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Posted at 8:28 PM ET, 02/20/2008

Multiple Changes, Beginning at Five

By Fritz Hahn

The popular nightclub Five is shifting direction under new management, the Common Share reopens this weekend after a Gaelic makeover and Capitol Hill lounge Tapatinis is going on hiatus.

The News at Five
Big shakeups are ahead at Five after club owner John Boyle parted ways with longtime management team of Tim Sherman and Hooman Pedram, who were responsible for turning the 18th Street venue into a magnet for house music fans.

"The first thing we're going to change is Friday and Thursday nights," explains new Operations Manager Jeff Duke. No final decision has been made about Thursdays, but Friday, currently the domain of house music DJs, whether locals like Tom B or international stars like Dirty Vegas, is going in a new direction. "Friday is going to be more hip-hop, reggae and breaks," Duke explains, "and slowly move into house for the after-hours crowd. We don't want to compete with the other four clubs around us who are playing house."

One adjustment that's going to be far more obvious: Five's super-relaxed dress code is disappearing -- "That's not going to fly anymore," Duke says -- and the club's going to have a stricter door policy. We'll see how that goes.

Washington's club community has been buzzing about the new management, especially because one of its first acts was to remove Wednesday night's appearance by legendary English drum 'n' bass DJ Fabio from the schedule. (It was moved to the neighboring lounge Andalu, which is a fraction of the size of Five.) Duke claims the show was relocated because Five was going to lose money on Fabio's appearance, while promoter Bobby Jae Chun, who also DJing at the event, told me before the event that the change wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing, because Five was having sound issues over the weekend -- a view that's been echoed on some Internet message boards.

Despite the problems with Fabio, Duke and Chun say everything looks good for next month's drum 'n' bass blowout with groundbreaking DJ Andy C, the well-known duo Ed Rush & Optical and the buzzed-about Sub Focus. "Everything [on the calendar] in March will still be going on," Duke says.

Still, those assurances haven't stopped rumors about Five's new direction from flying all over the scene; High-ranking employees at nearby nightspots and DJs who've previously spun at Five have independently told me that they've heard the space was going to become a live music venue. (Before Five opened, the building housed a concert hall called the Garage.)

Duke dismisses those ideas. "The club is still open," he says, "but we're in the process of cleaning house." Right now, his agenda includes a new design for the interior, new sound and lighting, staffing changes and possibly switching the promoters who run the club's various events. Watch this space for more information.

Meet the Blaguard
Back in Adams Morgan, it seems like it's only been a minute since the Common Share closed, but the old bar, famed for its "anything $2" pricing policies, is set to reopen with new owners and a new theme this weekend. It's now called the Blaguard, and it will have the feel of "an old classic pub," says owner Martin Corboy, who runs the neighboring Bobby Lew's Saloon and the Angry Inch Saloon up the street. His partner is Brendan Kelly, who runs Capitol Hill's famous Kelly's Irish Times with his father, Hugh. Corboy says they've made a number of additions to the building, including a new bar on the second floor and the installation of a shuffleboard table. Get your first look during grand opening parties on Friday and Saturday, and take advantage of open bars from 8 to 9 and $2 Miller Lites until 11.

If you're wondering what a Blaguard is, it's a variation on the British term "blackguard," which means a robber, a foul-mouthed person, or someone of questionable morals. Funny, I never would have imagined you'd find one of those in Adams Morgan.

See Ya Later, Tapatinis
As one bar opens, another takes a break. Barracks Row lounge Tapatinis is closing for a renovation that could last up to six weeks. Owner Jordan Cappolla has plans to expand the cramped bar area and kitchen.

-- Fritz

By Fritz Hahn  | February 20, 2008; 8:28 PM ET
Categories:  Bars and Clubs  
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Any word on what's going on with The Attic in Adams Morgan? Tried to go there a few Saturday's ago, and it was closed. Is that for good?

Posted by: dan | February 22, 2008 9:33 AM | Report abuse

indeed very sad news about tim and hooman's split with club 5 . . . yet another blow to dc's strong and hungry underground house scene. seems to me that the new management is totally out of touch; the ONLY one of those '4 neighboring clubs' that plays house now is ESL (and there it is only on Sunday nights).

