Metro at night. Photo: Monica Eng/Axios
We kicked off the week with 16 historic venues. Today we are crowned champions: Wrigleyville’s Metro.
inside story: Founded in 1982 by promoter Joe Shanahan, the club was an early local showcase for REM, The Replacement, Sonic Youth, New Order and Nirvana.
- In addition to the main auditorium, the Metro has a dance-friendly SmartBar in the basement and a lesser-known fourth-floor auditorium for special events. This is where the Victory Gardens Theater began in 1974.
- Metro continues to stay on the cutting edge of new music, honoring veterans like Patti Smith, who performed at the 40th Anniversary Show last year.
What they say: “This is very humbling,” Shanahan told Axios. “The goal has always been to provide a community hub for music and the arts in the city. As myself, my staff, fans and artists will recognize, I am very much looking forward to continuing this mission beyond 2023.”
- “Thank you for your votes and your support. Because of you, we have Metro, we have music venues, and Chicago is home to a growing and vibrant collective of music, arts, and more.”
conspiracy: When the Spanish Baroque Revival style building was designed by architects Michaelsen & Rognstad in 1927, it contained two lodge halls, a kitchen, a dining room, eight shops and an arcade that ran from Clarke to Racine.
- The name “Northside Auditorium Building” can still be seen on the façade.
💭 Justin’s speech bubble: This was a lot of fun. Your passion for both our tournament venues and non-qualified venues proves that Chicago is the best live music city in the country.
Bonnie E.: “It was great to see Metro make it to the finals. I’ve always wondered what the band’s dressing room looked like, and 10 years ago on New Year’s Eve, I took the chance.”
- “Smoking Popes were playing and they’re my brother’s friends, so I had to stand on the side of the stage and look over the audience from their point of view. Then I got it .to see the whole hall singing your song.. back to you and jumping to your music is like no other height!.but the dressing room is still a bit dingy It was something.
Alicia B.: “Where’s Park West!?”
John S.: “Kingston Mines, Green Mill, SubT, Old Town, Bottom Lounge, Jazz Showcase, Waystation, Carol’s Pub, Golden Dagger, etc. I appreciate your support for Chicago Music, but I would have run with them. At least, the ability to write a venue.”