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Posts posted by icepickphil

  1. Does anyone have any information or anecdotes about Houstonian William "Bill" Newkirk? He was the talent booker for the Tidelands Club in the 1960s. Newkirk was known and respected in national entertainment circles and was written up in Billboard several times during that era.

    He also was a Houston sportscaster and was the pressbox game announcer at Rice Stadium for Owl football games in the mid-60s. I believe he announced the first televised Houston baseball game (from Buff Stadium) in 1949.

    The Newkirks were family friends and I went to school with his son. I remember meeting Totie Fields at their house when she came to Houston to play the Tidelands. As best I as I can recall Newkirk divorced his wife (maiden name Elledge?) and moved to Los Angeles in the early 70s...



    Anyone familiar with him?

    Screen Shot 2017-02-27 at 1.53.00 PM.png

  2. I've heard that Corll also lived in a couple of apartment complexes on the west side — Yorktown apartments on Yorktown between San Felipe and Westheimer and Woodway Square apartments on Woodway near Voss. Can anyone verify this?

  3. I can recall going to see the Disney film "The Love Bug" at the Delman. It was a small neighborhood theatre. That was in the late 1960s.

    IHB2, I remember Cinema West being located at the corner of Yorktown and W. Alabama (just south of Westheimer) in the early and mid-70s. Was it located on Richmond at some point also.

    I was downtown at the Continental Club on new year's eve 2001 to see some live music and backstage they had the original marquee from Cinema West just lying around leaning against a wall! I have no idea why it was there but it was very cool to see. The theatre had a distinctive logo.

  4. I picked up an awesome black Liberty Hall t-shirt at the Texas Junk Company in the Fourth Ward a couple of weeks ago. They had a few left.

    I met the owner of the Junk Company named Robert and he used to run with the Liberty Hall crowd... worked there in fact. He told me a story of giving Ravi Shankar a ride from the airport to Liberty Hall as well as seeing the New York Dolls play there in '74.

    Does this guy ring a bell for anyone?

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  5. This is great devonhart thank you for posting the clip to YouTube. I used to watch Larry Kane all of the time when I was a kid. Later I got into Soul Train. Too bad most of the Larry Kane show programs were not archived at the time.

    As I recall in the late 60s and early 70s American Bandstand was not aired in Houston. Did that have something to do with Larry Kane? Was Kane's show on channel 13 (ABC)? I believe Bandstand was an ABC show.

    I would only get to see Bandstand when visiting Austin.

  6. I have to think that there were some x rated hardcore movie theaters downtown before Cinema West opened in the early 70s.

    From the book Cinema Houston: from Nickelodeon to Megaplex by David Welling and Jack Valenti (p. 246) several other theaters are mentioned during a 1970 vice raid. These would include: Cinema X, Zipper Lounge, Cinema Arts, Kitty Arts, Kazba Art Cinema, the Rex, and the Houston Mini-Art Theatre.

    Here's a story related to Cinema West. I was at the Continental Club downtown watching some bands for New Year's eve about ten years ago. Backstage leaning against the wall was an original outdoor Cinema West sign. I'll never forget their distinctive logo.

    The first XXX porn theater in Houston was the Cinema West, which opened in 1971 or 72 in a strip center on West Alabama where it meets Westheimer. It was owned and managed by a young guy named Joe Spiegle. He was an interesting guy. Spiegle took a business degree from the University of Houston in the mid 60s, and as a graduation gift his father gave him 100 thousand dollars to start his first business. Soft-core porn was common in the 60s and early 70s, but hard-core porn was starting to slip into the mainstream. Spiegle spotted that trend, and he saw it would be profitable, so he opened Houston's first hardcore porn house.

    He made so much money he was able to move out of the strip center to his own free-standing adult theater on Richmond, and open another in the Rice Village off Kirby - Cinema West II. His long range plan was to use his adult theater profits to buy legitimate family movie houses and ultimately get out of porn altogether, which is exactly what he did. At one time in the 80s, Spiegle owned about half a dozen neighborhood movie houses around the city, the names of which I can't remember.

    Spiegle was also a big softball fan and player. He organized and sponsored teams in the city softball leagues and tournaments for a long time, and they were good. He had their trophies on display in the Cinema West lobby. I always liked Joe Spiegle. He wasn't a porn-meister, and he never got involved in producing adult films. He was, and probably still is, a smart businessman, and he used the growing popularity of adult movies to get started. I have no idea what he's doing now, but I'm betting he's successful. He's that kind of guy.

    As for Coors Beer, I'm thinking it made it into the Houston market sometime in the 1980s.

