An Ending & Two Beginnings: Pegstar Bids Farewell to Fitzgerald’s & Fitzgerald’s Gets Reborn

11822461_863589707062057_534147079634523315_nEver since the news first broke about local booking maestros Pegstar opening their very own purpose-built venue, the sweet-looking White Oak Music Hall, it’s felt like it was only a matter of time before the other shoe dropped. Namely, before Pegstar waved goodbye to Fitzgerald’s, where for five years now they’ve booked a long string of fantastic shows that might not’ve bothered to stop in Houston at all, in favor of shifting over to the new place.

And lo and behold, that’s almost exactly what’s happening. A week-and-something ago, the Pegstar crew let fans and friends alike know that after this coming Saturday, August 29th, they would be moving on. There’re numerous reasons behind the change, apparently, but I’m not going to presume to speak for those folks — hear it from the horse’s mouth, so to speak, over here.

Now, what’s that mean for the future of shows & whatnot, both at Fitz and elsewhere? Well, a few things:

  • If you look at the shows list, you’ll notice that there’re a whole slew of Pegstar-booked shows coming up at venues other than Fitz. They’ve really ramped up bookings at Numbers, Rudyard’s, and Walter’s (plus Warehouse Live, where they’ve been booking some bigger shows for a while now), and that’s a really cool thing, to me, because one downside of the Pegstar “residency” at Fitz is that those other venues haven’t gotten nearly as much touring-band love these past few years. It’s good to see it being spread around some, at least for the time being.
  • Pegstar won’t be booking shows at White Oak Music Hall just yet, because, well, it doesn’t quite exist yet. Work’s underway, but they’ve got a long, long ways to go ’til it’s ready for bands & audiences. The new venue won’t open its doors ’til Spring 2016 at the earliest, it looks like.
  • Now, don’t worry: Fitz isn’t done, not by a long shot. According to the knowledgeable people at the Houston Press, the venerable club will be in good hands, with new GM Lauren Oakes — who I don’t know personally, but about whom I’ve heard many good things — heading a crew of dedicated, music-loving folks that includes Buxton bassist and cool dude Chris Wise and designer Dutch Small.
  • A little bad of bad-ish/good-ish news on that front, though: Fitz will be closing its doors after that final Pegstar show this weekend, so the new owners can renovate nearly every damn thing about the place, from the rickety-ass floors to the nasty-ass bathrooms and beyond. Oh, and they’re planning on actually creating a real parking lot, which definitely falls in the “good-ish” column.
  • With the change in management also comes a new entrant into the Houston booking scene; Oakes and her people will be working with Transmission Events out of Austin, who are very big names up there but who haven’t done anything down here before now. Again, in the “good-ish” column for sure.

So…there we are. Lots of changes, some sadness, but some big chunks of awesomeness to go along with it. And before all that, one hell of a blowout, with a bunch of the best and brightest Fitz has played host to under the Pegstar tenure. Bright lights and retro-roots-rock dudes Buxton head up the bill, playing what’ll apparently be a set of Talking Heads songs, and then there’s shiny-sweet pop-rockers {Wild Moccasins}, throwback old-school hooligans {Sideshow Tramps}, indie-rock gang Young Mammals, murky electro-rock band Night Drive and Bang Bangz, and Austin guys Ishi, among others.

Tickets are cheap — $3 to $10, it looks like — so get on out and celebrate one last time before “Old” Fitz goes away for a while and “New” Fitz comes back to life.

Post by . This entry was posted on Wednesday, August 26th, 2015. Filed under Posts.

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