ON THIS DAY 48 YEARS AGO
Posted by Sid Smith on Jan 13, 2017

On this date 48 years ago King Crimson began rehearsing in the basement of the Fulham Palace Road Cafe. This small, cramped space was to be King Crimson’s home for the next two years.

On the day of the rehearsal Peter Sinfield and fellow KC roadie (and later tour manager) Dick Fraser turned up in the van at Ian McDonald’s place to collect Mike’s drums.  After that Dick, Pete, Bob and Greg returned to Ian’s to haul the Mellotron off to its new home and get their first basement rehearsal underway.  

The space had been found by Peter Sinfield after hearing that the cafe owners, Peter and George Calatychos, rented it out to bands. They continued to do so long after King Crimson left the premises. Fripp returned to the venue in the summer of 1972 to listen to David Cross’ band Waves who rehearsed there. It’s not certain when bands stopped using the basement as a practice facility but the cafe has changed hands in the 80s. 

Robert as a basement dweller circa 1970...

The cafe as it is today...

In 2011 Mark Ferraro, from Ozone Park, New York came over to London to make a pilgrimage to lots of buildings tinged with a bit of Crimson history. "I walked in the present day restaurant and went right downstairs without anyone questioning me and took some photos of this tiny space that once contained the sounds of ITCOTCK rehearsals. How the walls were able to take such thunder I can only wonder. Think of those lucky "invited guests" that were able to witness these young musicians and what was coming out of them in this tiny basement."

Here's some of Mark's photographs...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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