Albany Bar Owners Protest Cabaret Law

Albany, NY – “Music anytime should never be a crime,” chanted Albany bar owners, musicians, and DJ’s Monday evening. The protesters marched through the streetscape beginning at Townsend Park and filed into Albany City Hall. (pictures from Pete Mason below)

Last spring city council members passed the Cabaret Law requiring businesses seeking live entertainment to purchase a permit. However, once the permits were issued, business owners were outraged to learn there were restrictions. The Cabaret Law requires music to be shut down by midnight on weeknights and by 2 am on weekends. Patrons under the age of 21 must be off venue property by 11 pm. Bar owners fear this will drastically hurt business.

Albany bar and restaurants, particularly in the live music business have been struggling. With the recent closures of Jillian’s and The Dublin Underground, protesters are distressed over losing their livelihood. The Albany bar scene has always been a late night town. Patrons do not usually start filing in until after 11PM. It is not uncommon that after party shows happen after midnight.

The Common Council is reviewing the recommendations and will hold a special meeting in the future.

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