Ricardo Guerrero: "Miami Venues Suck Dick" and I'm Moving Death to the Sun to Lake Park

RicardoGuerrero.jpg
In another instance of local music scenesters using Facebook to rail against the scene (see also: Fernando Perdomo Wants You To Know That Experimental Music is Crap), Crossfade was surprised to see a surly post from This Heart Electric frontman Ricardo Guerrero acerbically declaring that "All Miami venues fucking suck a fat fucking dick" and that he would be moving his annual Death to the Sun festival to the recently opened Snooze Theater in Lake Park, Florida.

Guerrero's statement is weighty not only for its critical, kind-of-manic tone and approach, but also because the musician, promoter, engineer, and artist is such a dedicated member of the Biscayne Corridor music and arts community.

Crossfade shot Guerrero an email to get a feel for why he's so bummed out on Miami and its venues.

We sent Guerrero a few bulleted questions and he responded with a bona fide, self-described "rant." We've broken up his message into thematic clusters.

The crux of the problem seems to be a lack of options when it comes to live music venues. Guerrero thinks Miami has so few that he'd rather take his festival an hour north to The Snooze, a spot that matches the spirit of his event.

In the course of detailing the problems with Miami's venues, he touched upon several spaces, new and old, still around and now defunct.

I am very disappointed in the lack of options Miami has to offer. I would like for anyone to offer a retort to this.

Although I love it, respect it, and love playing it (it's actually my favorite place to play in Miami), Churchills' ratio of shitty shows to good shows is astounding. I do like that anyone can play there though, and I am happy it exists.

Sadly, Goo Gallery, Chum Bucket, and other DIY venues have all been shut down. Sweat Records is one of the only decent places you can book an out of town band. Eve, Grand Central, Bardot, Villa 221, and places like that cater to a South Beach/DWNTWN condo/trust-fund hipster crowd. Bar was okay, but like all things Miami, it did not last. There is practically no place, except for Churchill's and Sweat (which are in the same building) to book a DIY show.

I just feel there is a lack of places that support the underground music scene here. It feels like you're always fighting management when dealing with the places that are available. They refuse to pay bands, offer decent drink prices, or even pay for flyer costs.
He went on to explain how The Snooze offers a contrast to his issues with clubs in Miami.
The Snooze is a blessing to the South Florida music scene. Formerly known as The Orange Door, The Snooze is now being run by members of the bands Cop City/Chill Pillars and Love Handles. They have been the most accommodating, friendly, respectful, and professional people to work with in years. I've played as This Heart Electric a few times, attended Zitfest and a few other local shows there. They also host an array of events outside of "the scene", which is just wonderful for the community. I am excited to bring DEATH TO THE SUN to The Snooze. It's time to break the borders between counties and unite!
After speaking his mind, Guerrero brought shit back to the point, which is apparently rockin', rollin', and havin' a good time.
My plans for DTTS are to stick to my flawless formula: a shitload of excellent, hand-picked south Florida bands, no cover, and cheap drinks for all. It's a farewell to summer celebration, so I want to make sure everyone can partake and fucking lose their shit.
Follow Crossfade on Facebook and Twitter @Crossfade_SFL.

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118 comments
Chico Biscayne
Chico Biscayne

"Beach/DWNTWN condo/trust-fund hipster crowd" ? seriously bro, get over yourself. You're the epitome of this stereotypical hipster you're vilifying. How about the "omg, look how cool I am, I throw awesome shows because I just want to support the shitty miami scene" That argument is so fucking played! If you can't deal with Miami, great then get the fuck out, but don't talk shit about clubs like Eve, Grand Central and Bardot that are actually doing really cool things. All the people who own or run all the places u bash in your response are people that have worked their ASSES off to make the scene here what it is. You don't like the way the available venues work in Miami? Open up your own place and stop talking shit. The fact that you have the nerve to denigrate the crowds that support the few venues that are available to bolster your own efforts and struggles makes you a self-indulgent asshole and totally negates any shred of sympathy for your argument. 

Mikey R.
Mikey R.

Ricardo, you and I are gonna fight tomorrow outside RokBurger.

Stephanie Heeeeey Berzon
Stephanie Heeeeey Berzon

I personally left the state because starting something in Florida reminded me of this:http://www.sparknotes.com/phil...

