The Sound Room is the home of Bay Area Jazz and Arts, Inc (BAJA), a nonprofit organization focused on music and art, with an emphasis on jazz performance.
It has now been almost 24 years since we first started presenting music. Initially it was in our house but over the years we formed a non-profit and moved to Downtown Oakland in 2012. At that time businesses were sparse and it was a brave move to take on a lease in the relatively empty commercial area. Over the last 6 years Oakland has changed and we have as well. We have been listed in DownBeat magazine as one of the best places to hear Jazz in the world for the last 4 years. In addition, we have been featured in the New York Times, 36 Hours in Oakland, as well as in the Wall Street Journal article One of a Kind Experiences in Oakland.
Our current location, 2147 Broadway, will be demolished to erect the Eastline Project, a 30-story tower and campus stretching from 21st to 22nd and Broadway to Telegraph Avenue. As a result, we will be relocating to 3022 Broadway – directly across from Sprouts. We are excited about this move but it requires a LOT of work!
Our current location is self-sufficient; proceeds from our food and drink sales are able to pay the rent, utilities and cover costs for our food and drink supplies. We use our door proceeds to pay the band, tune the piano and keep our sound system up and running. The build out of our new location is costly and time consuming. Our Board continues to donate services and time, but your help is needed. We are a 501(c)3 non-profit organization (FEIN #454823197). Please help us in this journey by donating to Bay Area Jazz & Arts, Inc and by asking friends, family and organizations to also donate. We are happy to provide a receipt for your tax-deductible donation.
Your donations will be used to complete the transition to our new location. Below are the necessary steps.
1st - Acquire a new location – we have located the perfect spot for the Sound Room and secured a 99 year lease at below market rate. Completed!
2nd – Robert Bradsby donated over 200 hours of architectural services to work with the Oakland Planning Commission to obtain a Conditional Use Permit to allow a Jazz Venue. Completed!
3rd – The existing interior has been demolished and seismic upgrades will be complete in August.
4th – New utilities connections (water, gas, and electric) are required. A new sewer line has already been installed and we are waiting for utilities approvals.
5th – With new utilities in, next comes installation of sprinklers. This is required by the fire code to ensure that the venue is safe. Engineers have completed their work & contractors are lined up for work in August.
6th –Installation of commercial kitchen equipment and a fire suppression system in the kitchen. Drawings complete; Health Dept approval pending.
7th – Build out a podium that includes accessible restrooms outside the jazz space and an additional bathroom inside the front café. Drawings complete; Build out requires completion of #4 & 5.
8th – Almost there – now build out the stage, get some additional furniture, install the sound and light systems.
9th – Transfer our cabaret permit with the City of Oakland.
10th - Final Inspections
11th – Have a Grand Opening and let everyone know we have moved!
We must relocate from our current location by the end of November 2018. Our target is to relocate ASAP as we are currently paying on both locations.