Best Speakeasy - 2011
The Black and Tan
For years, people tried to keep The Black and Tan a secret, closely guarding its location, despite the fact that a Google search for "Black and Tan Phoenix" neatly pulls up an address and phone number. That's because The Black and Tan actually is a legitimate recording studio and rehearsal space. But that's not what this building in an industrial area of west Phoenix is known for. It's known for being the Valley's only true speakeasy. The Black and Tan has played host to some of the wildest private parties and underground music shows in the city, from national acts like Slick Idiot (which includes members of KMFDM) to local noisemakers like industrial duo Mess & Phetamine. The building's got plenty of room to house a stage and a bar, which it has done regularly for the past several years. On some event nights, people in the know can just show up with money and get in, but in an attempt to keep the place exclusive, a lot of the more recent events require a special ticket or password to get in.