Club 47

Club Passim is an American folk music club in the Harvard Square area of Cambridge, Massachusetts. It was opened by Joyce Kalina (now Chopra) and Paula Kelley in 1958, when it was known as Club 47 (based on its then address, 47 Mount Auburn Street, also in Cambridge; it moved to its present location on Palmer Street in 1963), and changed its name to simply Passim in 1969. The Donelans who ran the club during the 1970s pronounced the name PASSim, and Bob Donelan said this as he welcomed people to the shows with the always-out-of-adjustment mic stand microphone, but those who didn’t know that always said PassEEM, perhaps thinking they were correct. It adopted the present name in 1994; a combination of the earlier two names. At its inception, it was mainly a jazz and blues club, but soon branched out to include ethnic folk, then singer-songwriter folk. Artists who have performed there include Joan Baez, Shawn Colvin, Bob Dylan, Tom Rush, Joni Mitchell, Suzanne Vega, Muddy Waters, Jimmy Buffett and many others. At times the Club was a place for blues musicians like Paul Butterfield and Elvin Bishop to play as well. In the 1960s, the club (when known as Club 47) played a role in the rise of folk-rock music, when it began to book folk-rock bands whose music was unrelated to traditional folk, such as the Lovin’ Spoonful. The club’s importance to the 1960s Cambridge folk scene is documented extensively in Eric Von Schmidt‘s Baby, Let Me Follow You Down: The Illustrated Story of the Cambridge Folk Years. Scott Alarik described Club 47 as being ‘the hangout of choice for the new folkies’ during that time. … Joan Baez described to Rolling Stone‘s Kurt Loder how she began performing at Club 47 in 1958 as a largely unknown Boston University student, playing on Tuesday nights as a means of providing entertainment because the jazz musicians who played there had Tuesday nights off; she would continue to perform regularly there through the early 1960s. In 1961, Bob Dylan was said to have played at the club between sets for free so that he could say he had played at Club 47. … Bonnie Raitt chose to attend Radcliffe College in Cambridge in order to be near Club 47, though the club closed temporarily after her first year as a student (1967). …”
Club Passim
NPR – Club Passim: 50 Years Of Folk Legends (Video)
Harvard Square: Club 47
The Crimson: The Rich Folklore of Club Passim

Joan Baez plays at Club 47 in 1959.

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