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Bluesman Digs 'Beach' Getaway


Blues legend JOHN LEE HOOKER, 75, has purchased a $350,000 home with a pool and a guest house in Long Beach as a getaway from his permanent residence in Redwood City.

Known as "The Godfather of the Boogie," the bluesman was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last year, when he released his hit album "Mr. Lucky."

The album was a follow-up to "The Healer," which he recorded in 1989. His duet with Bonnie Raitt in "The Healer" won a Grammy Award for best blues performance. Hooker's recordings from 1948 through 1990 were recently compiled on two CDs by Rhino Records.

The electric-guitar pioneer, who has earned a reputation as one of the greatest blues and folk-blues artists in the United States since he started playing guitar professionally when he was a teen-ager, performed earlier this month at a Los Lobos concert at the Greek Theatre.

However, Hooker has said that he might retire this year. "I still might (retire)," he reiterated by phone from the Bay Area, where the Mississippi native has lived for the past 23 years, "but I could retire here and still have my Long Beach home as a vacation spot."

"I bought in Long Beach because I just like the area," he said. "I can go there, kick back and be myself."

The Long Beach home, which has three bedrooms in about 2,500 square feet plus guest quarters, was listed by Dwight Heard of Heard Real Estate Co. Barbara and Leon Shoag, with Robert Weil Associates, represented Hooker. Both firms are in Long Beach.

ALEX VAN HALEN, the drummer in the rock band Van Halen, has put his Beverly Hills home on the market at just under $2.8 million.

Van Halen, 38, and his wife, Kelly, are about to move into a new home, which they have been building in the area.

The band Van Halen is also beginning the U.S. leg of its "Right Here Right Now" world tour this weekend. The tour, which celebrates the band's first 15 years, is also being called the "National Hunger Relief Tour," with fans being urged to bring canned goods to the concerts for distribution to missions and shelters across the country.

The Van Halens have been living in the house they are selling since it was built in 1984. The walled and gated compound sits on nearly an acre with city, mountain and canyon views.

The 6,000-square-foot main house has five bedrooms, including a master suite with a media center, two sitting rooms, his and her baths and private sun decks.

There is also a 40-foot-long pool, guest house with a steam room, and a 1,000-square-foot recording studio on the site, which is listed by Vida Namouli at Asher Dann & Associates, Beverly Hills.

Jazz musician MARCUS MILLER, 34, and his wife, BRENDA, have purchased a canyon home in Brentwood for just under $2.5 million, sources say.

The electric-bass guitarist and record producer, who has been called "the Superman of Soul," won a Grammy last year for writing the Best R&B Song, "Power of Love/Love Power."

The Millers bought a 3-year-old contemporary house on about 1.5 acres. The house has four bedrooms, maid's quarters and a guest suite in about 6,000 square feet.

The couple has a home in New Jersey, which they plan to sell. The house they bought had been on the market for 1 1/2 years, originally in the $4-million range.

Natalie Janger of Mike Silverman & Associates, Beverly Hills, represented the Millers in their purchase, and Joyce Rey and Bonnie Black, of Rodeo Realty in Beverly Hills, represented the sellers.

"The largest, most expensive mansion on the market in Music City." That's how a 30,000-square-foot mansion on nine acres in Nashville is being described.

Priced at $5 million, the mansion is the home of builder/architect RICHARD OSIAS, who was a home builder for 30 years in New York and Florida before taking early retirement and moving to Nashville.

Osias, an offshore boat racer, also owns some oceanfront property in Newport Beach, where he has had plans to build a home for himself and his family. He decided to sell his 3-year-old Nashville home, because he plans to build another residence nearby.

His current home has a 1,200-square-foot music room with 26-foot high ceilings, draped walls, a piano, CD, wall of speakers and 60-inch-wide video.

The eight-bedroom home, which has an eight-car garage, is on 10 acres, next door to a home owned by record producer Mike Curb, who was California lieutenant governor from 1979 to 1983.

Osias' home is listed with Mamie Sanders with Prudential MacArthur-Sanders in the Nashville suburb of Brentwood, Tenn.

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