The 2016 Year End Worldwide Top 200 Clubs by Ticket Sales was recently released by Pollstar and, at a glance, there appear to be quite a few familiar venues within the dance music world that have made it onto the list.
No. 2 in the world 🌎 We couldn't have done it without you.
Thanks to our staff and partners for an amazing year. Let's rock 2017 👊🏼 pic.twitter.com/GrX1abAjhE
— Webster Hall (@WebsterHall) January 6, 2017
Right off the bat, one of North America’s most iconic dance clubs Webster Hall is sitting pretty at #2 with 279,090 tickets sold during the tracking period. Its New York neighbor, the iconic Terminal 5, sits not too far behind coming in at #4 with close to 260,000 tickets sold on the year. While not necessarily a dance-first venue like Webster Hall is, it has nevertheless played host to plenty of dance music acts on the year. The same goes for Denver’s Ogden Theatre which has hosted a fair share of dance music shows; due to Denver’s large dance music fanbase, they came in #8 with just over 184,000 tickets sold.
LA’s Hollywood Palladium and The Fonda Theater came in back to back in 15th and 16th selling 146,205, and 141,769 tickets respectively while another popular venue familiar to dance fans on the northwest, Roseland Theatre of Portland, trumped them both with just over 152,000 tickets and 13th place on the list.
If you’re wondering what the top-selling venue was, it’s Boston’s House of Blues with a staggering 323,165 tickets sold. The only venue anywhere near, not to speak of above, the 300,000 ticket mark.
The lone international representatives in the top 20 are Metropolis in Montreal which came in at #11, and Belgium’s Ancienne Belgique which was the 5th most popular venue to meet the criteria globally. Check out the full top 200 list below.
By Dee Lockett
2. Green Day, Webster Hall (October 8)
Seeing Green Day at the Webster Hall (capacity: 1500) isn’t just a show; it’s like seeing Green Day perform at your high school prom. Stadium-level bands playing small, inexpensive venues just doesn’t happen. (Green Day generally only do when they’re performing as their side band Foxboro Hot Tubs, or for a damn good cause.) But before embarking on a stadium tour next year, the band played a handful of low-key shows to promote their new album. It’ll almost certainly go down as the closest many will ever get to them in person; it’s the best I’ve come to catching the remnants of Mike Dirnt’s sweat flung from all his bass-slapping. You have to remember: Green Day were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last year. They haven’t had to pay their dues in a venue like this for some time.
Yet, here they were — face-to-face with lifelong fans, on a victory lap. They played just three songs from that new album, instead focusing on their history. The band dusted off songs from as far back as 1991’s 1,039/Smoothed Out Slappy Hours and Kerplunk, pulled out deep cuts old and newer (“Stuart and the Ave”! “Letterbomb”!), revisited classic crowd-pleaser covers (“Shout,” “Hey Jude,” “Satisfaction”), and never even played “Wake Me Up When September Ends.” Billie Joe Armstrong described the night as an “underground show” and nothing could tarnish that familial feeling Green Day are still fighting hard to preserve.
View the full list here: http://www.vulture.com/2016/12/13-best-concerts-of-2016.html?mid=fb-share-vulture
By Andrew Sacher December 22, 2016 11:29 AM
Producer/electronic musician Machinedrum released his latest album Human Energy this year, which features guest spots from Jesse Boyskins III, Dawn Richard, and others, and he also produced much of Dawn Richard’s new album. He’s got some tour dates at the end of this month, and he’s begun announcing 2017 shows too.
He’ll do a Human Energy live A/V performance in NYC on January 27 at Webster Hall. That’s a Girls & Boys party that also includes Strangeloop & Timeboy, Taso, DJ Spin, DJ Earl, plus residents Alex English, DJ Dali, and Hiyawatha. Tickets are on sale now.
All dates are listed, with a stream of Human Energy, below.
Machinedrum — 2016/2017 Tour Dates
Dec 27 Neumos Seattle, WA
Dec 28 45 East Portland, OR
Dec 29 Fortune Sound Club Vancouver, Canada
Dec 30 Sugar Victoria, CA
Jan 27 Webster Hall New York, NY
Jun 22 ELECTRIC FOREST 2017 Rothbury, MI
On Wednesday night, Run For Cover Records held the first-ever Something In The Way festival at Webster Hall in New York City. Alex G was one of the many acts to play, and he closed his set with the debut of a new song. “This is the first time we’ve ever played this song,” he said before launching into four-and-a-half minutes of jubilant glee. Alex G’s most recent album was 2015’s Beach Music, so chances are that this comes from something he’s cooking up for next year. Watch below.
