Welcome to the conversation pit for the Mars Club of Paris

Posted: April 14, 2011 in club memories

This blog is to allow jazz fans who remember the Mars Club of Paris in the 1950’s a place to comment and get in touch with each other.

The Mars Club was home to a rich jazz scene with performers like Billy Strayhorn, Aaron Bridgers, Art Simmons, Billie Holiday, the Nicholas Brothers, Leroy Vinnegar and many others.

Pull up and chair and join the conversation.

  1. Lee says:

    Are there any sites where I can find photos of what the club looked like in action, back in those days? I saw the painting you hosted on the site, but is that all there is?

    • first50 says:

      Al Jones, who painted the one on the site, has more paintings of the Mars Club. As for photos, I don’t know of any. Would love to hear about them if any turn up.

      Thanks for visiting the site.

  2. Ferrier jean jacques says:

    My name is jean jacques Ferrier. I was a frequent customer of the Mars Club in the 1950s and sixties.Aaron Bridgers and Art Simmons were close friends of mine since the mid 5os. I am writing biographical pieces about Paris Jazz clubs during the 5os and 6os (Mars Club,Blue note and Club St Germain) and I need still pictures and videos, if any, taken inside the clubs durind that period, notably of Aaron and Art, i heard recently that there are apparently at least some pictures of Art and one of his trios, (with the 2 Cullaz brothers in the 50s or with Bibi Rovere and Lolo Bellonzi in the 60s) . If you can help me for my search I would be extremely grateful

    • first50 says:

      Unfortunately, the only photo the Butlers had was of the door, which became the basis of the original website. I haven’t heard from anyone who has photos in all the time the site has been up. Al Jones at The Heart of Jazz did some paintings of the Mars Club, but that’s as close as I can come to helping you.

  3. Olivier Burel says:

    In the early 60’s, my aunt Trudy Peters sang in Paris at the Blue Note with Bud Powell and Kenny Clarke, then at the Mars Club with Aaron Bridgers.
    Trudy, who lives now in South-West of France, was a young jazz singer from sweden.
    Her life is so incredible that we are beginning to write a book about it. All memories of this period would be very precious for us.
    Thanks to all
    Kind regards

    • first50 says:

      Olivier, I seldom hear from anyone from that era. It’s wonderful to know people still care about it. Thanks for commenting.

    • Jean Jacques Ferrier says:

      I was an habitué of the Mars Club from 1958 until it closed in the sixties. Aaron Bridgers, pianist, and Art Simmons, also pianist, were dear friends. I think Art is still alive but Aaron died several years ago.
      Nancy Holloway and Billie Poole were the main singers during that time although I remember meeting Trudy Peters who was there during a brief time.

      • first50 says:

        From what I know Art Simmons is alive. He’s a college professor, I think. Thanks for your comment.

      • Jean-Jacques,
        Je poursuis en anglais pour nos amis,
        Trudy joined the Mars Club at the end of 61 after Nancy Holloway left the club.
        On 62 march 21st, she had a terrible car accident going to a diner with a fan after the set.
        And that was the end of his career.
        That’s why she spent a very little time in Mars Club.
        Glad you met her.
        I will tell her about it.

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