When you pay for a ticket at your local venue, your money doesn't just go to the band onstage. It helps pay the salaries of the security guards, bartenders, sound engineers, and other staff members that make your music experience an amazing one.
But now that venues like The Rebel Lounge and Crescent Ballroom are closed due to the coronavirus outbreak, these unsung heroes of the local concert scene are in a difficult situation. There are ways you can ensure that your favorite drink-slinger will be pouring your favorite beverage for you again when concerts return, and some of these venues are offering contributors some cool incentives.
Crescent Ballroom/Valley Bar
On Friday, March 28, a video of Jim Adkins of Jimmy Eat World playing inside an empty Crescent Ballroom was posted on the band's Facebook page. Before performing a nearly 20-minute set, the singer said he wanted to help the venue that supported their music for so many years (Jimmy Eat World kicked off their tour at the downtown Phoenix venue in October). If you would like to contribute, there is a GoFundMe page where you can donate to the staff of Crescent Ballroom and Valley Bar, both of which are managed by Stateside Presents.
This downtown Tempe venue has been around for nearly two decades, hosting everyone from Interpol to Insane Clown Posse. According to its GoFundMe page, for every dollar you contribute to the venue's fundraiser, you'll receive twice that amount in box office credit for any show until December 31, 2021 (so if you donate $20, that's $40 toward a ticket purchase).
The Rebel Lounge
The Rebel Lounge has teamed up with two local businesses, design studio Hamster Labs and T-shirt printer Acme Prints, to create a shirt that shows your support for this Phoenix venue. It's only $20 for the shirt, but there are pretty cool incentives if you contribute more, including a ticket to an upcoming show, coffee mugs, and even a chance to put a message on the marquee. Click here for details.
The Trunk Space
Downtown's home for DIY artists is shut down until May 31. It's a nonprofit organization, so any donation you make to the venue is tax-deductible. Also,it's setting up the Trunk Space Artist Fund to help artists during this time. Be sure to follow the Facebook page, so you'll be the first to know when more details are available.
The Rhythm Room
The legendary blues venue is currently closed until April 1. It's set up a Venmo account to help employees during the quarantine.
The Lost Leaf
The Lost Leaf, a bar and music venue located at 914 North Fifth Street, temporarily closed on March 16 amid the COVID-19 crisis. Eric Dahl launched the small business with artist Tato Caraveo back 2006, in the space that’s now home to Sidebar. Later, The Lost Leaf relocated to a 1912 bungalow in Roosevelt Row, where it has featured a diverse array of local talent from musicians to visual artists.
Ten employees aren’t being paid now that the venue is on hiatus. And Dahl has set up a Go Fund Me campaign, hoping to crowdsource $35,000 to help pay expenses during the temporary closure. Without those funds, it could be difficult to reopen the bar, he says. He built several art-friendly benefits into the online ask, including T-shirts and custom murals created by local artists.
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If you're already headed out for a beer run, stop by the DIY venue The Lunchbox. They are selling your favorite brew in growlers made by their staff to raise money for them while they're closed.