Whether you like it or not, Denver is growing, and while you might be upset with the dwindling elbow room, there is definitely a plus side to living in a growing city. Other than new job opportunities and legal weed, droves of transplants are coming to Denver because of a booming cultural scene that before could only be found on the coasts of the country. Now, as you read this, plans for four fresh music venues are coming to fruition and are planned to open in 2017. From underground bass lounges to outdoor family picnics arenas, here are four new music venues opening in Denver in 2017.
Coming to Ruby Hill Park summer 2017 will be Levitt Pavilion. A fully-functioning, free outdoor venue will be something new for Denver, whose summers are dominated by the ever-growing Red Rocks calendar. Unlike the other venues on this list, Levitt Pavilion will be completely non-profit, relying solely on sponsors and the city to make the open community feeling possible.
Featuring 50 shows a year, the creators of Levitt Pavilion wish to build something for the public with a relaxed open lawn feel, while at the same time giving a full-professional live music experience with state-of-the-art sound and lighting. Executive director of the project Chris Zacher has also recognized that people are moving to Denver, and noticed that a free cultural facility is the next natural step for a modern Denver. With the music fans of the community in mind, the venue will have the local artists of the community on their radar. The pavilion will look to scout local and national talent coming through Denver to create a sort of “launching pad” for promising young careers. What better way to get people out noticing new talent, than to make it free? No doubt something artists cannot turn down. Read our full interview with Chris Zacher about Levitt Pavilion here.
The Black Box
This next venue actually opened this last November, but looks to really get the ball rolling in 2017. The Black Box looks to give Denver a true home for underground bass music. Many may be saddened to hear that the long-standing Grateful Dead bar and venue, Quixote’s True Blue on 13th and Grant, has been closed down and replaced by this venue dedicated to electronic music.
All the tie dye and old posters have been taken down and replaced with black paint inside and out to bring focus to the music. This focus on music is the booking company Sub.mission’s main message, and they wish not to be grouped under the massive “rave” culture that electronic dance music has become. Similar to Levitt Pavilion, Black Box’s owner Nicole Cacciavillano looks to break away from the giant promoters AEG and Live Nation, who dominate Denver, to bring music back to the people with their motto: “moving people through sound not hype.” Cacciavillano, who Complex Magazine put on the list for the “15 Most Important Women in EDM,” believes the music industry today is run by corporate interest in the chase for a profit. The Black Box looks to make a splash in 2017 by providing fresh, affordable dance music for the people to discover.
The RiNo District (or River North for you newbees), has seen an immense development over the years with breweries, bars, restaurants, galleries and venues that are replacing the old industrial warehouses of the past. Now for lack of a better word, something epic is coming to the area that could make RiNo the premier neighborhood in Denver.
A man named Bernard Hurley is planning to build Hurley Place – a multi-functioning cultural center that will include multiple small to medium size music venues. Hurley has worked with neighborhood leaders and the city to map out a six acre lot that is situated right along side the Platte River. It will usable in the summer and winter months, with indoor and outdoor music, movies and food for anyone passing by to enjoy. With such a bold project underway, Hurley envisions a South-by-Southwest style festival in the future, and a chance to create something on a “blank canvas” that people from the community will flock to. Before anything has even been built, AEG already put on the RiNo Music Festival in 2016 in the same location. Look for more and more in this neighborhood to give the RiNo district a new incredible feel. Read our full interview with Bernard Hurley here.
The Black Buzzard
Already making news earlier this year, Longmont brewing company Oskar Blues announced they will become the first Colorado craft brewer to be distributed in all 50 states. Next is the music biz. Set to open summer 2017, The Black Buzzard with be the next of numerous restaurants owned by the by Oskar Blues Fooderies, and the second to feature a music venue. Located at 16th and Market and set in an old historic Denver building, this 11,000 square foot location will be in the heart of lower-downtown, and have no problem drawing in tourists and locals alike from the city looking to get a classic Colorado experience. With smoking meats on site and cajun style dining, look for blues and bluegrass music to be in rotation at this soon-to-be hot spot, in an already hot Denver neighborhood.