Clint Barlow, the soon-to-be-former talent buyer for Firewater, checks in today to confirm the news about the club closing tomorrow night. Turns out, despite the timing, it's not an April Fool's joke.
"No," Barlow says. "It's not. I wish it was."
Oddly enough, the club's closing has been impending for some time now, Barlow says; employees first found out that the club was eventually going to shut its doors back in September after owners got into some legal trouble. At that point, the owners told their staff that it was only a matter of time before the business went belly up. "Everyone knew it was coming. We just thought that it would be closer to June when it happened."
The fact that it did happen before June, though, has left Barlow a little bit in the lurch. With little advance warning from the owners about tomorrow night's close date, Barlow, who also doubles as Vanilla Ice's touring drummer, had booked Firewater's stage with shows for the next few weeks. As of now, he hopes to move the shows to other venues, namely the Curtain Club and the Lakewood Bar and Grill, if possible.
But Barlow has other news to report: In the past two months, he says he's made some serious headway into re-opening the much-revered Deep Ellum venue, Trees.
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"I believe I'm further along than anyone else who's tried," Barlow says. "I'm going forward with a little bit of caution. We're working on it, but we'll see."
Still, when talking to Barlow, it's quite clear that he's excited about the potential. And, though he's aware that many others have tried and failed to re-open the space, Barlow remains hopeful.
"I don't think anyone else really did their homework," he says. "We've hired a zoning consultant to look at the files. And there's a lot of things you can do down there."
Tentatively--and barring any roadblocks (which, let's be honest, is a strong possibility)--Barlow hopes to have the space open on August 1.