Friday, July 24, 2009

Doghouse to close

The live music venue described by The View as their 'home from home' has been sold, creating a hole in the heart of the Dundee music scene.

The Doghouse Dundee, recently saved from permanent closure following a financial dispute, has been sold by Punch Taverns and will formally close early next month.

The development is a bitter blow to venue manager Sarah Hill, who gathered support from The View and other top local acts to reopen the venue just two months ago.

Two 'Band Aid' style fundraisers, described by Sarah as the venue's 'last fight', were headlined by Dundee's most famous sons and successfully raised enough money to reopen its doors after a two month hiatus.

Despite the venue's grand reopening and a run of live bands booked for several months ahead, The Doghouse team were formally given notice to quit last week after being unable to come up with the money to buy the building themselves.

Sarah Hill took over the venue in December 2004, and, on a shoestring budget, turned it into one of the best live venues on the east coast of Scotland. Of the latest development, she hopes that the sale of the 350 capacity former schoolhouse will not necessarily mean the end of The Doghouse.

She commented: "I am presently in talks with various parties about possibilities of where we can go from here. I definitely feel The Doghouse is not over. We have not come all this way to simply give up; it is hopefully just another hurdle. So for now The Doghouse team, our bands, our many loyal customers and fans will be looking forward to the closing parties and watching this space."

Described as the 'heart and soul' of the live local music scene, the permanent closure of the Brown Street premises will be the end of an era for fledgling young bands who viewed it as a home from home. Used as a practice space by local bands, the city's most successful exports The View practically lived there during their early days.

The View last played their 'spiritual home' on Hogmanay. At the time of the recent closure, their bassist Kieren Webster said: "It's really sad and it feels like it's ripped the heart and soul out of the music scene in Dundee. We're gutted, it's the end of an era."

This weekend, the venue hosted the launch party for local heroes The Law's new single, Don't Stop, Believe, which is officially released this week. The band, as with many other local musicians, could as often be seen playing pool or jamming in the venue's outdoor area, as playing on stage.

Their guitarist Stevie Anderson said, "All good things must come to an end; and The Doghouse has indeed been that. Like a good Beatles song - it was short in lifespan, high in energy and always left you craving for more - not to mention the wealth of talent it has nurtured in recent years.

"We are privileged to have been a part of the madness and would like to thank Sarah and all at The Doghouse for their help and support in the last four or so years."

Sarah and the rest of The Doghouse team are currently planning a final farewell party for Friday August the seventh before finally closing the venue's doors the following Monday.

Sarah said: "This has all been especially difficult as it would seem all the hard work, dedication and support that has been provided by many people including local businesses, bands, fans and the community itself has been in vain but we are all hopeful it hasn't. Their backing will not be forgotten."

STV, 24th July 2009

Download early videos of The View at The Doghouse below. (Right click, save as...)
'Posh Boys'
'Comin' Down'


Post a Comment

<< Home