When I go Jukeboxin’, I sometimes think I’m trying to recreate the feelings I had as a teenager in love at Huey’s Diner, ordering a shared plate of grilled cheese, fries, and a cherry coke while sitting in the retro booths and playing the working tableside jukeboxes. My favorites were Jackie Wilson’s “Higher and Higher”, Otis’ “Sittin’ on the Dock of the Bay” , and “The Book of Love.”

The Gold Cane isn’t anything like Huey’s, except they have “Duke of Earle” by Gene Chandler, and large windows. And on the warm, sunny day I visited, I already had that fuzzy “omg it’s spring – I love everyone” feeling, and then I found a great Juke, which made my day even better. I also made sure not to look down, as their floors are made of carpet. Barf.

They have a very large, well-rounded selection: heavy on the Stones and a good sampling of soul: Aretha Franklin, Otis Redding, Marvin Gaye, James Brown, The Ronettes. Also the 1970’s, skinny jean and leather jacket smelly guy selections: Television, Clash, Pogues, Bowie, and the Damned. Throw in a little 90’s alt like Bikini Kill and The Pixies, and you have a pretty good mix-list.

If I were on Yelp, I would say “minus one star because they have the Grateful Dead”. No one with good taste would play Grateful Dead – especially at a bar. Sorry but it’s true. But the fun I had while flipping through was a little like the fun I had at Huey’s.

Where: Gold Cane (1569 Haight Street @ Clayton)
Good for: Sunny afternoon drinking with good music you probably won’t play because it’s too early for that
Bad for: People who don’t go to the Haight because it’s too touristy, or people who hate carpeted bars
Cost: 3 plays $1, 7 plays $2, 18 plays $5

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  • SFGroover

    So, let me get this straight. The Grateful Dead house is just around the corner (710 Ashbury). The Dead’s home ‘hood was the Haight.

    And this bar’s jukebox shouldn’t have any Grateful Dead?

    OK. Thanks for being such an expert.

    PS: It’s Duke of Earl. Not Earle.

    Anybody can do jernilizm!!!

  • shannonica

    no one with good taste would play the grateful dead? even in their original stomping ground? ouch.

  • Greg Dewar

    news flash, hippies: the 60s have been dead for a long long long time. The Haight is no longer a bastion of counter culture – it’s a bastion of shopper culture with lots of shoe shops.

    time moves on. anyone who still thinks the 60s are alive in the Haight either stopped for a red in the 60s and never moved on, or saw some movie on TV and decided to come here thinking they’d find the Summer of Love, but all that’s left are the stoned folks that hang around mcdonalds.

  • Katied

    I read it how I see it.

    Before you tear a seam in your hemp hammer pants, note: the ONE grateful dead compilation (what’s that – one song?) was the last cd in the jukebox, next to Xmas hits. It was more like an afterthought then a “traditional necessity.”

    Maybe it was from the bitching and whining that this was located in their stomping grounds. Did they stomp into Hot Topix? I bet they bought alot of sparkly mushroom candles.

  • SFGroover

    It’s just ignorance, so if you want to be proud of it and defend it, that’s cool.

    Analogy: A Frank Sinatra fan wandering into a Hoboken bar and dissing the Sinatra tunes on the jukebox.

    As I said, jernilizm is easy! It takes no thought or perspective. Just opinions. And you know what they say about opinions.

  • Brock Keeling

    No, what do they say about opinions? I hope it’s analogous. Plz illuminate.

  • Greg Dewar

    I think it’s the same thing they say about anonymous commenters who feel a need to comment on every single story on a site they hate, thinking somehow they’re making a difference. #FAIL.

  • generic

    Commenter Angered That Critique Contains Opinions

    love. it.
    love it.