Sun Staff Reports
Each Saturday, Thin Man Music
on Webster Street hosts a “Sidewalk
Serenade” featuring various talented
musicians from around the Bay
The musicians perform tunes
of their choosing and sometimes
requests for passersby.
This past Saturday, as a thank
you to Thin Man Music’s owner
Leroy Thomas, an Alameda resident
who is also a member of the
folk-singing Kingston Trio made
an appearance on Webster.
Rick Dougherty’s acoustic guitar playing
accompanied his crystal clear singing
voice on a handful of Christmas
Carols and other tunes listeners
recognized from the trio’s heydey
in the late 1950s and early 1960s.
Dougherty replaced one of the
orginal members of the trio, which
still tours today.
Today’s Kingston Trio, made
up of George Grove, Bill Zorn and
Rick Dougherty, trace their roots
back to the spring of 1957 when
three unknown musicians — Bob
Shane, Nick Reynolds and Dave
Guard — were playing as a nameless
group at the Cracked Pot on El
Camino Real in Redwood City.
Frank Werber, who worked as an
advertising director for the clubs in
San Francisco’s North Beach scene,
heard Shane, Reynolds and Guard
were packing them in.
He needed someone to fill in for Phyllis Diller
(also a one-time Alameda resident)
at the Purple Onion, but the three
needed a name and a contract.
They wrote both on a napkin. They
named themselves The Kingston
Trio for Kingston, Jamaica, home
of their favorite music, the calypso.
The following year their song
“Tom Dooley” went gold.