Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Old Milwaukee Clubs That Closed Their Doors

Having been around this old town for too long, I can recall many live venues that have come and gone. Some clubs just change ownership, remodel, and open as a new club the day after the old one closes. Most close their doors, and never open as a club again. I can think of three factors that influence the decision to reopen as a club. Is the foot traffic strong enough to bring people to the door? Is the style of music that they book still popular enough to attract paying customers? Is the surrounding neighborhood supportive?

Taking a moment to write about the East Side, North Avenue, between Farwell and Prospect has seen numerous live clubs open and close under different names for many years. The foot traffic it great, the college crowd will always be there, and the neighborhood is mostly commercial.

The neighborhood at the intersection of Humboldt and North Avenue does not have the foot traffic that it used to in the early 80's. Even though the southeast corner has been fully developed, and the blocks south of North avenue have seen a boom in condo construction, the neighborhood cannot seem to support a live club.

The building that used to house The Tasting Room was once called The Landing. It was a bar that had live shows for decades. Sadly, the Tasting Room closed its doors a few years back and never opened again. The neighborhood is perfect for the right venue, but probably not good for a club any more. It's become gentrified.

The following club names should bring back memories: The Underground on Broadway Street, Club New York, Irene J's, Zak's, Starship, The Stone Toad, Century Hall, The Crystal Ballroom, Yano's, Teddy's, Billy's Old Mill, and many more.

Clubs have to change with the tastes and with the times. Only the strong and supported survive.

1 comment:

Tales of the Goof said...

I want to know more about the Landing. Was it on Water where the Tasting Room is now or on North?

It does seem like that area could use a good venue. It may have to cater to the kids in the new dorm to survive though.