Times Square venue B.B. King Blues Club & Grill will be closing at the end of April after 18 years in business. The music spot says that rising rent is the cause of the shut down. In a press release Tsion Bensusan, the company’s chief operating officer, writes:
"Despite many sold out shows, the location's rent escalated to an unsustainable level, leaving us no choice but to close our doors. Unfortunately this has become a growing trend in New York City, with other iconic music venues and businesses falling victim to opportunistic property owners. This venue's legacy extends much further than the stage, playing a role in Times Square's revitalization two decades ago. It is a shame that wasn't taken into consideration regarding its future in the area. Nevertheless, we feel extremely grateful for the overwhelming support we have received from both fans and artists over the years to create some truly historic and incredible memories in this space. We hope that we can find a new place to call home very soon so we can continue bringing live music to you all."
The last show at its Times Square location will be Buddy Guy on April 29. Before then, the venue has shows with funk outfit George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic, rapper Rick Ross, hip-hop royalty Slick Rick & Doug E. Fresh and more set to close down the location.
The final performances of the Sunday Gospel Brunch featuring The Harlem Gospel Choir will take place on April 22 and 29. And the adjacent club space, Lucille's Grill, will feature closing sets by B.B. King Blues Club All-Stars, Jon Paris and A Decade of Soul.
Tickets for the closing shows are on sale now.
B.B. King Blues Club & Grill Closing Week Celebration Show Schedule:
April 17 & 18 Buddy Guy
April 22 William Bell's Memphis Soul Revue
April 23 Rick Ross
April 25 Slick Rick & Doug E. Fresh + Special Guests
April 26 El Gran Combo
April 28 George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic + Special Guests
April 29 Buddy Guy