Tuesday, September 4, 2012

The Chateau, 2100 Santa Cruz Avenue, Menlo Park, CA

The Chateau was this large house that was probably built in the late 20's or early 30's on this little knoll there," says Laird Grant. "At the time it was owned by a guy named Frank Serratoni, who was an artist.[4]

Lee Adams was the house manager of the Chateau and driver of the car that on February 20, 1961, killed Paul Speegle, a sixteen year-old artist and acquaintance of Garcia.
There were also plenty of games and partying over at a large house on Santa Cruz Avenue, near Sand Hill Road in Menlo Park. It was home to various members of the scene, including Garcia and his songwriting collaborator, Robert Hunter, today a lyricist for the Grateful Dead. We used to sit on the front porch of the Chateau and jam. Jerry was always the leader, it was quite the weave," Williams says. "Jerry was the finger man." Vic Lovell remembers the three-story house with lots of rooms as one of the first "hippie-group-living-together" situations. "They had loud, wild parties, and lots of people were drunk. Sometimes somewhat out of hand."[1]

"A rambling, two story red and white house on a rise off Sand Hill Road in Palo Alto.  It was an old two story house, red with grey and white trim.  It had been divided into little studio rooms with a communal bath and kitchen."[2]

"My Mom bought the house at 2100 Santa Cruz Avenue in 1964 as rental property originally and lived there herself until 2002. It was a Victorian style house built in 1910 with shake tiles on the exterior. It was sold in '02, demolished and rebuilt ."[5]
It is now a commercial strip.

Jerry lived, rehearsed and performed here in
October 1961 (moved in)
Jerry Garcia moves into the Chateau - or rather into a car on the grounds. Eventually he takes residence in a dirt-floored space that was once a root cellar. The house’s denizens now also include Robert Hunter, who is working on a novel he plans to title The Silver Snarling Trumpet; Jerry’s old friend Laird Grant is camped out (literally) nearby.[10]
Jerry plays an acoustic guitar.
"No matter who was there in the daytime or the night time, when Jerry was living at the Chateau, he would walk around the house with a guitar on. He would be so intent on what he was doing that he would come and stand in front of people the way you stand in front of somebody your'e going to have a conversation with. But he would be absolutely completely inside himself. He would make no response at all to the person he was standing in front of. He was inside himself playing."How are you doing today? And he wouldn't say a word. His fingers would never stop moving."[1]

11/18/61 (Groovy Conclave)
Matty Grooves;The Long Black Veil;Greenback Dollar
Jerry plays an acoustic guitar.

"A tape made at the Chateau during a party dipped the “Groovy Conclave” includes Garcia performing Matty Grooves, the mournful murder ballad The Long Black Veil, and Hoyt Axton and Ken Ramsey’s Greenback Dollar - a chart hit for the Kingston Trio in 1963. Among the other groovers are Phil Lesh and Tom Constanten."[10]

""Pigpen started going down the wrong path pretty early. I remember back at the Chateau, he would turn up when he was about sixteen or so, with a bottle of Ripple or Thunderbird - no, it was Thunderbird that he drank. He was one of the youngest alcoholics I've ever met, but he was very, very good. He was, I think, the best performer around, the best all-round performer; the only guy who could get up on stage and play blues. The rest of us were into things a lot lighter than that. He could really play the blues, really play harmonica. His father was a disc-jockey on a rhythm & blues station in San Jose, so he had a whole library to draw from."[9]

11/19/61 (Groovy Conclave)
Jerry plays an acoustic guitar.
We used to sit on the front porch of the Chateau and jam. Jerry was always the leader, it was quite the weave," Williams says. "Jerry was the finger man." Vic Lovell remembers the three-story house with lots of rooms as one of the first "hippie-group-living-together" situations. "They had loud, wild parties, and lots of people were drunk. Sometimes somewhat out of hand."(12)

11/20/61 (Groovy Conclave)
Jerry plays an acoustic guitar.
Blair Jackson’s Garcia: An American Life, pg.44 puts Petersen, along with Lesh and Garcia “and about two hundred other people,” at “a giant party dubbed the Groovy Conclave” that began on November 18, 1961, and went on for three days at a rambling Palo Alto “party house” known as the Chateau.[3]

1962[8]

1963 The Chateau was sold and Jerry, Nelson, Hunter and Legate moved into 436 Hamilton Street, just a block away from St. Michael's Alley.[6]

 





Chateau, Menlo Park, CA
1.)^Wood, Suzy, Greenfield, Robert, Dark Star, pg. 30, http://books.google.com/books?id=XJmzvXLJmjoC&pg=PA28&lpg=PA28&dq=chateau,+garcia&source=bl&ots=B_08shUCVN&sig=DfBvQvl7O1rhauX1o01eSo7qwMM&hl=en&sa=X&ei=Fq46UKX1FOiGjAKptoGwCw&ved=0CFgQ6AEwBw#v=onepage&q=chateau%2C%20garcia&f=false
2.)^Van Maastricht, Norm, Reflections On The Garcia, pg. 13.
3.)^Mitchner, Stuart, Now's The Time, 2012-09-17, http://www.towntopics.com/wordpress/2012/08/29/nows-the-time-making-history-with-charlie-parker-and-jerry-garcia/
4.)^McNally, Dennis, A Long Strange Trip:The Inside History of the Grateful Dead, pg. 30.
5.)^Pat, comments, 2012-12-20, http://lostlivedead.blogspot.com/2010/02/grateful-dead-and-menlo-park.html?showComment=1386778988634#comment-c5236350108207656611
6.)^McNally, Dennis, A Long Strange Trip:The Inside History of the Grateful Dead, pg. 51.
7.)^Troy, Sandy, Captain Trips, pg. 34.
8.)^Shashinda, Lorna Joy, 2014-7-08, This information comes from the original "customer cards" used at Swain's House of Music to record who bought and rented instruments.
9.)^Hunter, Robert, First impression of Pigpen, Light Into Ashes, comments, 2014-06-26, Pigpen Solo, 2011-04-22, Grateful Dead Guide, http://deadessays.blogspot.com/2011/04/pigpen-solo.html
10.)^Jackson, Blair; McNally, Dennis; Peters, Stephen; Wills, Chuck, Grateful Dead - The Illustrated Trip, pg 22, 23.
11.)^Shashinda, Lorna Joy, 2014-7-08, This information comes from the original "customer cards" used at Swain's House of Music to record who bought and rented instruments.
12.)^2.)^Bothun, Brian and Monica Hayde, Palo Alto Weekly, 1993-05-12, "Dawn of the Dead- A Tour of the Grateful Dead's Midpeninsula roots", http://www.kazart.com/bus_stop/p_alto.htm

3 comments:

  1. I lived there from 1975-76 and have some photos
    Bob Davis

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