When the Palomino on Lankershim was the Epicenter of Country Music
While it may be a far cry from the rough and rowdy Palomino Club, you will be transported back in time at the El Portal Theatre in NOHO by the authentic music and singing of Carter Calvert, playing the title role in Always…Patsy Cline. One great song tumbles out after another as Louise Seger, played by the inimitable Sally Struthers, tells the humorous and heartfelt story of her pen-pal relationship with Patsy before her sudden and early death at the age of 30. The show leaves you with a warmth and yearning for a simpler, more intimate time when you would hear your favorite songs and singers floating like magic from your radio in your living room or kitchen.
North Hollywood was once the country music capital of Southern California, and Lankershim Boulevard was at the epicenter!
If you were looking for the best talent in country music, they all came through the notoriously broken-down, but popular Palomino nightclub at Lankershim and Vanowen.
Owner Tommy Thomas described the business this way:
“People would ask ‘what is the secret to your success?’ I said, ‘real simple. We had all the acts that nobody wanted. No one wanted Marty Robbins, Barbara Mandrell, Kenny Rogers, Willie Nelson, Patsy Cline, Jim Reeves and on and on. So we had it made. For years and years, we had all these entertainers to ourselves. It was like a private goldmine.”
A trip to the Palomino was exciting for reasons other than just the music. Jerry Lee Lewis once pushed the piano off the stage when told to “keep it down” onstage. And at some point, you could count on a fight breaking out between two “s—tkickers,” the colorful name attached to the rough-ridin’ locals.
This summer, North Hollywood and the El Portal Theatre will turn back the clock to the heyday of country music when Carter Calvert sings twenty two of Patsy Cline’s hit songs — she is here direct from her off-Broadway, latest success, Forbidden Broadway: Comes Out Swinging. She got rave reviews in New York, but because of her relationship with this show and Sally Struthers, Carter decided to spend the summer with El Portal audiences. Her husband Roger Cohen will join her on drums. Carter has been reviewed as the “best” Patsy Cline in the USA.
For tickets and additional information please call 818-508-0281 or the Box Office at 818-508-4200. You won’t want to miss this show at the El Portal Theatre!