We are Nippertown.com are deeply saddened by the announcement that Club Helsinki – the heartbeat of musical nightlife in Great Barrington, Mass. – is shuttering its doors on Monday, August 31.
But stop all of that wailing and gnashing of teeth for a moment.
It looks as though Great Barrington’s loss may very well be Hudson’s gain. Club Helsinki owners Deborah McDowell and Marc Schafler have been slaving away at a new performance-and-more venue in downtown Hudson for a couple of years now, and the grand opening might finally be on the horizon.
Here’s what McDowell and Schafler had to say in an e-mail that was sent out yesterday (Wednesday, August 19):
“This, however, is not a goodbye. The project you may have heard about for so long is nearing fruition. Construction is nearly complete on our glorious new home in Hudson, New York.
“The Hudson venue will be everything the Great Barrington club was and more; a larger capacity without loosing the intimate feel, a full service event space, recording studios, and an infrastructure custom designed for music production. It will be a Mecca for artists, agents, music fans and technicians alike.”
Meanwhile, there are plenty of great musical memories that came out of more than nine years worth of great concerts in Great Barrington. It was just a tiny little club, but Club Helsinki has attracted some wonderful musicians – Norah Jones, Mose Allison, David Bromberg, Levon Helm and Garth Hudson, Gogol Bordello, Rodney Crowell, Burning Spear, Michelle Shocked and Don Byron – to its cozy confines over the years.
It will be missed. But we’ll be keeping our fingers crossed that the Hudson hotspot turns out to be even better.
Sarah Borges and the Broken Singles will be playing Club Helsinki this Saturday. Here’s a clip of them from their appearance there on September 01, 2007: