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Montreal’s Home of Jazz closes its doorways for good

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“They have the pure jazz lover who goes (to Montreal jazz club Upstairs) and doesn’t talk,” he instructed the Montreal Gazette’s Peter Hadekel in 2014. “Me, I’m happy when people come here to have fun.

Music was more mainstream at House of Jazz than the city’s other jazz venues, often with a vocalist fronting the band, and an emphasis on entertainment.

House of Jazz was popular at lunchtime with the downtown office crowd, and with tourists in evenings — both of which have dried up during the lockdown because of COVID-19.

Jacques Laurin, a minor partner who had worked at House of Jazz for 26 years, says the decision was made by Adrienne Durst, who inherited the business when her father passed in 2018.

“We did everything to try to convince (her and Villette not to close), with explanations and numbers, but they didn’t see the end of the tunnel,” Laurin stated. “It’s not their fault. This is really due to COVID. The restaurant had been working well for years; but COVID didn’t just kill with infections.”

It’s a unique story over at Home of Jazz Laval, with its ample free parking. Launched by Durst in 2015, the venue reopens Thursday at 5 p.m. Reservations could be made at houseofjazz.ca.

tdunlevy@postmedia.com

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