Robert Brown, The ‘World’s Greatest Wino,’ Dies at 73

Robert Brown
Robert Brown Photo: RobotClaw666/Flickr

A true character of The Venice Boardwalk has reportedly passed away from cancer, as Yo! Venice! announces the death of 73-year-old Robert “Bobby” Brown, the self-professed “World’s Greatest Wino” who would gladly trade you a joke or a drinking song for a dime. Usually, the shanty went, “Jingle bells, Jingle Bells, help me get drunk,” a refrain that echoed by the beachside for eighteen years, though Brown would occasionally bust out another song if pressed. A son of Georgia, Brown grew up in Florida and lived in New York before his move to the West Coast, and once joked that he “tried to turn the Napa Valley into a desert” in his hard-partying past. Funnily enough for a man who made his living by portraying an alkie, Brown claimed to be sober for the last thirteen years. Have any great memories of “The World’s Greatest Wino?” We’d love to hear them in our comments. [Yo! Venice!]