Old What? Bar’s Closure Leaves a Hole in the Heart of Beijing’s Music Scene

A staple in China’s underground music scene has taken its final bow

With Mao Livehouse’s final show happening not too long ago and now Old What? Bar following suit, the news leaves Beijing city and its musicians in a state of shock and grief. I remember being pretty bummed/pissed that I couldn’t get to either of these spots when I went to China some years ago, and now the opportunity has unfortunately passed me by. All of the memories these venues hold for bands on the rise and their fans, it’s just all so fu*ked, especially when you take into consideration the already limited space there is for indie musicians to play in the city.

For more details on Old What? Bar’s closure make sure to read The Beijinger’s article below. The bar’s legacy will live on in the memories of all of us.

Like the lyrics of a tragic rock ballad, Beijing’s music scene continues to leave us misty-eyed. The latest heartbreaking turn in that narrative comes courtesy of Old What? Bar which – like Mao Livehouse a few months back, and a slew of other longstanding music venues in recent years – appears to have shut its doors.

Word about the closure began spreading on the afternoon of Thursday (Aug 4) when Brad Seippel – an American musician who has made a name for himself as a solo performer in Beijing under the stage name thruoutin – posted on Facebook about getting “some abrupt and shocking news yesterday which has kind of bummed me out. The Beijing underground music institution, Old What? Bar, is now closed.” He went on to lament the lack of fanfare following its quiet shuttering (a point that many fans would likely echo, given Mao Livehouse’s far more lengthy string of farewell gigs), before describing how he played his first ever gig there, and how his “former bands Yantiao and Mammals (Social Boar) would always select Old What? Bar as our first place to play in order to test out the waters before booking any other shows.”

Read the full article Here