The preacher and the Prophet

Why can't we all just get along? The history, or not, of Russell and Jeff's Deep Ellum

March 25: Club Clearview reopens at its new location, 2806 Elm.

April 3: Hobbs signs Johnny Paycheck to perform at The Longhorn. Reverend Horton Heat opens. All profits from the gig will support the Horton Heat album, due for release on Deep Ellum Records. The record is never released.

April 16: Theatre Gallery inducted into Dallas Observer Nightclub Hall of Fame.

Three on a Hill, plus one: Russell Hobbs wouldnít let these local heroes play the Prophet till they stopped their blasphemous ways.

May 3: Theatre Gallery hosts a TABC Benefit Concert for its sister club, Prophet Bar, featuring 11 bands for $5, including The Daylights, Loco Gringos, League of None, End Over End, Shallow Reign, Da Nu Man, Three On A Hill, Lost Cause, Graceland, Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!, and Twang Popes. The benefit is to raise money to pay back taxes the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission says the Prophet owes them, some $10,000 by May 4.

May 7: Patrick Keel is hired by Planet Dallas Studio as a full-time production assistant.

May 7-9: The TABC raids Theatre Gallery, Prophet Bar, and Club Clearview in a crackdown on underage drinking. A handful of patron arrests are made at each club, with the majority being for public intoxication. The bartender at Prophet is arrested for allegedly serving alcohol to intoxicated persons, and four Clearview employees, including co-owner Jeff Swaney, are booked on similar charges.

May 9: Decadent Dub Team debuts at Theatre Gallery.

May 12: The Deep Ellum Freedom Festival is canceled five days before it was scheduled to take place. The Deep Ellum Planning Association (DEPA) had a verbal agreement with the city for a street permit, but in light of the recent bust, the city rescinded its offer at the last minute. The clubs involved in the festival were Video Bar, Club Clearview, Prophet Bar, and Club Dada.

May 16-17: Capitol Records' West Coast A&R rep Rachel Matthews is in town checking out The Buck Pets, Loco Gringos, Princess Tex, Three On A Hill, and Reverend Horton Heat. None of the bands will ever sign with Capitol.

May 30: Legendary Revelations, made up of veterans of the original Deep Ellum scene of the 1930s and 1940s, record a live track at the Prophet Bar for inclusion on the Deep Ellum sampler, The Sound of Deep Ellum, compiled by Kim Buie and Jeff Liles and released by Island Records.

June: Hobbs begins printing up "Prophet dollars." The currency, available in $100 increments, equates to a "free summer cover" at the Prophet, including nightly shows, roadshows, special events, and entry into the Prophet's sister club, Tapaz. The move is designed to give Hobbs' club empire an influx of cash, since both Prophet and Theatre Gallery are in financial straits. In a related note, after the bust a few weeks earlier, Hobbs is now forced to give Dallas police 45 days' notice for any outdoor shows.

June 4: Hobbs receives a letter from the TABC informing him that he has until June 14 to pay $9,400 in back taxes or the agency will shut down the Prophet Bar and Theatre Gallery. In order to avoid the closings, Hobbs plans a fundraising marathon on June 12 at Prophet featuring more than 30 bands. Performers include White Animals, End Over End, Shallow Reign, Three On A Hill, Decadent Dub Team, Larry's Dad, Changes, Loco Gringos, The Buck Pets, Princess Tex, Lost Cause, League of None, Josho Misho, The Daylights, Idea Men, Wild Peach, New Bohemians, White Shapes, The Trees, and Ten Hands. The concert raises enough money to keep the clubs afloat.

July 9: The Crowdus Street Fair, scheduled for July 10-12, is canceled at the last minute after four skinheads allegedly beat an undercover Dallas police officer with lead pipes on Oakland Avenue (now Malcolm X Boulevard).

July 23: Drummer David Mabry leaves End Over End. At the time, singer-guitarist Tench Coxe and bassist Kevin Moore plan to continue together after finding a new drummer and a second guitarist. However, Mabry will rejoin the band a month later.

August 24: Island Records' compilation The Sound of Deep Ellum is released, featuring songs by Three On A Hill, Decadent Dub Team, The Buck Pets, Shallow Reign, Reverend Horton Heat, New Bohemians, The Trees, End Over End, The Daylights, and Legendary Revelations.

September 10: Hobbs returns from a six-week European vacation with new plans for his embattled clubs on Commerce Street. Prophet Bar and Theatre Gallery were recently ticketed by the health department, as well as inspectors from the building, mechanical, and electrical offices. Hobbs decides to transform Prophet into a reggae bar, saying, "We've had enough of giving bands chances, and once they get a gig somewhere else, they forget where they came from. We're not doing new music anymore."

Theatre Gallery, rumored to be closing for the last few months, will be stripped down essentially to four walls and a stage in order to comply with city codes. TG will also stop serving mixed drinks, eliminating the need for a health permit. Among other things, Hobbs insists he's opening a "skinhead Nazi topless bar on Elm," the street where many of his detractors -- most notably Club Dada co-owner Tom Henvey -- operate.

September 21: The first single from Island Records' The Sound of Deep Ellum compilation, Decadent Dub Team's "Six Gun," hits record stores. The A-side is a 12-inch remix produced by NWA's Dr. Dre. On September 15, DDT left for Los Angeles to record a demo for Island.

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