Monday, May 14, 2007

A haha

The Landlord

The closing of a Memphis Landmark

As most of us have walked along 2nd street in the early morning hours headed towards the birght blue, white, and red lights we come into view of the "No Discrimination" sign that ultimately leads us into the Prince playing, disco haven called Raiford's of Hollywood. Whether you worked in a bank, grocery store, or just visiting Memphis from college, Rai Rai's always opened it's doors to everyone allowing a good time. Maybe it was the fact it is the only disco bar left in Memphis, maybe it was just the smog that filled every square inch that you couldn't see 2 inches in front of you, the infamous pole that so many of us have danced upon, Paula walking by handing you your ice cold 40, the back tables filled liquor bottles, couches and rolly chairs that made Raiford's raiford's or just watching the sun rise from the back porch sipping your luke warm 40 at that point.

The best part of Raiford's may have been watching friends karate chopping mid air and doing a jump kick while singing along in-tact to Kung Fu Fighting or maybe mom and dad at the club on the dance floor tearing it up. Or it could just have been watching friends realize how they were dancing was quite ridiculous and then proceed to dance with themselves while looking at the mirrors thinking about how great of a dancer they are.... good thing only they can see themselves in the fog.

Although, Rai Rai's definitely will be missed there are several classic touches no bars in Memphis will ever be able to top. One for instance that I am greatful was always available on call was the Raiford's limos, excursions, caddies, and horse carts that would drive you home at no charge just so you wouldn't drink and drive. One of my best memories is Paula driving me and a friend first to waffle house where we gossiped all about the Raiford groupies and then were dropped off safely after an evening of fun- a classic moment in time.

Even though this means an end to a classic late night spot that oh so many of us enjoy I am excited to see where the new late night spot will become (hopefully something will be kicking by the time I ever move back).... I'm sensing that the Soul Burger and Hazel's is about to make is scene on the map again!

So here's to the ice cold 40s, cash only policy, and the great memories of the jerry-curled pimp dj.