Posted by: alexgold | February 22, 2008 12:26 PM | Report abuse

so i guess new owners of five want it to become just another faceless "upscale" dooshbag club? i guess they want to compete with 1223 right across the street? and all the other dooshbag hangouts along the k st. corridor?

Posted by: kenc | February 22, 2008 3:59 PM | Report abuse

say it ain't so!!

FIVE was one of the few reasons i ventured into the city from from the outskirts of more M3!? i'm fine with adding more hip-hop and reggae, but the dress code change and door policy is going to ruin it for me (and most others)

Posted by: hmmmmm | February 22, 2008 5:00 PM | Report abuse

A quick read and you can tell Mr. Duke is already in trouble.

Saying he doesn't want to compete with neighboring clubs by playing reggae and hip-hop makes no sense. They all play hip-hop and top40. Five was one of the only clubs to play house/electro/techno music in the DC area and now its shifting to the same music played in every other DC club.

Changing the door policy to match all the other clubs in the area won't help either. One of Five's draws was that it wasn't considered uptight and snobby like other clubs can often be. Apparently, that isn't the case anymore.

However, the worst part was where he shot himself in the foot with all the promoters that read this article. "Duke claims the show was relocated because Five was going to lose money on Fabio's appearance..." Now anyone that books at Five, or whatever the new name will be, is going to wonder if Mr. Duke isn't going to cancel their event if he thinks the club will lose money.

Best of luck Mr. Duke. You're going to need it.

Posted by: t-mac | February 22, 2008 6:03 PM | Report abuse

i can't believe this! i love Five because it's a club i can go to without having to dress to the nines and hanging around snooty people who think they're all that. booooo...

Posted by: around | February 22, 2008 6:26 PM | Report abuse

Regarding 5....
First of all, anyone who's unfamiliar with club 5 isn't going to get a clear idea about what exactly that club was by reading this article. Club 5 was the STAPLE for real house music in Washington DC. It was a club that really had to do with music, and with the ever increasing obsession that simple minded club goers have with that whole "bottles and models" notion, having a real music club was a rare and beautiful thing. 5 was a dark club with an amazing sound system that consistently brought good dj's. Dirty Vegas? Come on...we had plenty more people than that come through spanning different styles of music. Deep house and Chicago house dj's like Heather, Mark Farina and Kaskade would rock that place. People will never forget the night that Dubfire and Sander Kleinenberg tag teamed in there. Dimitri From Paris, UNKLE, Tiefschwartz, etc..etc... Those dj's didn't play anywhere else in DC.

Is Jeff Duke a novice at this? Does he even know what house music is? Is he REALLY serious when he says that he doesn't want club 5 to compete with the other clubs in the area that place house music. There is NO club around Club 5 that plays real house music. Fly...nope...1223/Spank...nope, Play? Nope. Oh, maybe you'll hear a dj at those clubs play a top hit from two years ago like World Hold On or Love Generation. Maybe you'll hear The World Is Mine....but don't be fooled; that doesn't mean you're listening to house music or that you're listening to a DJ put together a set that starts you off in one place and takes you somewhere completely different with the musical soundtrack that they're writing.
Changing 5 so drastically is probably the stupidest thing I've ever heard of. I mean, let's be many times are people going to go to Tattoo, Lotus, Josephines and Play before they realize that all those places are basically the SAME thing with the SAME people. There's no sense of community at any of those venues, there's nothing special about them. They're vacuous and insipid, and we don't need Club 5 to become another one of those places.

Posted by: (DJ)George Karmokolias | February 23, 2008 2:52 AM | Report abuse

terrible news. Just another step towards completely dumbing down DC nightlife. Who likes to spend $350 on a bottle? I guess dudes wearing $400 shoes. Do we really need ANOTHER spot like that?

The answer is "no."

Posted by: MM | February 25, 2008 10:22 AM | Report abuse

Club Five had a distinct niche and loyal following. By trying to conform to current market trends, they dont stand a chance, especially with all the other new venues opening up. Poor business move Jim Boyle.

