Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Sweetwater, 153 Throckmorton Ave., Mill Valley, CA

The Sweetwater is the legendary Mill Valley music club which for over 30 years had been the premier live music location in the North Bay.

The bar is lit with a dim, orange lighting scheme. And it was filled choc-o-bloc with chairs and tables.

Live musical performances by the likes of Bonnie Raitt, Elvis Costello, The String Cheese Incident, John Lee Hooker, Carlos Santana, plus many others [1]. There were typically at least 4 to 5 musical acts booked per week making it a popular local hangout.[1) The Sweetwater also featured an open mike night on Mondays that had occasionally featured surprise performances by well-known artists such as Gregg Allman, Train and others.
The band Hot Tuna recorded two live albums at Sweetwater in the early 1990's[3]featuring guest performances by local figures such as Bob Weir and Wavy Gravy.
BBC Television shot a documentary at the club featuring John Lee Hooker, Bonnie Raitt and Ry Cooder.
In 2004, the establishment faced eviction by landlords who needed to raise the rent to more than what the owners claimed they could pay.Through donations the bar was saved and its lease was renewed when the owners of the building generously offered new terms. It was not however disputed that the new rent was fair and the owners of the Sweetwater entered into a month to month lease.[1)
In September 2007 Sweetwater closed because the landlord of the building found it necessary to renovate the somewhat run-down property and declined to offer the club terms for a new lease after the renovation's anticipated completion.[3] The owners of the building were also the long time owners of a very popular Italian restaurant next door that had been established in the 1960's. A spokesman for the family that owned the building and restaurant said at the time that the building would undergo long-overdue repairs and maintenance and that the new Sweetwater owners knew about renovation plans since their lease had expired two years previously. "We've been in this community for 45 years," he said. "If we wanted to throw the Sweetwater out, we would have done it a long time ago."(2)

In 2012 it's located in the Masonic Hall at 19 Corte Madera Avenue in Mill Valley, the Sweetwater Music Hall offers food, drinks, and a broad spectrum of live music and entertainment

Jerry performed here on
4/24/89 Elvis Costello
12/17/90 David Grisman

1.)^Selvin, Joel, Sour note at Sweetwater prompts outpouring of support, http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2004/03/18/DDGM35LTCQ1.DTL#ixzz1veamIAne, 2004-03-18
2.)^Selvin, Joel, Longtime club Sweetwater set to close Sept. 1, http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2007/08/08/DDEGREBHN.DTL#ixzz1vebKjmDG, 2007-08-09, http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2007/08/09/DDEGREBHN.DTL


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