Today’s Metro memory comes to us from journalist Mark Guarino…
“Congratulations Metro, one of Chicago’s great living institutions right up there with Wrigley Field, the Art Institute and the Billy Goat Tavern. Metro has long played a pivotal role in my life as a music fan, starting in my college years when it was known as Cabaret Metro. Every Thursday started with scanning the Chicago Reader ad to check the onsale announcements and I escaped there very often to have my first rock experiences and witness bands great and small play its great gothic stage. Those moments contributed to my interest in music as a journalist and I’ve conducted many interviews there, from hanging on the fire escape stairs with Jim James of My Morning Jacket the afternoon before their Metro debut, to sitting on the curb out front with Glen Hansard of The Frames.
The star turns at Metro continue to be imprinted in my memory — Iggy Pop, Bob Dylan, Elliott Smith, solo Billy Corgan, and Rick Danko stunning the room to silence during The First Waltz. Plus bands whose music sounded perfectly tailored for Metro’s shape, size and feel: Superchunk, Nada Surf, Sonic Youth, Mudhoney, Low, Peaches. And those moments when stadium bands like Coldplay and Foo Fighters decide they wanted to once more get close, not just to the audience, but to each other.
But, for me, Metro is indelible because it often is the first major step for any band or performer in the process of discovering what or who they are. Metro is where bands start their careers and where many have chosen to finally walk off the stage. Musician or fan, when you finally arrive in the center of that oval-shaped room, the outside world is far, far away and everything is the music.”
— Mark Guarino