When you think about Ybor City legacies, The Orpheum ranks supreme. This glamorously gritty event venue has been around for nearly two decades, and has hosted some of the most up-and-coming artists in many genres of music. The aesthetically dark venue favors a classic organic nostalgia that demands notoriety, and the digital event promos and viral recaps just don’t do it justice. If you need more convincing, take a stroll down 7th Ave. and you’ll see The Orpheum’s concert posters displayed proudly in the windows of Centro Ybor community supporters.
Bottom line, if you want to experience real, raw, uncut talent, you need to be at The Orpheum.
I can personally attest to the filthy amount of electric energy delivered as you walk through those double doors. It’s addictive in the purest way. My first memory of The Orpheum’s glory dates back to 2013, when I convinced my besties to ride with me to see Mickey Avalon perform. “Pics or it didn’t happen,” was created for nights like this. Avalon delivered a fresh set, to which I sang ever word. I can hear the deafening sound of my voice scream the lyrics to “So Rich, So Pretty” just thinking about it.
My girls and I with Mickey Avalon
Boss-man Jerry “Lazy” Dufrain says, “The Orpheum has been in business for just under 20 years. We work with many of the top promoters in the area including Noclubs, AEG, For Your Friends Booking and Endoxa Booking. It's primarily known as a rock n' roll venue, but we also feature all sorts of different events from indie rock to hip hop to electronic music. Additionally, The Orpheum showcases some of the best independent professional wrestling in the country with EVOLVE & Shine Wrestling.”
My Girls & I with "Lazy"
The current list of artists scheduled continue to soar with great heights, as Jessie Reyez, Jonathan Davis of Korn, Queen Naija, G Jones, and Poppy are set to take center stage in the upcoming months.
A big event to look out for is Justin Martin on Thursday, November 29th.
While many venues in Ybor City change ownership, genre, and make moves to stay with whatever is "hot" right now, The Orpheum has kept its soul and vibe across a generation. Whatever show you've come to see, take a minute to appreciate one of the standouts of Tampa's music scene.
For event updates and additions, make sure to follow The Orpheum here at 813area to find out the latest at what's happening at the legendary Tampa nightclub!
All photos from author, cover photo from The Orpheum.