Brennan Bryarly, a resident DJ at Lipgloss under the name option4, got to see world-renowned turntablist A-Trak in a room of about forty people at South by Southwest a few years ago, and catching that act in such an intimate venue blew his mind. "Then I started thinking about it," Bryarly remembers. "Some of the best shows I've seen in my life were in small venues before artists got really big. I think the first time I saw Tokyo Police Club in 2005, when they just had an EP — it was me and like eighty kids in a small room in New Orleans. That was the funnest experience I ever had."
Giving others the chance to enjoy up-and-coming artists in small venues was the reason Bryarly started the Hundred, a group of a hundred people with a sincere passion for music who get to weigh in on who will play at the Hundred's new monthly series at Beauty Bar (608 East 13th Avenue). For the first party on Saturday, November 19, Bryarly is bringing in Houston-based DJ Damon Allen; he hopes to continue booking national acts that haven't yet hit the mainstream but are big on the blogs.
The Hundred has a private website that's similar to Twitter, where members get to discuss what acts should be considered for upcoming parties. The group is entirely non-profit, Bryarly says; any money a show makes goes into the bank to cover future shows, and screen shots of the bank account will be posted on the website to keep things transparent. The site will also include videos of the parties and interviews with the artists, as well as audio downloads. "For the public, they can be part of the site, too, but they have to be very aggressive," he says. "If the public really wants to get in, they can hit me up and I'll let them on."
While for now the core group of the Hundred is limited to a hundred members (who will get into shows for free), their parties will be open to the public for a cover charge. "The people who aren't technically part of the Hundred are more than welcome to come, and that's what we need, because for a really cheap price they're going to see these huge acts," Bryarly says. "I don't ever want a cover of more than $4 to $5. Ever. The goal is not to grow this thing and make any money. I feel very strongly about making this anti-commercial. I think that's the only way to make this succeed. People are broke; it's a recession. I don't want it to be a business-type thing."
Club scout: To celebrate eleven years in business, the Celtic Tavern (1801 Blake Street) and its younger sibling next door, Delaney's Bar and Cigar Lounge, just kicked off a series of weekly events. The Celtic will offer a singer-songwriter series on Wednesdays, live music on Fridays and Saturdays, '80s night the second Friday of every month, and live jazz on Sundays; both places have also introduced a new gourmet burger menu featuring ten burgers. And the Robusto Room (9535 Park Meadows Drive, #D, Lone Tree) has brought back its jazz and cigar nights, with the Eric Dorn Trio playing at 7 p.m. on the first Wednesday of each month.
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The opening of Fluff Bar at 1516 Wazee Street has been postponed until December. And say so long to JR's, the popular gay bar at 777 East 17th Avenue, which closed on November 4 after an eleven-year run.