Last night, New York City’s Webster Hall hosted the riff-roaring 2016 Epiphone Revolver Music Awards.
The event—formerly known as the Revolver Golden God Awards—was livestreamed via Facebook, Twitch.TV, RevolverMag.com and GuitarWorld.com and hosted by Megadeth’s Dave Mustaine and SiriusXM’s Jose Mangin.
Performers included Megadeth, Anthrax, Lacuna Coil and Stitched Up Heart. Near the end of the show, Zakk Wylde performed a solo-guitar version of Black Label Society’s “In This River” as a teleprompter paid tribute to the many musicians we’ve lost over the past two years (there was no awards show in 2015.)
Other highlights included a performance of “A Tout Le Monde” by Megadeth and Lacuna Coil’s Cristina Scabbia and a Fallen Heroes All-Star Jam that featured Bumblefoot, members of Megadeth, Slipknot, Pop Evil, Annihilator, Mutoid Man, Butcher Babies, Red Sun Rising, Lacuna Coil and Ace Frehley.
During the jam, Butcher Babies’ Carla Harvey and Heidi Shepherd joined Scabbia for a rocking version of Motörhead‘s “Killed by Death.” Members of Pop Evil, Red Sun Rising and other bands played Stone Temple Pilots‘ “Plush,” and Frehley, Slipknot‘s Jim Root, Bumblefoot and others rocked Frehley‘s rendition of “New York Groove.”
Below, you can watch the entire awards show and see the complete list of award winners and nominees.
2016 Epiphone Revolver Award Winners
LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT: Dave Mustaine
REVOLVER INNOVATOR AWARD: Anthrax
ALBUM OF THE YEAR: Metallica – Hardwired…to Self-Destruct
Other nominees: Deftones – Gore | Megadeth – Dystopia | Meshuggah – The Violent Sleep of Reason | Volbeat – Seal the Deal & Let’s Boogie
SONG OF THE YEAR: Ghost – “Square Hammer” (winner)
Other nominees: Amon Amarth – “Raise Your Horns” | Megadeth – “The Threat Is Real” | Metallica – “Hardwired” | Testament – “The Brotherhood of the Snake”
BEST VOCALIST: Austin Carlile (Of Mice & Men) (winner)
Other nominees: Johan Hegg (Amon Amarth) | Chino Moreno (Deftones) | Jesse Leach (Killswitch Engage) | Cristina Scabbia (Lacuna Coil)
DIMEBAG DARRELL BEST GUITARIST: Dave Mustaine and Kiko Loureiro (Megadeth) (winner)
Other nominees: Mark Tremonti (Alter Bridge) | Mikael Åkerfeldt and Fredrik Åkesson (Opeth) | James Hetfield and Kirk Hammett (Metallica) | Zakk Wylde (Black Label Society)
PAUL GREY BEST BASSIST: Dick Lövgren (Meshuggah) (winner)
Other nominees: Geezer Butler (Black Sabbath) | Kyle Sanders (HELLYEAH) | Piggy D. (Rob Zombie) | Robert Trujillo (Metallica)
BEST DRUMMER: Chris Adler (for his work on Megadeth‘s “Dystopia“) (winner)
Other nominees: Billy Rymer (The Dillinger Escape Plan) | Vinnie Paul (HELLYEAH) | Tomas Haake (Meshuggah) | Valentino Arteaga (Of Mice & Men)
BEST LIVE BAND: Slipknot (winner)
Other nominees: Black Sabbath | Ghost | Hatebreed | Rob Zombie
MOST DEDICATED FANS: Pierce the Veil (winner)
Other nominees: Anthrax | Periphery | Trivium | Volbeat
BEST NEW TALENT: Avatar (winner)
Other nominees: BABYMETAL | Nails | Stitched Up Heart | Toothgrinder
BEST FILM/VIDEO: Gojira – “Silvera” (winner)
Other nominees: Giraffe Tongue Orchestra – “Blood Moon” | Kvelertak – “1985” | Red Fang – “Shadows” | Slayer – “Pride & Prejudice“
MOST METAL ATHLETE: Baron Corbin (WWE) (winner)
Other nominees: Drew Stafford (NHL) | Julianna Peña (UFC) | Matt Brown (UFC) | Robin Lehner (NHL)
On Monday night the 3rd Annual Ally Coalition Talent Show, a benefit for homeless LGBTQ youth that is the brainchild of musician Jack Antonoff, was hosted at Webster Hall. The show featured an impressive array of performers, including Lena Dunham, Antonoff’s band Bleachers, Carly Rae Jepsen, Charli XCX, Lauren Mayberry of Chvrches, Andrew Dost of Fun., comedians Jordan Carlos, Hasan Minhaj, and more. There was also a surprise appearance by Lorde.
