Adam Harding, Denver Drake, and Adam Martin – three familiar names in the local music scene – are acquiring Velvet Lounge (just down from The Duke of Duckworth), and making the place over into a new music venue, with “new lights, new sound, new name, new staff. A total overhaul.”
It’s going to be called Factory. In addition to offering up the uniqueness of the bar’s two-storey space, raised stage, and ample dancefloor, Harding says the trio want to use the space to “produce shows across a multi-genre spectrum, and maintain a level of quality. Without making that sound too much like a fast food restaurant, we just think a Factory produces a product that maintains a level of consistency. The name seems to make sense in some way.”
Harding says the trio are after a responsive, well-curated venue. “We just want to run a space where we can adapt to the overall aesthetic that makes sense for any given show. We don’t want it to be offputting if there’s a punk show on a Friday, and a dance party on a Saturday. St. John’s has always had a very community-oriented music scene historically, so we feel like we want to bring that open format venue back to the city.”
When the bar’s not open, they plan to rent Factory out as a jam space, “and hopefully facilitate an all ages scene again as well.” Something the city has strangely more or less gone without since the all ages hey day of the 90’s and early 2000s at now defunct legendary bars like The Edge, Junctions, and Calio’s.
Denver says he and the two Adams already have plenty of experience working together, and skillsets to draw on, so partnering up to launch Factory just made sense. “We’ve been working together in St. John’s with our own respective brands and creative projects like Hear/Say, Yung Dumb, Martin’s Potemtole alias, and our grapevine gigs like Profonde and Saltwater Stereo. Adam Martin is a graphic designer, Adam Harding has experience in bookings, and I have a background in managing businesses, and three of us just have an affinity for alternative music in general, so we jumped on the opportunity, and we get discounts on Jameson’s and India, no brainer right?”
Factory is set to open on March 25th, but their official opening launch will be on April 9th, featuring an eclectic mix of two powerhouse local bands – Ouroboros and Hear/Say – with one of the city’s more popular new offerings, Joe Grizzly and The Wildlife.
“We’re definitely looking forward to Lawnya Vawnya in May, a summer full of Yung Dumb parties, and hopefully the coolest local hiphop monthly to hit the island so far. It’s still in its infancy, but we’re excited to test the waters.”
As for the fate of Velvet Lounge … it’s set to take up the space formerly known as The Stetson on Water Street.