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Pete Douglas RIP

Mike Schwartz

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{ didn't know where exactly to post this }

Pete Douglas.....music presenter and owner of the Douglas Beach House, Miramar Bay, CA; the Bach Dancing and Dynamite Society

He was 85 passed 07-12....quite a gentleman, the ultimate cheerleader for music and musicians.

Each and every musician I've known to play there LOVED the experience.

One of a kind guy...leftover Beatnik!


Edited by Mike Schwartz
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For Immediate Release
July 17, 2014
Media Contact: Linda Goetz

Pete Douglas, Founder of Half Moon Bay’s
Bach Dancing & Dynamite Society, Dies at 85

Legendary Impresario was Inspiration to Local
and National Musicians, and Presenters

Half Moon Bay, Calif.; July 17, 2014: Pete Douglas, founder of the
world-renowned music and jazz club, the Bach Dancing & Dynamite Society in Half
Moon Bay, Calif., died peacefully in Miramar Beach on July 12, 2014 at age 85.

Pete Douglas was born in Waukegan, Illinois, in 1929. He and his family moved to
the Los Angeles area in the 1940s after his father died, and his teenage years
were spent growing up in Manhattan and Hermosa beaches. Soon, Douglas became
engrossed in the city’s jazz scene, hanging out in jazz clubs listening to
swing, early bebop and the cool sounds of West Coast jazz at such clubs as the
Lighthouse Café.

Douglas graduated from the University of California Santa Barbara with a
sociology degree in 1955, after serving in the Army in the Korean War. He
married and moved to San Mateo County as an Adult Probation Officer.

Pete Douglas soon purchased an abandoned beer joint on the ocean in Half Moon
Bay called the Ebb Tide Coffee Shop. By 1958, Douglas was inviting beatniks,
local artists and Coastsiders into his joint, hosting private impromptu music
jams and ceaselessly renovating his building and music room, which eventually
evolved into the Bach Dancing and Dynamite Society. After becoming a registered
non-profit for the musical arts in 1964, Douglas began presenting regular jazz
and classical programs to the public. National and local jazz luminaries such as
Betty Carter, Bill Evans, Stan Getz, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, McCoy Tyner,
Bobby Hutcherson, Art Blakey, Cal Tjader, Vince Guaraldi, Etta James, Dexter
Gordon, Dizzy Gillespie, Max Roach, Freddie Hubbard, Benny Carter, and Milt
Jackson, to name just several of thousands, played at the Bach over its 50-year
history. Notables in the classical music world such as the Kronos Quartet and
Mariano Cordoba performed as well.

In 1973, Douglas hired the then 19-year-old Tim Jackson, a Santa Cruz resident
and musician to take tickets at the door. “Pete gave me my start in the jazz
world in 1973 and has always been a mentor to me,” said Jackson, Artistic
Director of Monterey Jazz Festival and Kuumbwa Jazz in Santa Cruz. “Pete was a
pioneer in jazz presenting and presided over one of the longest tenured jazz
venues in the country. His passion for quality music and developing audience
engagement—or a ‘scene’ as Pete always said—was paramount and never diminished.
He was truly unique and was able to develop a venue that expressed his own
personal viewpoint. I will miss that chiseled face with the pipe and Greek
fisherman’s cap (Etta James called him ‘Popeye’) and will always remember the
spirit he brought to any conversation.”

Pete Douglas gave the Bay Area and Northern California a much-needed alternative
and distinctive venue in which local and touring musicians could perform. As the
San Francisco Clubs in North Beach were closing down in the late 1960s, the Bach
was a perfect beach experience that reflected the nature of the curator.

Saxophonist David Liebman, a frequent performer at the Bach over the years,
described Pete Douglas as the “Original Hipster.” “What a perfect ambiance,”
Liebman recalled in an email. “A nice meal and drinks; playing jazz for an
appreciative audience; a great piano; complete care of the musicians; all with
the Pacific Ocean at your doorstep and of course Pete, who knew it all and would
sit front and center listening like a hawk. He lived a long, full life and will
be missed by all.”

Douglas is survived by his daughters, Linda Tichenor, Barbara Riching and
Virginia Castillo and grandsons, Tony, Aaron, and Andrew Ackerman and Maxwell
Riching and his granddaughters, Chelsea and Tina Castillo, and several
great-grandchildren. Additionally, Pete is predeceased by his brother John
“Jack” Douglas and survived by his brother Roger Dial. In addition to Pete’s
family, Pete was loved by his many jazz supporters, including his right-hand
manager, Linda Goetz. A memorial will be announced on the Bach Dancing &
Dynamite Society’s website at http://www.bachddsoc.org where memorial donations
may also be made to the non-profit organization.

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