Posted by: EL | February 25, 2008 5:17 PM | Report abuse

John Boyle

Posted by: correction | February 25, 2008 5:33 PM | Report abuse

I will sincerly miss going to Club 5. Just like previous posts, I would go because I could wear whatever and nobody there would give a damn. With the staffing changes, I will be taking my loyalties elsewhere. I am happy that I can still go visit Hooman at Steve's Bar Room. I am totally sad that I won't be able to see my friends who work there.

From a loyal former customer for the past 3 years.

Posted by: soccer36 | February 25, 2008 5:49 PM | Report abuse

I am also truly saddened by this news John Boyle and friends are going to find out soon that FIVE cannot and will not be run with out Tim and Hooman.

Posted by: Gifted | February 25, 2008 6:23 PM | Report abuse

I think collectively the comments i read are all saying the same thing and its that John Boyle has made a bad move. I dont personally know John, but my brother the founder of Kalliope Hospitality Advisors (KHA) does and there is not much complimentary to say about his business acumen.

KHA were responsible for the concept of SAKI in Adams Morgan (sold its interest in July 2004) and Gallery Restaurant Lounge in Silver Spring (still have ownership interest). I took KHA over in order to sell it off, but before that, i decided to let Gallery compete with Club 5 on the Chicago Old School House format with djs like Sneak, Gene Faris, John Howard, Kenny Glasgow, Roy Davis Jr, Miles Maeda, Todd Terry, Derrick Carter and many other great House Music DJs....simply for the love of that genre.

One thing i can say about Tim & Hooman is that they know their stuff and Jeff Duke should think before he talks as he is headed for being just another club on the block where as M3 did something special.

If Gallery had been closer to 5's location, I would have personally taken the opportunity to sign up Tim & Hooman which would have sealed Five's fate, but i guess its not necessary as Mr. Duke seems to be doing it without competition driving customers away. My only advice to Mr. Duke is to curb the arrogance of his actions.

And lastly to John...we know what you said and Intrawest does too.

Posted by: Matti Alwazir | February 25, 2008 6:37 PM | Report abuse

Duke, you are truly moving in the WRONG direction. 5 was true house. For the house heads out there looking for that wicked beat, 5 was there. For the people who wanted to completely comfortable in their surroundings, 5 was there. For the people who wanted to "feel" house, 5 was there.

Duke, for you to eliminate that and create a "hip hop/raggae" event, and then want to bring house in later is all wrong. Thrive on what 5 has now and move forward, not backward. 5 is not, and never will be a pretentious 1223 where you can only wear "nice shoes" or "heels" to get in. Why be like the other Duke? It's the wrong move mate!

Listen to what the community is saying, and think outside the box. After reading this article, I will truly miss 5 because I know I will not patronize your the new 5, not with your attitude, and especially line-up.

P.S. - Dogging local talent is a big no no. Good luck in trying to get some good talent now.

Posted by: Fidel | February 25, 2008 7:15 PM | Report abuse

I know the players involved and have heard that John Boyle's vision for Five is eventually to make it into a live rock venue. I don't know about the current economic feasibility of operating such an establishment in NW, but from what I know of John Boyle and the way he ran Nation and other venues, I could definitely see the idea appealing to him. This is indeed one more nail in the coffin of DC's electronic music scene. Five is home to more than just house music, Thursday nights Five hosts Arcadia, DC's favorite industrial/gothic party. Occasionally, like last Friday, Five plays host to Buzz or other EDM parties. I only hope this opens the opportunities for new bigger&better venues, but I am also realistic in my doubts that the scene will be strong enough to support trance/EDM if they should take too long to capitalize on this chance.

Posted by: Kevin | February 25, 2008 8:01 PM | Report abuse

Wow what a disappointment. Club FIVE was a staple of Washington DC. It had it's own niche. Laid back cool people, no dress code (but people still dressed nice), the best "dirty" and true House music and the best staff ever. Hooman himself is a DC legend. People actually come to the club to see him. Just the departure of Hooman is enough to never go back to Five or what ever club takes it's place. There are plenty of Hip Hop and top 40 clubs in DC. They're located directly to left, right, behind and in front of club Five. What business genius thought up this new plan? Fired!!!! As a well known club-goer I would bet that if you renovated Five and brought back it's staff that you would make a lot more money than turning it into another cliche club. I give the new Five 6 months before you realize that you just made a Huge Mistake. Mr. Duke you messed up. I'll never go to "new" Five and I promise you that none of my friends will go there either.

