Frank's Is a Throwback to Bars with Attitude
All hail the dingy live music bars of Joburg…
Whether you grew up on a healthy dose of The Boh, spent endless weekends at The Doors or occupied any of the various smokey, dimly lit and loud bars that all seemed to close at once in the last 5 or 10 years you’ll know that apart from “maybe” Hell’s in Melville and the occasional gig in Linden that we’re not spoiled for choice like we used to be. Even the more airy, fairy Shortstraw-led Boosh seems to have disintegrated into the ether.
The fact is that live music venues that host rock bands in Joburg are a dying breed, and getting rarer with each passing weekend and the emergence of a new gastropub that misuses adjectives to describe their exorbitantly priced and simple meals.
With the injection of a number of new restaurants and shops on Grant Avenue in Norwood, it was screaming out for just this and the owners obliged. During the day in the week only a few people litter the outside seating area, idly chatting, but it’s at night when Frank’s comes alive.
During the week they have everything from quiz nights to live comedy to cater to the tastes of patrons in the area who prefer not to spend their evening being hypnotised into a coma by NetFlix.
On the weekend, it’s a whole different story. Friday and Saturday nights are vibing; inducing memories of nights locked in among the sweat and raucous, beer-soaked floors with live bands and if that isn’t your speed you can always chill outside and take in the night air and long chats with friends while taking in the sights of the never dull Grant Ave.
I haven’t been, but I’ve cruised past Frank’s on a Sunday afternoon and wow was it full to the brim, which is great to see. People love to have something fun to do on Sunday but if you’re from the area then you’ll know that you often have to venture into Parkhurst and beyond to find something decent to do. Now, those problems are a distant memory and the Uber won’t break the bank.
Frank’s Wild Years is a throwback to grungy bars with attitude and an innate passion for live music and the survival of the South African music scene. It’s not the biggest venue in the world but it has a distinct style appeals to fun loving people who want to get out, have a beer with their mates, meet new people and listen to live music with no boundaries, and that’s what makes it special.
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