UPDATE // February 22, 2021

To our loyal fans and patrons,

As we round the corner towards a full calendar year since we have been closed due to mandates enforced by the City of Chicago and State of Illinois in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we thought it an appropriate time to reiterate just how much you mean to us and how longingly we look forward to reopening.

Metro, smartbar, and GMan Tavern are committed to and aligned with the mission of keeping our community safe and healthy. One year closed has been difficult for us all, and we sure do miss watching you pour in through our doors to spend your evenings with us and your favorite artists, bartenders, and venue staff. It is our foremost intention to return to doing exactly that once experts are confident that we can host you without risk of endangering anyone’s health.

We have not been dormant throughout this past year, though––rather, we’ve ardently contended in a valiant fight to ascertain government funding that will assist shuttered venues who have had mere fractions of prior-year profit, if any, to survive on. 2020 saw the activation of the Chicago Independent Venue League (CIVL), alongside the formation of the National Independent Venue Association (NIVA), both entities with which our team members have been actively involved. Many dedicated people have banded together to do many extraordinary things, through which we witnessed the passage of the Save Our Stages (SOS) bill, now renamed the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG). We may not yet be back to doing what we do best, but we’ve stayed busy!

In the meantime, we survive. We have rolled out unprecedented amounts of new merch, awarded our furloughed employees grants using our GoFundMe proceeds that you all have so graciously donated, established the 501(c)(3) CIVL SAVE Emergency Relief Fund to benefit Staff, Artists, and VEnues local to Chicagoland, hosted some livestream events, and even opened GMan Tavern at a safe occupancy while stridently abiding by all BACP/City of Chicago guidelines. There is a light at the end of the tunnel, and we’re excited to venture towards it, wisely, together.

Please be good to one another. Help out where you can, and remember that we are all in this together––and, honestly, that’s a beautiful thing. We will keep you updated on our reopening trajectory, but in the meantime, wear your mask and keep sharing your favorite smartbar memories. These actions will help keep our hearts light and achieve our end goal of bringing you the unforgettable nights you’ll cherish for years to come.

Love always,
Your pals at Metro/smartbar/GMan

UPDATE // August 20, 2020

Hi, friends––we hope you’ve been healthy, kind, and creative.

While not much has changed in the way of reopening, there has been much action surrounding the fight to provide federal relief to #SaveOurStages.

The Chicago Independent Venue League and National Independent Venue Association have joined forces to persuade members of Congress to introduce a number of bills (RESTART, SOS, ENCORES Acts) aimed at ensuring our independent businesses, along with thousands of others nationwide, survive the state-mandated closures they’ve been subjected to, which remain in effect until we reach Phase 5 of the IL Reopening Plan.

How can you support the mission? Glad you asked! We need to keep the pressure on our lawmakers to include our industry in relief negotiations. Reach out to yours at as often as possible to remind them that support without action is meaningless.

We miss you. We love you. We can’t wait to be together again.

––Your Friends at Metro, smartbar, and GMan Tavern

UPDATE // June 23, 2020

Hey y’all! While we appreciate your love and support, we wanted to go on record and inform you that Metro/smartbar/GMan Tavern are not permanently closed. We look forward to reopening when it is deemed safe to do so.

In the meantime, please visit to learn how you can help ensure that happens. ❤️

March 17, 2020

To our neighbors, fans, and family,

As our world continues to be impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, Metro, smartbar, and GMan Tavern have made the difficult decision of temporarily closing our doors. While navigating these unprecedented times, we share in the concern for our community, whose livelihoods depend on the entertainment, service, and hospitality industries.

In working to find ways to support these folks, we have created a GoFundMe page for our staff, who depend on the gathering of music lovers near and far in order to provide for themselves and their families.

If you are able to contribute, you can do so here. 100% of net proceeds will benefit Metro, smartbar and GMan Tavern staff.

Other options to support our small business can be found here.

We eagerly await the day we can reopen our doors and again share in the revelry and goodness that live music brings. Until then, we will continue to work together to keep our community strong, safe, and supported.

Be kind, be creative. We’re in this together.

––Your Friends at Metro, smartbar, and GMan Tavern

Powered by Rockhouse Partners, an Etix company.