Close Window
classical joint CoffeeHouse

This is the land of is...for those who knew it. 231 Carrall Street. A world-class time capsule. A place that exists in the moment. Unique, subdued, dignified, a breed of behaviour. 'the joint' is a westcoast outpost of a certain intellectual bohemia to roost for a spell. Left coast. Drum spliffs and dark coffee in the ether. Wooden benches run along brick walls, candles flicker-talk on the flat black ceiling, and the floorboards creak soul. A toss back to turn-of-the-century days of gold fever, when this room is the nickelodeon piano saloon Bodega Hotel, just off Trounce Alley. Tonight is Thursday...jazz night...Gavin Walker, the saxophone man and his trio the bill. 'At the joint the music comes first.' In 1970, Andres Nothiger, a wandering architect from Switzerland, purchases the one-year-old establishment. 'I blinked once...and eighteen years passed at the joint.' The audience an eclectic flock of pilgrims, yippies, anarchists, pacifists, hipsters, rogues, earnest university students, travellers and senior couples. Performers and characters of honourable mention would include Joe Mock, Rick Scott, Shari Ulrich, Ole Juul, Trevor Carolan, George Faludi, Jaan Kaplinski, Harry that lives in the basement, Tony Zerba, David Liebman, Colin Lazzerini, Linton Garner, Don Thompson, Gaye Delorme, Jack Velker, Emery Barnes, Reverend Gary Davis. Andreas, with his mutton-chop beard and self-possessed demure of survival is the ever-present 'infant tyrant' of the joint. The classical joint cuts deep into Vancouver Cafe history. 'Nothing has replaced it.'