Last month, The Smell announced via social media the demolition of the one-story building housing the underground music venue.
The iconic, volunteer-run operation’s location between Spring & 3rd street in downtown Los Angeles, recently under new building management and is said to have its days numbered. However, The Smell’s all-ages, local fan base is determined to not let the venue go down without a fight.
One petition started by Robert Marquez, urging to “Save The Smell,” has quickly garnered over 7,000 signatures in just a matter of days. On top of that, hundreds of followers of the venue have taken to social media under #savethesmell to express their gloom over the bad news as well as to earn support for efforts to preserve the site. Unfortunately, it is unlikely that public opinion will have any influence on halting the building’s probable destruction.
The best hope for the DIY venue is to relocate, and a GoFundMe campaign has since been launched by The Smell’s management. This is a costly endeavor, however, with a goal of $1.4 million needed for the project. Either way, the venue’s supporters are devoted in their efforts to save the local music club and honor its legacy.
As one fan wrote over Instagram, “while [the building] will definitely disappear, the spirit and the passion behind The Smell will never die”.
The Smell, founded in 1998 by Jim Smith, was originally located in North Hollywood until moving to its current site in 1999. In addition to showcasing a multitude of punk, experimental, and noise bands throughout its 18-year history, the alcohol-free, non-profit venue also houses an art gallery and small library. Some noteworthy artists to have played The Smell include No Age, Best Coast, Ty Segall, Girlpool, The Aquadolls, The Frights, Joyce Manor, Fidlar, and many more.