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Crawl boosts local scene

Biannual event grows in price and attendance

Albuquerque's Spring Crawl just keeps getting bigger every year - from the ticket prices and crowd attendance to the advent of national acts mixing with the local scene.

Spring Crawl is a Downtown festival sponsored by the Weekly Alibi, Albuquerque's alternative arts newspaper. The crawl is celebrating its tenth year Saturday.

"We've generated more and more interest every time," said Joe Anderson, the crawl's main programmer.

It will bring in about 100 local acts performing at 20 venues and on three outdoor stages. According to an Alibi news release, the crawl is "a multi-venue, live-music event designed to promote interest in local music and highlight Downtown Albuquerque as a vibrant hub of the community and as the place to visit and spend entertainment dollars."

The business of organizing the crawl is sometimes stressful, Anderson said. Although Albuquerque has 300-350 local bands, he has to work with venues to get bands that fit their programming.

He said he is given a list of bands the venues prefer, but unfortunately, many do not make the lineup.

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"It's kind of a tough spot for me to be in," Anderson said.

The ticket prices are going up from $10 to $15 in advance and from $15 to $20 at the door.

The Alibi is responsible for paying police, the fire department and paramedics to work at the event.

The national acts - the Romantics, the Funk Junkies and Brian Jonestown Massacre - might steal a little limelight from the local acts, but the venues enjoy participating in the crawl, Anderson said.

Ed Grant, the owner of Brewster's Pub at 312 Central Ave., said his venue has been a part of Spring Crawl since its inception. He said it's a good way to introduce people to Downtown while having fun.

He added that it's all about good food and good music.

Eric May, the general manager of the Downtown Distillery at 406 Central Ave., said though his venue doesn't usually feature live acts, the experience of having bands in the bar is nice.

"It adds a different kind of element, and the business boost is nice," May said.

Spring Crawl will feature other over-21 venues like the Atomic Cantina at 315 Gold Ave.; Burt's Tiki Lounge at 313 Gold Ave.; Maloney's Tavern at 325 Central Ave.; Sauce-Liquid Lounge at 405 Central Ave.; Ned's Downtown at 407 Central Ave.; and Pearl's Dive at 509 Central Ave., among others.

The under-21 events will be at the Launchpad at 618 Central Ave.; the Sunshine Theatre at 120 Central Ave.; and La Posada Hotel at 125 2nd St.

Two main outdoor stages will be set up on 3rd and 5th streets between Central and Gold avenues.

Tickets are available at all TicketMaster outlets, Natural Sound at 3422 Central Ave. and the new Alibi offices at 411 Central Ave. Gates open at 5 p.m. Festivities will begin at 6 p.m. on the outdoor stages and will continue until midnight. Inside the venues, bands will be playing until 2 a.m.

For more information on bands and Spring Crawl, visit

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