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RecordBar’s new locale opens as a pop-up this weekend

RecordBar opening for Middle of the Map

The RecordBar is hosting a pop-up opening this weekend for Ink's Middle of the Map Fest.
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The RecordBar is hosting a pop-up opening this weekend for Ink's Middle of the Map Fest.

Almost five months to the day after it closed its site on the outskirts of Westport, RecordBar is ready to welcome the public into its new locale. At least temporarily.

Friday night, RecordBar will host live music at 1520 Grand Blvd. when it takes part in Ink’s Middle of the Map Fest. Kansas City’s Not a Planet will be its inaugural band.

For six weeks, workers have been furiously readying the space for a destination live-music venue and restaurant. They aren’t quite there yet, so Friday’s premiere won’t be a grand opening, said Steve Tulipana, who co-owns the venue with Shawn Sherrill.

“This is a pop-up opening,” Tulipana said. “We’re not finished, but we’ll be ready for the weekend.”

For the weekend, the space is piggy-backing on licenses and permits from Terrace on Grand, with whom it shares the building.

Thursday afternoon, crews were working diligently on the floor and electrical systems, but even in the later stages of completion, the room revealed its charm and potential. A large balcony runs the length of the bar, offering a great space for a VIP section or a perch from which to observe what goes on below.

The stage is bigger than its predecessor and the room itself isabout 25 percent bigger, he said. If so, that would mean capacity is about 400.

[RecordBar owners look back on 10 rewarding years]

Four more shows have been booked this month and another in June. After that, the venue will remain quiet until the end of July, when its owners expect the kitchen to be completed. Their goal: a Wye Oak show booked for July 31.

The original RecordBar opened in 2005 at 1020 Westport Road. In July, the owner of the property informed Tulipana and Sherrill that he no longer wanted them as tenants after their lease expired Dec. 31. The venue’s final show was on Jan. 2.

In its 10 years, RecordBar established itself as a destination music venue in Kansas City, hosting international, national and regional acts.

Timothy Finn: 816-234-4781, @phinnagain