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it's been a few years now since I was in Leicester but this is real sad news. There won't be any venues left in the city!
I remember being sad when I heard the Attik shut a while back.
I remember being totally battered at many a night there when a mate used to DJ from 8pm until 2pm.
i spent way too much time in the charlotte from 93-96, inlcuding my first and last oasis gig. loved the place. this would be very sad.
The problem is...well, it's us, the Leicester gig goers and there not being enough of us. Sumo and Firebug get the very occasional touring band and De Montfort Hall gives it a good go, and obviously Summer Sundae always does well, but the university seems to have stopped bothering putting gigs on. It's not coincidental that new promoters breeze into a venue every so often promising more up and coming bands and quietly sneak out again a few months later, and those with some prominence go to Northampton or more likely Nottingham instead, where they have a decent number of sizeable venues - I think as far as 'name' touring bands go the first three months of 2009 has Frightened Rabbit, the Rumble Strips and the Wonky Pop tour in total.
I really hope the Charlotte survives - the sound is variable (although better lately) and it's built oddly so the floor slopes back but it's pretty much acknowledged as not the most salubrious of venues but when circumstances are right it really gets a good active crowd, and it's stilla acknowledged as the touring venue of choice in the city.
is at The Musician I think.
as far as I know. Obviously Ed Tudor-Pole or Pauline Black could be playing the Shed again.
but Leicester was always in second place when it came to the East Midlands, however it seems like places such as Derby and Northampton seem to be above Leicester in the pecking order now.
I left Leicester 5 years ago but then there was never really all that much going on. It often felt like Leicester is a city that does not really want to go out and see bands in the Charlotte but they are happy to plod along to the Summer Sundae once a year. Certainly moving to Manchester showed the difference in attitude.
Tis a shame indeed though. I saw Clearlake play there on my 18th birthday. And also The Hidden Cameras played an amazing gig there back in 2003.
this is awful!
can't think how many times I've been there over the years, seen some great stuff. So Leicester would be left with The Shed? Ouch..
I mean the place is obviously a complete shithole (freezing in winter, sweltering in summer, the whole venue slopes uphill towards the stage etc. etc.), but it's got character and it'd be a real loss if it did actually close for good
and I live in Leicester. Obviously it would be sad to see it go but people only seem to turn up when it's a more mainstream band playing, it also seems weird to me that not a lot of students seem to be willing to come to gigs, yet it almost the opposite in other cities.
I still think we need more promoters in the city.
I'm just thinking about the 65daysofstatic / Maybeshewill /Amusement Parks on Fire that's supposed to be coming up in April now...
The students thing is a good point, especially as it's literally across the road from the main De Montfort Uni building and not that far from Leicester Uni. I don't think it even sold out, certainly it didn't in advance, when Mystery Jets played there while Two Doors Down was all over the radio.
that if it all boils down to it and the charlotte does close, that gig will move to either Firebug or Sumo. Prays.
It's a shame that the charlotte just doesn't seem to have moved on at all.
I actually went along to the Mystery Jets gig, I took a spare ticket from a friend, it didn't look like it was packed but there did seem to be a lot more people there than I can remember in the last few years.
The last time I can really remember it being sold out in advance, with people still trying to get tickets, was either Panic At The Disco and Razorlight. Both of those gigs were four or five years ago.
around 3 years ago being sold out.
I think the View sold it out in advance in October, and if Half Man Half Biscuit didn't a month later I'd be surprised, but they're two bands who are always going to have specialised live followings and thus are the exception. What it all boils down to is your common-or-garden touring 'name' isn't seen as attracting the crowds in Leicester, and booking agents certainly won't flock here if its biggest regular circuit venue closes.
...good bands play there at all recently. during my school years and early uni were the best, i.e. between 1999 and 2003/4. have fond memories of seeing the following there:
muse, soulwax, blood brothers (twice :D), dandy warhols, the coral, datsuns, jj72, bloc party, libertines, pretty girls make graves etc etc etc.
it did use to be such a quality venue but yeah leicester has dropped off the radar recently in terms of gigs
i saw Libertines and The Music there...and Alfie!
