y first long vacation of 2019 coincided with the final week of East Room, Logan Square’s infamous speakeasy slash music venue slash 4 AM bar slash place where seemingly every other 20-something Chicagoan went in order to create cherished blurry memories they’d only half remember the next day. I arrived back in town Sunday morning before 2 AM, which I suppose meant that I could’ve spent that night waiting in line for East Room’s final hurrah, hosted by the founders of streetwear shop Fat Tiger Workshop. They said goodbye by
dusting off their defunct East Room series, Sundays with the Tigers; I didn’t mind staying home, and caught up the following day via Instagram stories that showed a packed-out crowd and an impromptu performance by R&B star BJ the Chicago Kid.
East Room announced its impending closure a little more than a week before that final evening, which prompted a deluge of tweets from Chicago’s nightlife denizens. I held back, but not because I’m short on memories. I can still recall playing Jayaire Woods’s “Man of the Year” off my iPhone during my DJ set for the Aux Cord series in January 2017 after someone requested I play Lil Yachty (he appears on the song, so I did fulfill his request; people still left the dance floor in confusion). I just had a little trouble fitting all my complicated feelings about a venue I’d only sporadically spent time in into a few tweets.
and Mick Jenkins[https://www.complex.com/pigeons-and-planes/2015/09/mick-jenkins-vic-spencer-diss” target=”_blank”>Vic Spencer and Mick Jenkins).
Yes, East Room is gone, but the communities it harbored remain, and will find new places to continue to grow. And I can’t wait to see what happens next—and share it with you.