Posted by: Jacob Ayubi | February 26, 2008 12:42 AM | Report abuse

I think renovating Five and bringing back the staff would be the best business decision. Why would you want to turn an original club into another same old same old DC club that does well for 6 months and then tanks. Club Five had something awesome going on. It's sad to see the Staff gone. Hooman and Tim brought in the best talent and genuinely took care of the club and it's patrons. I will not go to the new Five and I will make sure none of my friends go either. Bring back Five and it's Staff and lets party!!!!!!

Posted by: Adam Weisman | February 26, 2008 3:17 AM | Report abuse

It's a shame to lose club 5 and all the great names and shows that came through that house. Other than Buzz of old at Capitol Ballroom/Nation it was the most consistent driving force in house music and DC. Tim and Hooman are great people/business men and will succeed wherever they go. It's disgusting how it all went down and the Hip Hop/Reggae direction, 5 will now be just another lame club for.

Posted by: RW | February 26, 2008 9:04 AM | Report abuse

This is truly sad. This was one of the greatest places to be... and to work, only left because I moved. It was my family. I hope new management knows what the hell they are doing, well actually, no I don't. Good luck Tim, Hooman and everyone that was working there... love you guys and I am sorry this is happening!

Posted by: former bartender | February 26, 2008 10:02 AM | Report abuse

It's so sad what's going on with Five. I worked there for almost four years, it was a great place to work at. It had it's bad times and good times, like any other club does, but what most people don't realize is that Five was worldfamous. DJs from all over the world have played there, and Five had an essential spot in in DC underground house scene. The new owners think they can make it into something better?! They're dillusional, I don't think they're paying attention to the fact that we're half way into a recession, economy is bad due to the subprime mortgage mess. 99% of the clubs/ lounges in DC,VA,MD are not doing well. Five was staying afloat BECAUSE IT WAS DIFFERENT!!!!
On a personal note, I won't ever set foot in there unless Tim and Hooman are running things. Anything else would be just a slap in their face, and would show the person who screwed them over that it's ok what he did. It would also show all the other a-holes out there that nobody values loyalty anymore and that what was done to Tim and Hooman can be done to anybody else. So, stand together and boycot Five, we can all make a difference.

Posted by: Teodora Simu | February 26, 2008 9:37 PM | Report abuse

Boyle ran FIVE into the ground before Tim and Hooman, and he's going to do it again.

FIVE was the best club in DC and had the best staff. This is the dumbest move Boyle could have made.

I give it a year before JB has officially f'd up what was a unique place in the DC nightlife.

Posted by: EB | February 26, 2008 10:25 PM | Report abuse

I love the DC club scene and I go out at least 4 nights a week and with that said I can tell you that you're making a huge mistake by losing Hooman and Tim. In their own right they are living legends in the DC club scene. I've spoken to many friends over the past couple of days regarding their departure and it would be safe to say that CLUB FIVE or any other club that takes its place is already BLACK LISTED if Hooman and Tim are not there. Thanks to Hooman and Tim FIVE is an internationally known club and not many clubs can claim such achievement.

An error is not a mistake if you fix it and I recommend that you fix this error before you reopen a club that no one will go to. As a loyal friend of Hoomans and Tims I will never step foot in that place unless they are there. I'll even go as far as to say I'll use all of my influence to make sure everyone I know does not go there and does not let their friends go there. I have plenty of spare time and will make that my mission. If you think I feel strongly about this you should hear what other people are saying. You just created a new mission for the people in the DC club scene.

Posted by: Friend | February 27, 2008 12:04 AM | Report abuse

at least it's the promoter shooting himself in the foot and we're not losing the club to arena football or something

Posted by: mr phipps | February 27, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse

tim and hooman poured their heart and soul into club five. their vision and hard work made the club a driving force in the dc electronic dance underground. from their stellar line ups to their bangin soundsystem, and a staff that treated you like family. five was like home to myself along with many others.

however i do know that these guys are very resourceful and im sure we havent seen the last of them. BIG UP M3!

