Don Hill is a club cult hero. His joint Don Hill’s was born in April 1993 to much flag waving, fanfare and hoopla. The Smithereens set the tone that night and it has since become a virtual rock and roll hall of fame. Don has booked the joint, hired staff, run day to day and night to night operations, he’s answered the phones and I suspect that on some nights he swept out the joint. He will now be joined by superheroes Nur Khan and Paul Sevigny. They will come in with mad skills, new energy and cash to redux the place. They will merge with Don to create more of the same but even better. Nur is famous for his stadium act showcases in what essentially is an over-sized living room over at Rose Bar. He will now have a mid-size venue to accommodate his vision and connections. Nur and I talked about the Don Hill space being perfect for him over a year ago. I floated the idea past Don Hills honcho Nicki Camp last July and I am as pleased as punch that a deal has been finalized. Nur is partnered up with my own personal Jesus, Paul Sevigny at Kenmare and together they will bring their unparalleled talents to this venture. The inclusion of Don into the mix is brilliant. I caught up with Paul and asked him if I could finally write about this and he spewed info at me at a thousand words a minute. I got some of it.
The essentials are that they will renovate. Thousands of rock and roll shows have worn the place out. Rock and roll has a tendency to do that—take a look at a recent shot of Keith Richards. I told Paul that I heard from a second source about this love-in and therefore I should be allowed to tell my loyal readers the good news. Paul agreed and gushed info at me. He’s wanted to talk about this for a while and is uber-excited. “We’re adding 5 bathrooms and seating, we’re going to fix it up.” I tried to take notes but it was hopeless. He was particularly excited to reboot the traditional all-ages Sunday rock shows. He told me to expect 2 or 3 big rock and roll shows a month. I know enough not to ask him if this will be the new Beatrice. Paul would have said Beatrice was Beatrice and this is Don Hills and why do people ask that and then he would have mumbled, laughed to himself and made sly, snide side comments—a bit like loveable Popeye.
The Beatrice, ladies and gents, is gone and thankfully not forgotten. The space has new ownership and I hear it’s going to be a tapas joint. I am sure that the beautiful, fashionable, relevant, unusual and usual suspects will follow both Nur and Paul wherever they go. Don Hills familiar Spring Street location near Sway where Nur held court for eons is sure to be a different kind of wonderful. Both of these gents are so connected and creative that something ‘new’ grounded in their understanding of what was—and is still—relevant from a glorious past is to be expected. ‘New’ often trumps ‘nostalgia’ when the past is embraced and respected. Don Hill, the man, the legend, also has some tricks up his sleeve and now he will have a new place grounded in his legacy to entertain his friends. I’ll keep you posted.
Today Cordell Lochin will rejoin the living. This is great news for the multitudes who have missed his energy and spirit. His stint over at La Esquina when it opened insured its success. I can’t wait to see him and I hope his transition back into society is an easy one. I had many friends and supporters when I got back from my “Poconos vacation.” The hardest part was the acceptance that, no matter what I said or accomplished, many would never believe in me. The only thing you can do is embrace those who embrace you and to work your way back into society’s good graces. In time, the work will define you as much if not more than the past. My design career and my writing replaced the Steve Lewis brand that I created before. Although there are times when I miss the action, I really can’t complain. I get along with this Steve Lewis way better than the last one.