By William Carter

Photographer, Author, Jazz Musician

Jazz + Photography (Part 3)

with 3 comments


A Spontaneous Collaboration

Strange bedfellows, you might say? In 1963 Lu Watters, Bob Mielke and Barbara Dane were each into separate scenes in the San Francisco trad jazz world. As was I: playing occasional gigs, while becoming professionally committed as a photographer and writer. More on this here.

What brought us together in one of those spontaneously rich, fleeting jazz moments was the decision by Watters (then retired) and Dane (who had been running her own San Francisco blues club called Sugar Hill) to make an album together as part of a protest movement aimed at stopping the California utilities agency from building a nuclear power plant at pristine Bodega Bay, north of San Francisco. For many reasons, the plant was never built. The recording session happened on December 1, 1963. My equipment was not yet the best, but the negatives have been in my files ever since (53 years and counting). Here are a few of those images.

Lu Watters Band recording "Blues Over Bodega"
The Lu Watters Band recording “Blues Over Bodega” in 1963. Personnel: Back row Bob Mielke, trombone; Lu Watters, trumpet; Bob Helm, clarinet; Barbara Dane, voice. Front row: Dave Black, drums; Bob Short, tuba; Frank Tateosian, banjo; Wally Rose, piano

 

Bob Mielke, Lu Watters, and Bob Helm
Bob Mielke, trombone; Lu Watters, trumpet; Bob Helm, clarinet at the 1963 recording session.

 

Lu Watters, Bob Helm, and Barbara Dan
Lu Watters, Bob Helm and Barbara Dane at the 1963 recording session.

 

Barbara Dane at the 1963 recording session
Barbara Dane at the 1963 recording session.
Lu Watters
Lu Watters on trumpet at the 1963 recording session.
Wally Rose
Wally Rose at the piano during the 1963 recording session.

 

Bob Helm
Bob Helm on clarinet at the 1963 recording session.

Copyright statement: William Carter papers, © Stanford University Libraries. Click here for a detailed usage guide.

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Written by bywilliamcarter

April 26, 2017 at 3:20 pm

3 Responses

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  1. Bill,
    Good to see you at the Grove.
    Minor correction: In the pic, the drummer is Dave Black (my drummer for 30 years) not Thad Vanden. Note the bass drum labelled DAVE is the companion to Dave’s famed double bass drum setup, the other drum (not present) labelled BLACK. The location is Local 6’s old Union rehearsal hall at 240 Taylor.
    Are you sure the recording was done there? It had barnlike acoustics, and no mikes are present…

    Keep swinging,
    Rex Allen
    http://www.americaswingsagain.com

    Like

    Rex Allen

    August 27, 2012 at 7:42 pm

    • Rex: Thanks for your expert eye on the photos. I took them a long time ago. We will print your updated corrections in the Cricket, the quarterly newsletter of the San Francisco Traditional Jazz Foundation, unless you tell us otherwise.

      Bill

      Like

      bywilliamcarter

      August 28, 2012 at 2:04 am

      • The hall was actually located at 230 Jones Street according to the Local 6 archives.

        Like

        Medea Isphording Bern

        August 4, 2014 at 6:40 pm


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