Had all gone according to plan, Raleigh nightspot The Ritz would be reopening Wednesday night with a show by Marshall Tucker band, the 1970s-vintage Southern rock act. But the club’s reopening has been held up yet again.
“It’s basically just the normal construction delays that happen in these projects,” said Jim Yeager, spokesman for Live Nation/House of Blues.
Wednesday’s show and a Friday booking with Latino band Los Huracanes del Norte have both been canceled, with refunds available at point of purchase. A third show, rapper G-Eazy on Thursday, has been moved to Raleigh’s Meymandi Hall (also the site of bro-country singer Chase Rice’s show last month when his Ritz show had to be relocated).
Meanwhile, the latest opening-night target for The Ritz is Jan. 31 with world/reggae band Rebelution.
In decades past, the nightspot at 2820 Industrial Drive has hosted everyone from Snoop Dogg to Smashing Pumpkins. Live Nation bought it last fall with plans to operate it under its House of Blues umbrella and launched a seven-figure makeover. But the remodeling has been plagued with delays.
Once reopened, The Ritz will have a capacity of 2,000 (smaller than the former 2,500 capacity) and should be a formidable presence for theater-sized shows that often bypass the Triangle in favor of similar-sized venues in Charlotte and Asheville. Upcoming acts on The Ritz’s schedule include Umphrey’s McGee, Bush, Sleater-Kinney and Interpol.
With Live Nation behind it, The Ritz might even be compeition for the Nederlander-operated 2,700-capacity Durham Performing Arts Center -- currently fourth in the nation in Pollstar magazine’s ranking of theater venues, behind only New York’s Radio City Music Hall, The Colosseum at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas and Atlanta’s Fox Theatre.