By Hayden McBennett, October 30 2014 —
The first week of November marks Commonwealth’s third birthday. Between signature events like Hip Hop Karaoke and hosting world-class DJs, the warehouse-turned-bar has become a staple in the Calgary club scene.
“The main thing that we care about is helping the city grow culturally,” says Commonwealth assistant general manager Joe Ramirez.
Starting Nov. 7, Commonwealth will bring in big name performers such as Californian rapper Lil B, post-punk band Titus Andronicus and electronic rockers Austra.
With the motto of “an uncommon bar for common people,” Ramirez says Commonwealth strives to create an interesting and inclusive environment.
“The main thing that we’ve seen over the years with bars, in Calgary especially, is there’s been this really weird standard for night clubs. There’s a bad stigma about people who don’t necessarily fit into that mainstream point of view,” Ramirez says. “We wanted to create a venue where it doesn’t matter what kind of music you’re into or what scene you’re into, everyone can come here and have fun.”
The diversity Ramirez aspires to promote is seen in the variety of the bar’s clientele — girls in bandage dresses sweating it out on the dancefloor
alongside tattooed bohemians. The music touches on genres between grunge and glam. The tufted leather couches and chains adorning the roof create a unique and eclectic aesthetic.
The third anniversary week features events nightly, with Austra playing on Nov. 5, Titus Andronicus on Nov. 4 and Lil B on Nov. 9. Tickets can be purchased online or at Sloth Records.