Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame nominee and founding member and guitarist of The Meters, Leo Nocentelli, was denied lodging at a San Francisco Travelodge the other day. Nocentelli, Bill Dickens (Stevie Wonder’s bassist), and session drummer Felix “D-Kat” Pollard were refused lodging at the Travelodge Central in the Mission District as the management reportedly said that they “don’t accept credit cards from those people”, and later admitted that by “those people” he meant black people.
Jason Perkins, managing partner at Parish Entertainment Group, is the person that booked the group at the hotel, and was utterly embarrassed by the incident. This happened after sound check at The Brick & Mortar, where the band was scheduled to play. Eventually, Perkins was able to book the band at another hotel, but was still shocked by the occurrence.
Here’s what Perkins told his friend, David Pescovitz, who’s an editor and partner at BoingBoing:
I bought 4 rooms for the band and prepaid for them on debit card. After sound check, Leo and the band went to the hotel and tried to check in. The manager refused to accept 3 of 4 members credit cards for incidentals (4th member is Rich Vogel/white dude). Leo called me and (my family and I) drove to the hotel at 7:30 pm. I asked what the hell and manager pointed at 3 members and said he wouldn’t accept credit cards and “those people” need to pay cash deposit. When I asked what did he mean by “those people” — he pointed at Leo and said “black people.”
I felt like I was hit in the face. It was stunning. I called the police and when they arrived, the police went through it with him and then he caught himself and said that they cannot check in any longer as he didn’t feel “safe.” He then refused to talk.”
L4LM is astonished by what went on here. Tell us your thoughts about what happened.