For a long time, Williamsburg (you know, that place your mom and dad moved to) was seen as a realm of artists and cutting edge Brooklyn uh…Brooklyness. But now the gentrifiers are getting gentrified, seen recently in the news that DIY music venue 285 Kent is more than likely getting the boot. It’s not a shock, given that a few huge residential towers are going up across the street from the hot, crowded venue, but it’s a shame nonetheless.
So of course, with their backs against the wall, some fans of 285 Kent are making a last-ditch effort to keep their venue alive: a petition asking Brooklyn’s royal couple, Shawn Carter and Beyonce Knowles to step in and pony up $1 million to save 285 Kent. We’d say stranger things have happened, but we don’t think anything this stupid has ever happened in the history of the Earth.
The petition aims to get Jay-Z and Beyonce to donate one million dollars to the curators of the venue to help keep it open as a reminder that “not everything used to be so polished, nor does it have to be,” in the words of the petition. It’s not that we don’t agree 285 Kent was cool, because we’ve seen some great shows at there while it’s been open, but given that Williamsburg is making room for a Starbucks and maybe an Apple Store, we wonder if this is really the best neighborhood to make some kind of art-based stand in. Let the yuppies have Williamsburg, it’s better to shore up your defenses in places like Bushwick, Crown Heights and Bed-Stuy, as opposed to having some kind of doomed last stand that’s only beautiful in your mind.