Choosey Mothers reunion
Denver’s Choosey Mother’s reunion show playing their Broadway street anthem at the
Lion’s Lair last weekend. First show in 18 years!
Choosey Mothers 18 years ago, same angle, same faces in the crowd!
(Almost, I ducked out of the video!)
I am hoping the smoke clears out this weekend so I can get that classic Denver blue sky
into some new photos!
[video from the the Denco83 YouTube Channel. Photo by Joe Dallenbach from the
second Choosey Mother's 45]
June 29th, 2012 / 2 Comments » / by Tom Lundin
The entire country knows of this tragic Waldo Canyon Fire. I am sorry that I cannot
properly credit the photo above as it is all over Tumblr and it is hard to tell who originally
I was searching around the house for my Flying W Ranch albums, but could not locate
them so this odd lp will have to suffice. The Flying W sadly burned to the ground.
This odd U.S. Air Force Academy album features Hugo Montenegro and Carol Channing.
June 28th, 2012 / No Comments » / by Tom Lundin
Photo © 2012 Scott Murdock
Guest photographer Scott Murdock with an iconic shot of the Bluebird Theater on Colfax.
The theater was designed by Harry Edbrooke in 1913 for John Thompson and was originally called the Thompson Theater. While movies had been playing in town before 1913, the Bluebird was the first theater in Denver designed specifically for screening films. Edbrooke is probably the most famous and prolific of downtown Denver’s architects. (And he later designed the Ogden Theater for Thompson as well.)
Harry Huffman, the Denver movie theater mogul (who built Shangri-La), bought the theater in 1921, changed the name and added the first Bluebird signage, which originally had a very large bird placed on top. I assumed the sign was replaced with the current Art Deco sign in the ’30s.
May 22nd, 2012 / No Comments » / by Scott Murdock
Dean Reed’s grave
Since I had just posted some cemetery shots from Denver, I thought it time to head into Boulder’s Green Mountain Cemetery to visit the final resting spot of Dean Reed.
The sweet Czechoslovakian woman who ran the front desk at the cemetery told me about what a huge star he was when she was young. His card in their files lists him as famous singer and movie star. Indeed he was, just not here in the U.S. But in Eastern Europe he was The Red Elvis. In fact, Eastern Europeans visit his grave all the time, take photos and leave all kinds of unusual things, like the black tv controller on the ledge above (and whatever that was in the tree).
Not only was Reed a celebrity singer and actor, but it is possible that he was a spy working for East Germany, and maybe even a double-agent working for the U.S. (My personal favorite mythology). We’ll never know as he was tragically found floating face down in a lake in East Germany in 1986. Either suicide or murder, depending on which story you tend to believe. Tom Hanks optioned the movie rights quite awhile ago.
(I have posted two other videos of Dean Reed in the past).
For more information, please visit the Dean Reed site.
April 30th, 2012 / 2 Comments » / by Tom Lundin
A 4/19/2012 photo of Rock-A-Billy Records head honcho and my long-time favorite Denver recording artist, Willie Lewis. He emailed me today:
“Seeing all them pictures of the old haunts brought back lots of memories! I had a friend who worked at the Oxford Hotel as a bell hop… the things that boy used to tell us (mostly me) about that job were hard to believe till I saw it with my own eyes!
I used to work at a place called Rich Burgers that was right next to the Chez Paree. We also used to live right across the street from the Pig & Whistle…”
You can read more about Willie Lewis on Jonny Barber’s Rock-A-Billy Record Co. site.
April 20th, 2012 / No Comments » / by Tom Lundin
Phil Urso home movies
Denver jazz great, the late Phil Urso, hamming it up with fellow members
of the Elliot Lawrence Band in this rare 1950 8mm home movie.
This happy, short clip features Howie Mann, Joe Techner and Phil Urso
Phil Urso had a great tone, somewhere between Lester Young and Sonny
Rollins. He played with many jazz legends but is best known for his mid-’50s
sides with Chet Baker.
Here is a much longer clip of the Elliot Lawrence Band from 1949, touring
around Golden, Lookout Mountain, Mt. Evans (Urso showing up at the top of
the mountain around 5:50 & 6:15), then off to Utah where Phil Urso and Jimmy
Padget look parched (at 7:50). Phil shows up one more time at about 9:15!
One last clip, the first solo on this wonderful Elliot Lawrence recording
Elevation is Phil Urso on tenor. Dig that tone!!
January 26th, 2012 / No Comments » / by Tom Lundin
The Grim Reapers
(Ronnie Montrose: top, unknown: bottom left, Rick Palan: middle, Ron Akers: right)
Ronnie Montrose, circa 1966, in Denver band The Grim Reapers (or sometimes called
The Grim Reapers of the New World).
Ronnie wasn’t born in Denver, but moved here when he was two. He got his first guitar in 1964 and formed the Grim Reapers a year or so later. After the Reapers, Ronnie moved to San Francisco and formed the band Sawbuck, landed the guitar spot on Van Morrison’s Tupelo Honey, joined the Edgar Winter Band, then formed his most famous group Montrose with singer Sammy Hagar.
(photo borrowed from Grand Junction Free Press)
January 5th, 2012 / No Comments » / by Tom Lundin
Safari Supper Club
The soon-to-be-opened Mauki Tiki Bar on S. Broadway reminds me to post some photos
of the Safari Supper Club, an exotic ’60s-era night club in Ft. Collins, owned and run by
Bob Swerer, also the leader of the house band.
I just determined that building that housed this night club still survives, I will post a photo
when the weather cooperates.
December 4th, 2011 / No Comments » / by Tom Lundin
Fyodor, Boyd and Ralph
Photo © 2011 Gregory Ego
Guest photographer Gregory Ego weighs in on The Eye with a photo of three unusual underground music artists from present day Denver: Little Fyodor, Boyd Rice and Ralph Gean, taken recently at the Lion’s Lair on Colfax.
The 2011 Boyd Rice biography film, Iconoclast (directed by Larry Wessel), is being shown in it’s entirety at the Denver Underground Film Festival this Sunday, November 13th at the Unitarian Society of Denver (1400 Lafayette).
(Be sure to view Gregory Egos photo website (http://gregoryegophotos.blogspot.com/), a who’s who of underground music, literary and political figures.
November 8th, 2011 / No Comments » / by Gregory Ego