comics journalism / inkt|art issues / Noel Franklin / nonfiction

Last Call #3: Club Lingerie


Noel Franklin, Last Call 3, Club Lingerie, 1

Noel Franklin is a Seattle-based performance poet and visual artist with an academic background in fine arts printmaking.  Her poetry has garnered a Seattle Arts Commission grant, a Jack Straw Foundation Fellowship and placement on Seattle’s National Poetry Slam team.  Her visual art has been exhibited in Seattle, Sacramento and San Francisco.  


I need to thank Barbara Mitchell, first and foremost, for introducing me to Club Lingers and Barbara Martinez for introducing me to the people with facets of the story, including Kurt Fisher, Art Fein, Bill Bentley, Europa MacMIllan, Gary Leonard, Alicia Valesquez and Collin Baker.

I reference photos provided by all of the above, but in particular Gary Leonard, who took professional photographs of Big Joe Turner with Dave Alvin and his mother, George Wendt posing with The Leonards, and Bill Bentley.  He may have taken the photos of The Blasters backing up The Midnighters, and Brendan Mullen hanging out with Big Mama Thornton.  In addition, Ellen Von Unwerth shot the Red Hot Chili Peppers photo I referenced Joseph Henderson is credited on the photo of DOA.  There are several other images that came to me without a known source, so if you recognize it, let me know.

This story is not yet a finished story, there was too much to fit into the mini comic!  But it scratches the surface and I’ll likely be exploring more later.

10 thoughts on “Last Call #3: Club Lingerie

  1. Pingback: REAL AND READY: The new issue is HERE! | inkt|art

  2. This is so awesome!! I used to play here and I cut my musical teeth here. Melvis at the door — Brendan hovering over the room — Kurt in and out — When this club was packed, it was the greatest club EVER. it was the best club in hollywood. Thank you so much for this beautiful history! wow.


    • Thanks Candye, people had such incredible stories. I’d like to do an entire book on Club Lingerie, written with the comic as an add-on, because you can only cram so many words into a mini comic, and there is SO MUCH I left out. I was having a convo with another cartoonist friend and said “I can’t believe I actively chose not to draw an original photo of Sonic Youth….”


  3. The picture of me and joseph was taken by johnny roza for the cover of the l.a. weekly. Nice job. I’ve been sitting across the street from the shell of the lingerie waiting for the bus.


    • Thanks Henry! I’ll definitely add the credit to the print version. I might want to talk with you about an expanded story, a whole book could be written on The Veil and what grew from your efforts there, alone.


  4. It was an amazing club. I have memories of so many diverse shows: Fear, Red Hot Chile Peppers; Buddy Guy and Jr Wells with John Lee Hooker, KoKo Taylor and Willie Dixon in the audience; Top Jimmy so drunk he was singing from under the piano; all of the amazing, amazing shoes Bill Bentley booked around Mardi Gras time, best of the best, The Neville Brothers; The Blasters etc, etc, etc, Cannot forget Melvis and Brendan…… I also have pictures from most of the shows..


  5. Thank you for this cool history in’geniously recorded in comic format. Just mind blowing!
    The Lingerie was our musical home for so many years. Brendan Mullen’s booking style was like no other and as I was a pal I was always on the list. Lucky me.
    So many memorable shows from Irma Thomas, Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, Hank Ballard, to Red Kross.
    Europa & Pinkytessa were also Lingerie icons!
    P.S. I was in a band with Spyder Mittleman for a brief time too.


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