RNC 2016 CLE: “It’s a God awful job, but it’s gotta be done… protecting the soul of America…”

Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams

 and radio talk show host, Alex Jones


“Soul Of America” – Ian Hunter (2007)

(67 Photos)

The Republican National Convention came to Cleveland this week, and I could not be more proud of my city. Thank you to Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams and the officers he leads, as well as the hundreds of law enforcement officers from across the country who came to Cleveland this week to help make this a safe, demonstrative, and enjoyable event. Thank you also to Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson, and the local and RNC Planning committees. The city was prepared, organized, and shining! I went down to Public Square and East 6th Street on Tuesday, where much of the outdoor activities took place. There were demonstrators of all ilks and persuasions, as well as thousands of Convention attendees taking in our fair city. The feedback that I have read has been overwhelmingly and greatly positive. I made sure to thank the law enforcement officers that I came across, just for being there and for keeping everyone safe. Proud to be a Clevelander!

Photos taken July 12, 16, and 19, 2016


“We’ve been waiting so long… …we need just one victory and we’re on our way…”

Game three of the 2016 NBA Finals… Cavs are down 2 – 0 in a best of 7 Series against the Golden State Warriors…Photo taken on May 31, 2016 on Carnegie Avenue near East 30th Street.

“Just One Victory” – Todd Rundgren (1973)

We’ve been waiting so long,
We’ve been waiting so long,
We’ve been waiting for the sun to rise and shine
Shining still to give us the will

Can you hear me, the sound of my voice?
I am here to tell you I have made my choice
I’ve been listening to what’s been going down
There’s just too much talk and gossip going ’round

You may think that I’m a fool, but I know the answer
Words become a tool, anyone can use them
Take the golden rule, as the best example
Eyes that have seen will know what I mean

The time has come to take the bull by the horns
(Hold that line, baby hold that line, get up boys and hit ’em one more time)
We’ve been so downhearted, we’ve been so forlorn
(We may be losing now but we can’t stop trying, so hold that line, baby hold that line)
We get weak and we want to give in
(Hold that line, baby hold that line, get up boys and hit ’em one more time)
But we still need each other if we want to win
(We may be losing now but we can’t stop trying, so hold that line, baby hold that line)

If you don’t know what to do about a world of trouble
You can pull it through if you need to and if
You believe it’s true, it will surely happen
Shining still, to give us the will

We’ve been waiting so long,
We’ve been waiting so long,
We’ve been waiting for the sun to rise and shine
Shining still to give us the will
Bright as the day, to show us the way

Somehow, someday,
We need just one victory and we’re on our way
Prayin’ for it all day and fightin’ for it all night
Give us just one victory, it will be all right

We may feel about to fall but we go down fighting
You will hear the call if you only listen
Underneath it all we are here together
Shining still to give us the will
Bright as the day, to show us the way

Somehow, someday,
(Hold that line, baby hold that line, get up boys and hit ’em one more time)
We need just one victory and we’re on our way
(We may be losing now but we can’t stop trying, so hold that line, baby hold that line)
Prayin’ for it all day and fightin’ for it all night
(Hold that line, baby hold that line, get up boys and hit ’em one more time)
Give us just one victory, it will be all right
(We may be losing now but we can’t stop trying, so hold that line, baby hold that line)

“…talkin’ baseball… baseball and the Tribe…”

“Talkin’ Baseball” – Terry Cashman (2008)

Today is Major League Baseball’s Opening Day in many cities across America (and Canada!) The hopes and dreams of October championship baseball are alive and well for fans of every team!

Today in Cleveland, the Indians play their chilly home and season opener against the Boston Redsox with David Price the starting pitcher for the Sox, and Cy Young Award winner, Cory Kluber taking the mound for the hometown good-guys.  First pitch at Jacobs Field is scheduled for 4:10 PM.

Pictured above: The 28-foot neon sign that adorned the 74,000 seat Cleveland Municipal Stadium at Gate D for 32 years. The old stadium was demolished in 1996 with the Tribe’s new home, Jacobs Field, opening on April 2, 1994.

