I Lived Next to Hollywood Alley and Never Gave It a Chance
by Aaron Thompson
Melissa Fossum View our slideshow of Hollywood Alley's final weekend.
Hollywood Alley has always been just another bar to me. Since I relocated to the Phoenix area about four months ago, the bar, located in an unassuming strip mall at the Tempe-Mesa border always seemed like a potential suburban gem of hidden filth and rock 'n' roll debauchery.
Despite my love for hidden rock, filth, and debauchery, I never really gave it a second thought. Maybe I thought I was too cool. Maybe I was too busy. Maybe I thought it would always be there.
Yet as I held my tangy yet simultaneously putrid gin and tonic in my hands at 1:05 a.m., and a solo couple clutched each other to the sounds of a grimy blues band belting out tunes that blended into the atmosphere, it never was more clear to me and everyone else in the bar: This was the end of Hollywood Alley.
Being new to the area, the bar's legendary status means little to me, but the others inside are eager to fill me in, even then. Patrons around me drunkenly recall tales of being the subject of episodes of Cops in the bar's parking lot, playing their first gig on the club's stage, even just managing not to puke on the bar's floor.
"It's a place that's important to me," says a bartender I don't [and won't' know. The bar's logo is tattooed on his arm.