To be a high school kid in a band is hard; often, a generational gap exists between the bands and promoters at venues that cater mostly to adults. Students do not always play the same music that promoters want to book. Luckily for students at Boyertown, a new venue has risen to support the local music scene: Chaplin’s Music Café in Spring City has begun booking large numbers of bands in an exciting and affordable setting that caters to a younger audience.
Mr. Chris Cachuela established Chaplin’s in 2007. Cachuela says that the purpose of Chaplin’s was to support artists both local and regional. Because Chaplin’s is not a bar but simply a “music café,” the venue easily caters to both young and older performers in a safe and healthy environment.
In recent years, Chaplin’s book has been booking softer acts, but over the past year it has returned to heavy metal, hard rock, and punk rock shows; previously, there was an incident involving property damage and heavy shows were removed from the venue. Cachuela has decided to book such shows again, however, under the condition that a “no moshing” policy would be in effect. Mr. Cachuela does not think that this policy has affected the turnouts for heavy metal shows, saying, “Since the policy went into effect, the bands and their fans have been respectful to the venue, enabling them to share and enjoy this particular genre in a nice, clean, and safe environment.”
The environment at Chaplin’s seems to be an attractive factor to both promoters and artists alike; Chaplin’s is a small venue, selling out at slightly over 100 fans in attendance, making for a more intimate experience with one’s favorite bands. This creates a recurring interest in artists to return to the venue and a constant demand for more shows from local fans. In fact, Dan Moore, band manager at DRM Artist Development and booking agent at Codex Agencies, says that one of the best things about booking at Chaplin’s is the ease with which a show can be booked; bands want to play, and they don’t have to struggle to sell a ridiculous amount of tickets.
The musicians playing at Chaplin’s seem to have good feelings about the venue, though there are small complaints. Ray Figueroa, bassist for The Last Remark, comments that the venue and management are incredibly knowledgeable, the room is cozy, and there is high quality professional recording available. He does mention that the stage is too small for a band that contains more than four members, and sometimes there is little variety to the bands booked on a show.
Chaplin’s is not a bad sounding venue either; the room shape was meant to carry sound in the best possible way. The addition of the highest quality sound equipment and speakers has made the Chaplin’s the best sounding venue in a nearby radius. Hunter Valentine, an avid fan of local music, says the part of Chaplin’s that he most enjoys is that “the sound is great for such a small venue.”
For fans of any style of music, especially younger fans, Chaplin’s Music Café is the place to be.