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Tuesday, November 8, 2011

SF Entertainment Commission to Bar and Café Owners: Hire Musicians!

Posted By on Tue, Nov 8, 2011 at 6:00 AM

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This summer, San Francisco created a new process that makes it easier for bars, restaurants, and cafés to host live music. Now it just needs the bands to show up.

Jocelyn Kane, executive director of the city's Entertainment Commission, is urging cafe and bar owners to apply for one of the city's new live performance permits, and hire musicians to perform in their businesses. She even wants artists to go to the proprietors of places they frequent and ask to play there.

"I want there to be live music everywhere," she says. "It's easy now to get a permit for live music in San Francisco."

So far, about five businesses in the city have applied for a limited live performance permit, Kane says. Today, the Entertainment Commission is set to consider the very first one, for the Pour House, at 1327 Polk St.

The new permit reduces the cost of a permit to legally host live music in S.F. to about $400 from as much as $15,000. Far simpler than the standard city process required for large-scale shows like those at the Warfield or Mezzanine, the permit also comes with some restrictions: Music must end by 11 p.m. (10 p.m. in some places), and DJ performances currently are not allowed. (Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi, who introduced the new permit legislation, says he wants to change that.)

Despite the restrictions, Kane says the new permit makes getting legal live music in a bar, restaurant, or café much easier.

"I believe that there are many places that do this kind of entertainment, and just do it without permits," Kane says. "Let's do it the easy way."

Business interested in the limited live performance permit can apply here.

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