Posted by: rowenawilcox | September 2, 2010

RIP Cardiff Barfly – let the music play on

Sticky floor, stale booze smell and an overly, over enthusiastic mosher right at the front (there’s always one) – the three memories of Cardiff Barfly I’ll keep with me after the prime live music venue unexpectedly shut its doors this week.

Twitter was full of ‘RIP Cardiff Barfly’ updates on Tuesday evening and its closure has been surrounded by an aptly rock and roll air of mystery ever since.

I can, however, confirm the venue will not reopen, although Barfly’s managing director, Be Rozzo, has not ruled out relocation.

“Cardiff has a rich musical heritage and many genuine music lovers, for this reason we hope at some point to return to the city in a location that better reflects the needs of the current generation of the artists and audiences,” he told me.

After being right at the heart of the city for 10 years, “we’ve [Barfly] had the opportunity to present an array of extraordinary up’n’coming artists – some of whom have gone on to become festival headliners and household names”, recognised Rozzo.

The Libertines, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and the Killers are just a few major bands who have played there and lots of local talent, including Solutions, I Am Hope and Goodtime Boys are regulars.

Rozzo added “wholehearted” praise to the staff, promoters, agents and managers and everyone who attended the charismatic music haven.

When quizzed about upcoming shows, Bozzo said: “We will endeavour to place all forthcoming gigs at alternative locations. Where this is not possible, tickets will be refunded”.

Its closure is not the first in the Barfly chain, following the Brighton venue calling last orders in 2008 and both the Glasgow and Liverpool branches doing the same last year.

As Rozzo pointed out, “Cardiff has a rich musical heritage” so let’s hope the music can play on, although I for one will miss the inimitable venue.


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