Music News: New music venue planned near Target Field


Target Field Station
Target Field light rail station (Courtesy of Hennepin County)

The Minneapolis-St. Paul Business Journal reports that a new concert venue is being planned for downtown Minneapolis, as part of an extended-stay hotel next to the Target Field light rail station. United Properties, the developer, hopes to break ground this spring.

"A big question," notes the Business Journal, is "what capacity the venue will have. First Avenue holds about 1,500 people and Roy Wilkins Auditorium holds 5,000. First Avenue and Chicago-based Jam Productions are teaming up to re-open Palace Theatre in St. Paul, which holds 3,000." First Avenue tells the Business Journal they are not involved with the new venue near Target Field.

Meanwhile, Minneapolis City Council and Park Board committees are moving a riverfront amphitheater proposal to a more advanced stage of consideration. That proposal, which also comes from United Properties — in this case, partnering with First Ave — would put an amphitheater and other new construction on the site of a former barge depot in North Minneapolis. A considerable amount of planning and community input remain, so it will likely be a couple of years before any ground is broken there. (Star Tribune)

Today's political news

With this Coachella lineup newly announced, Philip Anschutz is coming under criticism for having supported anti-gay groups and groups that deny climate science. Anschutz owns AEG, a massive concert promoter that runs Coachella as well as several sports teams and venues; locally, the company manages Target Center. (Teen Vogue)

Numerous fans have taken to social media to say they'll be boycotting Coachella because of Anschutz's activities, but as Billboard notes, entirely boycotting AEG would mean also skipping events such as Desert Trip and several other prominent festivals and tours. Regardless, Coachella tickets quickly sold out. In a statement, Anschutz says that reports he's anti-gay are "garbage" and that when he's learned of anti-LGBTQ actions by organizations he supports, he's "immediately ceased" contributing. (Consequence of Sound)

Meanwhile, country duo Big & Rich and country rapper Cowboy Troy have signed on to play a Republican-sponsored pre-inaugural gala on Jan. 19.

The Talladega College marching band have reportedly agreed to march in the inaugural parade, which has sparked a firestorm of criticism from alumni of the historically black college. Another marching band participating in the parade, that of Marist College in New York, reports that over 100 band members are opting out of the performance. A school spokesperson says the college respects the students' right to hold political views contrary to those of Donald Trump, and the students who refuse to perform will not be reprimanded. (Billboard)

Tidal goes higher-fi

Tidal has become the first streaming service to offer "master-quality" audio. The new super-high-resolution streaming is available to subscribers in Tidal's "HiFi" tier. Other streaming services — including Pandora, Rhapsody/Napster, and HD Tracks — are planning their own high-quality audio options. (Pitchfork)

PHC announces Vernon replacement

A Prairie Home Companion has re-booked the Jan. 14 show that Justin Vernon was slated to appear on before canceling it — along with Bon Iver’s entire European tour — for "personal reasons." The show will now feature musical guests Laura Marling and Andrew Bird, along with comedian Beth Stelling.

Tom Parker home could be razed

A stone house that belonged to Col. Tom Parker during Elvis Presley’s career could be razed to make way for a car wash. Current owner Steve North has signed a contract to sell the Memphis property to the car wash developer after being unable to find a buyer interested in keeping the house intact. Some community members are organizing to save the house that was once a home-away-from-home for Elvis, but Billboard reports that saving the house looks like a long shot. If the deal goes forward, North plans to retrieve and sell fixtures including a wet bar and a black marble shower.

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