Frisco's Music Scene Faces Its Biggest Hurdle Yet, As The Only Venue In Town Sets To Close
At least for now.
Matthew Harber of Wellhouse Co., the entity behind Frisco's musical growth, confirmed to DC9 yesterday that the scene's headquarters, Lochrann's Irish Pub & Eatery, will close after this weekend.
The news comes after several court battles between Lochrann's and its landlord, Frisco Square, which all started after Lochrann's alerted Frisco Square of the bar's plan to move to the Gilley's complex in Dallas.
"We were trying to move, and because of personal guarantees that we have on our lease with the Square, the Square obligated that they should keep all of our assetts," says Lochrann's owner Deina McNabb.
After several battles in court, though, Lochrann's was allowed to keep all of its assets.
"The Square then was upset about this, and came after us personally," says McNabb."Meaning? They were suing myself and my family."
McNabb is still working on moving the bar, but the new lawsuit has slowed her plans quite a bit. Whether the bar will still move to the Gilley's complex is now uncertain, she says.
The news also comes as a big blow to Wellhouse Co., which has worked to build a music community in the North Dallas suburb for over a year now.
"This is very unfortunate on many levels," Harber writes in an email to DC9. "Most importantly, it is going to be difficult for locals, as there is not a viable alternative for consistent live entertainment [in Frisco] outside of the Top 40, dance, cover band variety."
Since before last September's Oysterfest, which brought in several national acts including Bowerbirds, Efterklang, Rhett Miller and others, Lochrann's was very much serving as the main source of original live music in Frisco. Since that festival, Wellhouse Co., with the help of Spune Productions had continued to book weekly shows, bringing top regional and even a handful of other national acts to the Lochrann's stage.
After Harber learned the news, he says his own Wellhouse Co. entity even attempted to rent the space from Frisco Square, the bar's landlord. Their efforts were unsuccessful, he says.
In the meantime, Wellhouse Co. plans on continuing its work in Collin County, hosting and promoting a summer music series at Plano's Nylo Hotel. But, mostly, Harber views this as a time to regroup his efforts to create a buzz in the 'burbs.
"We have most of the resources we need to open a restaurant/small venue in Collin County," he writes, "But [we] have to find the right location, and this may take time. We are also taking a separate look at options in Dallas and Oak Cliff."
We''ll keep you posted on his efforts.