Closed. Court Tavern, New Brunswick, New Jersey, after 30 years, joining in posterity other local clubs long gone: venues like the Roxy, Budapest, Patrixx, and The Melody Bar. The iconic Pavement played its first show at the Court. Mudhoney, Butthole Surfers and, more recently, Gaslight Anthem all compared tattoos with patrons under its water-stained drop ceiling. The Court has played Lazarus before, fending off the taxman in 2009 with the help of The Smithereens and poet-rocker Patti Smith, who headlined a benefit. But this looks different.
The Music Box in Hollywood is destined for a similar fate, like CBGB’s and the Bottom Line and countless other rockspots before them. Corporate juggernaut Live Nation, a Clear Channel radio spinoff remarkably allowed by the justice department to merge with Ticketmaster, now owns or handles booking at over a hundred music venues, including even Cincinnati’s Bogart’s, former proving ground for erumpent 80s metal acts. Top brass have hired even more lobbyists to remove what’s left of the hair.