It’s the end of an era: IOTA Club and Cafe in Clarendon will close at the end of the month.
In its nearly 24 years in business, IOTA has hosted countless live music performances. Among those who have performed there, according to a list published by the club, are numerous well-known artists.
Below is a list of some of the notable acts.
- Colin Hay (Men at Work)
- Crash Test Dummies
- Frank Black (The Pixies)
- Franz Ferdinand
- Graham Parker
- Great Big Sea
- Handsome Family
- J. Roddy Walston & The Business
- Jack Johnson
- Jason Mraz
- Jeff Pinkus (Butthole Surfers)
- Jimmie’s Chicken Shack
- John Mayer
- Marky Ramone (The Ramones)
- Norah Jones
- Ok Go
- Rufus Wainwright
- Silversun Pickups
- Tegan & Sara
- Tim Reynolds (Dave Matthews Band)
- Tristan Prettyman
(Updated at 9:25 a.m.) Arlington’s most active live music venue is closing its doors this month.
The owners of IOTA Club and Cafe in Clarendon announced this morning they have decided to close after 23.5 years in business. The venue’s lease expires after Sept. 30, which will be IOTA’s last day in business.
Despite a campaign to “Save IOTA” earlier this year, Market Common Clarendon owner Regency Centers is proceeding with a plan to revamp the retail and office development, including IOTA’s space along Wilson Blvd. IOTA called the changes “much-needed building repairs and improvements.”
In a press release, IOTA owners Jane Negrey Inge and Stephen V. Negrey said that while Regency Centers tried to make accommodations, they ultimately made the difficult decision to close the club rather than temporarily relocate during renovations and pay higher rents upon moving back.
IOTA will host concerts to raise money for the Red Cross’s hurricane relief effort tonight and tomorrow starting at 8 p.m. Currently, the last item on IOTA’s performance calendar is an open mic night on Wednesday, Sept. 27. A “grand closing” event is planned for Sept. 30, though the details have not yet been announced.
“Watch [our] website and social media for announcements,” said Inge.
More from the press release:
IOTA Club & Cafe’s main mission has been LIVE MUSIC for 23-and-a-half years. IOTA has presented some of the most creative and talented musicians from across America, including many rising stars and dedicated artists exploring and-or earning a living making music. IOTA also has hosted acts from Canada, Mongolia, England, Ireland, Scotland, Japan, Niger, China, the Scandinavian countries and others. IOTA’s top priority has always been seeking artful, original and creative live music experiences. In addition, IOTA has showcased catalytic bands, and to a lesser extent DJs, all who put on good shows for a good time for the people.
Owners Jane Negrey Inge and Stephen V. Negrey believe they have made a contribution to their hometown Arlington, Virginia through a dedication to live music and hard work at the restaurant and bar business, the mainstay of the endeavor. They believe that creative and interesting options for consumers make communities better. They view their many years fighting for the life of IOTA as well worth it and peaking in a triumph of arts and entertainment through independent small business.
The countless performances and participation of local artist-musicians in the DC Metro Area have brought joy and good times to many thousands and have sustained IOTA. Jane and Stephen are especially grateful to these musicians in addition to the touring musicians that have inspired and entertained so many.
Regency Centers, the new owner/developer of Market Common Retail (since 2016, owner of the spaces leased by IOTA since 1993 on Wilson Boulevard), have announced their plans to make improvements to the block in order to make space available for tenants at more up-to-date market levels. Regency Centers kindly offered IOTA Jane and Stephen a six-months lease extension at rock-bottom rents, ending September 30, in order for them to review their situation. They determined they would not be able to afford to participate due to the cost of a temporary relocation, much-needed building repairs and improvements, and new higher rents. Besides, IOTA’s beloved and irreplaceable ice machine, The Hoshizaki KM-630MAF, is about to bite the dust!
The support of hundreds of SAVE IOTA participants has been amazing. Jane and Stephen have not wanted to let these IOTA fans down and hope they will watch the website and social media for upcoming events and other ways Jane and Stephen hope to support LIVE MUSIC in the future and continue to participate in art activity.
