Charlotte Local Music Venues Worry About Future Amid Coronavirus Closures

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Music venues in Charlotte are facing an uncertain future amid continued coronavirus closures.

They’re trying to convince local leaders to provide them money from the Cares Act, so they can stay afloat.

The Evening Muse in Noda is a place you can find up-and-coming artists, in an intimate setting.

“It’s a place where they can hone their skills and get better at what they do and connect with an audience and build a fanbase,” says owner Joe Kuhlmann.

But Kuhlmann hasn’t been able to open since March and now worries his venue and others might not be around much longer, if they don’t have financial help.

“People are holding on week-to-week right now, it’s not even month-to-month,” Kuhlmann explains.

He has joined a new alliance of several local independent music venues, in an effort to rally public support.

They’ve launched an online petition asking state and local leaders for money from the Cares Act.

“It’s important for us to send a message that there needs to be some action soon,” says Gregg McCraw, with Maxx Music.

McCraw is talent buyer for the Neighborhood Theatre, also in Noda.

He says it’s important the venues stay open because they’re economic drivers for the communities they serve.

“We’re all the foundations of those neighborhoods, so without us, people aren’t coming out to those neighborhoods,” McCraw says. “People come out, they go to restaurants, they go to bars, they take cabs, they take Ubers.”

Kuhlmann says now is the time for music lovers to step up and show their support for keeping the venues open, so that local leaders will take notice.

“If we have to wait around much longer, these venues are going to be closing… permanently,” he says.

The alliance plans to present their petition to Charlotte City Council as soon as next week.