On March 6, 2013, Fremont Country Club opened, touted by its owners as downtown’s premier live music venue. In the four months since, the club has failed to live up to that promise.

Pre-opening reports had the venue playing host to local and national acts four or five nights each week. Michael Chugg, a tour booker for major acts including Radiohead and Coldplay was said to be lining up acts for FCC. Employees even claimed Coldplay had been booked for a rare club show to give the place some early notoriety and name recognition.

So what happened? Following the grand opening show by Louis Prima Jr., the club hosted a sold-out concert by Alkaline Trio (April 27), three shows as part of the Punk Rock Bowling and Music Festival (May 24-26) and little else.

At least three other shows (Escape the Fate, The Neighbourhood and Anberlin) were cancelled or moved to competing venues. Lucero, another band mentioned by employees as one of the scheduled acts for Fremont Country Club, is playing the smaller sister venue, Backstage Bar & Billiards.

It doesn’t appear things will be turning around any time soon. The only upcoming show listed on Fremont Country Club’s website is Hanson on Sept. 21.

Meanwhile, just a few blocks away, LVCS has stepped up its game. In the past few months, that club has hosted a variety of known, diverse acts, including Jello Biafra, Murder by Death, Molly Hatchet, Helmet, Fear Factory and Tone Loc.

So is Fremont Country Club rotting on the vine? We really hope not, but based on the first four months the club seems like it’s on a path to becoming the next Azul Tequila.


Category: News

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15 Responses to Fremont Country Club Seems Like a Dud

  1. Discostu says:

    I would just simply like to add that hardly ever is true investigatory journalism practiced in our country. Opinion and bias rule the press. With the strength and power of the internets these days one might try to be sure their own venue is producing a quality product first. It is very normal, but possibly not correct, in putting up a defense when one gets criticized. By the way, FCC, it isn’t a so called negative review from this site that’s “hurting” your business, it is lack of actual bands at a venue that is to have bands. Once that changes you should be just fine. Right?

  2. VegasMax says:

    Wow, lotta buzz over this. I think people need to remember this is just a blog – one man’s opinion, not a true journalism piece where investigation is done and interviews with the venue are conducted like you would expect in an accredited news source account. They tell it like they see it – which is every blogger’s right. But people shouldn’t take it as gospel or even a news article. It’s an opinion piece. In fairness to the author, he never claims otherwise.

    But people treat UGC as straight fact these days, so I don’t blame the venue for trying to respond, either, since they weren’t given the opportunity to explain when the piece was written. Nor do I think the author has a bias against the venue or wants it to fail. As he said, this blog is generally supportive of downtown efforts and I think that is part of its appeal to its readers. When FCC gets the bugs worked out, I suspect he’ll give a positive account of that, too. And I think they will.

    Good banter though. Long live the Internet.

  3. Scott Roeben says:

    Um, “…negativity-spewing, agenda-driven pseudo-vocation”? Were we reading the same post?!

  4. Benzo Jones says:

    I went there… but couldn’t find the golf course. My golf bag got heavy and I went home.

  5. Travis Forbes says:

    What struck me in the article was “So is Fremont Country Club rotting on the vine? We really hope not…” My experience with FSB.com is that it continually presents a stance that new venues will succeed and help the Fremont Street area prosper. As we all know, there have been quite a few failures, but more and more successes lately. I can certainly understand issues with licensing, however it is tough to put a positive face upon the lack of acts that have failed to materialize to date. Hopefully all will be worked out and things will proceed well for FCC.

    Regarding the closing comment by the FCC rep, I think that businesses and venues need to realize that more people are gathering information from trust blog sources and other social media outlets than ever before. The information is fresh and “un-skewed” compared to the mainstream media that many have come to mistrust. Some ownership groups in Vegas, most notably Derek Stevens just up the road, have realized and embraced this shift and have recognized the importance of blog writers tapped into the Vegas scene. I understand the need to correct, or supplement information that has been posted, but it reflects poorly upon your organization to do so in an insulting manner. You tend to drive away large groups of customers as a result.

  6. Steven says:

    The fact that your objective reporting drew such an angry response proves you were right on the mark, FSB. If FCC spent half as much time working on their music venue as they do scowling angrily through the internet, a turnaround might well have happened.

    But as you said, for now, not so much. IMHO, they need a new PR machine.

  7. Steven says:

    You would think that an entertainment venue would have all of their licensing issues sorted out BEFORE opening their doors. It doesn’t speak well of the ownership and management to have to relocate shows due to “licensing issues”.

    Sounds like someone is trying to sugarcoat the bitter truth that is reality. If the criteria for holding a concert at FCC is for it to be “sold out”, that doesn’t sound like a viable long term business plan to me. Having shows there regardless of how many tickets were sold would do more to generate buzz than only holding shows when they are “sold out”. Bills still have to be paid regardless of how many nights there are shows there…..

