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paramount records

from charley patton, son house, delta blues posted in music by tacopolis

In the early days of 78 rpm record-pressing, furniture stores would package their phonograph cabinets with recorded music to help sell the product. This led the Wisconsin Chair Company to construct a studio at this location for their Paramount Records label, near their furniture plant and record plants in Port Washington, WI.

Charley Patton recorded a number of profitable songs at here, so he was sent out to find other blues artists and bring them to Grafton. Son House, the Mississippi Sheiks, Tommy Johnson, and a number of other artists recorded here.

From Paramountshome.org:
"One fourth of the nation's 'race records' were pressed in Grafton, WI. Over 1600 songs were recorded in Grafton between 1929 and 1932. Over 60 African Americans recorded their blues, spirituals, and even sermons in a 'make-shift' studio of an old chair factory, opposite of the pressing plant."

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son house’s apartment

from son house posted in music by tacopolis

After legendary bluesman Son House recorded with Charley Patton and Willie Brown, taught Robert Johnson and Muddy Waters some licks, and did a stint at Parchman Farm- he left Mississippi for good in 1942.

Although many blues players ended up in Chicago, Son House ended up taking a job with the New York Central Railroad in Rochester, NY.

He was living on the third floor of this apartment building in obscurity until a couple of blues fans tracked him down, and convinced him to come out of retirement in 1964.

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cafe wha?

from bob dylan, jimi hendrix, david lee roth posted in music by tacopolis

In 1959, Manny Roth laid down some marble floor and spray-painted the walls black in this basement venue that had been a horse stable. The idea was to have a place for the beatnik crowd to enjoy.

Roth held "hootenanny" nights where anyone could perform a song. It was on Jan. 24, 1961 that a 19-year-old Bob Dylan played his first NYC set, consisting of several Woody Guthrie tunes. At the end of the set, Roth asked the crowd if anybody had a couch Dylan could sleep on (he had just hitch-hiked from Minnesota).

Jimi Hendrix used to play at Cafe Wha? in the mid-60s when he called himself Jimmy James and fronted The Blue Flames.

Manuel "Manny" Lee Roth is the uncle of Van Halen frontman David Lee Roth. Manny Roth passed away on July 25, 2014 at the age of 94.

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gerde’s folk city (former)

from bob dylan, joan baez posted in music by tacopolis

Gerde's Folk City (or Gerdes) was one of the pivotal music venues for the folk music revival of the early 60s, and continued to feature many breaking musicians and bands until the lease was not renewed in 1987.

Originally located at this address, the venue moved to 130 West 3rd Street in 1970.

It was at this location, that Bob Dylan played his first professional gig supporting John Lee Hooker on April 11, 1961.

Dylan's performance at Gerde's on September 29, 1961 was reviewed in the New York Times by Robert Shelton, after which Dylan's career catapulted.

Gerde's is also the place where Dylan first met Joan Baez, and where he first played "Blowin' in the Wind" in a public performance.

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avatar studios

from bob dylan posted in music by tacopolis

Originally built as a Consolidated Edison power plant, this building became The Power Station recording studio in 1977 under the direction of producers Tony Bongiovi and Bob Walters. The result is an award-winning recording space used by scores of musicians and bands. In 1996, the studio was renamed Avatar Studios.

Bob Dylan's 1983 album Infidels was recorded at The Power Station from April–May, 1983. Dylan needed someone with experience with new recording techniques, so Dire Straits frontman Mark Knopfler was selected to produce the album. Additional musicians include the Jamaican reggae rhythm section of Sly & Robbie.

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