Growing up in the turbulent 1970s with a family that loved music helped motivate one particular Dilworth native to be a lifelong music fan. Gabe, a 12-year veteran inside Tremont Music Hall's cinder-block walls, has seen it all and done it all, from working the door and security to bartending and managing the classic venue.
Creative Loafing: How did you land your initial gig at Tremont Music Hall?
Gabe: My mom and Penny Craver, who owned Tremont at the time, worked on a newspaper called The Carolina Lesbian News. When I was moving from Seattle back to Charlotte my mom asked Penny, "Can you get my son a job?" Me and my appreciation to feminism and being raised by a woman, I just kinda fit right in.
How has the Charlotte nightlife/music industry changed in the last 12 years?
You've seen it go from real to corporate. For the club/nightlife thing Uptown, it's totally different. There was never really anything down there [Uptown] that was rockin' and there's not really many rock venues other than The Fillmore.
Why is Tremont important to Charlotte's nightlife/music scene?
We have made amazing strides in those 12 years. It's going back to the neighborhoods where we are gentrifying areas of the city in a manner to where we can have some openness that will create more music opportunities for us to partake in. The best thing about Tremont in my mind is seeing the progression of a local band.
What has been some of the strangest or most humorous occurrences while on the job?
It was a big hardcore show. The City of Charlotte decided to turn off power to that corridor of the city to service a transformer and didn't know there were any businesses running. I was worried that we might have a mini riot. It took some time to figure out.
What have been some of the more memorable shows that you have seen?
The Helicopters. They're from Sweden. They were all about the MC5 and straight kick-out-the-jams rock 'n' roll. I had been turned onto them out west. They played a week after I started working there. Getting to see Greg Allman on a small stage was quite amazing. Iggy Pop was awesome. The original members of Black Flag.