|||

Anything for a Weird Life

Underground Show FAQ

So you’re decided to go to a show at a non-traditional venue in the Baltimore underground. Great!

Here are some of the questions you may have.

Soul Chatter performing at an undisclosed locationSoul Chatter performing at an undisclosed location

What time does the show start?

No one knows.

Unlike shows at bars or clubs, there are usually no employees on hourly wages and therefore no clock”. Underground venues have their own math of when and how long for an event’s duration. They don’t have to close like a Baltimore bar at 2AM. The time on the flyer (if there was one) is probably more of an aspiration than a guarantee.

When will the show end?

When the police arrive.

If the police do not arrive, shows can go on into the wee hours depending on the friendliness of neighbors and the decisions of the hosts. At one point, underground shows were starting so late and ending so deep in the night that it was suggested to just start shows at dawn. Many former ravers (see below) dug on this idea, but it never came to pass.

Where is the location of the show?

DM for address.

It is a long-standing tradition that the address of non-traditional venues be kept off the Internet/flyers. Baltimore City police, when not up to other activities, may show up and shut it down (see second question). There is a whole complex legal situation involving a decision to tie liquor licenses to live performances during the great rave panic of the 1990s, the differences between a house party and a house show, and whether or not that money you were asked for was a donation.

Speaking of, how does that work?

Often, a friendly but vocal person will walk around after the first performer and after subsequent performances with a hat, a boot, a plastic vase… something for you to donate to the evening’s touring bands. You don’t have to donate.

But you should. You know that, right?

Will drinks be available?

No. But there is this place down the street…

Any underground venue runner knows of a package goods” place nearby. If you are of age, it is wise to bring your own beverages and to plan for this to be the situation. After attending shows at the same underground venue over time, you will figure out the best place to stash your beverages to avoid things going missing. I can be a good marker to use for your stash as I do not move around much and don’t drink. Ask me what I am reading. I would be happy to talk about it.

Who are these people at these shows? Where do they come from?

Happily, our world continues to have people in it who live life deliberately. They often make up the sizeable contingent of the folks you end up elbow to elbow with in someone’s living room at these events. They may also be enrolled in one of the many colleges or universities in the area. Some are lifers, some are just passing through. Treat them as you would want to be treated and things will typically be fine. Remember your home training, and all will be well. We only have each other, especially in this situation. Especially these days.

Can I hang out in front of the venue?

No.

It is never cool or good to hang out in front of the venue.

Sorry! It just isn’t.

Tim Kabara

IG: @kim_tabara

Up next Prose poem: "Birthdays" by Rob Kempton Poem: "The Absorber" by Chadwick Beattie
Latest posts 13 ANGELS BEAT YOUR ASS TILL YOUR ASS STARTS TO LOOK LIKE A FLOPPY SACK by Tyler Dempsey NIAGARA by Juliette Sandoval TO MAKE OF THEE A NAME by Andrew Buckner Two poems by Jessica Heron "Grocery Outlet" by Lisa Loop "Gatorbear" by John Biron Interview: Skizz Cyzyk on Baltimore Filmmaking and the Mansion Theater "On Time" by Hanna Webster "Only the Most Neutral Executioners" by GRSTALT Comms Poems for Clara Peller by Ella Wisniewski "I've Got a Fake I.D. from Nevada and No Name" by Max Stone Truth Cult (Last Show) [Anything for a Weird Life] Three poems by Stacy Black "Bob's on Fire" by Alex Tronson Two poems by Alexandra Naughton Reflections on Series Two: How Does He Do It? [Anything for a Weird Life] "A Sadness that Sings" by David Hay "The City" by Ryan Bender-Murphy Three poems by Abigail Sims "The Depth of the Abrasion" by David C. Porter Steve Albini 1962-2024 [Anything for a Weird Life] Some Things are the Same Everywhere [BRUISER Field Report] BRUISER ZINE 005: Foul Black Rookeries by David Simmons "Bilbao" (for Richard Serra) by Damon Hubbs Beyond Periphery by Ada Pelonia Mayday [Anything for a Weird Life] "Drones Drones Drones" by Aaron Roman Review: White Paint Falling Through a Filtered Shaft by Adam Johnson "Buckskin Jacket." by Noam Hessler A User's Guide to Universal Order of Armageddon (Numero 221) [Anything for a Weird Life] "Sepulcherality" by Cora Kircher