Hats off to Culturemap, whose offices are located a few blocks from Last Concert Cafe, for breaking this Monday, but Rocks Off figured our readers (especially those who have ever participated in a drum circle), would like to know as well.
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The nearly hidden north downtown hippie hideout/Mexican restaurant, where Rocks Off ourselves recently enjoyed an evening of Gram Rabbit's desert dance-rock, indeed ran into some trouble with the fire marshal this past weekend and has had to make some significant - if hopefully temporary - changes. Reports LCC owner Dawn Fudge via email this morning:
"The fire marshal came in last Friday night and cleared the house. Green Mountain Grass had 120 folks at their concert. They were all asked to leave. We are allowed only 49 people in here, including employees and band members.
"This is the original occupancy assigned 60 years ago. We are moving with light speed to get the backyard included in the occupancy numbers. We have architects and lawyers on board. We are hoping this will be resolved within two weeks if everyone in the city moves rapidly.
"We are condensing our employees to the minimum and hoping they can hang on as it is impossible to support the regular staff with only being able to serve 40 ish customers. Some shows have been cancelled and others are going to two shows per night to accomodate more customers, like a 10:00 & 12:00 show.
"The cover charge will have to be raised to around $10 per show. We are encouraging early arrival and please come eat lunch and dinner in the meantime.
"So to answer your question, we are not closed, just severely handicapped and we are doing everything in our power and many others to get the situation rectified with light speed."
According to Last Concert's Web site, tomorrow night's Potroast show will be the first to be split into 10 p.m. and 12 a.m. sets, with a $10 cover for each. There may also be a three drink minimum, it adds, and "there will be a drum circle in the alley."
Fudge added that vendors are welcome to set up across the street from the venue, and that Friday's Fever in the Funkhouse and Saturday's Congos by Carlos Birthday Bash may also be scaled back. However, she added, "A waiting line outside can still hear the music!"