Some time ago,  I wrote a post about the inspiration and reason behind the “Indians” team name. The cartoon mascot “Chief Wahoo” has caused controversy among some, but to me Chief Wahoo is simply an emblem representing my baseball team!

Today the Chief Wahoo sign has been preserved and is on display at Cleveland’s Western Reserve Historical Society (as seen in my photograph above, taken December 30, 2014.)

“Theeeere’s… gonna be a show–down…”

“(There’s Gonna Be A) Showdown” – New York Dolls (1974)
“(There’s Gonna Be A) Showdown” – Archie Bell & the Drells (1968)

A billboard along Interstate-77 heading North into downtown. Cleveland in the international spotlight… and we’re ready!

Photo taken March 30, 2016

“…Come share this golden age with me…”


“Glory Days” – PULP (1998)

(10 photos)

At 7630 Broadway Avenue, in a once prosperous neighborhood on Cleveland’s southeast side, the building pictured above was built in the late 1800’s with the promise of a new century before it. With commanding doric columns, and beautiful exterior complements, it was a notable piece to Cleveland’s South Broadway community.

The last photo in this set was taken in 1939 of the same building and vantage point, and is borrowed courtesy of the Cleveland Public Library Digital Gallery. The Amster-Kirtz Cigar Company, which was headquarterd here eventually relocated and today still exists in Ohio under the name The Amster-Kirtz Company and are regional wholesale distributors of candy, tobacco and groceries. The Erie Savings and Loan, which was incorporated at this location in 1923, and the Cleveland Liberty Bank, also former tenants (whose name plates still exist on the building today) are gone as well. Today the facilities are home to a second-hand furniture and appliance shop.

Top 9 photos taken June 22, 2015

“One, two, three, four…”

“1234” – Feist (2007)

The W. Bingham Hardware Company Warehouse Building
Built: 1915
Architect: Walker and Weeks
Today: “The Bingham” (luxury apartments)
1278 West 9th Street
Warehouse District
Cleveland, OH

Photo taken May 21, 2015

“There’s a meat market down the street…”

“Dance Anthem of the 80’s” – Regina Spektor (2009)

State Meat Market
Ukrainian Village
5338 State Road
Parma, Ohio
Southwestern Cleveland suburb

Photo taken January 25, 2015

“Along the river of men…”

“River of Men” – Tom Waits (1998)

(18 Photographs)

During the Industrial Revolution of the mid and late 1800’s, up and down Cleveland’s Cuyahoga River, heavy industry flourished and was responsible for the growth of the city– from a small village to a major metropolis, by the end of the 19th century.

John D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil Company was chief among the Cleveland based companies that utilized the river as a transportation solution, distributing across the nation, product from its Cleveland oil refineries. Resulting from the new technologies derived by the Standard Oil Company, chemical companies began populating the area in abundance.

In 1871, three enterprising men of the time– Henry A. Sherwin, Alanson T. Osborn, and Edward P. Williams formed a partnership and created Sherwin, Williams, & Company, a paint manufacturing and retail company, headquartered in a long-since-demolished building on Cleveland’s Superior Street, in an area today known as Public Square. Taking advantage of the rich, local chemical availability, the firm became one of the first in the country to concentrate on producing ready-mixed paint and lacquers for retail consumption.

In 1874, the group purchased from J. D. Rockefeller, the Standard Oil cooperage building, which produced the wooden barrels that the company used at the time to transport Standard Oil’s refined oil products that were “barreling” out of Cleveland to a nation thirsty with consumption.

Once the transaction was complete, and the necessary equipment and materials were moved in, the building (pictured above), along the Cuyahoga River, at 601 Canal Street, became the manufacturing home of the Sherwin-Williams Company, producing paste paints, oil colors, and putty.

The company greatly flourished over the years, opening plants all across the nation. Today, a national brand, with headquarters still in Cleveland, and thousands of retail stores nationwide– the old “cooperage building”– The original Sherwin-Williams paint factory, remained opened and in production until 1982.

