On the Beat

Alejandro Escovedo to christen new Raleigh club

Alejandro Escovedo will play opening night at Stag’s Head Music Hall, June 25.
Alejandro Escovedo will play opening night at Stag’s Head Music Hall, June 25.

Summer is often when the local nightclub population contracts. But so far, this year seems to be bucking that trend.

IMURJ has its grand opening in downtown Raleigh this weekend, and late June will bring another new venue to the Glenwood South district: Stag’s Head Music Hall, at 105 Glenwood Ave. just north of Hillsborough Street.

It’s a private club (although lifetime memberships cost just $1), with a capacity of 238. Opening night is June 25 with Texas country-punk soul man Alejandro Escovedo.

Also on the schedule are 2008 “American Idol” winner David Cook on July 14; Cherish the Ladies July 19-20; and Eilen Jewell with Jeffrey Foucault on Aug. 25.

The former Amra’s has actually been open for a couple of years as Stag’s Head Beer Hall & Bottle Shop. Over the past year, it has evolved into a full-liquor bar that also started bringing in acoustic bands. Finally, management decided to make live music its emphasis.

“The biggest complaint from bands was that bringing in sound and breaking it down every night wasn’t the way a music venue should operate,” said co-owner Malachy Noone. “We hadn’t even really known it was a music venue until then, but decided that was a good route to go.”

Stag’s Head’s main booker will be Bob Nocek, former CEO of Durham’s Carolina Theatre and now a show promoter.

“I’ve always loved the idea of having my own room, but I didn’t want to get into the bar business,” Nocek said. “I love the feel of this place. It’s got hardwood floors, a rustic feel and more character than a black-box club might. So we’re getting it ready to go.”

David Menconi: 919-829-4759, @NCDavidMenconi