Moved away but good gig memories, Leicester seems to miss out to Nottingham etc these days. Would be a shame.
There are hardly any decent venues near to me and this is going to make things ten times worse. 65dos are supposed to be playing there in April :(
The charlotte does attract these bands but it always seems to attracts them just before they get well known. the fact is the bands it gets are too small for the venue at the time. Leicester doesn't get many gig goers. Its not just the charlotte thats affected the same goes for sumo....realy good bands last year and 2007 but no one went so they don't host gigs now. All we've got left is Firebug (which is a great little venue) and the Musician (great music but not the best venue). how can cov pick up danan... and derby the rakes? Even little civic gets more than leicester
Saw quite a a bit of good music there. Most of the other venues I've been to in Leicester are crap.
Had some good times at the Charlotte over the years. I remember seeing Oasis there with Whiteout, literally standing in a puddle of piss for Urusei Yatsura and asking one of the Voodoo Queens out for a date at the end of their set there. She turned me down of course.
The rakes not playing there is a good example, its a small venue tour, them playing the charlotte would get a lot of people in yet its not happened for some reason.
its the charlottes own fault pretty much.
Shit gig listings (most of the time)
Poor sound, far too many tribute bands and no decent clubnights
With its location and it being the best known venue in the city for it not to be doing well it has to be doing something wrong.
The man is a complete cunt and he knows it. Shame about this, played and been to so many good gigs there. I don't think it will close, someone will help out, hopefully.
Yeah. It's pretty much assumed that putting on a single benefit gig, no matter who headlines, isn't going to keep it open for longer than a few months, so clearly the only option left is to rattle some buckets in the city centre on a Saturday. Note also: "The petition set up that's going to 10 Downing Street". Third Heathrow runway? A passing irrelevance compared to propping up a small music venue in the Midlands. "A cause which has made generations of music lovers, happy, kinda like a Woodstock feel, but in the new Century and in Leicester" might be my new favourite sentence.
The problem isn't so much that the Charlotte is so threatened, nor that many people genuinely think one Kasabian gig and everything will be alright again, it's that a city currently priding itself in its "cultural quarter" has no bigger regular venues than 400 capacity - 200 if the Charlotte does close - and nobody bothers going to those unless the band is massive or constantly gigging locally.
Leicester University and De Montford University must have the best part of 30,000 undergraduates plus all of the sixth form college types and the usual 18-35 gig going crowd you'd find in any city of 300,000 people.
i grew up in leicester(shire) and the charlotte holds many fond fond memories. basically most of the gigs i went to during sixth form were there (about 3-5 years ago - arctic monkeys, dfa 1979, futureheads, nine black alps, boy kill boy(!), bloc party etcc) and i remember it often being packed. seemed that there was a real buzz around but since then the place seems to have taken a bit of a dip (did they always put on so many tribute bands?!!?)
recently whenever i've been back to leicester it's a bit of a ghost town generally though to be honest :(
Asians generally aren't fans of live rock music :-)
The real reason is that the Charlotte is the biggest pit of a place I have ever been. Played there and had a great sound, but really I'm sure that once smoking was banned, you can see this SHIT HEAP exactly for what it is.
The Attik was no better, let them die and other people can open cleaner newer places
'UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE' sounds like they might try and re-establish it eventually, but... well, there it is.
65daysofstatic at the Musician? A rootsy blues bar with a 140 capacity? Christ.
so its left to the musician sumo and firebug to save leicester from becoming a complete waste....
if the promoters get this right it could be what leicester needs, based on whats happened before i doubt it.
not that they have had anyone of note in the last 5 years except bloc party, elbow, kasabian and kaiser chiefs.
glad they re-scheduled a couple of the gigs. not looking good though. musician only holds 200, doubt sumo holds much more
has the biggest event in the local music calendar, but they can't expect the council to keep topping them up. Sumo is 200 capacity, but it's hardly put anything on in the recent past and the people who run the bar above seem not to acknowledge it. Leicester Square or whatever it's called this week is the only building I can think of that could be developed into a new venue but it seems to have settled for being some sort of metal enclave. And, as I said up there, the local council are priding themselves on Curve and their 'cultural quarter' while the rest of it goes to ruin.