There’s a lot of doom and gloom hanging over certain circles of the music and art scene these days, thanks to a certain orange-hued man getting trounced in an election yet somehow winning anyway, and this pervaded the entire show. Dunham devoted her time on stage to running the audience through a new age-y self-help call and response piece, adding that she hadn’t put this much effort into an outfit since November 8th. Antonoff expressed a newfound appreciation of the current president by wearing a few dozen Obama pins and opening the show with a cover of “Bloodbuzz Ohio” by The National, who performed at many Obama rallies.
Dost performed a cutting song called “Young Republicans” which he described as apropos considering that “times are getting pretty dark.” The Daily Show’s Hasan Minhaj, a Muslim American, spent his entire set discussing his anxiety about the President-elect (“being at a Trump rally is like being at a haunted house with the lights on”), and de facto host Jordan Carlos unveiled a spot-on “black Trump” impersonation. Only the artists hailing from other countries (Charli XCX, Jepsen, Lorde, Mayberry) kept their performances apolitical.
Unlike some other benefit shows, the cause remained mostly offstage here, although Mayberry did reference the topic via a cover of Katy Perry’s “Firework”, a kind of LGBTQ anthem even though the subject is not being directly addressed in the lyrics.
The night featured several standout performances offering brief escapes from the current political climate. Jepsen provided this with a stellar, sax-laden performance of Em*o*tion standout “Run Away With Me.” Charli XCX delivered an acoustic version of her hit “Boom Clap,” which proved to be a terrific song even with all of the studio pyrotechnics stripped away.
Mayberry evoked a period of political unrest in America with a plaintive cover of Joni Mitchell’s “A Case of You.” Lorde stunned the crowd with an emotionally charged version of Robyn’s “Hang With Me.” And to close out the show, the entire crew of performers gathered together onstage for a charmingly shambling yet rousing cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “Go Your Own Way.”
The current state of affairs in America has ushered in a pervasive pessimism about the future of the country, but as has historically been the case—and if these performances are any indication—it just might end up being a pretty great era for art.
The benefit raised more than $100K which will be put towards combatting LGBTQ inequality in the U.S.
Metallica. Green Day. LCD Soundsystem.
Those were just some of the names that passed through the sacred ground that is known as Webster Hall throughout 2016. The brains behind that masterfully booked operation is Heath Miller. Miller has firmly established himself as one of the key players in the New York nightlife scene. The entrepreneur has over 14 years of marketing and event production experience behind him. His constant hustle finally earned Webster Hall its first nomination for Nightclub of the Year by Pollstar after being open since 1886. The nomination is a gigantic deal because the venue books all of their talent independently. Since 2014, Miller has managed to move Webster Hall from ranking #11 on the Pollstar ticket sales charts to #3 worldwide and #1 in New York City. Before Miller could become the king of New York, he had to prove that he could be a prince in his parent’s backyard first.
“What I count as one of the first shows that I booked was basically a show in my parent’s backyard. My dad was actually out of the country at the time but I told him and I was planning on doing it and he was okay with it. We didn’t get shutdown by the police but the police did show up. They went, ‘Well, everything seems fine.’ Then they left. All was fine—we got through the night without getting into any trouble,” Miller told me with a big laugh. He would learn how to deal with trouble at a different point in his career. “I literally once had a show where lightening struck the building and we lost power early on in the day,” Miller recalled. He was able to overcome the chaos and continue down the road of becoming one of the music industry’s most influential leaders.
