Starlite Room marking 'incredible' 30 years as staple in Edmonton's live-music scene
EDMONTON -- A live-music venue that has both brought rock royalty to Edmonton and helped build the reputations of local bands is celebrating its 30th anniversary doing what it does best: putting on a show.
The Starlite Room is considered by many a pivotal part of Edmonton's music scene for a reason.
In its 30 years, the venue has seen Nirvana and Green Day—in 1991 and 1992, respectively, before either had become household names—grace its stage, as well as NOFX in 1994.
"North American bands and the North American touring circuit really feel that this place is a special venue," commented owner Tyson Cale Boyd.
"The energy from the crowd, the room, and there's all sorts of contributing factors. Llike artists often will play longer than what they're slotted for if they're having a good time and feeling the energy."
But the Starlite has also kept its finger on the local tempo, helping to introduce Edmonton-born bands like The Smalls and SNFU.
"Bands like SNFU set the standards of how bands should perform here in Edmonton. And I think it's created a really large, strong local scene," Cale Boyd said.
"I think just through the continuing years, this has become a very important staple to Edmonton as a whole—let alone the bands themselves."
Operating out of a 1925 building at 102 Street south of Jasper Avenue, that at times served as a Salvation Army church and the first venue of the Citadel Theatre, the Starlite has built a reputation over the last three decades, its owner said.
"The building as a whole actually and the venue, to me, very much means community."
A 30th-anniversary celebration on Saturday holds true to that legacy, promising sets by locals Shout Out Out Out Out, Mad Bomber Society and Voice Industrie.
But the milestone has management looking to future decades, as the live-music industry grows trickier and trickier to sustain financially. In recent years Edmonton has counted the closures of two live-music venues, The Pawn Shop and The Artery.
"We've seen a lot that have come and go. Live music is extremely challenging," Cale Boyd acknowledge.
But according to the owner, so long as the Starlite has an audience, there'll be a show.
"People still want to access live music. For a lot of people it's therapeutic. It's healing."
Doors open to the Starlite's 30 Years show open at 7 p.m.
With a report from CTV News Edmonton's Bill Fortier