#SaveMezzanine – Why Indie Venues Matter
As Mezzanine, a longstanding indie venue in the heart of San Francisco, faces pressure to vacate its location, Eventbrite explains why this venue and others like it are vital to maintaining a thriving, vibrant music industry.
Guest post from Eventbrite
Last year, Eventbrite helped 795,000 creators host nearly 4 million events across the globe—meaningful and shared experiences that enriched relationships and cultivated a sense of community. Our team is passionate about supporting the creators that produce and host these events, whether it’s offering their time to volunteer at events like those hosted by CUESA, a nonprofit dedicated to cultivating a sustainable food system, or standing up for organizations like Mezzanine, the latest venue in a long line of independent rooms facing pressure to vacate their location.
Mezzanine sits in the heart of the SoMa district in San Francisco and is one of the central points of the neighborhood’s nightlife scene. The 15 year-old independent live music venue is both an institution for those that frequent it, as well as being the largest woman-owned club in the city. It puts on a mix of shows like Dirtybird Quarterly, Hard French crew’s annual Pride celebration, and 90’s dance parties, as well as historically playing host to major music acts like Lady Gaga, LCD Soundsystem, Snoop Dogg, and Green Day, long before they got big enough to fill an arena.
It’s independent rooms like Mezzanine that not only provide more intimate spaces for fans to see the acts they love, but serve as a breeding ground for tomorrow’s big name acts. Put simply—fans and cities both want and need small-to-mid-sized independent music venues.
Yet at the end of 2018, Mezzanine owner, Deborah Jackman, announced that they would be shutting their doors the following year due to the landlord’s refusal to re-negotiate the lease. Last month, after public backlash that resulted in assurance of a lease extension through the end of 2019 with a chance to re-negotiate the lease long term, Mezzanine was notified in early June that their three month lease extension was no longer on the table, cutting short the future of a mainstay music venue and jeopardizing the artists and staff they already had booked.
As one of our longest standing music venue clients, news of the reneged extension was felt deeply at Eventbrite and on Thursday, a crew of our SF Britelings joined other advocates to attend a press conference held by District 6 Supervisor Matt Haney to announce new legislation that will help protect nightlife establishments in western SOMA facing eviction.
This isn’t just about one local venue, it’s about all of the ways we strive to support a strong independent live music scene. One built on relationships and community, not just transactions.
If you’re local to SF and would like to show your support, Mezzanine are urging people to contact their District Supervisor, letting them know you support Matt Haney’s legislation.