Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Dirk Dirksen-S.F. Punk Promoter

The Mabuhay Gardens was a Filippino night club located on
Broadway at the end of the North Beach area in San Francisco
, where lots of night clubs and topless bars were located . It was
a failing night club owned by Ness Aquino . Sometime in 1976 .
Ness was approached by Dirk Dirksen to promote punk rock
shows at the Mabuhay . Ness agreed , and the rest is history
, the PREMIER PUNK PALACE was born.Jello Biafra of
the Dead Kennedys stated that seeing the
Sex Pistols , Nuns , and Avengers at Winterland , changed
his life . He knew that this was what he wanted to do , form
his own punk band . He wasn't alone , also in the audience
were the people who would later make up some of San
Francisco's most notable Punk bands . The Nuns would
become one of the first bands to play at the Mabuhay ,
The Mary Monday Group was the first band to play
there,though, I cannot remember them, or, if they were
actually a punk band. Now the stage was set , these punk
bands needed a place to play and the Mabuhay was there
.Dirk Dirksen made the perfect emcee for the Mab.Coming
from a background in television , and very much into
experimental theatre and audience participation , this
BIZARRE and unusual character turned a failing Filippino
night club into a WORLD FAMOUS TOURIST
In fact, the Mab would soon become
as famous as CBGB's was on the east coast .The Mab
was host to many famous bands of that era , including ,
The DAMNED , DEVO , IGGY POP , Neil Young ,
The RAMONES , The Nuns , CRIME , The Dead Kennedys
Husker Du , DOA , Pink Section, Rozz & Negative Trend
and many more .

By 1978 , the Mabuhay became to punk rock , what the
Filmore West and Winterland were to commercial rock
and Dirksen became punk's answer to Bill Graham
from:Mabuhay Gardens.
This is a little more than I can even begin to write.
Dirk passed away last night, in his sleep.
I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for him.
Many of us wouldn't.
He only wanted a band to be good. If he was harsh it
wasn't because you sucked but because you could be better.
4 Bands a night, 7 nights a week.
Think about it.
With love,
VKTMS - John, Steve, Lou, Nyna (R.I.P.)

Man, that's sad. More than "4 Bands a night,
7 nights a week," it was a
SCENE (a concept today's aggregate club owners
can't seem to grasp), and no
one person was more important to that scene
than Dirk. The Jars' second ever
SF gig and our next to last gig ever (Dirk:
"It's time to can The Jars...")
were both at the Fab Mab. For a time it seemed
we were there every third
Tuesday, and then there for entertainment 2
or 3 nights a week besides. All
the bands were always (good naturedly, for
punks) on Dirks ass, it meant we
loved him. He was an indelible part of the
last, most coherent music scene
in this here city.
Glad he got to do that Mabuhay reunion at the
Fillmore earlier this year, he
must have gotten a kick out of it.
For the Jars- Mik Dow, Armin Hammer, Gary Nervo
, Marc Time, Johnny Savior
and sometimes Mike- bye, Dirk, R.I.P.
Gary Hobish / "Armin Hammer"
A. Hammer Mastering & Digital Media
San Francisco, CA

Here is a great write up from the Chron:

1 comment:

Gary said...

Here's a link to The Josh Kornbluth Show interview on KQED with Dirk and Penelope Houston.