If you are creative and have "made" it beyond the phallic shaped state than more applause and cheers to you because it's much more difficult - the environment is totally unsupportive of creativity in comparison to other international cities. But Miami and South Florida harbors musical geniuses that deserve much more recognition that I fear they will never get. 

I encourage you all to leave if you have the desire. And if you stay than you will stay. 

Your mom
Your mom

Miami is full of shit, or full of shit talkers and shit thinkers.  Anyone who's actually doing something worthwhile has to escape.  Like Louis R. once said "If you're too dumb for NY or too ugly for LA, theres always MIA"  not that brains or beauty are the only things that count but miami generally lacks balls.  It's tuesday night, where do you go to have a good time with smart, pretty, ballsy people? Fuck you ugly, dumb wimpy miami.  Shaun Apple-Pie

WTF
WTF

HAVE YOU BEEN THERE MAURICIO? DONT JUST A VENUE BY ITS NAME HOMO

234234sda
234234sda

Why won't Adam Huss admit he was regularly paid money to suck Robert Marquetti's incredibly black cock in the warehouse next to the Alley

IVAN records
IVAN records

ehhh mehhhh gehhhh i think i blacked out there for a secondis the thread still there ehhhhhhh mehhh

Chuck Livid
Chuck Livid

I don't think New Times/Crossfade had any idea how big this thread would get. Shit I think it's topping any piece on Rick Scott they've done. You know why? Because everyone already knows Rick Scott's a criminal thug and everyone hates him. But talk about the Miami music scene and all hell breaks loose. Note to NTM/Crossfade- keep covering music scene topics. We'll all either kill each other or we'll all hang out and get shit-faced on your account! How about Friday at Foxes? You got a tab there right? Awesome! 

Chuck Livid
Chuck Livid

Adam,Read my earlier comment about the lack of house shows in Miami & how bad of an idea grants are to punk shows. I run a label (that ironically carries Bulletproof Tiger among its roster) I'm not also opening a venue and shouldn't have to. Miami has enough already. Ricardo Guerrero from what I'm coming to find out is a pretty decent organizer/promoter and he shouldn't have to open up a place of business either. He like myself are already doing our part. 

The point of this whole discussion is to acknowledge what's fucked up in this scene and fix it. Telling people to leave Miami isn't exactly constructive criticism but rather lazy arm-chair babble. It is settling for shitty conditions that allow bands to get fucked over and honest promoters to have to find other locales that will have them. 

Your comment reads like the only thing you read from this piece was the title and the ridiculously stupid "green room" comment. 

People ARE walking out of that metaphorical door of yours and that's the reason this piece has garnered the attention it has.

wah wah wah
wah wah wah

Guerrero sounds like a dream to work with. Not surprised he had to leave the city to find a venue willing to withstand his own personal brand of idiocy.

Flinging insults to other promoters, venues, musicians? Good riddence. Miami's scene gets better with you out of it.

Adam
Adam

This is simple if you are going to go on a tirade about the Miami scene....

Get off your ass, since there are no decent or worthy venues in your eyes, and get a grant, or take out a loan, and open a place you would be proud to call a local venue.

There is an amazing amount of good music coming out locally and spanning across many genre. Those bands continue to network and support one another. Shows can be found in the most random of spots at this point such as Foxs Lounge in South Miami which remodeled and is a nice intimate venue. or Kris Huesby of Bulletproof Tigers House which i know has opened its door and living room to many bands and consistently has had 50-60 piled in there to support music.

Bitch and moan all you want but if its the venue situation that disgusts you then get off your ass and do something about it.

As for the person who said a venue with a green room, unless your a highly known band which you would most likely be playing Fillmore or Grand Central, a green room is just dumb. You gain notice and exposure by socializing with those who come to see you play, not sitting in a room eating catering and drinking Fiji water with a holier then thou attitude.

.....but as always with most complaints about Miami, if you dont like it, there's the door.

Chuck Livid
Chuck Livid

After a few days of seeing this thread grow I've come to the conclusion that a lot of the issues in the Miami scene pertain to 3 things- Promoters, venues & bands.

