Live Music Society, a new non-profit organization, is set to award $2 million in grants to small venues across the country during its first two years. This will mark the first relief effort for the organization as clubs and music halls around the country remain shuttered and go without federal assistance.
The grants will go venues that have a capacity of 250 people or less, have been in operation for at least three years, and whose primary function is that of a music venue. The maximum one-year individual grants will be between $10,000 and $50,000 for each venue. The first wave of grants is set to be distributed among 14 venues across the country, including Dazzle Denver in Colorado, the Mercury Lounge in Oklahoma, Hotel Cafe in California, The Bowery Electric and Levon Helm Studios in New York, and more.
“Music is magic. It has tremendous power to connect people and create energy,” said Live Music Society founder and board chairman Pete Muller in a release. “There are small venues around the country that create soul-filling experiences for their audiences, staff, and for the local and touring musicians that play there. These clubs are a precious and important part of our nation’s music ecosystem, and our goal is to help them continue to be excellent at what they do.”
By day, Muller is the head of quantitative investment management at PDT Partners in New York. He is also a singer-songwriter who has previously partnered with Berklee College of Music and the New York City Mayor’s Office for Media and Entertainment to save New York’s famed Power Station.
Other members of the Live Music Society board include president of Quincy Jones Productions Adam Fell, founder and host of Colorado-based radio show and podcast eTown Nick Forster, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Nona Hendryx (Talking Heads), dean of strategic initiatives for Berklee College of Music and executive director of BerkleeNYC Stephen Webber, and many more.
“Our original goal was to support a small network of like minded clubs around the country that could share best practices and learn from each other,” Live Music Society executive director Joyce Lim said in a release. “But then the pandemic hit, and now we are simply trying to help these clubs stay afloat until they can open their doors again.”
The next round of applications for the Live Music Society’s 2021 grant cycle starts in early January. Only venues that have a capacity of 250 people or less and have operated for three years or more will be considered for grants. Further information about Live Music Society grants can be found here. See the full list of recipients below.
Live Music Society’s 2020 Grantees
The Hotel Cafe (Los Angeles, Calif.)
Dazzle Denver (Denver, Colo.)
Hi-Dive (Denver, Colo.)
SPACE (Evanston, Ill.)
The Jazz Showcase (Chicago, Ill.)
Club Passim (Cambridge, Mass.)
Jonathan’s Ogunquit (Ogunquit, Maine)
Seven Steps Up (Spring Lake, Mich.)
The Word Barn (Exeter, N.H.)
The Bowery Electric (New York, N.Y.)
Caffé Lena (Saratoga Springs, N.Y.)
Levon Helm Studios (Woodstock, N.Y.)
BOP STOP @ The Music Settlement (Cleveland, Ohio)
Mercury Lounge (Tulsa, Okla.)
The Kennett Flash (Kennett Square, Pa.)
Club Café (Pittsburgh, Pa.)
McGonigel’s Mucky Duck (Houston, Texas)
Jammin Java (Vienna, Va.)
Barboza (Seattle, Wash.)
The Royal Room (Seattle, Wash.)