    And Minimax Street has that name because it was once the location of the Minimax Stores' warehouse and distribution center. Minimax -- Minimum Price - Maximum Value. That particular area off West 18th and the Loop 610 had a lot of large distribution warehouses for various stores. They're all gone now. There's nothing but endless stretches of vacant lots there now.

  7. Thanks for the info sevfiv. That seems about right ...between '61 and '62.

    Any clues on how the city dealt with the Hathaway addresses when that street became part of Westheimer? I'm wondering what building or lot is currently at the 602 Hathaway address.

  8. My father lived at 602 Hathaway Street for a time in the 1920s. It was the same road as Westheimer and was just west of Elgin.

    As recently as '61 (according to some Houston street maps) that portion of Westheimer was still known as Hathaway. Does anyone know when exactly Hathaway Street's name was changed as it became part of Westheimer?

    link to '55 Houston street map showing Hathaway.

  9. What was the scene at "The Hill"? Hippies hanging out smoking weed?

    I hung around all of those places... During that time, I shot about 400' of color footage at The Hill. There's several short subjects that could be produced; the Hill, Liberty Hall, downtown festivals...skyline timelapse (1972) ...but I'm just a sprockethead. Anyone know of an hip nostalgia buff who is into digital video today? I need some help posting this film (late 60s early 70s) online.
  10. I think a film about Houston music from that era would be fantastic. It may be a tough rode to get it made, but go for it!

    Hey everyone,

    Looks like I found some L Hall old schoolers...huh?

    my name is Valentina Gonzalez, I am the daughter of the late Roberto Gonzalez, a former manager of the Hall.

    For those of you that care, Roberto passed away last October from a massive heart attack.

    He was crazy! creative, inspirational, irrational, brilliant, irresponsible, innovative, addicted to life(and some other stuff too...), and above all

    fun as hell!

    He designed many if not all the posters hanging in the Museum exhibit, and brought in bands, that at the time were, completely exotic.

    Thanks to his passion for all forms of music and art, I was able to grow up claiming John Lee Hooker and Lightin' Hopkins as my god pappies,

    and I continue to utilize that same passion in my life as a musician, artist, mom, and partner.

    As for the architecture of the building goes, I can't say much because I'm only 30, but I do know that beyond the bar, down a little hallway, there was a secret room that all sorts of rowdy shit happened in. I've also heard some had preference for the old timey seating that was in the main hall, which my father tore out for a dance floor. In fact the only picture I have of the face of the building, was taken at my mother and fathers wedding out front...big crowd, shitty copy, and blurry, so I've always just used my imagination.

    I was planning on doing a film about the Hall, my pops, and the musical history of Houston, but everybody is either dead, thousand dollarsed up, stuck up, or over it.

    What do you all think?

    If its something you think would be cool, or that you would like to contribute to, or even if you would like to simply share a memory

    I can be reached at bloomn@gmail.com

    Have a good day!

    Keep rocking!


  11. also The Magic Island on the SW Freeway.

    I'm trying to get a list of businesses closed by Ike that did not/probably not going to reopen.

    H-E-B Pantry Foods, Galveston

    Dillard's, Mall of the Mainland, Texas City

    Macy's, Northwest Mall, Houston

    Target, The Woodlands

  12. At Robert E. Lee Sr. High in the mid-seventies there were the kickers, freaks (stoners), jets (jocks, rich kids), and the geeks (nerds). The boundaries between the groups were fairly distinct.

    The kicker boys used to get to school a half hour or so early before school started and park their trucks across Beverlyhill Street in the vacant lot (a lot that was also used for some serious drug dealing by the freaks). Once parked they'd take their car stereo speakers out of their trucks and put them on the roof where they'd blast KIKK or the latest Charlie Rich 8-track.

    You'd have the same thing going on in the other end of the lot except it would be a freak and his van. If he was lucky he'd have his girlfriend in the van with him. Instead of KIKK it would be music like Robin Trower or 'Dark Side of the Moon'. Cranked up volume to the max. Alot of the freaks would smoke reefer before school started with their car windows closed. You'd see them open the door to go to class and the smoke would just pour out of their cars.

    This all started to wind down after the big HPD narc bust of several students selling acid in the vacant lot before school. That happened in October of '74. Before that kids would buy their "Quays" (quaaludes -- usually Rorer 714s) for a dollar in the lot before school.

    I knew some FFA kickers who used to "shotgun" pot smoke into their steers faces right before they were inspected by the teacher. They said it sedated the animal and they always got a better grade.

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