With the departure of the local Irish pub in Moore Square, The Pour House Music Hall, a bastion of great live music, superb draft beers and fine cocktails since 1997, has assumed the mantle of elder statesman among the bars, bistros and party dens anchoring the downtown Raleigh, N.C., nightlife district. The Pour House Music Hall puts on concerts almost 365 days a year, helping Raleigh become the place with the most music in N.C. And with 31-year-old owner Adam Lindstaedt running the show, the venue has never been in more capable hands.
I recently caught up with the Chicago, Ill., native at the club that represents a dream he has had since he was 13.
First, tell us how The Pour House Music Hall is doing.
Last year we had over 1,000 bands from all 50 states play our stage. Before I came on board in 2012, The Pour House Music Hall mostly booked jam bands and Americana. Now, we're mixing it up with jazz, hip hop, rock, soul—introducing people to a broader variety of music and attracting a more diverse crowd—and it is working. We're also doing things like Local Band Local Beer nights on Thursdays where the shows are free and we pair up a local act with a local beer.
How did you get into the live music business?
When I was 13, I went to a show at the Metro in Chicago and there was something I just loved about it. But it wasn't the show or the band, it was the building. I decided right there, I need to be around this forever. So ever since junior high I've been working for record labels and venues and booking agents—anything in music, events and performing arts—learning all I could from every angle. My dream has always been to own my own place.
What led you to Raleigh?
I moved from Chicago to San Diego and lived there for seven years, working in the live music and performing arts industry. After I got married, my wife and I decided to look around the country for the best place to open a live music club. We traveled to 40 cities and after looking at places like Portland, Ore., Madison, Wis., and Austin, Texas, we decided Raleigh was it.
That was 2009, when you were 25 years old. Three years later you bought The Pour House Music Hall. How did it happen?
I had zero intention of buying an existing club. It's funny because The Pour House Music Hall was one of the reasons we liked Raleigh so much. There was a friendly, positive vibe that was different from any other place. After we moved I worked at local theaters in the area. When I started looking for my own place, we looked at six or seven buildings and started to get frustrated with the process when we heard that the owner of The Pour House Music Hall was looking to sell. I bought 50 percent of the business and eventually became the sole owner.
What has been your most memorable night at The Pour House Music Hall so far?
It had to be in 2013 when we booked Os Mutantes, the psychedelic pop band from Brazil. They had been around since the late 60s and were big influences on artists like David Bowie, David Byrne, Kurt Cobain and lots of others. When they contacted us I literally lost it and ran around the house for two hours! The show was just unreal—exactly what the live music experience should be. All 200 people in the room knew something magical was happening. That's why I got into this business.