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April 28, 2010

Old Talking Head/Ottobar building up for auction

this building used to be the talking head, and before it, the  ottobar, and before it, chambers.The Davis Street building (pictured) which used to house the Talking Head Club, The Ottobar and Chambers is headed for auction May 19

For a mere $10,000, one lucky person will walk away with an integral piece of Baltimore's music history.

Years and years ago, it was a bar with live music called Chambers. If memory serves, it became The Ottobar in the '90s, and then the Talking Head Club in 2002.

The Talking Head abandoned the Davis Street space in 2008 at the end of 2006, and eventually moved to a side room at Sonar. The Ottobar is now on North Howard Street ...

Many wicked parties went down on Davis Street, and many bands (such as J-Roddy Walston and the Business) cut their teeth playing there.

It was a cruddy space, with a busted pool table and an odd layout. But it was our space, and now it's gone. 203 Davis Street, you will be missed.

Thanks to Adam Meister for the tip.

(Photo courtesy of Alex Cooper, via this website)

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 2:36 PM | | Comments (11)
Categories: Bars & Clubs, Local music


I bid $1

Oh wow, Chambers. You just brought back some memories.

I went to a show at the Talking Head there in the spring of 2008. It did look pretty vacant then, although there was still (minimal) indoor plumbing.

Fishtail -- good call. I'd forgotten that they resurrected it for a while before moving it to Sonar. Fixed!

Whoever buys this will be pretty much forced to knock it down.

I propose that before they do you hold the Midnight Sun Situation in Davis Street (not the building, but the actual street.)

Bourbon Street Anti-Fest used to go on there, and I'm sure promoters from the neighborhood would be happy to put you in touch with bands to play.

I've got $27.90, a guitar pick and some lint.
In all seriousness, i hope someone buys the building and keeps it a venue. Needs MAJOR work, but here's for hope.

Two days after I moved to Baltimore in 1991 I saw the Jesus Lizard there. Crazy.

DMFS played one of the last shows hosted there. The pipes had just busted so none of the toilets worked. It was freezing outside. But instead of cancelling the show, all of the guys pissed in the alley around the corner, and all of the girls used the bathrooom at The Sidebar around the corner. That was pretty rock and roll.

Definitely remains as one of the best venues we've ever played. It'd be awesome if someone cool bought it and fixed it up, but the chances of that seem slim.

Ryan, if memory serves some of the girls pissed in the alley as well.

Played at The Chambers many times, fun place!

God I miss that ... little place. Saw some great shows there.

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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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