As someone that runs a label my first line of defense to bands touring or playing shows is to always look out for the band. I treat these situations just like anyone would in regards to friends and family. I've got their backs and they know it. Usually the bands themselves don't care if they get paid or not at non-free shows. I always strive for them to get paid because I know that if they don't get paid someone else is gonna and it's off of their backs. I've had to chase down promoters in Miami more times than anywhere else which is alarming. Case in point- a few months ago I had a promoter run off with all the door money (over $900) so that THEY could buy blow with it. 

How to fix the scene in Miami-

Venues- You need to pick better promoters to work with and actually work with them rather than not giving a fuck or letting them tarnish your businesses' name. If you run or work at a venue that doesn't routinely meet with your promoter(s) take warning- word spreads quickly about bands getting fucked over and eventually no one will play at your business. I at times have written off venues in Miami and elsewhere. I'm always real quick to pass that list along to bands so they don't get fucked over. You gotta change that shit. Also, keep up with your sound system, incorporate a free pitcher or 2 for bands as a "thank you". Booze works wonders and you're getting that shit for next to nothing. (The asshole that's going to comment on alcohol permits.. that's the cost of doing business free pitcher(s) or not. So fuck you in advance.)

Promoters- Whatever your definition of punk, diy or "what's fair" for paid shows is, remember that there's nothing punk, diy or fair about you keeping 90% of the door and paying bands 20 bucks. That just makes you an asshole. Also, don't just wake up one morning deciding that you're now gonna be a promoter. It IS the hardest job in the music industry (indie or major). It's not a "I'll spend 1 hour a week on this" kinda gig. So if you're that dude, go smoke a bowl and go back to sleep. Hopefully the next day you'll pick another "job" that doesn't kill this scene. 

Bands- Venues and promoters have almost worn its "gentlemans handshake" deals to the ground. Come up with written contracts with stipulations and remember that you're not the fucking Rolling Stones nor as important as the Ramones- make contracts to the point and consider ALL parties not just yourself. Many bands nowadays suffer from a certain "We're the greatest thing in the world and YOU must bow down to us" attitude that makes you look like a bunch of fucking whining idiots especially if you've only been around for like a week. Also, thank your sound guy at the end of the night, 99% of them will either be glad to be smoked out or at the very least get them a drink (either or, just make sure its after your set of course). Miami scene problem solved. Your welcome Miami. 

Uncle SCotchy
Uncle SCotchy

it's supply and demand really.everyone says it sucks where they are at.i used to book clubs and manage bands in San Diego. the scene was great there... but everyone there thought it sucked. San Diego bands all wanted to play in San Francisco.then u go up to play San Francisco, think its awesome, but all the bands up there think it sucks and want to play San Diego.i don't think the miami music scene is that great,,, i can easily reel-off several reasons why it sucks. but you have to admit that it has evolved quickly in the last 5 years or so.now i book the Stage. i have not been offered this show.i may have been, actually, at one point or another...but i'm pretty buried w show submissions...however, all the bands/promoters who seem to know what they are doing pretty much find a way to get a pitch in front of me. we try our best not to be genre-specific either... so before going on record saying that everything sucks for shock value because you didn't get your way,,,try exploring all your options.(it does pretty much suck,,,but i'm not sure if lake worth is the promised land)

good luck,eric

ad
ad

lol miami music scene is a piece of shit. get back to me when miami is actually putting out good music

IVAN records
IVAN records

I think DTTS would have been more viable now than everi love where miami is right now there's an urgency

BERNZ
BERNZ

MIAMI HAS NO FUCKING SCENE... signed, guy that just did a 65 city tour around the country... find me a venue here with atleast a green room and then we'll talk..fuckin pathetic

RICARDO GUERRERO
RICARDO GUERRERO

This is getting stupid. This guy just said Eve, Bardot, and Grand Central are doing great things. I can't even - well, whatever. Have fun this weekend. Peace and love.

Chuck Livid
Chuck Livid

Ricardo makes solid points. You make solid points. Let's make it better y pa la pinga!

Kristoffer Huseby
Kristoffer Huseby

eat shit.  there are plenty of people doing worthwhile things right here, with plenty of balls to boot.. if you are bored, you're boring.

Chuck Livid
Chuck Livid

Wait for it..... gay jokes! At this point I'm counting down until Godwin's Law takes effect on this thread. 

