If you're in a band, odds are you need someplace to stow your stuff, practice your hot guitar licks and/or faces, yell at your guitarist for not playing the riff right for the seventh time, and sit around and try to think of stupid words/phrases to sing over Bush's "Glycerine" for hours on end (okay, so maybe that last bit was just my old band, but you never know). And weirdly, for a city with so many freakin' bands, Houston has ridiculously few practice spaces for rent -- most bands I've known have made their homes either at their, uh, homes or squeezed between the sweaty concrete walls of the venerable Francisco's.
So, given that, it's nice to hear that there're newer places opening around town. We got a little note from a new one called Elemental Rehearsal Studio that sounds pretty nice -- it doesn't sound like they're officially open yet, but they're looking for suggestions on how they can "provide the best possible service to our local musicians." If you've got an opinion (or need to find a space), stop on by their site...
While we're at it, here's the scant bit of info I do have on local rehearsal spaces:
Francisco Studios: 2300 McKinney; 713-225-3112; "houston" at "franciscostudio dot com"
[Possibly the oldest rehearsal studio around, nearly every band in town has practiced in this grimy concrete hellhole at one point or another. I think they only go monthly, not hourly, but that was way back when I used to practice there, like a decade ago. Apparently the guy who owns the place has other rehearsal spaces in different parts of town, but I've never seen 'em. And hey, who knew Megadeth and Bobby Brown used to rehearse there? It's kinda hard to picture, I have to say...maybe they were at one of the mysterious other locations?]
Rhythm Room Rehearsal Studio: 1410 Brittmoore, Suite A, B, & C; 713-465-6122; "info" at "rhythmroomrehearsalstudio dot com"
[Never been here, but the rates look pretty good, comparable to others I've seen, and they do both hourly and monthly, which is nice. Plus, you can rent equipment if you need it, and the pics make it look awful nice & clean.]
Rock Center: 7330 Ashcroft Dr.; David @ 713-981-6555; "david" at "rockcenterhouston dot com"
[What the hell? This place is literally a three-block walk from the house I just moved out of, and I never had any idea...crazy. Sometimes that no-zoning thing's handy. Apparently the place's well-soundproofed, because I heard no thundering metal guitars at 1AM, thankfully... Anyway, the rates again look comparable, and they do both hourly and monthly. If you're doing the hourly thing, you can apparently rent a PA, drums, and amps if you need 'em. Hours for the hourly rooms are 10AM-2AM.]
Sound Check Music Complex: 5881 W. 34th; 713-682-2312
[Only went here once, but it was fairly nice. Back then it rented hourly, $15/hr with a 4 hour min. for a 20x20 room with floor monitors and mics and drum kits rent for $25 per session, and 30"x36" lockers for $50/month. Can't find the Website these days, so they might be out of business...]
Those're the only ones I've ever heard about, I'm afraid -- if anybody knows of any others, feel free to mention 'em in the comments. I'll update this post if there're a bunch of places out there I've missed...
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