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The Oyster Bar, “your friendly neighborhood seafood joint since 1975,” is a Little Rock landmark. And with new ownership by the Tanner family, the venerable institution is taking steps to be even more vital to the city scene. Live music will once again regularly ring across the LROB’s well-aged wood floors – and not only in the Oyster Bar’s tragically underused “party room,” but during happy hours from a planned new stage in the dining room as well.
A new bar for the party room will be installed along the west wall, a full A/V set-up is planned, and once-covered windows opened up, according to Chris Tanner. And the room’s storied stage will remain. Tanner’s been working with local musicians to create a sound system worthy of the Oyster Bar’s stage. For while its music schedule has been sporadic at best in recent years, the Oyster Bar is legendary for its live music. “Oh, that room used to be jumping,” according to equally-legendary local songstress Barbara Raney. “It was small, but one of my favorite places.”
“Look – live music and really good food, OK? Some places do live music, but their food is only OK,” Tanner said. “Or they do good food but don’t have live music. [The Oyster Bar] will be doing both, and doing both really well.”