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Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Music News: Show Cancellations/Reschedules, and Backspace's Closure

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Wed, Oct 30, 2013 at 1:14 PM

Clockwise from top left: Roach Gigz cancels; Tame Impala comes sooner than expected; Backspace dims the lights after Halloween.
  • Clockwise from top left: Roach Gigz cancels; Tame Impala comes sooner than expected; Backspace dims the lights after Halloween.

• Tonight's Roach Gigz show at Peter's Room at the Roseland has been canceled. No word on why, although it sounds like the show will be rescheduled for a later date. On Saturday, he posted this message to Facebook: "I wanna apologize in advance the North West shows and San Diego show have been postponed. I will keep you updated and def be there ASAP. I wish I could come party with yal but its out of my control."

Tame Impala were scheduled to play December 4 at the Crystal Ballroom with Vampire Weekend, as part of 94.7's December to Remember series. Due to a "scheduling conflict," the Aussie psych band isn't playing that show anymore, However, the long simmering rumor that they would play this Monday, November 4 instead has been confirmed—one month earlier that the original date. Advance tickets for Monday's show are sold out, although $20 tickets will be available at the door. The Crystal lays it out thusly:

If you have a 12/4 [December 2 Remember] ticket you get in to the 11/4 show for free. Bring that on 11/4, and it will also be good on 12/4 for the Vampire Weekend show.

If you have a 12/4 ticket and want a refund instead, go for it. But note: 12/4 tickets are refundable ONLY until 11/4. After the date you cannot refund your tickets.

If you don't have any of these tickets, and want to go to the 11/4 show, a few $20 tickets will be released close to showtime (we'll have more on this soon, so stay tuned).

Got it? Whew, ok.

• Yesterday, Willamette Week reported that after tomorrow night, all-ages venue Backspace will not host live performances anymore. A just-announced Halloween show, with Hop On Hold Tight and X-Day Band, will be the final show in the Backspace that we have come to know and love (although it's possible a New Year's Eve show may also happen). Backspace is converting back to a straight-up coffee shop for the time being, with future plans undetermined, but they definitely will not include a live music venue. Owner Eric Robison didn't respond to the Mercury's original email inquiries, but he told WW that he's hoping to open a new all-ages venue somewhere in NE Portland next year. Fingers crossed. This follows fundraising efforts to keep Backspace afloat that took place last December. I won't expound here on the continued frustration at the lack of all-ages venues for Portland audiences, although it can't go without mention. Furthermore, here's a very troubling quote from WW's report:

Robison says the last straw was a recently-passed city ordinance requiring small nightclubs in pre-code buildings to add sprinkler systems, though David Gold, an investor in the the Backspace property, says the building's owners chose not to renew Backspace's lease because "music is not compatible with rest of tenants in the building."
These developments, and the attitude of the property owners, seem to me like they'll cripple any potential downtown Portland has to transform itself into an entertainment hub—live music absolutely must be incorporated into Portland's plans if they want a vital downtown scene (anything resembling Austin, Texas' thriving downtown, for instance). I'm thinking of the countless downtown places you used to be able to go regularly to see live music (Satyricon, Berbati's, Someday Lounge, Ohm, Beauty Bar, Crown Room, Paris Theater, too many others to mention—and now Backspace) and have just made myself depressed. The only silver lining I can think of is the Star Theater reopening in 2011.

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