Not surprising really, it is a townie hellhole upstairs.
when i saw pigeon detectives there in 2006 they just kept getting electric shocks, the barrier (aka, bit of metal fence) fucked up straight away. there were only 40 people in there but it couldn't cope. the band stormed off pretty quickly.
been to a few good gigs in there though, rival consoles, tired irie, kyte etc.
bloc party, elbow, kaiser chiefs, manic street preachers, goldfrapp, paul weller, levellers, all in the last 2 years?
from the moment they rebuilt the De Montfort Student Union without a live venue. The Attik was a very sad less recently, the Charlotte also, although they've not put much on recently, and invariably when they do no fucker turns up.
The last great gig I saw at the Charlotte was Faust about a year and a half ago. I saw my first gig (don't laugh...Echobelly, 1994) there, my parents had their wedding reception there in 1967. It's sad. At this rate it'll just be the fucking Shed.
..Lords and Spin Spin The Dogs playing at the Criterion (tiny room in pub round the corner)???? Ludicrous.
i'm actually kinda glad the charlotte has gone. it was, quite frankly, not brilliant. like really not brilliant, to the point i didnt really go there whatosever. even when i ran gigs there. someone else will take it on, trust me on that one. give the dust a little time to settle and there are already people considering it. it's time for a new change, it's about time.
Leicester will be all the better for it
but I fear if it does get taken on and reopened they won't change a thing for the sake of "tradition" - not the acoustics, not the position of the sound desk, not even lagging in the bar. It's telling that they've only seen three gigs in the first four months of the year that were significant enough to require moving to other venues.
since, it's the appearance of the place which led to its downfall. why go and see a band in a horrible concrete box with shit sound, and piss all over the floor, when you could go watch bands in firebug instead. anyone who took the charlotte on, and did'nt refurb, would be frankly in business madness.
but it depends on who takes it over. It's catch 22, though - nobody's coming to gigs, but the one thing the area needs is larger 'small' venues. Nottingham's got about seven that are smaller than big halls and bigger rooms than The Musician, including both Rock City rooms, Derby's got a couple, even in Northampton Roadmenders is about 800 in total.
the charlotte is a little too small. you've got firebug at 100 capacity, then the musician at 230, then nothing really until DMH. ok the curve is 750, but that place really wont be seeing many gigs, and athena arent willing to risk gigs at all.
the best thing to do would be to buy the charlotte and the castle rock cafe, knock them together, and turn the live area through 90 degrees.
and....i hate to say it, but those new student flats and fish bar round the corner from the charlotte will cause all sorts of noise pollution problems.
go the way of The Magazine..
rather than go straight to the charlotte. everyone stops in the criterion for a few beers beforehand.
that lords gig was supposed to be quite special was it not?
No details at all, just "it's reopening! Here's a gig!"
a gig there is better than nothing, shame it's The screening. Simon do you know what happened to the displacements? I thought they were the local boys done good about to change the face of music.
They split at the end of last year, and I've heard they're regrouping under a different name and sound.
"The Charlotte is now being run as A Social Enterprise, the local community acting together to provide services needed by local people. The Charlotte will try and generate an income to ensure it covers its running costs and is self sustainable. Also The Charlotte will qualify for grant support. Any additional money that it generates is reinvested back into The Charlotte and no one makes a profit. We are hoping that this will make the venue more accessible to the community enabling us to use it to its full potential. You will now be required to pay a deposit of £33 to play at the Charlotte or £45 as a headliner."
Of course you will. There's your 'social enterprise' the organisers have been promoting as the fundamental reasoning for the venue's reopening, it's gone pay to play.