OLCC says No

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When I was growing up and attending rock shows at the “grown-up” clubs, it meant sporting a huge black X on both hands to signify that I was under 21. Alas, those under 21 in Oregon won’t have the experience of spending significant amounts of time trying to get that marker off their hands any time soon.

Earlier this afternoon, the OLCC voted 3-2 to reject a proposal that would have allowed minors access to music venues where alcohol was served. Thus, those currently under 21 won’t be able to attend that Stephen Malkmus show at the Doug Fir. Thank goodness Portland hosts PDX Pop Now! and other festivals where the young-folk can experience live music.

Does the OLCC really think the kids need to be sheltered from alcohol or that there would be a rash of drunken 16 year olds rolling out of a club at 1AM? What about helping the next generation appreciate live music in all settings?

8 Comments so far

  1. Setya (unregistered) on December 13th, 2007 @ 5:12 pm

    It’s disappointing that the OLCC rejected the proposal. I hope this issue will be revisited in the near future.

    And yes, hats off to PDX POP!


  2. Lady (unregistered) on December 13th, 2007 @ 6:11 pm

    I agree that music should be open to all ages. Liquor laws currently ignore liquour consumption. Big gap that needs to be addressed.

    I also think that parents and other adults should be very careful to ensure that no one drinks too much and drives. Pack on enough cash for your kids and yourself to call a cab.


  3. tenstringesquire (unregistered) on December 13th, 2007 @ 7:02 pm

    The OLCC is a prohibition-era relic that needs to go the way of the dinosaur. The harm they do vastly outweighs the good, and the power they have over Oregon’s music and nightlife options is absolutely frightening.


  4. divebarwife (unregistered) on December 13th, 2007 @ 8:28 pm

    I tried to write a post about this earlier when I heard and had a hard time coming up with a side to take.

    I agree that the OLCC should have passed the ruling…but the people supporting it did not do a good job of truly detailing what it meant. When I first heard about it I was against it because I didn’t want a bunch of kids crowding up the shows at places like Dante’s, Ash Street or Tonic (ok, so the Tonic’s not usually crowded, but still..) because to me those ARE venues, not bars. I never go to any of them unless it’s to see a show. The only redeeming value it had was getting rid of the divider moat at places that are already all ages.

    Good idea – poor sales job.


  5. brewcaster (unregistered) on December 14th, 2007 @ 6:38 am

    Ian Mackaye said it best when he testified in DC about this same issue in DC:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8TFNXUsr7gM


  6. Random Citizen (unregistered) on December 14th, 2007 @ 6:47 am

    I come from the community that Ian speaks of, so his testimony is right on for me. That passion he has about music and community is what I’ve always known, which is probably why it’s difficult for me to understand why the kids aren’t able to see good music (i.e. *not* Hannah Montana at the Rose Garden) in actual venues here.


  7. Nolando (unregistered) on December 14th, 2007 @ 7:44 am

    The rare all-ages shows I’ve played at, the kids had zero cash (wanting to trade stuff in their pockets for merch, for example) so you know they won’t afford the booze prices and most places they’d want to go to see shows (Crystal, Doug Fir, etc.). I know when I was a kid I watched shows from outside the venue ‘cuz that’s all I wanted – I wasn’t some slathering, out-of-the-OLCC’s-control beast bent on alcohol consumption. Those kids were at the parties I was skipping/not invited to/oh, boo hoo. Stupid OLCC does need to be extincted (new word?) in the names of fairness and sanity.


  8. Meghan H (unregistered) on December 14th, 2007 @ 9:04 am

    What I found interesting is the note, buried at the VERY bottom of the Oregonian story this morning…
    “The commission also agreed to let concert halls such as Portland’s Keller Auditorium and the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall allow alcohol consumption during some performances where minors are present — and not just in the lobby. The Portland Center for the Performing Arts had initially sought the rule change that resulted in Thursday’s vote.”

    So I guess if you’re a “fine arts venue”, serving alcohol in an all-ages setting is acceptable, because it’s a cultural event. Apparently live music that happens to be played at a tavern isn’t up to the OLCC committee’s standards for culture. That decision smacks of elitism to me.



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