Photos taken July 29, 2015

“Things are different today, I hear every mother say… cooking fresh food for her husband’s just a drag… so she buys an instant cake and she burns her frozen steak…”

“Mother’s Little Helper” – The Rolling Stones (1966)

The two entrance ways into the once– supermarket giant “Fisher Brothers” Bakery and Warehouse, built in 1916, at 2323 Lakeside Avenue in Cleveland.

Incorporated in Cleveland in 1908, by brothers Manning and Charles Fisher, the food retail company grew handily with sales reaching over $18 million and over 300 food stores in Northern Ohio, by 1928.

In 1961, the name of the company was changed to Fisher Foods, Inc.  During the years prior to this, Fisher Brothers had become the largest retail food distributor in Cleveland. But by 1965, the company only held 12 percent of the Cleveland market. In that year the fledgling firm merged with Fazio’s and Costa supermarkets, who were prospering as part of the Stop-N-Shop Super Markets Association.

Although Fisher Foods maintained solvency and in some cases, prosperity throughout the 1970’s and 80’s under a variety of different marketing names and outlets, in 1997 all of Fisher Foods financial holdings were sold to the Pittsburgh-based Giant Eagle Supermarkets for $403 million.

Today the 420,000 square foot Fisher Brothers building, with it’s elegant entrance ways on Lakeside Avenue, is leased as loft-style commercial warehouse space.

Top photo taken March 24, 2014
Middle and bottom photos taken June 16, 2015

“It was the heat of the moment…”

“Heat of the Moment” – ASIA (1982)

(19 Photos)
In an area on Cleveland’s east side that was once filled with heavy industry and commerce, today only hints of that glorious history still exist in the shadows. At the corner of Central Avenue and East 67th street one such structure-as evidence, holds on by a string.

The Cleveland Co-Operative Stove Company was established at this site in the late 1800’s and eventually expanded it’s operations to several other manufacturing locations nationally. The company produced an extensive line of large, highly ornate, coal-burning cook stoves, ranges and heaters. In 1909, as technology provided, a full line of gas ranges was introduced by the company.

From the top: Photos 1, 10, 15 and 18 taken April 27, 2015. Photos 2 – 9, 11 – 14, 16, and 17 taken May 1, 2015

The above advertisement appeared in the July 1895 issue of “Stoves and Hardware Reporter”

“…you’ll see a smilin’ face… a fireplace.. a cozy room… a little nest that’s nestled where the roses bloom…”

“My Blue Heaven” – Frank Sinatra (1950)

[10 Photos]

A very unassuming, almost hidden piece of urban property at 4806 Euclid Avenue in midtown Cleveland…

Built in 1898 as an extended-stay housing option for visiting business executives from other cities, “The Esmond” also served as the ideal turn-of-the century “swanky” bachelor pad for single businessmen working in the hustle-bustle world that was Cleveland, Ohio in the early 1900’s.

The building was designed by architect John Eisenmann, who also co-designed with fellow architect, George H. Smith, the Cleveland Arcade. Eisenmann is also credited with designing the official flag of the State of Ohio that flies today in the buckeye state (and He was a graduate of the University of Michigan, of all things!)

Through the years The Esmond has continued to serve as a fashionable apartment building, and still offers extended-stay bed and breakfast suites to visitors to the city.

Photos taken October 31, 2014

“…join us in our blind ambition… get yourself a brand new motor car…”

“Grand Illusion” – Styx (1977)

In the City of Cleveland, at the corner of Carnegie Avenue and E. 46th street there sits a another small reminder of the city’s fashionable past. Built in 1917, at a cost of $200,000, the Pierce-Arrow Motor Car building served as one the city’s automobile showrooms for the “well-to-do” until 1938, when the Buffalo-based Pierce-Arrow Motor Corporation was formally liquidated.

During the automobile company’s tenure, the Pierce-Arrow “motor car” was a luxurious status symbol, prized by Hollywood millionaires, business tycoons and American Presidents alike.

