by Lou Bartelli
posted Jun 25 2014 12:02PM
Many of the Nation's biggest rock n roll groups played at the Downtown Dance Club in Yakima beginning in 1967. The Downtown was owned and operated by Yakima Businessman Ron Barnsley. The Downtown , located on South 2nd street,had a block buster opening in June of 1967 when the Grassroots came to town. I know,because I was there. Their hit, Let's live for today,had just been released. It happened to be the first song they sang at the Downtown. Kima Radio was the driving force behind promoting the groups that would play at the Downtown.
KIma had a dj booth inside the club where Kima personality Dave Hood would play records and give away prizes during intermission. Yakima rock n roll fans had a chance to see stars like Rick Nelson,The Strawberry Alarm Clock, Merilee Rush and Sugarloaf without leaving town.
by Lou Bartelli
posted Jun 4 2014 10:46AM
Bands like Paul Revere and the Raiders , Don and the Goodtimes
and the Beatles were an inspiration to up and coming rock and roll
bands in Yakima in the mid 60's. As a student at Highland High School
in Cowiche we had great record dances provided by History Teacher
Ken Leader. Ken always did his best to provide a Live Yakima band
as well. One of the hot bands at the time were the Lost Souls. The Lost
Souls played at the Highland High Christmas Ball in 1966.
Other rock bands at the time included the Velvet Illusions,
The Gentlemen Wilde and the Time Exit. Besides playing at area
High Schools, there were many other venues for the bands to show
their stuff. They included the YakIma Armory,Carpenters Hall,The Gay Shateau and the Downtown. The Downtown was the Premiere Dance Club in the 60's.More on that in a future Professor's Blog. I have included a photo from my High School Annual of the Lost Souls.