NYC’s Bowery Ballroom and Mercury Lounge partner with Live Nation Entertainment
New York’s Bowery Ballroom and Mercury Lounge are the latest of the city’s venues to partner with Live Nation Entertainment.
The company and Michael Swier, the co-owner of the New York institutions, have announced a new booking and promotions venture. Mercury East Presents will pick up where The Bowery Presents left off, as the company was officially sold off to AEG Live earlier this year.
Mercury East will not only handle the Bowery and the Mercury’s logistics, it will also see out the booking and promotions for Live Nation’s Irving Plaza, Gramercy Theatre, Warsaw, and the Ford Amphitheater at Coney Island’s Boardwalk.
According to Michael Rapino, president and CEO of Live Nation, “Swier and his team are the total package, delivering industry expertise, relationships, and landmark venues that complement the greater Live Nation portfolio.” Rapino continued, divulging on his excitement on the partnership,” Mercury East is the ideal partnership, and will allow Live Nation to bring New York’s residents and visitors more music and events than ever before.”
Swier and co-founder John Moore’s Mercury Lounge has been in operation since 1994, with the Bowery Ballroom opening just four years later in 1998. Since their opening, the two clubs have served as a home base for some of indie music’s most tantalizing talents.
The Bowery-AEG partnership solidified early this year included NYC’s Terminal 5, Music Hall of Williamsburg, Rough Trade, as well as Brooklyn Steel. The latest purchase is the final major concert venue buyout from either AEG, Live Nation, or the Madison Square Garden Company. Surely, the acquisitions spark concern over the immense accessibility of indie acts and the integrity of booking in the city.
Swier, though, saw the move to AEG as the necessary next step for the city. He will also retain ownership of the clubs with his partners, although the shows there will now be booked and promoted under the Mercury East name. Ultimately, time and the fluctuation of pop culture’s popularity will be the deterrent of the venue’s booking, though Swier ensures Mercury East will not be far removed from how he had previously run his venues. “They haven’t totally taken away the indie mind-set,” he said of the partnership. “That is my core.”