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Sunday, March 18, 2012

From Family Dog to Friends and Relations, 1970-1971

Does anyone know the story of the end of the Family Dog, and the re-emergence of 660 Great Highway as Friends and Relations Hall? I am sure it's out there, but I don't recall seeing it and I know nothing other than what I see in the listings.

I am presently going through some ca. 1970-1971 listings and find first reference to "Friends and Relations Hall" for March 12, 1971 (Big Brother). I had found listings as Family Dog through scattered through December 1970 (not listed at the Chicken).

Anyway, what's the story? I have been surprised to see nothing reported (as far as I have found) in the various music columns in the Bay Area papers.

Edit: Guess I haven't looked that hard. Heh heh.


  1. that would be me, jim

    I took over the lease and ran the place in several incarnations until it was demo for the current condo development. Our major success was a long run with the rock opera Tommy.

  2. Wasserman also covered the Friends & Relations opening (as such).

    Wasserman, John L. 1971. Friends, Relations and Good Intentions. San Francisco Chronicle, March 17, 1971, p. 63.

    Turns out, the really obscure billings at 660 Great Highway were early '71 ish under the name "Poor Richard's"!

  3. "Family Dog Bellies Up," Rolling Stone, October 15, 1970, p. 10.

    "After limping along for 14 months in a shorefront amusement park location, Chet Helms' Family Dog apparently bit the dust as of August 14th. … The Family Dog's notorious inability to keep its finances together caught up with it. Helms has run through six business managers, according to Richard Osborne, the genial former Playland official who is now deciding: the future of the hall. The last Dog concert was held the weekend of August 14th. The following weekend Quicksilver Messenger Service was scheduled, says Osborne, but by this time the Family Dog had fallen apart and Quicksilver put on the dance themselves. Despite rumors that the Family Dog on the Great Highway was going to be turned into a flea market, it is being renovated as a dance hall and given a new sound system. Osborne is considering bids from dance promoters, he says, but he allows as how he's 'liable to end up as the entrepreneur here.' He's already calling the place 'Poor Richard's At The Beach.'"


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