26 Jan 2011, Posted by admin in Stories, No Comments.

Cadillac Ranch Pulls MPMF Acts

Story by Harrison Kreimer and Emily Wendler
Elise Manahan, Lauren Justice and Kevin Doyle contributed to this report

DOWNTOWN — Cadillac Ranch pulled its Saturday night lineup of MidPoint Music Festival acts, replacing them with a DJ around 9 p.m.

The bar, at 38 Fountain Square Plaza, made the decision citing a lack of profit.

Cadillac Ranch Group regional manager Matt Arnott said the decision was made after the bar experienced a 71 percent drop in sales as the first band, The Lighthouse and the Whaler, played.

“There were probably 150 to 170 people in the bar,” he said, “and by the third song there were only 25 people.”

A Cadillac Ranch bartender agreed.

“It was horrible,” said Brian Krekeler. “It would have been fine for a different establishment, like a Sunday morning coffeehouse-type band. I lost half my clientele at my bar,” he added. “I’ve never heard anything clear out a bar so fast.”

This year’s festival hosted nearly 277 bands playing in 20 venues between downtown Cincinnati and Over-the-Rhine. Dan McCabe, the executive producer of the three-day event, called this year’s festival a success late Friday. He declined to discuss Cadillac Ranch’s decision late Saturday, the final night of the festival.

Gordy Fitzwater, Cadillac Ranch general manager, said the venue had no control over the bands selected to play there. “They sent me the lineup,” he said. “You’d think somebody would go through them and go, ‘well, this probably wouldn’t be a very good fit for Cadillac Ranch.’”

The Mean Tambourines, a band from Nashville, Tenn., was scheduled to play Cadillac Ranch at 12 a.m. MidPoint organizers moved their show to the Mainstay Rock Bar, 301 W. 5th St., in Downtown.

Ryan Truso, the band’s lead singer and a guitarist, said he was worried that some of the band’s fans would be confused by a change in venue. So, he called 20 to 30 people to alert them to the new location.

Despite the inconvenience, he said he was pleased with the new location.

“The type of crowd that came out to the Cadillac Ranch probably would not have liked the Mean Tambourines,” Truso said. “We didn’t have to compete with football and a mechanical bull.”

Benita Woodall, stage manager at Mainstay Rock Bar, said the bar had two MidPoint bands cancel on Saturday.

“Well, to be quite honest … adding the Mean Tambourines worked out for us,” Woodall said.

Patrons at Cadillac Ranch had mixed reactions to the bar’s decision.

“I don’t appreciate a bar if they were supposed to let a band play and they kicked them out,” said Dina Shields, who was at Cadillac Ranch when the show stopped.

Elizabeth Tigges said The Lighthouse and The Whaler, which completed its set before the show was halted, “were very good actually.

“Some of the songs were a little slow,” she said of the Cleveland-based band. “Some of the songs were great.”

Christian Knausa said he felt bad for the band In Cadeo, which was scheduled to follow The Lighthouse and The Whaler, “because they had to drive 13 hours to get here,” he said. The band is based in New York City.

Fitzwater said McCabe did not respond well to the bar’s decision to cancel the acts.

“I was going to approach him, try to talk to him, went to put my hand on his shoulder. He looked at me and said, ‘don’t you touch me. I’m getting them out of here.’ He didn’t want to hear our justification about why we were doing it,” said Arnott.

While McCabe did not comment about the situation, he noted that the incident did not dampen his enthusiasm for the festival.

“This was a very, very successful MidPoint Music Festival this year,” he said. “It’s a reverberation we will ride to 2010.”

Story originally published by The Cincinnati Enquirer, 9/26/09
View the original story here.

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