This Just In: Live Music To Cease At Khyber On August 1?

So says The Khyber’s calendar, and little birdies are confirming it for us. Meanwhile, rumors regarding the Khyber’s purported sale to Glen and Mike Naessens suggest that said sale may not happen after all. We’ll be following this one.

Update: We just spoke with present Khyber owner Stephen Simons, who was quick to say that the Khyber’s break from live music might not be a permanent one — and that in fact, it may just be for the month of August. The venue is pursuing other booking options at the moment, he said.

17 Responses to “This Just In: Live Music To Cease At Khyber On August 1?”

  1. Larry Says:


  2. Nate Says:

    Yeah, my band was supposed to play 8/1, and Andrew contacted me a couple weeks ago to let me know that he was going to get us added to a bill at the M Room because he couldn’t guarantee there would be any bands at the Khyber after 7/31.

  3. mikeyil Says:

    So… what’s the point of The Khyber then? Without live music it’s just a dive bar.

  4. BovineJoni Says:

    i’m equally upset and overjoyed

    upset : Dre Day 2010. I was really looking forward to Dre Day 2011. (this may still happen? it wasn’t live music…)

    overjoyed: last summer, I went to my first and last concert at Khyber. it was a three act show with all acoustic or light rock sounds. the bar management thought it would be appropriate to play ACDC the EN_TIRE_TIME, loudly, through the house speakers that also happen to be a major presense in the ‘venue’ area.
    needless to say everyone was pissed, the performers were annoyed enough to say something,and yet nothing happened.

    looks like i can make good on my vow to never see a show there again.

  5. djlynnabraham Says:

    @mikeyil you say “just a dive bar” like it’s a bad thing.

  6. jeffrey Says:

    it’s a dive bar with amazing food. Its been my go to spot in Old City. No entree over $9.

  7. DJRobertDrake Says:

    @tips … idunno … if you’re not giving up live music, why have “will no longer be presenting live music” on your website? Why not say “we’re taking the month of August off and will return in the fall, etc…”

    I’m going with the original spin ;)

  8. emmkay Says:

    hopefully it just means we’re no longer dealing with this whole music thing until the new guys get in there.

    new guys – please… don’t change a thing!

  9. John DeLuca Says:

    Fact or fiction? (cough) Lies. (cough)
    The owner of The Khyber lied about his place not being for sale (You can still find lies on and several other places). It was for sale at the time and still is today, with at least 1 sale currently in negotiations and 1 other prospective buyer “browsing” the building and business. There was also 1 canceled partnership deal. If any of these deals or others go through, the future of The Khyber is and will remain unknown.

    Once a liar, always a liar.

    The owner hasn’t cared about The Khyber in a long time (5 years at least). He doesn’t even go to the place to see how things are going. Most customers go there more often than he does! The only thing he is interested in taking care of are his ego and his money. He places blame on the bands, the staff and the numerous promoters that have stopped dealing with him over the last 10 years. The Khyber is falling apart everywhere you look. The bathrooms are a nightmare and smell like a dumpster. The entire place couldn’t even be used as pig farm. The sound system is horrible. Many bands are unhappy playing there with problems ranging from feeling unwelcome, to be shorted pay, to equipment being stolen. The upstairs is a fiasco, not to mention a death trap.

    Finally, when the press got a hold of The Khyber not doing shows, he hit the panic button. (Just like when the For Sale news hit…) The outcome is more lying to the bands, the people that love The Khyber (as well as the people that hate The Khyber), the press, and even his employees that he depends on to keep The Khyber going.

    Steve Simons needs to take a look in the mirror to see why The Khyber is in the condition it is, both physically and in reputation (locally and notionally).


    Simons, not so much.

  10. junior fudge Says:

    For all its faults, the Khyber really has been an enjoyable place. I saw Albert Hammond Jr. there a few years ago, and that alone was pretty memorable experience. Right before he came on, Julian Casablancas showed up. I had an interesting, albeit short, conversation with him in the foul-ass bathroom in which he predicted “New Jersey” would win the superbowl that year.

