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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

There Goes Another One: The Uptown In Oakland Will Close Next Week

Posted By on Wed, Oct 29, 2014 at 3:08 PM

The Uptown
  • The Uptown
In an already sad week for Bay Area clubs, Larry Trujillo, owner of The Uptown on Telegraph (not to be confused with the Mission dive), has confirmed the bar/venue will close its doors for good a week from today, after "the King of Surf Guitar" Dick Dale plays his scheduled show Nov. 5. 

The club, with a capacity of 300, has a prime location in the middle of Oakland's booming Uptown district — though that name wasn't quite so widely used, nor was the area highly attractive to young people, when The Uptown first opened in 2005.

According to Trujillo and financial partners Ray Yeh and Robbin Green-Yeh (who came on board when the club re-opened in 2007, after a rocky first year and a half caused the club to close temporarily), the venue is simply no longer financially viable: Green-Yeh told the Oakland Tribune that in 2014 alone, the team had spent $70,000 in "unexpected infrastructure bills." 

The Uptown's stage hosted everyone from Green Day to Public Enemy's Chuck D to the Germs to Pixies' Frank Black to Ice Cube. It was also known for long-running and very Oaklandish staples like the Hella Gay Dance Party and the Hubba Hubba Revue, a burlesque show that drew a crowd to the venue every Monday night for most of the club's lifespan.

Especially at a time when San Francisco's musicians and artists are moving to Oakland in droves, and there simply aren't enough mid-sized clubs to host them (despite the encouraging birth of some new rooms, like Leo's) it's disheartening to hear that the Uptown's owners have been looking for a buyer since May, and have yet to get any bites. Hey, you hip, newly Oakland-dwelling entrepreneurs paying nearly $4000 a month for that 12th-floor luxury condo — feel like making a few fans out of your neighbors down below?
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Emma Silvers

Bio:
Emma Silvers is SF Weekly's former Music Editor.

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