[Dixielandjazz] Re: North Beach memories Vanessi's restaurant & Gomans Gay 90's & Red Garter

OArkas at aol.com OArkas at aol.com
Sat Oct 22 12:18:02 PDT 2005

In a message dated 10/21/05 10:42:34 PM, Artwoo writes:

> Anyone remember Frank Gassis (sp?) who played the cymbalon at Vanessi's?
>  He was a musical genius and played the cymbalon with taste and fervor. I 
> can still picture his hammering out beautiful music such as The Fifth Man theme 
> and Smoke gets in your eyes.

Yes!   Frank Gazis was a friend of my father's and then of mine.   When I was 
a kid, my father would take me to him.   As an adult, my wife and I would 
visit him at Vanessi's; I'd always request that he play a Greek tune, and he 
would politely decline, stathing that the "********" customers would not 
appreciate it.   Then, after about a half an hour, he'd sneak into a Greek song for me 
 He was a great man and musician, and played tsimbalo (cymabolom, a type of 
hammered dulcimer used by the Hungarians and often in classic music) at 
Vanessi's for approximately 40 years.   He played light classical tunes, movie tunes, 
and popular tunes as well.   
He and his wife also told me the story that Orson Wells picked him to play 
the music for the movie The Third Man, but the director or producer had already 
chosen the Austrian on German zither player to play the music.   He always 
thought his career would have been bigger if the breaks had gone the other way.

<< Also not to be forgotten is the Red Garter! Those cats were powerhouses!>>

Yes, and the Red Garter was a really fun place with more of OKOM featured.

Good memories!

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