In 1911 Mrs. Brubeck inherited their family home from her father, Henry Ivey, who owned and ran one of the livery stables in Concord. At the house were all three of her sons born. Mr. & Mrs. Brubeck initially met in the house when he was brought home for dinner by her father, who had been fascinated by young “Pete” Brubeck. Pete Brubeck had come to Concord with his father from Lassen County, together with horses and cattle that he used to store his new ranch he had bought in Ignacio Valley along with pasture leased in what is now the Concord Pavilion site. Dave Brubeck, as you might remember, later performed several concerts at the Pavilion, a coming home experience he found very gratifying.

Ms. Brubeck was raised on a ranch near the Monument in 1886 but relocated to the Colfax house with her parents and relatives when she was in her early teens. Her mother Johanna actually died in the house’s backyard. A small stream ran near the property at the time, and the yard had flooded and overflowed. To save some baby chicks Johanna went out into the yard. She dropped, maybe hitting her head and sinking in a couple of inches of water. At that time, Mrs. Brubeck was an adolescent girl, inside the house and reading a book. She regretted to the end of her life that she had not gone out in the storm to help her mother.

Mrs. Brubeck designed and redecorated a dramatic second story studio and a balcony music studio that could be opened in a large room through sliding doors. The room could hold several hundred people for recitals. She gave music lessons to many kids and adults in this studio, as well as providing home life for her children.

It was at the house that Dave Brubeck heard live jazz music for the first time. His eldest brother, Henry, was a drummer and vocalist with the Del Courtney Band made up of mostly Concord and Martinez musicians. Henry persuaded his mother to let the band rehearse in her studio. She did not really approve of jazz like many of the classical musicians of that period, so her permission was granted with great reluctance. Dave relates that he was delighted with this turn of events as a 7-year-old and gave his first public piano recital at his mother’s studio at this time.

When his parents decided the family was moving away from Concord, Dave was 12 years old and his mother arranged a farewell concert with all her students performing on piano. Dave recalls that “(the grand finale featured four Brubecks in a spirited arrangement of Stars and Stripes Forever (two pianos, eight hands- Elizabeth, Howard, Henry and Dave). My brother Howard and my mother were fantastic pianists. Henry, however, was a drummer and not a pianist and during this piece he started one beat late and did not budge throughout the entire piece. Howard was furious. The first words he uttered to Henry were ‘How could you do such a thing?’. The audience however, applauded enthusiastically as we took our bows. I learned a little bit about ‘show biz’ that night. If something goes wrong just keep on playing”.

In Dave’s words : “ I have many happy memories of life in Concord. It was an ideal place for a boy to grow up. I recall playing in Todos Santos Park on summer evenings and racing home when curfew sounded. You didn’t want to get caught by Constable Slattery. I roamed the hills surrounding Concord on my Cleveland bike and door to door peddled apples from our back yard tree. If my mother approved of the film, I could go to Saturday matinees at Uncle Phil’s theater. My mother, who had lived all her life ‘ in the shadow of Mt. Diablo’, as she used to say, hoped for many years to return to what she called her ‘dream house’. I am so pleased and grateful that the Concord Historical Society has honored her fond memories and mine”.



Gently installed grass with shade trees covers a large open meadow with a concrete stage elevated above. There are picnic tables and a play area for kids. The park is host to community activities, which include the annual Singing Flag and many vintage car shows.

This well-known attraction is located near the following offices in Concord, California:

  • Concord Naval Weapons Station
  • Baldwin Community Park
  • Buchanan Field Airport 
  • Concord Skatepark 
  • Don Francisco Galindo House 
  • Lime Ridge Open Space 
  • Markham Regional Arboretum 
  • Newhall Community Park

All of these wonderful offices are located just a short distance from our location on Boulevard Circle in historic Walnut Creek, California.