Legendary club owner Mario Maglieri, who founded clubs on California’s Sunset Strip including the Roxy, Whiskey a Go-Go and the Rainbow Bar and Grill, died at the age of 93.
Rainbow Bar and Grill announced Maglieri’s passing on their Facebook page.
“Dear Rainbow friends and family, it is with great sadness to announce the passing of our beloved Mario Maglieri. Owner and founder of The Rainbow Bar And Grill and The Whisky a Go Go. He passed this morning while surrounded by loved ones,” the club’s post read. “We will announce services shortly. We ask that you please allow the family time to grieve. Thank you for your understanding.”
Many prominent musicians who got their start as a result of Maglieri paid tribute to the legend on social media, with former Guns N’ Roses drummer Matt Sorum saying on Instagram that Maglieri fed him soup “as a starving musician in the Seventies” when he first arrived in Hollywood.
Singer Sebastian Bach mourned the owner on Facebook, saying that he was “very sad to hear” the news. Guns N’ Roses guitarist Slash tweeted the he would “never forget” his “dear old friend.”
Rolling Stone reported that Maglieri is survived by his wife, son, and three grandchildren.
Many patrons and former employees commented on the Rainbow Bar and Grill’s post, sharing their own memories of the club owner and the kind of person he was.
“This makes me so sad. Mario was my boss. (I worked at the Rainbow Bar & Grill on Sunset Blvd. during the crazy days of Motley Crue, Bon Jovi etc….. ) Mario was kind, fun, protective, and very generous to me. If he worried that I didn’t make enough money he hand me a $100 bill for ” gas money “. (I never needed it). He was so protective and always watched out for me. I loved him, I loved speaking Italian to him, and I will always miss him !!! God Bless you Mario ( Sr. -or Godfather- that’s what we called him),” one former employee wrote.
“Godspeed Mario. Your vision, spirit and strong & hearty influence will live on in us and in Rock-n-Roll forever. Enjoy the perpetual ether of the Big Sky Jam and those who love you. And thank you for the timeless memories on Sunset over the decades, and your enduring friendship,” another friend commented.
“Mario was such a lovely man so kind and always willing to give great advice. A legend whose contributions to the music scene will live on,” another added. “I will cherish the memories of sitting in the kitchen table at the Rainbow discussing business or his thoughts on life. Thank you Mario for sharing your kindness and life lessons.”
Sources: Rolling Stone, Rainbow Bar And Grill/Facebook / Photo credit: Mike Dillon/Wikimedia Commons, Mark Mainz/Getty via Rolling Stone