HoB Sunset Under Fire

The West Hollywood City Council is considering suspending or revoking the business license for the House of Blues on Sunset Strip because of alleged excessive violence relating to events over the last year.

Councilman John Heilman introduced the item on the Oct. 6 meeting agenda backed up by a staff report that said events at the 1,000-capacity venue led to 44 arrests including fights, drunk and disorderly behavior and grand theft in the last 12 months, according to the Los Angeles Times. More than 100 sheriff’s radio dispatches have been made to the venue.

The most recent incident was a Sept. 4 brawl between patrons and security guards during a Three 6 Mafia concert involving about 100 people. One woman was injured and Sunset Boulevard was shut down while authorities worked to get the melee under control.

“Unfortunately, for the last several years, the House of Blues has had a history of serious problems and an unwillingness to address these problems,” Heilman wrote in the report. “After each serious incident, there is a perfunctory apology and a promise to reform, but the problems persist and have escalated.”

The report also claims most of the disturbances happened when the general manager wasn’t on the premises and the venue “continues to host events and promote the venue to groups which disrespect the community and the business.”

The report listed several incidents since February, including a patron hit in the face during the Take Action tour, a request for sheriff’s backup during a fight at a Too Short / Bun B show and fighting in the parking lot during a Sly & The Family Stone concert.

A fire rescue unit was called to assist a male who faded in and out of consciousness during an Everclear show (and the same for a female during a Rusted Root show), and 200 people, some getting into fights, needed to be disbanded after a David Banner concert.

The West Hollywood House of Blues is a successful member of the HoB chain, ranking at No. 18 on Pollstar’s 3Q Top 100 Worldwide Club Venues with 86,202 tickets sold.