Jane and Stephen are grateful for the financial and other support from friends and family that has helped IOTA prevail since March 15, 1994. They shout out big respect to three trail-blazing music venues who opened before IOTA and have been their idols: Black Cat, 9:30 Club, and especially The Birchmere. It has been an honor to share the road with these great independent businesses, rocking in the free world, where people really get off on live music, the power, art and fun of it, and the community and fellowship it creates.
Several thousand people are expected to descend on Rosslyn’s Gateway Park on Saturday, September 9 for this year’s Rosslyn Jazz Fest.
The free event at the park at 1300 Lee Highway regularly draws more than 5,000 people for jazz music, local food trucks and a beer and wine garden from 1-7 p.m.
This year’s lineup, with timings, is as follows:
- 1 p.m. – Joe Keyes & The Late Bloomer Band
- 2:20 p.m. – Xenia Rubinos
- 3:45 p.m. – Lee Fields & The Expressions
- 5:30 p.m. – The Soul Rebels
Food trucks Tacos Matadores, Rocklands BBQ, Mangia Tutti, Chix N Stix, Tapas Truck, Bon Bonni and Healthy Food Fool will be on site.
And for the second year, the Rosslyn Business Improvement District is partnering with neighborhood restaurants to offer discounts at to those attending this event. Customers must mention the code “Rosslyn Retail” at participating restaurants and receive 15 percent off their bill all day long.
The offer is available at Barley Mac, Bistro 360, Heavy Seas Alehouse, Kona Grill, Pancho Villa, Piola, Ben’s Chili Bowl, cityhouse, Key Bridge Terrace, Jimmy John’s, Continental Pool Lounge and The Perfect Pita.
Organizers said parking nearby will be limited. Public parking is available on N. Moore Street between 19th Street N. and Lee Highway for a $5 flat fee, while parking around Rosslyn will likely be limited too. Instead, organizers said they “strongly encourage” attendees to take Metro or bike to the festival, with the park a few blocks away from the Rosslyn Metro station.
Photos via Rosslyn BID.
A number of roads will close this weekend for the Columbia Pike Blues Festival.
The Blues Fest stage is located near the intersection of Columbia Pike and S. Walter Reed Drive. The free event will include several performers, food vendors, activities for children and other vendors.
The festival is taking place on Saturday, June 17. The closures, below, are scheduled from 7:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., according to a county press release.
- S. Walter Reed Drive from Columbia Pike to 9th Street S. (Motorists can use 7th Street S. to S. Highland Street as a detour)
- 9th Road S. from S. Garfield Street to S. Walter Reed Drive
- 9th Street S. from S. Highland Street to S. Walter Reed Drive
There will be temporary “No Parking” signs placed around the area and illegally parked vehicles will be ticketed or towed. If you are towed from a public street, call 703-558-2222.
For this FREE annual event, LaVette is joined by a full lineup of blues, R&B and funk performers of national and regional note, including: Rufus Roundtree and Da B-more Brass Factory; Full Power Blues Band; Sol Roots with Carly Harvey; and Jonny Grave.
Presented by the Columbia Pike Revitalization Organization (CPRO) in cooperation with Arlington Arts — the presenting arm of Arlington Cultural Affairs — the Columbia Pike Blues Festival is a recipient of Virginia Tourism Corporation’s Music Festival Sponsorship Program, which supports the growth of Virginia music festivals and their important economic impact for local communities while also building Virginia’s reputation as a music destination.
The winner of multiple awards, Bettye LaVette performed the memorable duet “Change is Gonna Come” with Bon Jovi for President-elect Obama at HBO’s We Are One concert, as well as the critically acclaimed “Love, Reign O’er Me” tribute to The Who at the Kennedy Center Honors. From the birth of soul in the 1960’s, Bettye continues to garner accolades and awards in her fifth decade in show business for her vital new albums and interpretive live shows. The rest of this year’s amazing Columbia Pike Blues Festival lineup includes:
- 6:45 p.m. — Bettye LaVette
- 5:00 p.m. — Rufus Roundtree and Da B-more Brass Factory
- 3:30 p.m. — Full Power Blues Band
- 2:00 p.m. — Sol Roots with Carly Harvey
- 1:00 p.m. — Jonny Grave
“The Pike” is fast becoming the Arlington destination for food and fun — with everything from the Salsa Room, a top Latin dance club in the DMV, and Ethiopian delicacies at the renowned Dama Pastry and Restaurant (whose baker was trained by the White House pastry chef), to down-home classics such as Bob and Edith’s diner and the now-famous Celtic House Irish Pub, which made national news this Spring when it was named by Travel + Leisure Magazine as the best place in the country to spend St. Patrick’s Day!
