Live Nation has signed a strategic partnership agreement as the exclusive concert-booking agent for two historic venues in Memphis, Tenn.: the New Daisy Theatre and The Palace. Both venues -- which adjoin one another -- are located on East Beale Street, on the east end of the stretch of Beale Street known for its high concentration of blues clubs.
Memphis fits well into Live Nation's presence in the Southeast, says Ben Weeden, chief operating officer of House of Blues. He says the Theater and Club division has about 80 venues it owns, operates or books, including numerous House of Blues venues and the Tabernacle in Atlanta, and also books about 100 tours annually. "We have the built-in content. Memphis was sticking out as a market we wanted to get into but we had to get the right partner."
The partnership is part of a larger effort to revive East Beale Street and make Memphis a more attractive city for touring artists, says Steven Adelman, one of partners developing the two venues. He says routing Live Nation tours through the New Daisy Theatre and the Palace will help improve a downtown area already experiencing growth of new condos and mixed-use projects. "That will have ripple effects across every aspect of downtown and Memphis."
The larger vision is to showcase more than music, adds Adelman. "We want to highlight local chefs and local talent and make it a one-stop shop, a regional entertainment district."
The New Daisy, built in 1937, will undergo some "cosmetic" work but will require some structural changes before a soft opening "around July 1," says Weeden. Adelman says the Palace has been closed for three years, and its improvements are "basically a rebuild," says Weeden. Its opening date is currently slated for the fourth quarter.