MrJumbo’s New York: The B.M.W.

There’s a joint just up the avenue and across the street; I can see it out my window at night. It’s called the B.M.W. Bar—for Beer, Music and Wine. It’s been there a few years now, and it’s one of the more comfortable places I know to go have a couple beers.Jenny

They’ve got live entertainment every night, usually from early evening till well past midnight. It’s a low-budget place, so don’t expect to see your favorite supergroup. The stage is barely large enough for three people; when there are more, they’ll stand on the floor between tables. But the music is real, and the performers too.


Rick comes in fairly regularly on Saturday nights, after midnight. He plays a lot of Dylan and Stones covers, plus some other old classics, blows some harp, keeps the scene going.


He’s good, and he’s relaxed, and he keeps the speed about right.


Frank the Barkeep.

Frank Bartender

No joint is complete without its regular bartender, and five days a week it’s Frank who keeps us hydrated. It’s a beer and wine bar, so no harder stuff—but they’ve got port and a sherry or two if you’re looking for something finer. Can’t go wrong, though, with the beers they have on tap. They match the music: not too ambitious, but local and drinkable.

About half the time one or another of the taps is acting up. It somehow matches the ambience of the place. Frank will cheerfully make do, and if you inspire him, he’ll give you his Irish accent. Used to be he could serve little frozen pizzas here, but management must not have been making any money on them, because they are no more.

For a bigger copy of this one, click here; to see it in black and white, try here.

Hat Guy

Funny thing is, right after I took these pictures, they redid the interiors, and now this guy hangs in a different place. He lends a certain tone to the pub. Periodically someone expropriates his hat, perhaps to keep dry on a rainy way home.

For a bigger version, click on the picture.

Jenny Playing

I loved it that Jenny and the picture this night wore the same color green. The walls are hung with stuff by local artists, some better than others. But the display changes regularly—like the music, it’s always from the heart.

Jenny Stage

A lot of people who play here do a lot of their own material. Jenny, who usually plays with a group, was testing the waters as a soloist, and she stuck to tunes she knew from other places—“With God On Our Side,” a French song, some others.

(Someone else took this shot, which I love, though I think I butchered it when I got it into Photoshop. Try it in a bigger size by clicking on the picture.)


A typical set from Rick might include “Working Class Hero,” “You Can’t Catch Me,” “Helpless,” “On a Night Like This,” “He Was a Friend of Mine,” “Sweet Virginia” and some others.

Dave and Rick

Often Rick is joined by Dave Francis, a nimble guitarist who also adds harmonies to the vocals. Dave solos at the B.M.W. on Fridays, but I can’t ever be there, because I work Friday nights. You can’t see it in this picture, but one of Dave’s many guitars is a Chevrolet.

Dave and Rick

Dave and Rick.

Jumbo New York Links

World Trade Center Disaster September 11, 2001 . . . Page 2

Chelsea . . . *Chelsea by Night . . . More Chelsea . . . *Night in New York
*Empire State Building . . . *and Friends . . . *Where’s the Fire Escape?
Waterfront . . . Water Towers . . . West Village . . . Statue of
In House . . . Out of House . . . Midtown . . . Architecture . . . Blizzard of ’96
*The B.M.W. . . . *Y2K New Year’s Eve 1 . . . *Y2K2 . . . *Berenice Abbott

*New and Improved (April 2000)

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