By Jerry Granelli
"I was born in 1940 so I remember when the Tenderloin had music and when Market Street had all those clubs. My dad was a drummer, not a professional musician but he just loved the instrument.
I remember Jimbo's Bop City but I also remember Bimbo's 365 Club. The Italian Village, just all these night clubs. I grew up in those nightclubs.
Julian Priester once said, "you would start playing on a Friday Night and you wouldn't stop till Monday Night. That was the goal. Jimbo's Bop City was the Mecca with Ronnie's Soulville and "The Plantation."
Jimbo's started at two in the morning. At it's purest form it was a place where you could go and play because you weren't getting paid. No one could tell you how to play. It was a melting pot of what became jazz music.
It was the education system, it was harsh and there was a pecking order. You knew where you stood. When I first went to Bop City I stood around till 6 in the morning and I would play with the Dregs of humanity. Because that's basically the level I was playing at.
I went to places like the Coo Coo Clun" and I would get a couple of beats in and someone would just take the sticks away. That was harsh but I didn't give up. At it's corrupted form it was just like anything else. I prefer to remember it for what it produced and it was community. It was a real sense of community.
Dick Berk and I were in High School together along with another great drummer Eddie Moore. There was only one guy that was going to get to play. We were rooting for each other. Trying to cut each other's throat and trying to support each other too."