OK, maybe it's not South By Southwest or Coachella, but it is unquestionably the best thing that's ever happened—and continues to happen—to the Albuquerque music scene. It also provides Downtown businesses with two of their best nights of the year in terms of pure revenue. I'm writing, of course, about the Alibi Crawl Series, the twice-yearly events we've been presenting faithfully and to larger and larger audiences since our inaugural Fall Crawl in August of 1999. The story actually begins years earlier, in 1994, when the popular opinion, even among the Downtown club and other business owners that were pitched on the idea originally, was that such an event was an impossibility in Albuquerque. But suffice it to say that after nine successful Crawls, the impossible has become a reality the entire community expects to take place every April and August. And even in our wildest dreams, we didn't begin to imagine that, in addition to hundreds upon hundreds of bands and solo artists, the Crawls would be embraced and enjoyed by such a diverse cross section of Burque dwellers. Folks that once avoided Downtown like a plague now visit at least twice a year. Businesses that used to approach Crawl nights by skeptically closing up shop and going home now extend their hours and invite the 12,000 or so attendees who come to each of the Crawls to listen, eat and spend their money on all the goods and services Downtown—quite suddenly—has to offer. As we wrap up the final preparations for Alibi Spring Crawl 2004, the 10th event in our series, we'd like to offer heartfelt kudos to everyone—bands, businesses, venues, sponsors, local media, city officials and the great crowds—for helping turn these events into the fantastic entertainment spectacles they've become.
By now, just about everyone knows the basic drill: A hundred or so bands play on a bunch of stages throughout the Central Corridor between Second and Seventh Street, and anyone with a wristband and proof-of-age is welcome to come and go as they please with respect to all participating venues. This time around, though, there are some significant changes. Not least among them is that we've invited a few choice national acts to participate—The Romantics, Brian Jonestown Massacre and the Phunk Junkeez—in an effort to diversify and begin attracting regional and, eventually, national attention to the Crawls. We've also multiplied more than three times the number of crappers available to Crawlers from just six at past Crawls to roughly 20. And all of them are conveniently marked on the handy locator map on page 34 of this very pullout section. More importantly, though, is the increased presence (on our dime) of Emergency Medical Services, Albuquerque Police Department Officers and Albuquerque Fire Department Officials, all centrally located on Fifth Street just north of Central, along with a First Aid Station. We've also hired plenty of private security officers to help keep things as safe and incident-free as they have been from the beginning, despite what some local TV news stations have led some to believe in the past with sensationalist teasers that, according to APD records available to anyone and everyone, are complete fabrications.
It behooves you to get an early start for one important reason: The Crawls tend to be less crowded early on, and that can be the best time to see some really good bands, grab something to eat or drink and get geared up for one hell of a late-night street party. You'll find music beginning at 6 p.m. at Third Street Outdoor Stage (21 and over) and the Fifth Street Outdoor Stage (21 and over), as well as at several indoor venues (see "Band Schedule," page 35). Live music at most other indoor venues begins at 8 p.m., but you'd be crazy to wait until then to start getting your Crawl on.
Among the venues participating in Alibi Spring Crawl 2004, La Posada Hotel and the Sunshine Theater will be open to all ages.
Also, bear in mind that wristbands will not be available at every participating venue for Alibi Spring Crawl 2004. And that's just all the more reason to get your wristband in advance, either at Natural Sound in Nob Hill (255-8295), at the Alibi offices at 411 Central NW (346-0660), at any Ticketmaster outlet or online at www.alibi.com.
Purchased in advance, Crawl wristbands are just $15. If you insist on waiting until the night of show, the same wristband is going to cost you $20. Pre-sales cease online at 5 p.m. on Friday, April 23; and at noon on Saturday, April 24 at Natural Sound and Ticketmaster outlets. Day-of-show sales (read: $20) will begin at the Information Booth (Alibi offices) at 2 p.m. on Saturday as well, 5 p.m. at both the Third and Fifth Street Outdoor Stages and 7 p.m. at the Sunshine and El Rey Theater. You will not be able to buy wristbands at any other location at any time during the night. We hope this will go a long way toward keeping lines down at most venues. But we also ask that you do your part to keep the lines down by purchasing your wristband in advance, which will also save you five bucks. It's the smart thing to do.
We sincerely hope you enjoy Alibi Spring Crawl 2004. Just remember to get your wristband in advance, book yourself a room at La Posada or Hotel Blue, and arrive Downtown in plenty of time to park and eat before you head out on a long night of Albuquerque's best live, local music and community spirit. We'll be happy to answer any questions you have during the Crawl at our Info Booth, located in front of our offices at 411 Central NW. See you Downtown!