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December 11, 2008

I.M.P. to exclusively book Rams Head Live

rams head liveBethesda-based promoter I.M.P., which currently books the 9:30 Club, has become the sole in-house promoter for Rams Head Live, officials announced yesterday.

That's a lot of industry speak, which actually means that new people are deciding which shows come to one of Baltimore's biggest clubs.

A few years ago, I.M.P. had a relationship with Sonar, and frequently booked concerts there. That was back when Lonnie Fisher ran the place. After Fisher left Sonar, so did I.M.P.

I.M.P. brings some of the best possible concerts to the 9:30 Club. And I think they'll beef up Rams Head's lineup.

But there's a little more to this than meets the eye ...

Back around the time I.M.P. (which is run by Seth Hurwitz) started working with Sonar, Hurwitz didn't get along so well with Rams Head Live -- at least professionally. In a 2005 piece written by Sun reporter Stephen Kiehl, Rams Head Live owner Bill Muehlhauser accused Hurwitz of using his influence to keep high profile shows out of Baltimore.

But in the years since then, Rams Head Live showed that Baltimore could sustain a top tier club. Sonar's success and a revitalized Pier Six Pavilion further proved that case. When I revisited the topic in an article last year, Hurwitz agreed that Baltimore's music scene was on the rise.

"There's no question that without the addition of these venues, people would either just come back to Washington or skip Baltimore," Hurwitz said. "It's definitely helped Baltimore's case."

I'm glad Muehlhauser and Hurwitz are teaming up. I think only good things can come of it.

(Photo of Rams Head Live by Christopher T. Assaf/Sun photographer)

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 2:16 PM | | Comments (7)
Categories: Bars & Clubs, Local music


i'm glad we'll be getting bigger names to come to Ram's Head at the very least. it's been the kind of venue that Baltimore had so desperately needed for quite a while.

Good news (except for maybe the Tesla lovers). Thanks for passing along.

The problem with Ram's Head Live isn't so much a dearth of quality acts, but, rather, it's a [crappy] sounding venue. Getting better acts isn't going to make the place any better.

It's going to be less big names not more. A lot of acts only play Baltimore or DC. I.M.P. is going to book 9:30 Club, which they own, before they book Ram's Head. Bad news.

When will we know? When will the new booking folks make their mark, one way or the other?

Seth and Rich certainly have the smarts to birng the best to Baltimore. More than I can saw about the folks at Ram's Head,,,,

Could this be Hurwitz' revenge for missing out on the Silver Spring performance space that will soon be a LiveNation (Fillmore) venue?

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About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

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