Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Save Silent Barn

via East Village Radio

New York is a vanishing city—no street or block looks the same year to year. Geographically and culturally, Silent Barn has always been “out there.” Located in the Ridgewood section of Queens, the live/work/performance space was founded in 2004 by artists and musicians on that now all-too-familiar eastward flee from Williamsburg and it’s homogenization.

The story of the artist, the developer, the well-heeled culture-vampire, young professionals, and the displacement of the working class is a tale that has been told but Silent Barn always felt different. Located on a stretch of nothing in the middle of nowhere, Silent Barn’s shelf-life as a haven for the presentation of the unmarketable in art and music seemed longer than most. The perpetually sharpie-marked among us figured as long as people dedicated to the fringe ran it and the sidewalk was kept clear, the space would continue flourish. Over the course of it’s seven years of existence, Silent Barn has nourished the careers of notable NYC acts like Vivian Girls, Woods, Liturgy, Real Estate and scores of lesser-known artists across the spectrum of the modern underground from around the world. Most recently, it was home to the massively successful Ende Tymes Noise festival.

This past weekend, Silent Barn was hobbled by a blast of cold urban reality — the venue was robbed and ransacked. Thieves walked out of Silent Barn’s doors onto Wyckoff Avenue carrying thousands of dollars of audio equipment, cash, and artwork and sent an already tight-knit community into shock. Silent Barn’s Facebook page has been lit up with well wishes and words of solidarity from fans and musicians from around the world. Benefit shows and compilations are in the works to help keep Silent Barn operating and its principals have just launched a Kickstarter to help defray the costs of replacing that which is replaceable and to make necessary renovations to keep the space safe and viable for years to come.

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