Enjoy food and beverages, arts and crafts vendors, and kids’ activities as you spend the day on Arlington’s oldest and newest Main Street — in one of its most diverse, vibrant communities — listening to quintessential American music that will make it impossible not to get up and dance.
The Blues Festival covers three blocks at the intersection of Columbia Pike and Walter Reed Drive. So put on your dancing shoes, grab friends and family and head to the Pike for a day of great music, food, art and fun! More info here.
The lineup is set for the 27th annual Rosslyn Jazz Fest.
The free event is scheduled for Saturday, September 9 in Gateway Park (1300 Lee Highway). It regularly draws over 5,000 music fans to the park for world-class jazz music along with local food trucks and a beer and wine garden.
The lineup this year consists of four different music groups:
- The Soul Rebels, a brass ensemble from New Orleans.
- Lee Fields & The Expressions, an old-school soul group that has been recording music since the 1960s.
- Xenia Rubinos, an Afro-Latina singer/songwriter that takes influence from hip-hop and Caribbean soul music.
- Joe Keyes & The Late Bloomer Band, a jazz/funk group from Baltimore influenced by artists such as Sun Ra and Miles Davis.
New this year, a Spotify playlist is available to listen to the artists’ work before the festival. Timings will be set at a later date. The event is presented by the Rosslyn Business Improvement District and Arlington Arts.
A new free rock concert series will kick off next week at Rosslyn’s Central Place Plaza.
The Rosslyn Rocks! Concerts are scheduled to take place each Thursday in June from 6-8 p.m. at the plaza on N. Lynn Street. Each week, a new cover band will entertain concertgoers.
Attendees can also enjoy a drink in the neighborhood’s newest outdoor space, with proceeds from sales going to the Arlington Street People’s Assistance Network.
The schedule for the month-long concert series is below.
- June 1: White Ford Bronco
- June 8: Lloyd Dobler Effect
- June 15: The 19th Street Band
- June 22: Jeff from Accounting
- June 29: The Monster Band
Thirty performances including big band, blues, soul and orchestral music as well as cabaret acts will come to the Lubber Run Amphitheater this summer.
The acts begin on June 16 with roots rock band The Grandsons, then children’s entertainer The Great Zucchini wraps things up on September 17.
The performances are being organized by Arlington’s Cultural Affairs division, with the cooperation of the Lubber Run Amphitheater Foundation, which funded the four family-friendly shows at the end of the season.
The amphitheater is located near the intersection of N. Columbus Street and 2nd Street N., about a 20-minute walk from Ballston. It is also accessible on Metrobus’ 4B route between Rosslyn and Seven Corners.
It almost closed five years ago but the foundation worked with the county to find a way to keep it open through some cost-effective renovations.
The full performance schedule is below.
- Friday, June 16 – The Grandsons (Rock)
- Saturday, June 17 – Rene Ibanez y Cubano Groove (Latin)
- Sunday, June 18 – Mr. Knick Knack! (Children’s music)
- Friday, June 23 – JoGo Project (Jazz)
- Saturday, June 24 – Caz (Soul)
- Sunday, June 25 – Arlington Philharmonic Pops for Pets (Orchestra)
- Friday, June 30 – Revelator Hill (Blues)
- Saturday, July 1 – Cissa Paz (Brazilian)
- Sunday, July 2 – Sligo Creek Stompers (Bluegrass)
- Friday, July 7 – Los Gallos Negros (Latin)
- Saturday, July 8 – King Soul (Soul)
- Sunday, July 9 – Akua Allrich (Soul)
- Friday, July 14 – Company Danzante (Contemporary Dance)
- Saturday, July 15 – Chopteeth Afropunk Big Band (Afrobeat)
- Sunday, July 16 – Kenny Rittenhouse (Jazz)
- Friday, July 21 – Little Red & The Renegades (Creole)
- Saturday, July 22 – Elikeh (Afro-Pop)
- Sunday, July 23 – Little Bit of Blues (Blues)
- Friday, July 28 – Chieck Hamala Diabate (African)
- Saturday, July 29 – Elena y Los Fulanos (Latin)
- Sunday, July 30 – Cristylez Bacon (Progressive Hip-Hop)
- Friday, August 4 – Dupont Brass (Soul)
- Saturday, August 5 – WSC Avant Bard (Theatre)
- Sunday, August 6 – The Scotch Bonnets (Punk Reggae)
- Friday, August 11 – Rico Amero Sr. (Blues)
- Saturday, August 12 – Signature Theatre Cabaret (Vocals)
- Sunday, August 13 – National Chamber Ensemble (Orchestra)
- Sunday, August 27 – “Speed” The Magician (Magic)
- Sunday, September 10 – Mystic Drumz (World Music)
- Sunday, September 17 – The Great Zucchini (Children’s Entertainment)
Flickr pool photo by John Sonderman. Kalina Newman contributed reporting.