The two story structure on the city’s near east side was designed in Classic Italian Renaissance style with and an eye-catching white glazed terra cotta exterior facade, by the Cleveland architectural firm Lehman and Schmitt, who also designed the Cuyahoga County Courthouse.

Photos taken October 9, 2014

“When this grey world crumbles like a cake…”

“It’s Not My Birthday” – They Might Be Giants (1989)

When I was a kid, there was nothing better than waking up on a Saturday or Sunday morning and finding a white box printed with the famous powder blue Hough Bakery insignia, waiting for us on the kitchen table! Pretty much a luxurious staple for any family in Northeastern Ohio– Hough Bakeries pastries pies and cakes were to die for!

Established in a small bakery on Hough Avenue on Cleveland’s east side in 1903, the family owned and operated business grew to become one of the ten largest multiple-unit bakeries in the United States. In 1941, the Pile family purchased the old Star Bakery building, pictured above, and expanded Hough Bakeries operations.

The company thrived throughout the years, but competition and a lack of modernized equipment and facilities proved to be too much for Hough Bakeries survival. In 1992, the old family owned bakery closed the facility, located on Lakeview Avenue and it’s 32 retail shops located throughout Northeastern Ohio, and filed for Chapter Seven bankruptcy.

Photo taken September 9, 2014

“…I think I’m in trouble…”

In a window along the exterior wall of Cleveland’s famed Tee Shirt printing shop, Daffy Dan’s. Located at 2101 Superior Avenue, near Cleveland State University, in downtown, DD’s has been custom screen printing tee shirts since 1973. Since then, according to Daffy Dan: “If your t-shirt doesn’t have DD on the sleeve, it’s just underwear!”

A picture of me back in college, sporting a Daffy Dan’s WMMS 101 FM Home of the Buzzard t-shirt:

“Trouble” – Lindsey Buckingham (1981)

“…come along with me misery loves company… you’re welcome at the home of the blues…”

“Home of the Blues” – Johnny Cash (1958)

At E. 4th Street and Euclid Avenue, in downtown… one of the many concert venues that this town offers… And from the interior of the Cleveland House of Blues, a picture I took a few years ago, and posted here!

Photo taken August 9, 2014

“There’s no surf in Cleveland U.S.A…”

“There’s No Surf in Cleveland” – The Euclid Beach Band (1978)

The Beachland Ballroom on an absolutely perfect summer day!

Located in the North Collinwood neighborhood on Cleveland’s East side… in the heart of the Waterloo Arts District. The Beachland is a concert venue and tavern but was originally built in 1950 as a Croatian social club called the “Liberty Home.”

Today the facility is home to eclectic musical performances, a sizable yet laid-back tavern, and a record shop in the basement that sells all kinds of cool popular culture items from days gone by, including a collection of old concert tee shirts… About a half-mile north of the Beachland is Euclid Beach–once home to the world famous Euclid Beach Amusement Park, on the shores of Lake Erie… and unfortunately, no… there is “no surf in Cleveland USA…”

Photo taken June 23, 2014

“…it’s to a castle I will take you… where what’s to be, they say will be…”

“What Is and What Should Never Be” – Led Zeppelin (1969)

[11 Photographs]

At 10660 Carnegie Avenue, in Cleveland’s University Circle neighborhood, the Tudor Arms Hotel building marks the sky with castle-like elegance, and has served the community in vastly different ways over the years of it’s existence.

The building opened it’s doors originally in 1933, as The Cleveland Club, an exclusive, members-only, place where Cleveland’s upper-crust met for lavish parties and other extracurricular activities.

The 12-story, Tudor Revival-style building was designed by American Civil War veteran, and MIT graduate, residential architect Frank B. Meade. Included amenities that attracted Cleveland area socialites to the Cleveland Club– a bowling alley, two swimming pools, a squash court, and two majestically detailed ballrooms.

