The Whisky A go go played an important role in many musical careers, especially for bands based in
After a big bang opening of the club with Johnny Rivers, when The Byrds began
a run of gigs there the Sunset Strip music scene and the Flower Children in
Hollywood had its birth.
The Doors were
the house band for a while. Frank Zappa's Mothers of Invention got their record
contract based on
their show at the Whisky. Jimi Hendrix came by to jam when Sam & Dave headlined.
recorded there during 1966, and years following saw groups like the Grateful
wood Mac, Chicago,
The Animals, Big Brother and the Holding Company and rock stars like Janis
David Bowie, Jerry
Lee Lewis, Buddy Miles and other Legends graced the stage.
Just hanging in the
audience were folks like: Steve McQueen, Ann Margret, Sandra Dee, Rita Hayworth,
Tuesday Weld, Johnny
Carson, Richard Chamberlain, Troy Donahue and on and on and on...
The stories and the
bands that played there goes on and on through the history of American rock and
roll. And the
British Invasion also made the west coast with headlining performances at the
Go Go by Led
Zeppelin, The Who, Cream, The Kinks and others...then hear came the punk sound
Heads, Elvis Costello, X, The Runaways and others...
We think it is
obvious and historically interesting the wide range of music that has played
along the "country" and "country rock" line of music with
groups like the Byrds
Springfeild, Pure Prairie League, Arlo Guthrie, The Allman Brothers, Rita Coolidge,
Ronnie Millsap and other acts down these country roads have played the
A SHORT LIST OF
NAMES THAT GRACED THE STAGE OF
FAMOUS CLUB IN THE WORLD...
Pure Prairie League
Three Dog Night
Jan and Dean
Jerry lee Lewis
Mamas and the Papas
Frank Zappa and the
Mothers of Invention
Pacific Gaw & Electric
Sir Douglas Quintet
Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show
Delaney and Bonnie
Jesse Ed Davis
Earth, Wind and Fire
Flying Burrito Brothers
Grand Funk Railroad
Guns n' Roses
Alex Harvey ("Delta Dawn")
Quick Silver Messenger Service
Dan Hicks and his Hot Licks
The Allman Brothers
Incredible String Band
Blood Swear and Tears
The Fifth Dimension
Blue Oyster Cult
Country Joe and the Fish
Nitty Gritty Dirt Band
New Riders of Purple Sage
Ozark Mountain Dare Devils
Big Brothers and Holding Co.
Black Oak Arkansas
At 8901 Sunset Blvd. The Whisky-A-Go-Go
opened in 1964 on the site of an old bank building
that had been remodeled into a short-lived club called
The Party. Though billed as a "discotheque"
--meaning no bands, just records--The Whisky opened with a live band led by
Johnny Rivers and a
short-skirted deejay spinning records between sets
from a suspended cage at the right of the stage.
When the girl danced during Rivers' set, the audience thought it was part
of the act and the concept
of "go-go" girls was born.
Rivers rode The Whisky-born "go-go" craze to national fame with
recorded (partly) Live at the Whisky...In
1966 the Whisky was one of the centers of the
Sunset Strip riots.
It was hassled repeatedly by the city, which once
ordered the club to change its
name, claiming "Whisky" was a bad influence
(does anyone remember when it was The
L.A. MUSICAL HISTORY TOUR
to go to the Whisky A Go Go