Charlotte Is Movin On Up


Somehow I haven’t heard about the NC Music Factory until today. If you haven’t heard of it then you really need to check it out, because the plans for this are impressive to say the least.

The North Carolina Music Factory will be a 35 acre campus in downtown Charlotte reminiscent of Beale Street in Memphis or Buckhead in Atlanta.  The 300,000 Square foot campus will have 7 venues, artist workspaces, residences, restuarants and shopping.  Included in the 4 venues are 2 ampitheatres ranging in capacity from 200-5,000, an Upscale Live Music Club (2,000+), country dance hall (1,500+), Blues and Rock Club (400) and several acoustic and small stages.  To get a better idea for this the capacity at New Brookland Tavern is around 300-350, Headliners is around 600, The Music Farm in Charleston is about 1,000.  Here is Charlottes current list of venues (courtesy of All In)

Amos’ Southend
Charlotte, NC
Capacity: 1,500
The Visulite Theatre
Charlotte, NC
Capacity: 540
Grady Cole Center
Charlotte, NC
Capacity: 3,200
Tremont Music Hall
Charlotte, NC
Capacity: 1,000

Go ahead and add The Evening Muse, Lunch Box Records, The Milestone and Fuel Music Venue to the Charlotte List and subtract Tremont and maybe a couple of the ones I just listed that probably won’t survive after the NC Music Campus is built.

This music campus will no doubt pick up a lot of shows that are currently either bypsassing Charlotte/Columbia for either Asheville or straight to Atlanta.  Although I’m not really sure what shows these are because every band I want to see usually comes to either Charlotte, Columbia or Charleston.  Occasionally I drive to Asheville to the Orange Peel.

What is my opinion on all of this?  I’m not sure how much it cost to build this.  Probably around XXX million.  I’m not looking forward to Charlotte becoming a Mecca for Corporate music.  I’m sure that there will be shows there that I won’t be able to avoid. but I think I’ll stick to NoDa.  But I don’t live in Charlotte and I really think this will be great for the South Carolina music scene.

  • On the slim chance that these new venues choose people to book shows who actually keep up with music–but I’m highly skeptical after just glancing at their website–it could have a positive effect in Columbia. For instance, if these new venues AT LEAST book mainstream-indie bands, it might send a signal to, for instance, a venue like Headliners that they ought to be AT LEAST doing the same. It will be interesting to see who they book the first month, and I’m sure it will also be really upsetting.

  • David Stringer

    For some reason I have a feeling that they won’t book any good indie bands, although I really hope they do. It looks like they are trying to bring corporate Nashville to Charlotte and lump it with Nascar.

    Regardless, if Charlotte becomes a big music city indie bands will quit bypassing the area and start playing other venues in the city.

    Having worked in Charlotte I know that Money runs the city. So for this place to survive they are going to have to bring in Nickelback and various country artists. I’m sure each venue on the site will cater to each type of artists.

    It just upsets me that this will put all of the other venues out of business, but you take the good with the bad I guess.

  • Josh

    I am also interested to see what bands they bring for this place. They might put some venues out of business, but I believe Amos’ and the Noda district are probably pretty safe.

  • Stephen

    My concern is that this is going to over-saturate the music market in Charlotte. There are already at least 10 venues there. Seems like overkill to me, but I’m no businessman.

  • HT

    Charlotte seems like a weird place to put a giant music center. My guess is the calender will be full of hinder and nickelback and bret michaels and stuff.

    Everybody knows Asheville is the place to go for music in NC.

  • Whhhhaaaaat? How have I not heard of this until now!?

  • Stephen

    Hinder and Nickelback would just play the Bobcats arena though, and when their careers go in the shitter (please let this be soon) they can play at Amos’. This saddens me because I have played 4 different venues in Charlotte and always had a great time and a good experience.

    Asheville is the place to go for popular indie shows, but their local scene is horrible. Whereas, Charlotte’s local scene is pretty sweet. I would prefer Charlotte to not become like Asheville.


  • Josh

    I agree with Stephen, I dont want Charlotte becoming Asheville. Even though Charlotte could use some work on its scene also.

  • Tank Abbot

    I think Tim Robbins best explained corporatism:

    “Let me explain to you how this works: you see, the corporations finance Team America, and then Team America goes out… and the corporations sit there in their… in their corporation buildings, and… and, and see, they’re all corporation-y… and they make money.”

    I’ve never heard of the complaint “there are too many venues” but I guess there’s a first time for everything. Maybe I’m an optimist. I mean nobody here is gonna see Nickelback anyway, let alone if MAT is playin in NoDa.

  • Stephen

    I wouldn’t define “too many venues” as being a complaint, but rather, more of a concern. It will undoubtedly force other venues out of business if the new venues are successful. I don’t see enough music interest in Charlotte to support this many venues. The corporationy vibe is also pretty off-putting to me.

    Every city could use work on it’s scene, for sure. Maybe that’s why this concerns me. I think a scene is defined by it’s fans, it’s bands, and by the venues. These kind of venues don’t seem like a place I would love to go see music at.

    It will be interesting to see what kind of effect this has.


  • Biff Tannen

    Come off it there Steve. Like Tank said, people who listen to Nickleback aren’t currently driving their F250’s up to NoDa to listen to Marry a Thief. So how are NoDa venues gonna see less of a crowd? The same toity self deprecating artists will still go to the same toity venues, except now they have a new group to be “holier than”.

    On the flip, maybe people can dump a few gallons of piss in the bathrooms at the Music Factory and spray paint the walls to get that “Art Bar” vibe that is so sought after. If by “corporationy” you mean “tetanus free” then I don’t see an immediate downside. The only thing that matters is the music, not the venue and not the amount of piss.