With the cost-effectiveness of touring remaining up in the air, fewer bands are meeting the necessary requirements to hit the road. As a result, patrons and fans are less inclined to go out to shows, and venue owners are facing more dead nights. How to deal?
More than ever, venues are opening their doors to all ages. It’s not a mystery why, with the obvious fiscal benefits gained by doing so. But is it the best choice for underground music? The strategy for coping with hard-hit finances calls for change. It’s putting a mark on the face of live shows every calendar day. Early performances are more frequent as well as a surge of music that caters to suggestible minds. It’s an unnatural mingling of underground live shows with a young hipster coffee scene. Could it work? Yeah, but why? An alternative to this desperate solution would be simple — reduce cover charges, and advertise tactfully.
When a venue like Marilyn’s — a place marked by licentious behavior and good times — opens its doors to all ages, it would seem that all hell would break loose. Underage drinking and jail-bait everywhere; things nobody wants to see. Instead there are more frequent patrols, with the Man watching much closer.
At this rate, the pride of live underground shows will only be found in ill obscure places, driven further into midtown and the back fringes of the capitol city.