The Unicorn Coffee House


825 Boylston Street, Boston, MA (The new Apple Store. 815-825 Boylston Street)

Thanks to Ray Paret for the following info (The J. Geils Blues Band were signed to Amphion Managment, ran by Ray Paret and David Jenks).

The picture from The Unicorn below shows the drums from a band called Underground Cinema that eventually became The Ultimate Spinach and the drummer in that group at that time was Keith Lahteinen. I have no idea who the other two guys playing with J.Geils are, but I would guess that this photo is from 1967 before July or August as it was during that summer that my partner David Jenks and I signed Underground Cinema and changed their name to Ultimate Spinach.

1967_J_Geils_Blues_Band_Unicorn_900 copy

The original line-up of the J. Geils Blues Band from left to right: Harold Stone on Hohner electric piano; Jay Geils on guitar; Magic Dick on vocals and harp; Tom Rand on drums and Danny Klein on bass. Thanks to Valerie Klein for the photo


Another prominent Boston club owner of the time, George Papadopoulo, was a major force in Boston music prior to the Boston Sound, and made his Unicorn Coffee House (where Dick Summer held frequent live broadcasts of Bosstown artists) and his other clubs, the Psychedelic Supermarket and Cambridge Electric Ballroom, important spots for this new talent.


Q: Where was Pall’s Mall in Boston MA?
A: Before it was Pall’s Mall jazz workshop, it was the Unicorn coffee house. I saw Linda Ronstadt there in 67 she was 18 yrs old singing the Stone ponies, who’s bass player was living up to it’s name.


The Unicorn, Popadopolis’s other club was a coffee house with folk music on 815 Boylston Street, now an Apple Store, it was near Boston University and Commonwealth Avenue, just across the Charles River from Cambridge and all its college students. As music evolved, some electric groups started to play The Unicorn as well. A Butterfield Blues Band performance from the Unicorn in 1966 has been widely circulated….


I was between college semesters, working in radio and television during the day and running the Unicorn Coffee House on Boyleston Street in the Back Bay at night. This was a folk music mecca, rivaling the Club 47 in Harvard Square.