!"
(thanks to Ernie Gammage)

Not much has changed from nightclubs in the 60's to today's nightclubs. Celebrities have gravitated to these scenes and are then broad-casted for the word to see the next day in the tabloids, newspapers, and on TV. With the rise of technology, a night like this would be very widely gossiped about among the best blog hosting sites found in today's society.

Performers included:
Fats Domino, Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis, Bo Diddley, and Louis Armstrong. More information about the club is in the book Telephone Road by Burton Chapman.


Liberty Hall
1610 Chenevert
liberty hall poster

poster
ticket

Located on Chenevert at the edge of downtown Houston. Liberty Hall was Houston's premier small venue for national touring acts from the early 70s to the mid 70s. Bands who performed there include Gram Parsons, Velvet Underground, Ramones, Jimmy Reed, Ted Nugent, Rory Gallagher, Bruce Springsteen (in '74), Gram Parsons (a performance available as a bootleg recording) and The New York Dolls. Touring bands that could not play a larger concert venue like the Music Hall often performed at Liberty Hall (as well as other Texas stops like the Armadillo World Headquarters in Austin). The folks that created Liberty Hall were many of the same folks that created The Family Hand Restaurant on Brazos--Mike Condray and Lynda Herrera along with Ryan Trimble.

There were so many friendships made and fun times had at Liberty Hall. All the memories made there last a life time. Occasionally people search for their lost friends and reunite to share old stories forgotten like the memories made at the Bruce Springsteen concert in March 1974.

Liberty Hall was a converted American Legion Hall. Patrons were seated at tables in the back and in rows of seats in the front. The believed incarnations of the building were:
1. A church
2. An American Legion Hall
3. Liberty Hall
4. A Chinese Movie Theatre
5. Demolished

Currently there is a vacant lot where the nightclub once stood.

sketch


La Bastille
Old Market Square photo courtesy theHAIF.com

old market square
An early and mid seventies basement jazz club located in the Old Market Square district when that area underwent brief revitalization in the late 60s/early 70s. It was near downtown along with a few other nightclubs, pawn shops, porn stores, etc. It occasionally hosted rock shows such as the 13th Floor Elevators reunion in 1973.

Dome Shadows
dome shadows advertLocated at 9218 Buffalo Speedway near the Astrodome. The Dome Shadows opened in the mid-sixties and featured live go-go girls and live music. It remained open until the late seventies when it hosted diverse acts including punk rockers The Ramones.

dome shadows - pastels
The Pastels perform at the Dome Shadows in 1966