Iconic Tennessee venue Songbirds announces permanent closure

The venue was also a vintage guitar museum.

Chattanooga, Tennessee venue and guitar museum Songbirds has announced that it will close its doors for the last time at the end of business on Saturday, 15 August. The closure comes amid the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on both the tourism and live music industries.

Songbirds’ two stages hosted thousands of local and national bands throughout its existence, while its museum hosted a huge collection of guitars, split up into several different exhibitions – each of which focused on different aspects of the 20th century’s guitar-centric musical history. Over 1,700 instruments were permanently on display, with more coming in and out for touring exhibitions.

Songbirds announced its closure in a statement on Instagram, writing: “It is with heavy hearts that we announce the closure of Songbirds at end of business on Saturday, 15 August 2020. As one of Chattanooga, Tennessee’s iconic tourist attractions and live music venues, we have nurtured local and national bands, hosted countless events and benefits, and provided a safe & inclusive space for people to gather and immerse themselves in music history and culture.”

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COVID-19 was cited as part of the reason for the closure, with the statement noting that as “gatherings are our business, and due to the unpredictable course & unforeseeable end of the COVID-19 pandemic, limited touring artists coming through our area, and our lease coming up for renewal in the near future,” the decision to close was made to close.

The statement also included a thank you to the venue’s staff: “Like all great music venues, it’s the amazing staff that makes the place special. You could feel their dedication and passion for music every time you went to a show or took a tour at Songbirds. We send a huge, heartfelt thanks to all of them for supporting us over the years.”

The venue’s charitable foundation, which provides guitar lessons, music therapy and other educational resources to young people across eastern Tennessee, will continue, with the business now “focusing all our attention and resources on advancing their mission of ‘delivering educational programming, preserving music history, hosting enriching events, and providing concrete resources to emerging artists.’ Visit their website to learn more about the life-changing programs they run and how you can help change the lives of kids through music.”

Finally, Songbirds notes that any tickets purchased via card will be automatically refunded. If you purchased a ticket with cash, get in touch at info@songbirds.rocks.

Head to songbirds.rocks for more information.

For more guitar news, click here.

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