At only 17 years old, Miller was able to have the incredible foresight of booking the Dropkick Murphy’s. When asked how that happened, he told me, “With Dropkick it was with an agent named Stormy Shepherd who at the time was booking all the Warped Tour style punk bands and things like that. I don’t remember how I initially got into contact with her because it was so long ago now. I did a couple of smaller shows with her and then she asked me about doing that Dropkick show. That was the first time I realized I could make money from doing shows. Up to that point, I was always kind of paying bands and had a couple of bucks left over. I was like, ‘Cool, I made some money. Now I can give the band some extra money.’” Miller’s goodwill created strong friendships that paid off over the years. The booker had very kind words for longtime friend and musical powerhouse, Jack Antonoff.
“I’ve known Jack since I was 15 or 16. When he was in his first band—he recorded his demos in my dad’s kitchen,” Miller said with a glow. He continued, “It’s funny. We grew up in the same social circle and we are all friends. We would go to punk rock shows together. It was kind of funny out of all the people from then to now it’s like…I remember seeing this transition from Jack being this kid who was in this not so great pop-punk band to Steel Train to FUN to Bleachers. At some point you realize, ‘Whoah, this guy has star power. I think eventually he will land in something.’ There has been a handful of people over the years where you go, ‘I think there is talent there. He might not be at that level yet, but he will be.’ He was one of those people. He works really hard and has that underlying spark.” Antonoff recently made a deal with Miller to bring his star-studded event to Webster Hall on December 12th in support of LGBTQ rights.
“I also love that Jack is now successful and is in the position to give back. He has chosen such a great cause to work with. The work that he has done with the Ally Collation is incredible,” Miller told me. The Ally Collation will be hosting their third annual talent show that will feature an impressive lineup including Carly Rae Jepsen and Lena Dunham. “I’ve been hounding him about this for years. I would be like, ‘C’mon Jack. Let’s do this at Webster! I’ll make it as easy as possible and you will have someone really pushing it for you.’ This one will be the biggest one to date,” Miller confidently stated. He continued, “I’m really excited for that show. There are so many bands that I have a history with. There are so many artists that have such a history with Webster Hall too. Bleachers. Kesha played here a long, long time ago. Charli XCX did her first big New York City show here. It’s going to be really fun. It’s going to be a great mix of comedy and music for such a good cause.” The upcoming event will be different from most concerts at Webster Hall. Miller said that the talent show will be a seated event. “I think it’s going to be 500 seats on the floor and 200 seats on the balcony with some standing room in the back. Jack was adamant with this being a seated event rather than a typical concert. We are on track of raising a lot more money this year than when they did it at New World Stages. It’s important to me that we have a packed house for such a special night. I hear we are going to have a lot of surprises that night that I don’t even know about,” he told me. There is a reason why Heath Miller is on top of the food chain. He knows how to keep people excited and get them to pack a room.
Miller’s journey to the main room at Webster Hall started with baby steps. “I initially came into working Webster as an outside promoter and producer for the studio area. The arrangement was to come in, book the studio and book the show,” he explained. Miller continued “During that two and a half year period, it gave me the opportunity to prove myself. I learned that if I could handle the pressure with the studio, I could eventually handle booking the main room. We got to that point where the studio was doing a lot better than it was. We started booking the shows in the Marlin Room. We redid the room, the sound system and the stage. The air conditioner was older than me at that point. And then it came time where people felt secure enough with me and my abilities that they didn’t renew the contract with Bowery. It was great because we now had a unified platform between all the rooms. It was a really cool opportunity. A lot of time where the band plays the main room, they know so much of the staff here so well. It’s not like, ‘Hey. Nice to meet you.’ It’s more like, ‘Hey! It’s great to be back here!’ It makes it that much easier to work with the bands. It’s also cool on the flexibility standpoint where if I book a show into the studio or the Marlin Room that clearly has more demand than we all knew about, we could always just move the show into a bigger room without switching the address.” Always a business man, Miller knows talent when he sees it.
