[Dixielandjazz] Charlie Hooks

Charlie Hooks charliehooks at earthlink.net
Sat May 3 17:13:03 PDT 2003

on 5/3/03 2:40 AM, RAHBerry at aol.com at RAHBerry at aol.com wrote:

    > Was Dick's Last Resort in Dallas?  I remember that place as being the
> loudest joint I was ever in.

    The first one was in Dallas.  A Texas oil millionaire name Steve Schiff
decided to open a swanky cafe for his brother, Dick, but something happened
at the last moment--burned down or fell through or some damn thing.  So, as
"a last resort" Steve bought some location to cater to young folk, brought
in cheap tables and chairs from some European garage sale (is what the stuff
looked like) and created a place that could gross out even Jr. High kids.
(The waitstaff blew up condoms and pulled them down over their heads--for
starters.) The noise level was deliberately kept at the max, waiters told to
start shouting matches if it somehow got momentarily too quiet.  Tommy Loy's
band worked 7 nights a week if they so wanted: they could seldom be heard.

    They called it "Dick's Last Resort" and it hit like blockbusters!

    Since very few Jewish millionaires are stupid, Steve Schiff quickly
decided to follow up with an exact clone in Chicago. Tommy Loy knew me and
he knew Jim Beebe, so we took the nights we wanted and recommended other
bands for other nights.  No one wanted to get tied up there 7 nights a week
and, as it developed, that was one of the smartest moves by Chicago players
in several years.

    Music was not allowed on the bandstand, and nobody could have stood it
seven nights.  I could barely stand Sunday and Monday.  Beebe took a chance
on one night.  We all already had other gigs that kept us sane.  Within a
few years the joints all went Rock.  Dixieland was in Dick's because of the
name: nobody even knew what they were buying. What they really wanted was
noise.  So Rock was a natural for the them.



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