Adam
Adam

LOL. seriously the article isnt about me and some one is ANONYMOUSLY coming at me. i love it. i hope you were in a band i didnt put on a show, or something that out of all the stupid things you can say, you make a gay joke about me and rob.

and im sure you are the one who wrote it in the interview i did for the new times a month ago, so with that being said either get a new joke, or come out of the closet and stop having homosexual fantasies of me and rob. its just sad.

oh and feel free to leave a name.. heres mine... Adam Huss. come at me.

Adam
Adam

Chuck,

I know you have the Tigers on your label. i believe we have met once or twice in passing. And by all means i respect you as well as anyone who contributes something to the scene. I've been a "musician" (i use the term loosely because i sing for hardcore-punk bands therefore i dont consider my role musicianship but more of a frontman/banter/entertainer) and booked shows for many years.

By all means im not in disagreement about the issues with good bands/shitty bands, good venues/shitty venues, bands who put in hard work/bands that just wanna be handed the keys to the city.

You both pointed out things, but then i feel you reneged on your points by saying i shouldnt have to open a venue.

Step #1 of course is pointing out a problem and admitting the issue at hand.Step 2 though is contributing to the fixing of that issue.  Saying there are a lack of venues, going on a tirade about the venues, and then just relocating is like me pointing my finger at a guy raping a girl, saying hey someones getting raped, and then shrugging my shoulders and walking away.

RICARDO GUERRERO
RICARDO GUERRERO

FUCK YOU TOO wah wah wah. Add that to my shit-flinging record. :)

RICARDO GUERRERO
RICARDO GUERRERO

Hey Adam. I never said there wasn't talent here. Or that the bands suck. Some of my favorite music in the world is coming out of Miami right now. I've worked with a million venues down here, and I speak from that end. I'm in 3 fucking bands, I throw shows, I work full time as a fucking waiter, yet somehow everyone keeps suggesting that I open a fucking venue. I feel you too have missed my point. There's a different mentality to Miami. It's a small town with a big name. AND DON'T TELL ME TO GET OFF MY ASS, I GUARANTEE YOU I WORK HARDER THAN YOU AT EVERYTHING.

Kristoffer Huseby
Kristoffer Huseby

wah wah wah my scene sucks... save the scene save the scene? those of us involved are enjoying it pretty well, things can always be better, stop complaining and open your house up to a show is what i always say.. that being said, next month North & South will be playing my house along with some other bands, ill keep people updated through facebook.. DALE BRO, GO OUT AND MAKE THIS MIAMI SCENE WHAT YOU WANT IT TO BE, MENG.

RICARDO GUERRERO
RICARDO GUERRERO

I didn't say it for shock value, Eric. I'm speaking on behalf of many. I'm just the only person that has the balls to say it out loud, and on the record. I did consider The Stage, but, I didn't feel The Stage had the right feel to it. I'm not going to sit here and list the reasons why, but, I just didn't feel it. And NO PLACE is the promised land. Lake Park just happened to have my favorite venue in South Florida at the moment. The show is and will be successful not due to its geographical location, but due to the formula behind it. I know I'm going to be treated right, and generously, by the guys that run The Snooze Theater. I know every band will get drinks, without hassles from the venue, I know I will get a fair cut of the bar which I will then be able to distribute among all the bands. There's no other place I can say I trust more for a great show. That's why I chose it. It feels right. It feels fresh, it feels real. You book for a place in this city, and you yourself said "it does pretty much suck" here. I know you know what I mean then. And thanks for the luck wish, but, I rely on my ability to bend reality to my will, not luck. 

rockstar
rockstar

a green room? relax Bon Jovi. yeesh

Kristoffer Huseby
Kristoffer Huseby

you are wrong BERNZ.. it might be hidden but some of the best music in the state is coming out of miami right now. anyone that says otherwise hasn't invested any time down here.. come check it out before you bash it.. im not saying we're austin or portland or chicago or anything like that, but for those of us that give a shit the scene is here and it doesnt require a green room or a contract or anything but artistic drive and integrity, if you disagree take it up with Bulletproof Tiger, Shroud Eater, Holly Hunt, GDN, shitstorm, GxP, Eztorbo, Baker Acted, years ago, stand proud, secret arms, capsule, maruta, and countless other miami bands that have members that make music becuase they cant not, because it comes from their pores and their heart..  hell even torche played a secret show in a bar for FREE not to long ago..  to say we have no scene is ignorant and closed minded, but i hear the green room at the house of blues in orlando rulez.. not to mention the sense of community down here that i have felt for the first time in years..  say what you want about the venues our scene is here and it fucking OWNS.