    • Mychal says:

      ^ Well said!
      Our group ventured into the FCC one night in May with high hopes it would be an awesome addition to Fremont East. We walked in, looked around, shook our heads, and walked back out. We ended up at the Griffin.

  8. Michael B. says:

    As a representative of Fremont Country Club & all properties under the 601 Fremont umbrella, I suggest that the writer of this blog do some investigative journalism prior to making posts about our venue.

    Had the writer done any homework, he would have been aware that no shows were cancelled; but, due to issues with City Licensing regarding special-use permits & 18+ concerts, we consequently had to relocate shows (out of respect for the artists) to venues on The Strip that cater to 18+ crowds; point being, most of the top-caliber acts we will book will only play to 18+ audiences.

    We are currently working with the Mayor and top City officials, along with Metro and Licensing, and these issues will be resolved. Until then, we will not compromise the caliber of acts that play at our venue and book lower-level shows just to open our doors. FCC will only be open for sold out concerts (i.e., every show we have held to date).

    In the meantime, we will be showcasing a plethora of private shows, as well as next month’s Vegas Music Summit and October’s Life is Beautiful festival events.

    We commend LVCS for adding to the music culture of downtown, because at FCC we don’t hate, we congratulate. (Unlike the writer of “Fremont Street Bars” blog).

    Regarding the reference to Azul Tequila: the main difference between the two situations is that unlike that venue, the owners of FCC and Backstage Bar & Billiards also own the 601 Fremont Building, which means that they are in it for the long-term & will be a stalwart in the live-music community downtown for years to come … long after this blogger has moved on to his next negativity-spewing, agenda-driven pseudo-vocation.

    • Johnny P says:

      Well, let me tell you about my experience with FCC. In May myself and four friends attended the 13th annual Punk Rock Bowling Tournament, and we all bought advance tickets for Me First and The Gimme Gimmes at $20 or $25 per person in February. This show was to feature 2 support acts and then MFGG starting at 11:30 p.m. Arriving for the show well past midnight we were shocked at the serpentine line wrapping way around the block leading to a TSA-like search experience. Once siphoned into the small entrance,there seemed to be a big problem with folks who had paid one way vs folks who had paid online or something but it was a time consuming [email protected] That was just the beginning. Once inside, the barstaff were hardly prepared to deal with crowds five deep at the bar, and from all accounts drinks folks got were either short or beers warm, at prices over what you would expect downtown. To make matters worse, the show got stalled forever, supposedly due to sound inadequacies(in a new venue?), and the headliner, MFGG, scheduled to start at 1:15, were not able to take the stage until 3:00 AM. Needles to say, we were tired, bored and thirsty so after three songs we went back to the El Cortez chugged two drinks and went to bed. If this is how FCC handles their all sold out shows, I don’t see them all selling out in the future.

    • Bubafettt says:

      Michael, you seem to have done little more than entirely support what the writer of the post stated in a way for more eloquent than this on-line temper-tantrum you posted. What was written by the author is informed, accurate and in no way disparaging of the venue. Not only that, it is very clear the writer is not the only person who feels this way. Your attempt to use semantics against the writer (if the show had” issues” and was not held at the venue, then it was a “cancelled” show at your venue) only emphasizes your lack of professional decorum on this forum, especially representing the venue (whom I’m certain would love to see how your are being very condescending and disrespectful). The venue has the right to operate how they see fit, “issues” and all, but by no means should you attack someone who wrote a well-informed and entirely accurate piece about the venue. While it is abundantly clear you are very well versed in “hateful internet lingo”, it is misdirected. As someone whom knows the author, I would suggest you do some “investigative journalism” prior to having a hissy fit online against someone whom does an amazing job.

    • FSB says:

      We appreciate your comments and wish nothing but the best for FCC. This blog has no agenda other than to provide news, information and a comprehensive guide to the bars on and around Fremont Street. Take a look at all of the blog posts on this site, and I think you’ll find that very few of them skew negative. However, unlike many Las Vegas websites, we also aren’t beholden to the bullshit PR machine that fuels most Vegas websites. We have no problem calling it like we see it. And if we’re proven wrong, we’ll gladly admit it. Like many, we didn’t think Krave Massive would see the light of day. It has, and we’re happy to report that we were wrong. We want all of the bars of Fremont to be successful.

      We sincerely hope that FCC truly becomes the premier live music venue in Downtown Las Vegas. So far, not so much.

  9. Al Visor says:

    Will these joints ever learn? You put money into renovations, sound, AC, etc. And yet you hire the cheapest staff and management you can get away with, or just give it to your friends and family. Then wonder what went wrong?

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