Back in 2007 we announced the closing of the Pioneer Supermarket on 145th Street. The plan was to renovate the market and reopen it, possibly under different management. Well, here we are 3 years later and the renovated market is nearing completion. The new owner, Fine Fair Markets.
The other day we received the following information in our inbox from Jonathan Gill, author of Harlem: A History. He wrote:
It was where Fats Waller got his first big break, and it also appears in Wallace Thurman’s short story “Ophelia the Crude” [Wallace Thurman is also the author of The Blacker the Berry] http://userpage.fu-berlin.de/~wilker/harlem/Thurman.htm. See also the entry from Cinema Treasures: http://cinematreasures.org/theater/12574/
The film version of The Emperor Jones with Paul Robeson also premiered there in 1933 to enormous acclaim (actually, it was a double premier, with the other showing downtown at the Rivoli).
Next door was a jazz club called The Sportsmen’s Club—where Bill Dixon met Cecil Taylor, probably in the 1950s.