A victim of the Great Depression of the 1930’s, the club eventually closed and The Tudor Arms Hotel took over the beautiful confines in 1939. During the 1940’s, the Tudor Arms Hotel became known for it’s dinner and jazz shows that filled it’s main ballroom– The Empress Room, on a nightly basis. The hotel offered 157 leaded-glass window, elegantly detailed suites. The hotel corridors lavished beautifully molded plaster and carved stone decor to the visiting guest’s experience.

Case Western Reserve University, eventually took over management of the Hotel as hotel business declined, and the building was slowly converted to a graduate student residence hall in the late 1950’s. By 1963, a total conversion had taken place. In later years, the building was leased to the federally funded Cleveland Job Corps.

Today, the building is home to DoubleTree by Hilton – The Tudor Arms Hotel, as well as two fine restaurants, and offers an exquisite over-night option for visitors to the nearby main campuses of the Cleveland Clinic, University Hospitals, and other institutions in walking distance around the University Circle area.

First 10 photos taken May 16, 2014
Bottom photo taken April 19, 2014

“…and all I do is pour… black coffee… since the blues caught my eye…”

“Black Coffee” – Peggy Lee (1953)

And for comparison purposes, the last picture in this 4 picture set– taken by an unnamed photographer in the early 1950’s (courtesy of The Chesler Group.)

At the northwest corner of Detroit Avenue and West 29th Street, on Cleveland’s near-west side, sits a refurbished relic from days gone by… Originally built in 1895 to house the Cleveland Steel Range Company, and later a different company that produced pistons for automobiles and airplane engines, the Van Rooy Coffee Company purchased and moved into the Romanesque-Revival style industrial building in 1935. The company provided “Hotel Quality” roasted Arabica coffee beans from Brazil and around the world as well as teas and spices from The Orient, and quickly developed a “second-to-none” reputation for the highest quality of products. The Van Rooy Coffee Company, still in operation, moved from this building in 2003, to a site just outside Cleveland. The old Van Rooy Building is listed both on the National Register of Historic Places and the Cleveland Landmark Registry.

First three photos taken April 8, 2014

“….made eye contact with a solitary pickle…”

“Reading Time With Pickle” – Regina Spektor (2002)

I couldn’t pass-up this ad artwork, without grabbing the camera and clicking the shutter release… A cartoon pickle clinging to the Terminal Tower. A banner advertising “Cleveland Pickle”— a downtown sub shop, located at Euclid Avenue and East 9th Street. Awesome!

Photo taken February 28, 2014

“…’Cause we find ourselves in the same old mess… singin’ drunken lullabies.”

“Drunken Lullabies” – Flogging Molly (2002)

(two photographs: front entrance, and rear patio area)

I was lucky enough to bring in the new year, 2012, at this fantastic Irish Pub– called, “The Treehouse,” but never a St. Patty’s Day… not yet at least!

Located in the heart of Cleveland’s Tremont neighborhood, at the northeast corner of Professor and College Avenues, the original structure was completed in 1900. After a variety of different uses over the years, the Treehouse opened for business in 1996 and has been a “must do” entertainment spot along Professor, ever since.

Inside the Jameson and Guinness flow and the crowd arrives nightly. The sizable bar service area is Canopied by a huge tree, with branches extending out over nearly the whole bar area.

I am thinking a pint of Guinness Stout after work today may be in order! Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Photos taken January 4, 2014

“She drew out all her money out of the Southern Trust.. and put her little boy aboard a Greyhound Bus…”

“Bye Bye Johnny” – Chuck Berry (1960)
“Bye Bye Johnny” – The Rolling Stones (1964)

The Greyhound Bus Terminal, located on Chester Avenue in downtown Cleveland, between East 17th and 13th streets, was the largest bus station in the United States when it’s construction was completed in the Spring of 1948.

Designed by architect William Arrasmith, the station was built at a cost of $1.25 Million, in “Art Moderne” architectural style (also called “Streamline Moderne,” a derivative of the “Art Deco” movement.) The aerodynamic look of the building fit into the Bus Company’s marketing focus of streamlined and effortless travel.

