The W Lounge announced that it would be closing doors at the beginning of August because owner Casey Staker wanted to reinvent the business, which will open with a new name and a new focus -- chiefly, the culinary arts.
Casey Staker (left) posing for Shots in the Dark (photo by Colin Wolf)
The West Temple purveyor of electronic arts and live music has been a mainstay for a decade. And W Lounge will be missed. Several DJs associated with the establishment spoke to City Weekly:
"What can I say? It's been the main hub, verging on a communal living room, for some of the most interesting and open-minded people in the city. Hard to believe it's been a decade since we first started making sweet music and friendships there,” says DJ Mr. Jesse Walker, who first began playing downtempo music -- on a folding table by the front door -- when W Lounge opened. “The hole in the wall with two bathrooms just kept morphing and multiplying into something really special, because its staff and the owner, Casey, were devoted to the music.”
Rebecca McIntosh gave her farewell behind the decks this past Tuesday with Last Train to Soulville. She talked of her favorite memory. “It was when Tim Burgess from the Charlatans DJ'ed. I was assigned to bring him to the W. I was blown away that he was sitting in my car,” she says. “W Lounge means a lot to many of us. Casey was willing to take a chance on unconventional nights, to great success. Many will miss the club and all of the wonderful memories that we had.”
But it’s not too late for one last hell-raising week of partying. And there will be festivities each night of the week until the finale on Saturday.
Wednesday night will host LzR BASS, featuring Lowpass (V2AM), SuprTek (Positive+ & NightOwl), CEDES (NightFreq) and Jae Wonka. There is no cover. Thursday offers up the final post-Twilight event, as revelers shake their asses after hearing hip-hop legend Common at Pioneer Park.
Flash & Flare after winning the 2011 CWMA DJ of the Year at W Lounge. (Photo by Erik Daenitz)
Flash & Flare has been holding down a residency for four years. This Friday is his goodbye night with Stir Fridays, and he’ll be accompanied by Corey Bolo and Finale Grand. The 2011 CWMA DJ of the Year looks back on his time there: “A DJ who was performing there had absolute freedom to play whatever you wanted. You could honestly express yourself however you felt. The crowd was always full of real, down-to-earth people, who were only there for the music and came with open ears ready to dance to whatever you fed them,” he says. “Whether you were a fellow DJ seeing one of your favorite acts 10 feet in front of you, a person wandering off the street or a person who got dragged to the club by your friend who told you that you'd have a great time, that's what happened. You had a great time. Everyone always had a great time -- too much, sometimes, in fact.”
And the final soiree will take place on Saturday. Here’s what W Lounge wrote on the Facebook invitation: “It's all been leading up to this, the final night at W Lounge. Jace and Zack are honored to bring you the best of Ready, Steady, Go! and Indie Disco one last time, one last night. We all have some great memories from W, so it's sure to be a bittersweet night.”