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Gay San Francisco: Eyewitness Drummer                461
                  was a French-Canadian who thought he had to enforce the
                  dress code to the nth degree. He wouldn’t let him that night
                  because he wouldn’t leave his fur at our coat check. Rudy
                  never came back. I fired the French-Canadian kid. I know
                  that Rock Hudson came in. Pacino came in. I let him in one
                  night just so he could research his role in Cruising. The music
                  was low. So you could hear the person next to you.
                Jack Fritscher: Who did your music tapes?
                Wally Wallace: Jerry Rice. . .
                Jack Fritscher:  Mon amour, and house guest for years [since
                  1967].
                Wally Wallace: . . .and Michael Fesco who ran the Flamingo
                  disco. . .
                Jack Fritscher: Michael and I spent the Jonestown weekend
                  together. [November 17-19, 1978] Luckily, we were in San
                  Francisco, not Jonestown, drinking beer, not Kool-Aid.
                Wally Wallace: . . .and a guy named Ashland, and myself. I asked
                  all kinds of people to make new tapes to fit our scene. We
                  played anything in the world, from western to classics. A lot of
                  classics actually. Electronic variations on classic themes. Ella
                  Fitzgerald, jazz. Tomita, new wave.
                Jack Fritscher: I remember hearing Kitaro, and Kraftwerk’s
                  Trans-Europe Express, and Tim Buckley. His “Sweet Surren-
                  der” was more seductive than poppers for fisting.
                Wally Wallace: We tried to avoid basic disco, references to
                  females, references to “let’s dance,” things like that. Our
                  music became famous because we didn’t follow the main-
                  stream. We were about kink. Mineshaft members knew what
                  kink was. They weren’t out to blind date, nor to emulate the
                  straight world in terms of sexuality, lovers, dogs, and family.
                  Single guys.
                Jack Fritscher: Every detail. Your main bar had sawdust on the
                  floor. Inside the Mineshaft you created an alternative uni-
                  verse.
                Wally Wallace: Most people don’t know. Art, business, politics
                  were conducted. Sex at the Mineshaft was like going to the
                  gym to work out. An exercise. But also spiritual, like going to
                  church. The Mineshaft was a form of recreation for people in
                  high-pressure jobs whose stress came out as sexual intensity. It
                  was not just a business; it was a labor of love. Other businesses
                  tried to copy the Mineshaft but didn’t succeed because they
                  did it for money.

           ©Jack Fritscher, Ph.D., All Rights Reserved—posted 05-05-2017
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