The Cleveland Greyhound Bus Station Building was added to the National Registry of Historic Places in 1999. In 2000, it was restored and modernized, while preserving it’s historic relevance and beauty.

Photo taken February 24, 2014

“Well I was layin’ in a hospital bed… a rock and roll nurse went to my head… hold out your arms, stick out your tongue… I got some pills, boy, I’m gonna give you one…”

“Pills” – Bo Diddley (1961)
“Pills” – New York Dolls (1973)

A billboard on the side of this building at 2541 Carnegie Avenue in downtown– Cleveland: the home of world class healthcare, AND the birthplace of “Rock and Roll!”

In the mural, a play on words… and some simple directions. To the left, several city blocks north: the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum. And to the right, one of Cleveland’s many excellent hospitals: the St. Vincent Charity Medical Center, just a few blocks south.

*As a side note: Bo Diddley was inducted into the Rock Hall in 1987– The New York Dolls… Hopefully one day!

Photo taken February 13, 2014

“…looking for soul food and a place to eat…”

“Walk on the Wild Side” – Lou Reed (1972)

Along Euclid Avenue in East Cleveland, Ohio.
Photo taken September 14, 2013

“But falling over you… is the news of the day.”

“The Ghost in You” – The Psychedelic Furs (1984)

At 1017 Fairfield Avenue in Cleveland’s near-west side Tremont neighborhood, the building that once housed the city’s first daily Polish Newspaper, Wiadomosci Codzienne.

Photo taken February 4, 2014

“Damn this traffic jam… how I hate to be late… it hurts my motor to go so slow… time I get home my supper’ll be cold. Damn this traffic jam…”

“Traffic Jam” – James Taylor (1977)

Another bridge icon in northeastern Ohio spanning east and west over the Cuyahoga River Valley. The Valley View Bridge, better known as the I-480 Bridge, was opened in 1977 and connects eastern and western suburbs of Cleveland. It consists of two parallel sections 4,150 feet in length. The bridge rises 212 feet above the river valley below.

Photo taken December 30, 2013

“I’ll get down in any neighborhood I swear that my friends will take me…”

“Funky But Chic” – David Johansen (1978)

On Cleveland’s near-east side, at the southeast corner of E. 36th Street and Euclid Avenue, near the central downtown area… Hatton’s, in existence since the 1920’s, was the first deli establishment to make the claim, “Best Corned Beef in Town” when Duane Hatton affixed the neon sign to the building in 1965.

Photo taken December 13, 2013

“Hey you, up in the sky… Learning to fly… tell me how high do you think you’ll go…”

“Up in the Sky” – Noel Gallagher (OASIS, acoustic 1994)

(2 photos)

Lucky’s Cafe
777 Starkweather Avenue
Tremont Neighborhood
Near west side – Cleveland, Ohio

Photos taken December 11, 2013

“…and I’m a skinny little boy from Cleveland Ohio, come to drink your women and chase your beer…”

“Skinny” – Alex Bevan (1976)

The grand daddy of local breweries in Cleveland, The Great Lakes Brewing Company was established in the Cleveland west side neighborhood of Ohio City, across from the West Side Market, in 1988. Today, the vastly expanded brewery is a favorite brew pub and restaurant night spot, where connoisseurs and happy-hour partiers can hang out, drink and eat. In 2011, The Great Lakes Brewery was the 18th largest craft-brewery in the United States. The beer is phenomenal! In the warm months in Cleveland, the establishment’s sidewalk patio along Market Avenue is THE place to be!