When asked about which artist that played Webster Hall that he was really proud of, Miller gave a thoughtful answer. “There’s so many artists that it’s hard to pick. Lindsay Stirling stands out as an artist that has achieved such a huge level of success. We were actually the first venue to do a real ticketed show for her. One of my interns came across her video and showed me it. I went, ‘Whoah. This is really cool and different.’ Lindsay was able to take the violin and make it fun and accessible. She was able to make people go, ‘It’s Friday night. I want to go out and see this show with this really cool violinist who can rock out onstage and make it an awesome party.’ Within five minutes of putting the tickets on sale, I clearly saw that she had a lot of fans. It sold out so quickly. She ended up getting an agent at the show that night. Now she is headlining SummerStage and places like that. She has taken off since then. She has had such a high level of success. It is incredible to see how far she has come. She remembers me and Webster Hall as the first place where she got her start. We believed in her enough to take a risk and try something different.” Miller continues to be a risk-taker who can’t say no to booking acts that might catch his attention.
“I focus on trying to serve the entire music community and not just people that would sporadically take the L train here,” Miller joked. He continued, “We book a lot of indie, a lot of rock, a lot of electronic and a little bit of hip-hop but I love when we get to do things that are out of the norm. It can be a jazz show or a violinist. Or a Russian show. There’s a show I’m working on now with a Chinese artist. It’s a great feeling where I can have this place and do so many different things,” Miller told me. Being the master of his domain, the exclusive talent buyer at Webster Hall has seen it all. Miller had a variety of different wild stories but one stood out from the pack.
“There’s a good crazy and a bad crazy. We got a good crazy vibe where we did this afterparty around All-Star weekend about two years ago. Everyone in hip-hop was here. Nicki Minaj, T.I. and everyone else that you could possibly think of were all on the stage at the same time. I saw Meek Mill come in with this crazy fur coat. It looked like there were 300 people on stage. It probably wasn’t but all of the stars were on stage with all of their entourages. We had this crazy hip-hop show and everyone was so well behaved. When Nicki Minaj actually showed up after the rumors of her coming through were floating around and doing this impromptu set, it’s like, ‘Whoah. This is really cool.’ You can’t make moments like that up. It was a once in a lifetime experiences.” Miller hopes to have another monumental experience by winning the Pollstar Nightclub of the Year award.
Miller has his eyes on the prize. With a prestigious award on the line, the hardworking nightlife expert is letting his big moment sink in. “It took 130 years for Webster Hall to get here. It’s nuts. It’s such a legendary building. The first Pollstar conference I went to I was about to turn 21. My joke to the people working the event was, ‘Thank you for not carding me.’ I never thought I would have the opportunity to possibly get on that stage to receive an award. Never at that time did I think I would be booking one of the top venues in the world. It has been such a fun and crazy ride. Getting to book so many acts I never thought I would work with. There’s a couple of really exciting shows that I’m working on for 2017 right now. Metallica is going to be a hard one to top but there are a couple that will fall on a similar spectrum. It’s going to be so cool,” Miller told me.
Monstercat royalty Puppet has finally released his much-anticipated Fear Is Fleeting EP and has enlisted some fairly big names in the EDM community. The six-track EP features close friends Pierce Fulton, Foria, Murtagh, Aaron Richards and labelmate Richard Caddock to give the collection an extra boost.
Fear Is Fleeting kicks off with the atmospheric and drone-sounding “Listen To The Storm” and glides smoothly into the upbeat “To Be Alive”, featuring Aaron Richards. Puppet, with the help of Foria, keep the euphoric atmosphere going with “I’m Here” and then slows it down with Pierce Fulton for the romance-inducing “Just You”. The Chicago-native stands alone with “Play Pretend”, a track with a heavy Daft Punk influence, which may be due to his introduction to dance music via the French-duo. The EP finishes big with the Murtagh and Richard Caddock assisted “Killing Giants”, a track with heavy bass and dub sounds and intense vocals.
Overall, Fear Is Fleeting is an EP which is cohesive in its atmospheric sound and immerses the listener in an other-worldly universe. Pop in your headphones and get lost for a while.
Puppet will be performing live in New York on December 12th and in Los Angeles on December 14th, as well as Sunburn Festival in India at the end of December. For more information, please head to Puppet’s official website.
Puppet play The Studio 12/12 – Tickets here
Something In The Way Festival
Boston indie label Run For Cover Records is taking over Webster Hall for its inaugural festival, and they’re bringing some of their favorite bands with them. The line-up includes British rockers Basement, dream pop group Turnover and lo-fi band Elvis Depressedly. Tickets here