Grateful Dead / Furthur bassist Phil Lesh spent most of 2011 trying to find a location for a venue/restaurant he has planned called Terrapin Crossroads. Today, Lesh has officially announced the launch of Terrapin Crossroads, which will be located in central San Rafael, California. San Rafael hosted the band’s business arm, rehearsal space and archives from 1970 to 1995, so it’s a fitting town for Terrapin Crossroads.
Lesh aims to have concerts similar to Levon Helm’s famed Midnight Ramble at the venue as well as performances by other artists. The room will also act as a community cultural and educational center as well as a restaurant. It will also contain memorabilia displays from Lesh’s collection. On the venue’s new website, Phil explains how he came across the San Rafael location…
I was recently re-reading Bob Dylan’s Chronicles, and Jill and I started reminiscing about the 1987 rehearsal sessions with Bob that took place at Club Front, the Grateful Dead San Rafael studio/boy’s club from the late seventies until the mid-nineties. We were having lunch in the areaone afternoon and decided to take a drive by the old studio. While we were driving around we went by The Seafood Peddler restaurant, where Furthur did some rehearsal shows a couple years ago in their Palm Ballroom. We pulled into the rear parking lot and we saw a large painted Grateful Dead logo with the words Buckle Up Kids above it. We looked at each other and both had the same flash – that the Seafood Peddler had the foundation for us to realize our long-held dream of finding a place in Marin County to make music.
Lesh aims to host the first performance at his new venue this coming March as Terrapin Crossroads will host shows throughout the summer before closing up for a while to renovate “the Grate Room.” He is targeting a grand re-opening for March 2013.