Photos taken November 14, 2013

“Paint no illusion, try to click with what you got…”

“Go Let it Out” – OASIS (2000)

The Sherwin-Williams Company, home to Sherwin-Williams Paints, was founded by Henry Sherwin and Edward Williams in Cleveland, Ohio in 1866. Still internationally headquartered here, S-W’s is a strong player in the cultural fabric of Cleveland. This mural, across the street from Quicken Loans Arena in downtown, where the NBA Cleveland Cavs play, is but one shining example. I do believe most of the items painted in this Cleveland depiction, are featured as photographs in this blog. “…try to click with what you got…”

Photo taken September 9, 2013

“Pretty Good Year”

“Pretty Good Year” – Tori Amos (1994)

Former Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company World Headquarters are being transformed into a modern “live, work and play” mixed-use urban attraction on Akron, Ohio’s east side. Goodyear is moving into new facilities in the city, and the historic, old buildings that were vital to Akron’s development as the “rubber capital of the world”–1.7 million square feet, in all, are being redeveloped through an ambitious urban renewal project called “East End.”

Photo taken November 23, 2013

“…with her line blown out she’s hummin’ like a turbojet… propped her up in the backyard on concrete blocks for a new clutch plate and a new set of shocks…”

“Open All Night” – Bruce Springsteen (1982)

Cleveland Packard Building
Built in 1915
Classical Revival Architectural Style
Located at 5100-5206 Prospect Avenue, in Cleveland, Ohio
Added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1984

The building served as Cleveland’s Packard Automobile Dealership from 1915 to 1939.

Photo taken October 28, 2013

“I’m gonna go dancin’ every night… I’m gonna see all the city lights… I’ll do everything silver and gold… I got to hurry up before I grow too old…”

“Silver and Gold (before I grow too old)” – Joe Strummer And The Mescaleros (2003)

An exterior wall to the Market Garden Brewery, located on West 25th Street, next to the West Side Market, in Ohio City – Cleveland, Ohio. The wall is complete with a “mail” box attached filled with chalk for adding your answer!

Photo taken September 27, 2013

“…I’ll be speaking to you sweetly from a window in the tower of song…”

“Tower of Song” – Leonard Cohen (1988)

Standing in the shadows of the Terminal Tower– the old May Company Building, built by Department Store tycoon, David May, in 1917. The May Company building is part of the Tower City Complex on the Southeast side of Public Square in downtown Cleveland.

An architecturally beautiful structure, it is one of many Cleveland landmarks listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The May Company Department Store stayed in operation at this site until the company was merged with Kaufmann’s of Pittsburgh, and the old May Company downtown closed it’s doors for good in 1993.

Photo taken July 23, 2013

“If you want to destroy my sweater.. hold this string as I walk away… watch me unravel– I’ll soon be naked…”

“Undone – The Sweater Song” – WEEZER (1994)

Coyote Ugly Saloon
1722 East 7th Avenue
Ybor City
Tampa, Florida

Photo taken September 9, 2006

“In this dirty old part of the city… where the sun refuse to shine… people tell me there ain’t no use in trying…”

“We Gotta Get Out of This Place” – Eric Burden and The Animals (1965)

An old warehouse loading station on the east bank of the industrial flats, near the downtown district of Cleveland, Ohio.

Photo taken March 27, 2013

“But what does it matter when you’re out on the town… Rock and roll cities, with a pizza to go…”

“Rock and Roll Cities” – The Kinks (1986)

Ohio City Pizza–some of the best, in my opinion, in the City of Cleveland. Located at 3223 Lorain Avenue, in the near-westside neighborhood of Ohio City. I used to eat OCP on a weekly basis when I lived in Ohio City back in the mid 90’s. The shop was located at it’s original location at Fulton and Bridge Avenues, back then. I was worried that the sauce wouldn’t be the same, this time around, many years later… The sauce was THE BEST, and fortunately some things never change, thank God! (And they say “you can never go back!” when you move away…) Ohio City Pizzeria was definitely worth making a stop at on this night out on the town!

