Frenchmen Street. Photo: Uber

Would You Be Willing To Pay?

My blog last week rubbed at least one person the wrong way, but it wasn’t so much a commentary on the history of OffBeat as it was someone who spewed hatred towards yours truly.

Oh well. The internet provides the anonymity for people who feel that they have no power to say nasty things about others publicly without benefit of explanation or reason. Can’t do anything about it: web bullying has become part of life now. Social media like Facebook and Twitter have created that atmosphere and permission for everyone to share the good, the bad, the ugly and untrue, whether their intentions are honorable or not. OffBeat’s work speaks for itself.

More on Frenchmen: I’m wondering what would happen if the city enforced the “Cultural District Overlay” zoning—which requires all venues on the street to shut their doors. Obviously that doesn’t happen now. If ths zoning were enforced, and all the venues had to keep their doors closed, would the places who offered music see fit to charge a cover so that musicians could be more fairly compensated? Many don’t charge a cover now for music, and these are the ones that have open doors.

Take our poll to weigh in on whether or not you would be willing to pay a cover to hear music on Frenchmen Street. I can guarantee you that this commentary will not be popular with the clubs on Frenchmen who currently open their doors and don’t charge covers. Why? Doors are open with no cover, more people come in, more alcohol is sold, clubs make more money (a lot more). I get it, but my contention is if everyone had to close their doors (it’s currently not lawful to keep them open, but that is never enforced), the musicians would have a better chance at possibly making a guarantee and enough money to live like middle-class citizens. It works both ways: if bands and musicians can be the lure that gets patrons in to drink, then they should be able to make a good living too. Is that attitude bad? Isn’t it more equitable?

Have a great time at French Quarter Fest, don’t forget to tip the bands whenever you can, sign up for Digital Tip Jar, and come down to Frenchmen Street to hear some live local music.