The Tim Buckley Archives

Tim Buckley -- A Chronology, 1947-1966

By Robert Niemi


1947 Feb. 14 (Valentine's Day): Timothy Charles Buckley III is born in Washington, D.C. c.1947-56 Buckley family lives in Amsterdam, NY, an isolated industrial city on the Mohawk River about 40 miles northwest of Albany.

1952 Hears his first progressive jazz (his mother is a Miles Davis fan). 1956 Buckley family moves, cross-country, to Bell Gardens, California (a Los Angeles suburb).

1960 Tim (age 13) begins to take banjo lessons and joins friend Dan Gordon & others to form a folk group; subsequently takes up guitar.

1962 Tim (age 15), a freshman at Buena Vista High, makes the junior varsity football team; also makes the baseball team (later claims he was a varsity quarterback).

1964 At the end of his sophomore year, decides not to play football anymore; claims to have joined Princess Ramona & the Cherokee Riders, a touring country band (that was probably a figment of Buckley’s imagination); subsequently forms two bands with school chums Larry Beckett & Jim Fielder (i.e., The Bohemians and Harlequins 3).

1965 Buckley family moves from Bell Gardens to Anaheim (50 miles south of L.A.); Tim transfers to Loara High School; his parents separate; Tim meets Mary Guibert in French class.

June: graduates from Loara High School. Summer: plays at a neighborhood club called Two Tables (Bell Gardens).

September: attends [Fullerton Junior] College for a week then drops out.

September 3: Tim & Larry Beckett attend Bob Dylan concert at Hollywood Bowl.

October 25: marries Mary Guibert at St. Michael’s Episcopal Church in Anaheim Fall: works at a Mexican restaurant by day, continues to play Orange County bars, nightclubs, and coffeehouses at night (e.g., the Paradox in Anaheim).


February 5: Tim & Jim Fielder meet Mothers of Invention drummer, Jimmy Carl Black at The Trip (8572 Sunset Strip) and Black introduces them to Herb Cohen (The Mothers’ manager); Cohen becomes Tim’s manager.

Tim Buckley's manager Herb Cohen describes how Mothers of Invention drummer Jimmy Carl Black introduced him to the singer. In turn Jimmy recalls his first meeting with Tim in Anaheim, 1966.

Tape courtesy of Veit Stauffer - RecRec

April-May: plays extended engagement at the Night Owl Cafe in New York City’s Greenwich Village; during this period Tim lives on the Bowery with his new girlfriend, Jainie Goldstein.

August: Elektra Records founder, Jac Holzman, hears Buckley play at the Night Owl and signs him to a recording contract on the strength of a 6-song demo tape; Tim records first album, Tim Buckley, in 3 days in Los Angeles.

September: plays The Galaxy club and Bido Lido’s (1608 N. Cosmo St.) near Sunset Strip in Hollywood.

October: divorced from Mary Guibert after a year of marriage.

November: opens for Joan Baez at Santa Monica Civic Center.

November 17: Son, Jeffrey Scott, is born.

December: Tim Buckley released; Elektra also releases a single - Wings and Grief In My Soul.

December 22-31: plays a weeklong engagement at the Balloon Farm (23 St. Mark’s Place, NYC), opening for The Mothers of Invention.


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