Just next door to the Fillmore District, once deemed The Harlem of the West, Divisadero Street was also home to numerous jazz and blues clubs in the mid-twentieth century. Local artist Mel Waters is currently in the process of paying homage to the neighborhood’s history with a new mural featuring Billie Holiday, Teddy Wilson, and Dizzy Gillespie.
“He [Teddy Wilson] was Billy Holiday’s pianist, so I had to throw him in there. They did like 95 songs together,” he told us.
Born and raised in SF, Mel has done many murals throughout the city, with the majority of them found in the Mission. However, you might recognize his work from another jazz-themed piece featured on the storefront of Nabila’s down in Hayes Valley, which happens to be right around the corner from his childhood home. Currently, Mel resides not far from the location of his new mural.
He plans on finishing the mural in about two more sessions. We’ll update you as soon as the finished product is ready, but for now, give Mel a thumbs-up if you see him hard at work.
An earlier version of this story incorrectly gave the mural's location at between Eddy and Turk.