BOTTOM OF THE HILL :: Tim Benetti
of the Hill is a close-knit family that’s been formed over 31 years,
and this Jan 11 2023, we lost Tim Benetti. More than a business partner
and one of its founders, he was a dear friend and mentor and a big part
of this crazy family.
Tim was a SF native, raised in Portola. He grew up playing baseball and
other sports and wilding in McLaren Park with his brother and friends.
He was from an Italian family and loved SF sports teams: the Giants,
Warriors, and 49ers.
Tim was gifted with high intelligence, and a sense of justice, and he
pursued a law degree. He graduated from Hastings (Kamala Harris’s
After his first year of law school, Tim was in an auto accident that
left him paralyzed from the chest down. In the face of what would be
insurmountable adversity for most, Tim met the ensuing lifelong
challenges with grace and strength that were inspiring to witness. His
resilience and unwillingness to yield to any limitations made him
outlast all predictions for his life’s scope and length. You would
never refer to Tim as a victim or as a disabled person because he was
the most capable person we knew. He detested getting any special
treatment or being thought of with any kind of pity.
Tim and his brother Dave created and became owners of the Bottom of the
Hill in 1991, what would afterward become a world-renowned music venue
in what was then an unlikely neighborhood, Potrero Hill, and Tim
remained a partner with Kathleen Owen, Ramona Downey, and Lynn Schwarz,
until his death.
Tim was also a dedicated public servant. He was a Deputy City Attorney
for SF from 2004 to 2006. He became a legal advisor for the SF
Employees’ Retirement System from 2006 to 2013. He also served on the
SF Entertainment Commission from 2010 to 2014, where he fiercely
advocated for the protection of the City’s live music scene, a job that
combined his loves: the law, his venue, and the wider music ecosystem
Tim was different things to different people and had an easy,
good-natured charm. He was equally at home with old-school Italians,
all kinds of rock 'n' roll kids, City Hall colleagues, and the
working-class people that he crossed paths with every day. He had an
understated confidence and there was always a hint of a laugh in his
voice when he spoke. He was a gifted communicator, both in verbal
storytelling and the written word. Tim was a dedicated and generous
friend to many, offering guidance and support to everyone who asked. He
was the person that everyone turned to when things got hairy.
Tim will be missed by many: his partners and employees, past and
present, his mother Irene, sister Anna Lisa, his tireless and selfless
caretakers, and countless friends in SF and the Sacramento area. And
especially his cat Joey, who doesn’t really care for anyone else.
A funeral mass held at 10 a.m. on March 7, 2023, at St.
Elizabeth Catholic Church, 459 Somerset Street, SF, CA, 94134. A
celebration of life held at 1 p.m. on April 16, 2023, at the
Bottom of the Hill, 1233 17th Street, SF, CA, 94107. All are welcome to
attend both events.