Vince Guaraldi

In a touch of irony, while the InMenlo team was talking jazz with KCSM’s Alisa Clancy yesterday, two different blog posts appeared about music related events and lore that happened in 94025.

There’s a terrific recap  about the Grateful Dead – including its various offshots – and Menlo Park on the Lost Live Dead blog. In showing how connected the Dead was to Menlo Park, even though they considered themselves a Palo Alto band, the writer, Corry Arnold, takes the reader through a litany of long gone Menlo establishments and places. Magoo’s Pizza Parlor, the Underground, Guitars Unlimited. For anyone who lived in the area in the 60s – or wish they did – it’s a really fun read.

Personal note: I’ve long wondered where Ken Kesey’s house was on Perry Lane but can’t figure out how Perry Lane (or Avenue) could have extended to where the Oak Creek Apartments now are, as one of Arnold’s sources thought (he and I have been emailing back and forth on the subject). There’s long been a row of ranch houses – built in the early ’50s – that run along the San Francisquito Creek side of Oak Ave. Then there’s the issue of where the street would have crossed the creek itself. Perry Lane now dead ends on its eastern end at the Oak Knoll School tennis courts. It could have extended at one time to Oak Avenue, I guess; finding out when the tennis courts were built could solve that part of the puzzle. Here’s the Google map so that you can see the area in question – open to hearing any other recollections.

Meanwhile, another blog, Saber Point, featured a memorial post to jazz pianist Vince Guaraldi, who died 34 years ago at the Red Cottage Inn in Menlo Park. It’s also an interesting read. Evidently Guaraldi was playing a gig at Butterfield’s which the post says was adjacent to the Red Cottage Inn, which still exists.

Personal note: Growing up in Menlo, I remember the Red Cottage restaurant very well. It was a bit of a special occasion place, at least for my household. The last restaurant housed in the same place was Gaylord’s, now boarded up and awaiting redevelopment. Does anyone remember Butterfield’s and where it was?

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