Posted by: kenny | February 27, 2008 2:26 PM | Report abuse

yeah, FIVE is def gone. M3 posted a statement concerning FIVE here --> .

I know the DNB sessions party on Weds is over w/ Andy C, Ed Rush & Optical, & etc, CHRONOS on Thurs is OVER, and Essential BREAKS is done on 3/8... so things dont look very good.

Posted by: dubsteptim | February 27, 2008 2:28 PM | Report abuse

hay everybody what's going on

Posted by: Dan Amitai | February 27, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Change is inevitable.

Congratulations to M3 for making five what it was. Like the closing of Nation, Red, Dragonfly etc. this was eventually going to happen considering the wane of edm in DC. Unfortunately it's a little sooner then I and others would've liked but threats of a boycott or blacklist really won't do much to bring Tim and Hooman back if they are changing their format entirely.

I've personally been going to M3 parties since 1999 and even though I'm on the west coast I still plan on dropping by when I'm in town. Best of luck in finding a new permanent home.

Posted by: Nabil | February 27, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Wow, so many commenters all saying the same thing. But it seems as if John Boyle stopped listening to what patrons wanted a long time ago. So instead of having an establishment that has a great vibe and is unique and fun, I'm sure everything they do will now be motivated by profits. Turning a profit is necessary if you want to keep your business on the up and up, but given their new plan? Eh...good luck. I hope Five goes under. Without the finely tuned knowledge of M3, the new Five will just get lost in a sea of trendy "douchebag" clubs.

Also, it is clear that Duke doesn't know anything about different genres of music. The new plan is different? Right, right, you mean different in the way Top 40 R&B is different than Top 40 Hip Hop? It's still Top 40 and attracts rude patrons and narcissistic jerks who like to take an attitude if you don't notice they're wearing a $400 shirt. I doubt their version of House will be anything other than crap remixes of Top 40. Sounds like they should just save the trouble of booking djs and take out the sound system all together...instead install one of those electronic jukeboxes. How boring!

If I wanted to dance to Hot 99.5 style music, I'll stay home. Why spend my money, "dress to impress" and be uncomfortable when there isn't even good music on the lineup. Actually, there is no point to going out and even listening to good music if you are dressed so uncomfortably that you can't actually dance. Five was a great place for electronic music, but no longer! Every bit of their whole plan is misguided and wrong.

Oh and then a live Rock venue? Hmm...Hey John Boyle, why don't you go spread some of the money you made on the sale of Nation over in another part of the city. Or maybe you can buy the 9:30 and somehow run that into the ground?

Posted by: SB | February 27, 2008 6:08 PM | Report abuse

I would have had something to do with this, but I left my +3 Cloak of Condescension at some other underground music venue.

Posted by: Amanda Hess | February 27, 2008 7:07 PM | Report abuse

House isn't dead in DC just because Five is taking a different direction. Check out Buzz events at Fur on Friday nights. They have housed acts such as Steve Smooth/JJ Flores/Roger Sanchez/Donald Glaude +more just this year. Buzz events don't just cater to the four-on-the-floor though, expect to hear breaks, dnb, progressive - whatever your heart desires.

Personally, I could leave Five behind and not think twice. The acts they brought were superb, but fighting off the forward clientele and the people who stood on the dancefloor doing the shuffle (or less) left a lot to be desired.

Bye Five!!

Posted by: LadyMarmalade | February 27, 2008 10:23 PM | Report abuse

This is terrible. Closing Five is a terrible blow to the house head community BUT that means that other opportunities can take its place. Hip-hop is becoming a wait it is a monopoly. why do club owners think house music is not wanted in DC? NY and B-more and Miami has a strong following of House music. what is it with DC and house music? what gives? i don't get it.

Mirrors on NY ave is having a house event starting this friday feb 29th @ 10:00pm. Gotta start somewhere.

Posted by: Cee | February 28, 2008 12:21 PM | Report abuse

WOW this sucks. Love you Hooman

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 4:00 PM | Report abuse

R.I.P Five....