The market, restaurant and beer garden at 5863 Washington Blvd in Westover also is applying to have furniture outdoors year-round, and reduce the number of required noise tests.
Westover Market’s application proposes that live music be permitted indoors each night, except Mondays, until 10 p.m.
The business is also requesting to have live entertainment outdoors until 10 p.m. on Wednesdays and Saturdays, later than is currently permitted, and expanding the amplified music that is currently permitted only on Fridays and Saturdays to other weekdays. That request is meeting resistance from county staff.
A report by county staff about the application notes that Westover Market has been issued two verbal warnings for not completing required noise tests in 2015 and 2016, and for its amplified live entertainment being on a non-permitted day and for going past the permitted hours on a day when it was allowed.
The report adds that Westover Market had an independent noise test earlier this month, and that it showed no violations of the Noise Control Ordinance. It also complied with the ordinance during tests in previous years, having struggled in the past with noise complaints from neighbors. Live music returned to the beer garden in 2012.
County staff is recommending that the hours and days for outdoor live entertainment not be expanded, but that indoor entertainment and year-round outdoor furniture be permitted. Staff added that a request that an administrative review be carried out in six months, then a review by the County Board in one year.
Lilith Christiansen, president of the Westover Village Civic Association, said in an email to county staff that they support that recommendation and ” believe it is important that the Westover Beer Garden be in compliance.”
At a March meeting, according to the staff report, some civic association members “noted that the Westover Market owner has not always been receptive to complaints from neighbors regarding noise. “
The 22nd annual festival is set for Saturday, June 17, from 1-8:30 p.m. at the intersection of Columbia Pike and S. Walter Reed Drive.
Jonny Grave kicks off the festival at 1 p.m., followed by Sol Roots with Carly Harvey at 2 p.m. The Full Power Blues Band follows at 3:30 p.m., before Rufus Roundtree and Da B-more Brass Factory at 5 p.m. and LaVette at 6:45 p.m.
LaVette has been touring and performing since the birth of soul music in the 1960s. She performed at the “We Are One” concert before President Obama’s first inauguration in 2008, as well as the Kennedy Center honors for The Who that same year.
Also at the festival, presented by the Columbia Pike Revitalization Organization, will be food and drink, arts and crafts vendors and activities for children.
Photo via The Kurkland Agency
Waverly Hills Profiled By WaPo — In a profile of Waverly Hills, residents call the north Arlington neighborhood — which features kids walking to school, a variety of house sizes and plenty of tree cover — “very storybook” with a “really strong sense of community.” [Washington Post]
Go-Go Concert in Arlington Tonight — The Church at Clarendon tonight will host a world premiere performance of “JuJu Symphony” and “Down With You” by the Go-Go Symphony. The event, which mixes go-go and classical music styles, is scheduled from 8-9:30 p.m. [ARLnow, Washington City Paper]
Arlington Factors Into FC Development Editorial — The City of Falls Church must allow more development so it doesn’t have to raise taxes, which would in turn increase the likelihood that it would eventually get absorbed into Arlington or Fairfax. So says an editorial that also notes: “we’ve suspected on more than a few occasions powerful interests based outside our Little City have sought to meddle in our politics to the nefarious end of forcing us to give up our autonomy.” [Falls Church News-Press]
Nearby: Dairy Godmother Has Closed — Beloved Del Ray custard shop Dairy Godmother will not reopen from its winter sabbatical, the store announced yesterday. [Washington Business Journal, Dairy Godmother]
It’s Friday the 13th — But that doesn’t matter. [Vox]
It’s January, and that means this year’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Tribute is less than two weeks away.