Photo taken May 4, 2013

“He thought he was the King of America… where they pour Coca-Cola just like vintage wine…”

“Brilliant Mistake” – Elvis Costello (1995)

World of Coca-Cola Building
121 Baker Street NW
Downtown Atlanta, Georgia

Photo taken January 16, 2006

“He smoked a big cigar.. drove a cadillac car…”

Rock and Roll Band – BOSTON (1976)

The J.C. Newman Cigar Company
Ybor City
Tampa, Florida
Established in Cleveland, Ohio in 1895
Cuesta-Rey brand established in Tampa, Florida in 1884

The J.C. Newman Cigar Company moved from Cleveland to Tampa in 1954 and eventually purchased the Cuesta-Rey brand. Today it is the largest family-owned premium cigar manufacturer in the world– maker of many high quality hand rolled cigar brands, including Arturo Fuente, Diamond Crown, Brick House and Cuesta-Rey.

Photo taken September 9, 2006

From my vintage Tampa cigar label collection:

Cigar Box inner label, circa early 1900’s:

Cuesta-Rey promotional card, circa late 1920’s

cigar band, circa early 1900’s

LIFE magazine Cuesta-Rey advertisement, circa 1920’s

“It’s a dirty job but someone’s gotta do it…”

“We Care A Lot” by FAITH NO MORE (1987)

UCC Headquarters
700 Prospect Avenue
Cleveland, OH

Photo taken January 16, 2013

“One hit to the body… Sure went straight to the mark”

“One Hit to the Body” – The Rolling Stones (1986)

Captain America Diner
Marvel Super Hero Island
Universal’s Islands of Adventure
Orlando, Florida

Photo taken April 3, 2003

“You can check out any time you like, But you can never leave”

“Hotel California” – The Eagles (1976)

Photo taken October 26, 2001

On the banks of the Hillsborough River, the former Tampa Bay Hotel, has been a national gem since its opening in 1891. Built by Railroad Tycoon Henry B. Plant, the lavish structure, of Moorish architectural design, boasted 511 rooms and covered over 6 acres of land and over 150 acres of lush grounds for guests to enjoy.

In 1898, during the Spanish-American War, the United States Military used the hotel and it’s grounds as a base of operations. Teddy Roosevelt and his “Rough Riders” prepared for battle on these grounds, and Roosevelt took comfort in a luxury suite in the hotel, while enlisted men stayed in near-by tents. Years later, Hall of Fame baseball player Babe Ruth signed his first Major League contract at the hotel, surely, with a Tampa hand rolled “Optimo” Cigar (his favorite) clamped between his teeth!

Following depression era hard times, the hotel closed in 1930. In 1933, the Tampa Bay Junior College established residence in the old hotel and the school eventually grew in size and became known as The University of Tampa. Currently, “Plant Hall” as the treasured building is named today, houses University of Tampa administrative offices and student oriented areas, as well as the Henry B. Plant Museum.

The Tampa Life cigar box featured the Tampa Bay Hotel prominently on it’s inner label artwork, to attract customers during the time that the hotel was in operation.

One of Babe Ruth’s favorite cigar brands was OPTIMO, also hand rolled in Tampa, the cigar capital of the world at the time!

“One mint julep was the cause of it all”

“One Mint Julep” – The Clovers (1952)

One of the million-and-one interesting things you can find on the streets of the Big Easy… Here, at 228 Decatur Street in the French Quarter, New Orleans, the aging “Emerson’s Ginger Mint Julep” hand painted exterior advertising mural from days of old.

Photo taken March 19, 2005

“Chock full o’Nuts is that heavenly coffee…”

“Chock Full o’ Nuts”

Chock Full o’ Nuts Coffee
exterior building art advertising
Manhattan – New York, NY USA

Photo taken July 2, 2005

“All the world’s a stage”

“All the World’s a Stage” – William Shakespeare

The Stage on Broadway
412 Broadway
Nashville, Tennessee 37203

Photo taken on February 14, 2007

Hand rolled cigar city

Arturo Fuente Cigars
Ybor City
Tampa, Florida.

Photo taken September 9, 2006

“Guess who eats together at the Carnegie Deli…”

“The Chanukah Song” – Adam Sandler (2002, live)

The biggest, baddest, BEST corned beef and pastrami sandwiches on earth!
The Carnegie Delicatessen
854 7th Avenue at 55th Street
New York, New York, 10019

Photo taken July 7, 2005