« Why Jackson Browne likes Baltimore | Main | Is Adam Lambert the new Chris Sligh? »

November 24, 2009

Inside Nadds

naddsI've got to be careful about these headlines. With a name like Nadds, the possibilities for lewd puns are endless (see this previous blog post for more about that).

Last week, I took a tour of New Age Dine and Dance in Mount Vernon, and was shocked at what I saw. 

The building that houses Nadds (227 W. Chase St.) is technically two spots in one. Until recently, the long-running gay bar Leon's was on one end and the dark, dingy Tyson's Place was on the other. A lounge connected the two.

You'd never recognize Tyson's Place now. It's much brighter, for one, and the walls are done in soft sea green tones.

The bar, with its flat screen TVs, is new. So is the stage, with the house piano, PA, guitar, bass and banjo. I can't think of another Baltimore bar with all those instruments just sitting there, waiting to be played.

"Somebody can just walk right in and play," said owner Ron Singer. "It's a lot different than what it was." ...

Singer bought the building after its previous owner, Bob Davies, passed away. Last week, Singer showed me the new couches in the lounge area between Tyson's and Leon's. Aside from a few new bar stools, not much has changed at Leon's -- yet.

Singer has great plans for Leon's, though. He wants to build a dance floor on the ground floor, a game room with a couple pool tables on the second floor, and a rooftop deck by next spring.

Nadds is open 11 a.m.-2 a.m. daily, and has a packed weekly lineup. There is figure sketching on Mondays (complete with a model), indie film screenings on Tuesdays, spoken word followed by stand up comedy on Wednesdays, open mike on Thursdays, DJs on Fridays, rock 'n' roll on Saturdays and jazz on Sundays.

"Do I think it will work?," Singer said. "Yeah."

(Photo by me)

Follow Midnight Sun on Facebook and Twitter @midnightsunblog
Posted by Sam Sessa at 1:47 PM | | Comments (21)
Categories: Bars & Clubs


I, for one, am 100 percent for dirty puns, so I think Nadds is the cock of the walk.

p.s. They're starting a comedy night called "Balls Out Comedy Night." Good thing these guys are gay - they are, right?! - because if this were a straight bar, it'd just be lame and fratty.

But based on the name, do they play Yanni? Enya? Vangelis?

Figure sketching! I'm there.

I rescind my early nomination for post of the year and nominate this post....Figure sketching? You've got to have some pretty big stones to be a model at Nadds.

Isn't Dr. Sketchy's (burlesque figure drawing) at the Windup Space on the same night at the exact same time?

Um, it's not like nude model sketching, right? That sounds like a health code violation waiting to happen.

shouldn't you have called this post Examining Nadds?

"A closer look at Nadds"

"Nadds - EXPOSED"

"Nadds - a bar named after testicles"

I don't remember its name, but I heard the place behind Nadds is a total craphole.

Hey, Chris - word on the street is that the new owner actually is NOT gay - there was a lot of fear when he bought the bar and Tysons that it was going to go to a straight indie bar {because one of the first things people heard is that he got a live performance lisensce or some such}.

Leon's has a lot of history: it's Baltimore's oldest gay bar, and one of the oldest in the U.S. still in operation. It's great the owner is keeping it around.

The changes might not help much: gay bars in Baltimore tend to be very 'locked' as far as clientele, and even with major changes (like a dance floor), I don't know that it will steal much of the biz from the Hippo (Grand Central tried and failed...miserably).

AAANNNDD Comment of the Century goes to BA.

So, does Nadds swing?

I haven't been yet (I play an occasional open mic now and then) but I'll really have to try and get my a** over to Nadds.

My band was booked for this New Year's Eve at Nadds. This gig was confirmed both over the phone and by e-mail. On the evening that I was supposed to come down and sign the contract, there were fliers for The New Years party all over the bar, but he had hired a different band and didn't even have the nadds or courtesy to tell me before I went down there. I had an offer for another New Year's gig that I turned down due to the fact that I already confirmed to play at Nadds. Now it is probably too late to get another gig, and I'm out a decent payday on one of the biggest gig nights of the year . I would discourage any musician from booking a show at Nadds or even patronizing this establishment.

I had calimari om 12-13-2009. The portion was pitiful. They gave me just enough to barely cover a lettuce leaf. You can get more for your dollar elsewhere. the little bit they gave me didn't deserve an $8 price tag. Many surrounding establishments have better quality wit a larger quantity.

Nothing screams Nadds like a loose banjo.

Stuff your sack with a gift certificate from Nadds.

Went in a couple of times, the bartenders have the personality of a bar stool

Herb Bowman.....I mean John Spokus, It is funny how your band, the Hi Gains (free plug for you there) seem way too disappointed that the P Funk Experience took your place for New Years Eve. I know as I am another band member that was hoping to play there on NYE, Big R the Owner called us that Sunday and offered us another gig right away. No harm, no fowl. We are lined up and have no poor feelings. The place is awesome for mid level bands on up. Maybe you should look into Open Mic night

The Hi-Gains were eventually able to book a replacement New Years gig that all of us are much happier playing, thanks to Nadds cancelling us.So it worked out for the better, a blessing in disguise. So thank you and Happy Holidays.
Sorry we couldn't do business with you.
All the best!!!

This place has several good beers on tap, good food, good bands for no cover charge, and a good sound system. NADDS is a great place to hear live music. The gay bar is a separate place behind NADDS.(I'll skip the obvious jokes).

Obvious shill in the above post. Vague yet positive. It has a good... It's a good place to... The good service... Good heavy sigh...

Post a comment

All comments must be approved by the blog author. Please do not resubmit comments if they do not immediately appear. You are not required to use your full name when posting, but you should use a real e-mail address. Comments may be republished in print, but we will not publish your e-mail address. Our full Terms of Service are available here.

Please enter the letter "r" in the field below:
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.

Most Recent Comments
Recent tweets
Sign up for FREE nightlife alerts*
Get free Baltimore Sun mobile alerts
Sign up for nightlife text alerts

Returning user? Update preferences.
Sign up for more Sun text alerts
*Standard message and data rates apply. Click here for Frequently Asked Questions.
  • Weekend Watch newsletter
Plan your weekend with's best events, restaurant and movie reviews, TV picks and more delivered to you every Thursday for free.
See a sample | Sign up

Photo galleries
Stay connected