The 48th annual tribute event and concert is scheduled for Sunday, Jan. 15, from 5-6:30 p.m. in the Wakefield High School Auditorium at 1325 S. Dinwiddie Street.
As is the tradition, the tribute concert is free and features live music, dance and spoken word performances.
This year’s lineup of artists and musicians includes gospel singer Helen Slade, the Duke Ellington School for the Performing Arts Show Choir, Alexandria’s Kingdom Fellow Church’s Worship Without Words Mime Ministry, poet Kim B. Miller and several other local performers.
The program will also “acknowledge the current social and political climate while motivating and uplifting attendees with words of inspiration and praise,” organizers said.
Those interested in attending must reserve free tickets in advance of the performance.
Photo via Arlington Department of Parks and Recreation
Arlington County Police released photos today of a man they say sold fake tickets to a recent Drake concert on Craigslist.
“The subject posted ads on Craigslist for tickets to the Drake concert on August 19 and met the victims in Pentagon City,” police said in a Facebook post.
The photos show a heavyset white male with facial hair and glasses standing in front of the Pentagon City Metro station entrance. He’s wearing a SwissGear (or similar backpack), a baseball cap and cargo shorts.
“If you have any information about this incident or can identify this subject, you are asked to contact Detective Marseilles at [email protected],” said ACPD. “You can also report tips anonymously to Arlington County Crime Solvers at 1-866-411-TIPS.”
The Summer Sixteen Tour, featuring Canadian rapper Drake and Atlanta rapper Future, visited Verizon Center on Friday, Aug. 19 and Saturday, Aug. 20. The price of tickets to the show on ticketing websites started around $100.
The event, held from 2-6 p.m. in the parking lot next to 220 20th Street S., features “delicious wines from Spain, Portugal, and Argentina together with food tastes from restaurants in Crystal City and the region.”
There’s also live Latin jazz, wine lessons from the Washington Wine Academy, and free salsa dancing lessons from Columbia Pike’s Salsa Room.
Crystal City says Sip and Salsa ” is the D.C. region’s only inside the Beltway, outdoor wine festival with the ease of safe and responsible transit access.”
Food and drink tickets are $20 online, while food-only tickets are $10.
The local professional football team, it should be noted, won’t be playing Sunday — the Redskins will face the Pittsburgh Steelers on Monday night.
Disclosure: Crystal City BID is an ARLnow.com advertiser
A Grammy Award-winning Latin jazz ensemble is slated to headline the 26th annual Rosslyn Jazz Festival next week.
The festival will kick off at 1 p.m. on Saturday, September 10 at Gateway Park. Thousands of people are expected to attend the event, according to the Rosslyn BID, which helps organize the festival.
Grupo Fantasma, a Latin funk ensemble from Austin, Texas, is this year’s headlining act. The band’s 2010 album, “El Existentia,” won a Grammy for Best Latin Rock or Alternative Album in 2011.
Other acts scheduled to perform in the festival include vocalist Akua Allrich, guitarist Vieux Farka Touré and the Glen David Andrews Band.
“The Rosslyn Jazz Festival has something for everyone in the community,” said Mary-Claire Burick, president of the Rosslyn BID. “The festival takes a very modern and accessible approach to jazz with musical groups that have a strong millennial following.”
Along with musical performances, this year’s festival will feature a special where kids can create their own musical instruments and an “art jam” session where attendees can draw, paint or write poems inspired by the festival.
The event will also have beer and wine from local bars and a variety of snacks from area food trucks.
The Arlington County Police Department says it will shut down some roads in the area, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., for the jazz festival. Those road closures include:
- Eastbound lanes of Lee Hwy between Fort Myer Drive and Lynn Street
- 19th Street N. between Fort Myer and N. Moore Street
“Heavy pedestrian traffic is anticipated between the hours of 2:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m.,” the police department said. “Be prepared for delays if you do not detour prior to Fort Myer Drive.”
Photo courtesy Rosslyn BID