    It would be a shame if a place like that lost its charm, especially in an area loaded with such a cookie-cutter atmosphere of terrible bars.

  11. moderngal Says:

    It is a complete shame what’s being said. Especially on who should check with BOTH sources to get their goods. Lame that they got that sh*t quote from Stephen….and, what John said (above) sounds more like what’s going on knowing the history of the club with Simmons (never there). Possible reason that Sunnyday aren’t chiming in? They’re above the mudslinging, and probably also b/c they still have until end of July for their booking contract. And good for them. They’ve done a lot of hard work and put on some great shows at that club.

  12. thrip jackson Says:

    wait a sec: you can’t blame steve for running the khyber into the ground–the place has been a toilet for time immemorial. given, it’s a toilet at which i’ve had truly transcendent moments and some very good beers, but it’s always been awful for performers and patrons. it is what it is, and it knows that.

    and pardon me for being out of the loop, but do they really offer decent food? having spent the better part of my formative years dodging vomit there, i can’t imagine anyone ingesting anything besides alcohol.

  13. modguy Says:

    I agree with moderngal. Sunny Day seems to be doing a good job over at the North Star, a quick glance at their calendar and it seems pretty diverse and interesting; Heartless Bastards, Hot Hot Heat, Sea Wolf, Agnostic Front (?!), Bettie Seevert. Why would Simons fire them if they can still bring talent in? Guess they can’t get talent to go to the shit hole that is the Khyber. Good luck at this point finding someone who can. Does anyone think R5 would touch the place? Until Simons puts money, effort and a shit ton of TLC into that room its just going to be a space for local bands that either are really nostalgic for what the space was (and most have moved on at this point) or real up and coming bands that don’t know the difference. God, don’t you all wish it could go back to what it was? Perhaps with the right owner maybe…but defiantly not with Simons. Even still, something tells me if he sells it the sale will get fucked up and he’ll do something stupid like take the bar with him.

    And BTW, Thrip, the food is great. The menu is put together by people at The Royal and The Cantina. They have been doing that for a couple years now. I don’t miss a happy hour on Friday, and the Khyber Dog is amazing!

  14. moderngal Says:

    thrip jackson says, “the place has been a toilet for time immemorial.” uhhh, well then yeah–we can in a sense blame him for attempting to get it up past the toilet stages and then not following through. but putting it on the booking agent when the owner has his own side-level stuff going on? Ridiculous. In one comment he gave an irresponsible reply.

  15. moderngal Says:

    And the comment is especially irresponsible (made by Simons to because until the end of this month–HE HAS A CONTRACT with them to finish out their bookings for the month, and the month isn’t even out yet. What a jerky thing to do.

  16. thrip jackson Says:

    moderngal Says, “we can in a sense blame him for attempting to get it up past the toilet stages and then not following through.” apparently you don’t remember the preppy suburban-themed khyber of about ten years ago? last i checked the lawn jockey was the only remnant of that ill-advised move.

    anyways, you’ve got beef with the particulars of this; i’m just looking at it through nostalgia goggles (remember when sebadoh broke up on the khyber’s stage!). if i wasn’t terminally distracted by a big bike race i’d probably agree with you…

  17. moderngal Says:

    It’s cool to have the nostalgia goggles on thrip, i hear you. I’m just coming from the PR and business standpoint of things b/c Sunnyday def. doesn’t deserve the flak commenting over whatever brand of “new” Khyber Simon’s contemplating (second to second) in his own indecision on the Khyber’s ‘future plans’. That seems to be all him and shouldn’t in any way be pointed at/reflected upon the booking team who have worked with him through everything over the years–esp. not by making a crap public comment that he thinks will make his club or himself look good. Anyway–good luck on your race!

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