M3 has done a lot for the DC house scene, and I know everyone is excited to see what their new ventures are, outside of FIVE. Also to Lady Marmalade above, Glaude/ Steve Smooth, etc. are not the crap house djs that Five booked. Real househeads want real house.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 7:34 PM | Report abuse

R.I.P Five....

M3 has done a lot for the DC house scene, and I know everyone is excited to see what their new ventures are, outside of FIVE. Also to Lady Marmalade above, Glaude/ Steve Smooth, etc. are not the crap house djs that Five booked. Real househeads want real house.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 7:34 PM | Report abuse

It is a shame to see Club 5 change, and no more Tim and Hooman there. I moved away a few years ago, but I would always recommend Club 5 as the best spot when friends visit DC. On a personal level, I do wish John Boyle the best of luck. However, Club 5 will never be Club 5 again, they should change the name.

Posted by: Katherine | February 29, 2008 9:46 AM | Report abuse

I'm sad to see the changes at Five. My husband and I recently moved here from Detroit last year and we loved going to Five to remind us of the dirty Techno shows we always went to in the D. We have been a to a few Buzz nights at Fur but it does not compare to the Five atmosphere, bartenders, and club attendees. Not to mention the DJs they booked (hello Kevin Saunderson) in the short time we were able to enjoy it. Please someone! Listen to this crowd and open up a real venue that brings in the good international DJ's. Like Carl Cox, Ben Sims, Richie Hawtin, and Mistress Barbara just to name a few. My husband and I will continue to search for a good venue that reminds us of the D, now that Five is gone. Boo to the new owners - eliminating all of your fan base is not good business!

Posted by: Rachael D | February 29, 2008 4:16 PM | Report abuse

Closing club Five and losing Hooman and Tim was a mistake. It was the best venue for House Music and real House Music lovers. I can't go back there again unless they stop this madness!!!! Please don't kill club FIVE.

Posted by: Sami | March 3, 2008 12:06 AM | Report abuse

Closing club Five and losing Hooman and Tim was a mistake. It was the best venue for House Music and real House Music lovers. I can't go back there again unless they stop this madness!!!! Please don't kill club FIVE.

Posted by: Sami | March 3, 2008 12:09 AM | Report abuse

I have been going to Club Five since day one. It was been one of the places I would recommend to anyone who wanted to hear good house music in a great atmosphere.

I am saddened to hear of the changes the owner has implemented because now I will have to find another place to hear house. Everything about the club was unique and fun. Especially the dress code!

I am angry about the changes because management wants to turn Club Five into another run-of-the-mill club with the same crappy Top 40 junk I could listen on the radio at home.(for free I might add)

Hip Hip/Regge is fine, but as a born-and-raised Washingtonian, i've seen those type of clubs come and go, mostly attracting people who don't know how to act around other people.(I call them knuckleheads) This change might make you some extra cash but at what cost? You'll have the police on speed dial when the number of fights increases.

I am also angry about the treatment of your staff. Why get rid of Tim and Hooman? Did they screw up the club? Last I heard on the international club scene, Club Five was the place to go in DC. I guess Jim Boyle saw that as a bad thing.

I'll stop now because I'm so angry!


Posted by: Rmann | March 3, 2008 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Really sad news.

I enjoyed going to Five for the past 3 years at least once a week because of how diverse it was compared to all the other posh clubs in DC.

It was full of great music (house, breaks, dnb, electro, etc) and those who love it while not having to worry about conforming to an uncomfortable dress code and just having a place to truly mingle, unwind and be free.

Five definitely played a major role in my life and DC night life (not to mention it became internationally known), I'm really sad to hear the change in direction..

I liked being able to decide until late in the evening if I wanted to go out and always knew I could depend on going to Five and dance to my hearts content with friends until 5.

Unfortunately, anyone I know won't be going to the new Five again (including myself).

Hopefully, Tim and Hooman will be involved somewhere else in north west or just DC in general. Until then, I think I may go to FUR occasionally.

Posted by: Dancer | March 4, 2008 4:16 PM | Report abuse

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