[Dixielandjazz] Big Bear Tavern

David Richoux tubaman at batnet.com
Fri Oct 8 20:49:53 PDT 2004

Nothing at all in the local yellow pages (web or otherwise) nor in 
guides to local taverns or entertainment listings, so my guess it is 
long gone. I made a few calls to some former members of the Turk Murphy 
band who might have played there but nothing specific has turned up yet 
(some were out of town for the weekend...)  If anything new turns up I 
will post it.

The big Oakland/Berkeley fire that happened about a decade ago may have 
destroyed any trace of the Big Bear - from your description it was 
probably in that same area - if that fire didn't take it down, the 
construction of the freeway through the hills before that might have. 
There are a lot of "back roads" winding through the hills of that 

Dave Richoux
On Oct 8, 2004, at 12:20 PM, Dan Augustine wrote:

> DJML (and other) historians--
>     Whatever happened to the old Big Bear Tavern in the Oakland hills 
> that Watters and Murphy et al. used to play at?  Does it still exist? 
> Was it torn down or replaced?  If it still exists, how does one get to 
> it, or (if it doesn't exist) get to the site where it used to be?
>     Reason?  I'm flying up to the Lu Watters tribute "tea dance" 
> concert on October 23rd in San Francisco (cf. 
> http://www.sftradjazz.org/main_events.html), and would like to drive 
> by the Big Bear Tavern (or where it used to be), just for grins and 
> maybe take a picture.  In _The Great Jazz Revival_, Jim Goggin and 
> Pete Clute say that "Among the other after-hour places was a spot 
> located in a canyon over the ridge in the Oakland hills.  Big Bear 
> Tavern was so remote that finding it required an intimate knowledge of 
> the East Bay, and only the dedicated chose to go there."  I've got 
> DeLorme's Street Atlas USA over on my Gateway computer, and it might 
> be able to at least show me the road it used to be on, if i knew the 
> name of the road.
>     So.  Did any of you used to go there, or do you at least know 
> where it might have been?
>     Dan
> -- 

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