Gazzarri’s (West Hollywood, CA, USA)

Club heaven on Sunset Strip in Los Angeles. Feeling the end of the 80’s rock boom at the historic club raising Van Halen. 

“Gazzarri’s” locates at the west end among the major three Clubs at Sunset Strip. This Club was famous that “Van Halen” played regularly. Going down the “Sunset Boulevard” from Los Angeles downtown side, “Whisky a Go Go” is the first, “the Roxy” is next, then this “Gazzarri’s” at the end.

After going through “the Roxy”, there are a few shops along the street. It means, a few parking spaces around. Therefore, parking a car in the east side, near the “Whisky a Go Go” or “Sunset Plaza”, then walking down to the “Gazzarri’s”.

As described in the article of the Rock Club in Los Angeles, I visited “Gazzarri’s” in 1991. At that time, “The Roxy” was the most popular, and “Gazzarri’s”, which locates at the edge, seemed to be declining in popularity.

When I entered, there were only about 10 audiences in the hall. Playing band was a long-haired, make-up, lavished glam metal band. Audiences standing in front of the stage were only two girls with 80’s-body-conscious costume, standing in front of guitar player, swaying to the music.

I was sitting at the chair located at the back side of space, and looking at the stage. There were no audiences in front of bass guitar player. Then I guess, devil made him to do it, but he looked at me and made an action to insist me, “I am here”. I could not make any reaction for that, but I have felt something empty from his expression and recognized that glam metal period really ends.

One feature of “Gazzarri’s” was that the stage was high. Usually, it is only a few tens of centimeters even if it is high, but it was more than a meter. Also, the stage was wide and band player must be comfortable. The “Gazzarri’s” stage structure was my favorite among three Rock Clubs including “The Roxy” and “Whisky a Go Go”.

I visited just once, but, “The lavish gram metal band” + “two good-looking girls” + “empty space” + “Insisting ‘I am here’ action by bass player” gave me the strong impact and memory.

As a method of Music Club operation, there is a system called “Pay to Play”. This is a system in which players can play if they pay the money to the Club. In this system, players purchase tickets in advance from the store, getting visitors by themselves and sell tickets. This system began sometime in the 1980s, and “Gazzarri’s” is one of the Clubs said to have started this “Pay to Play” system.

This Club closed in 1993. After closed, the building was demolished, then new Club, that is really no feature, “Billboard Live” has started, after that, its name is changed to “Key Club”, following, it became “1OAK” dance club.

​Visited in 1991.

​Basic Information​

​■ Name of Place:Gazzarri’s
■ Address : 9039 Sunset Boulevard West Hollywood, California, USA
​■ Performed Musician : The Doors, Van Halen, Go-Go’s, Ratt, Cinderella, Quiet Riot, Stryper, Motley Clue, Poison, Guns N’ Roses, Warrant