Chico Biscayne
Chico Biscayne

why are u such a hater? do u realize how wack u sound?

Chuck Livid
Chuck Livid

Horrible analogy. Just ask any rape victim. Wow.

RICARDO GUERRERO
RICARDO GUERRERO

And what's with everyone being anonymous? First name, last name. Stand by your statements unmasked.

Adam
Adam

thats great and all but dont sit there and guarantee a damn thing  at me. i've been in 2 touring bands and have a new band now. worked and attended school the entire time. booked shows for 4+ years, put up bands in my home, helped book their tours and did countless hours of promo before social networking existed.

your contributing and ill respect that, but dont give me a list of things and tell me you work harder then me with a holier than thou attitude buddy.

Chico Biscayne
Chico Biscayne

I urge you to actually say this to me in person. u know where to find me. =)

Chuck Livid
Chuck Livid

I learned a long time ago that screaming and shouting doesn't get shit done. Listening and being reasonable goes along way. I'll see you there bud.

RICARDO GUERRERO
RICARDO GUERRERO

Chuck, come to DTTS and I will get you DRUNK! :) Thanks for your words. I know you got my point. Everyone gets defensive when they think you're insulting "their scene". I have always been proactive, and will always be. I'm throwing a free festival, yearly. I doubt any of the people telling me to "do something about it" have done as much as I have for Miami. In general, I'm glad people are discussing it somehow, it seemed like a skeleton in the closet for a while. It feels like most people think I'm right. I'm kind of over this whole discussion really. You're pretty calm for a dude with the last name Livid! 

Adam
Adam

then the 2nd round is on me.

Chuck Livid
Chuck Livid

Next time I'm in Miami I'll get you a beer. 

Adam
Adam

If i had bad feelings based off a conversation on the internet then i would be no better then the people i hate.

no bad feelings at all man. simply a conversation/debate

Chuck Livid
Chuck Livid

I'm not saying you condone rape, that'd be absurd. What I'm saying is that your point is dead on arrival the second you write something like that. It doesn't get the point across any faster  because people who read that are gonna go "Really? Did he just write that?" and whatever valid points you had made or were about to make go out the window. So maybe what I'm trying  to say is stay away from analogies in general to make your points. No bad feelings dude, seriously.   

Adam
Adam

offense is not my goal in saying it. as i said i took the most extreme route of  analogy in order to drive home a point quickly.

do i condone rape? OF COURSE NOT.

that being said, im not going to sensor what i say, or play it down to a lesser severity simply because someone might get touchy about it. my words, and thoughts are mine alone, just as much as i respect others with what they say, whether i agree or not, i expect the same.

that being said no offense was meant by the analogy, however i will not apologize for it.

 

Chuck Livid
Chuck Livid

I give you props for adding what you have to the conversation and I get what you're saying, seriously I do. However, in the future please don't compare psedo-bullshit scene politics or anything non-important to rape. I'm not being cute or overly p.c. about it. It's hard not to focus on anything other than that statement and it strikes a non-productive/gut wrenching nerve with myself and a lot of other people. 

Adam
Adam

seriously, it was putting a point across. thats what you chose to focus on then so be it.

wah wah wah
wah wah wah

Real men complain via their facebook status.

Chuck Livid
Chuck Livid

Ricardo, welcome to the internet. Where everyone's an anonymous arm-chair revolutionary and no one owns up to anything. 

RICARDO GUERRERO
RICARDO GUERRERO

GOOD! You're not an arm-chair ghost. I don't doubt you. WE NEED MORE PEOPLE LIKE YOU. I agree with you on many levels, I just don't think me opening a venue is the answer. I just can't take a project like that on. YOU and I should be covering the OTHER end of things. Playing shows, booking shows, helping bands book shows, planning tours, promoting our bands, etc. Opening a venue is pretty much all you should be doing if you're doing it independently, if you want to succeed. If I did that I would be spreading myself too thin. There are other jobs to be done, like what you and I do. Feel me? We can't do it ALL ourselves, as I'm sure you know. I'm sure you've done your share. It's time for others to do so as well. I am on your side. I support people like you. I just didn't feel that your comment about me solving the problem by opening a venue was the answer. You know?

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