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2:32 AM Tue, Nov. 20th

Monk's cloistered for good: Restaurant/music spot is the latest closure in a series of shuttered venues

Matt Hinshaw/The Daily Courier, file<br>
Tumbledown House performs at Monk’s earlier this year.

Matt Hinshaw/The Daily Courier, file<br> Tumbledown House performs at Monk’s earlier this year.

The local music scene lost another venue with the closure of Monk's Restaurant this month.

Barry Barbe confirmed the news that he and his business partner closed the restaurant after a deal to bring in new owners fell through.

"It fell out (of escrow) and basically that's what happened as far as that goes," he said.

Barbe said the lease was up at the end of the month, and he and his partner were moving in different directions.

"It was just time," he said. "It sounded like a really easy transition, and at the last minute, (the prospective buyers) pulled out, and we'd kind of already gone our own ways."

Monk's wasn't the only restaurant and music spot to experience some shake-ups this year: The sour economy took out Sundance's Place in August.

The bar, which sits below Montezuma Street, went out with a bang as bands played there on the last weekend of the month.

Scott O'Neal reopened the bar as Scottie's in October. O'Neal said his plan is to highlight classic rock and blues music.

Barbe also closed 129 1/2 - An American Jazz Grille in September. The restaurant and jazz bar showcased a mix of music ranging from French jazz to traditional American genres and torch song standards, but business wasn't strong enough to keep the doors open.

The closures allow Barbe to focus on his El Gato Azul restaurant on Goodwin Street.

"We're kind of reviving the cat, I guess you could say," he said.

Most of the employees at Monk's either had other jobs lined up or they went to work at El Gato Azul, according to Barbe.

When asked about the dip in restaurants offering music options, Barbe said it's important for consumers to support local eateries and artists.

"It's been kind of a disappointment," he said. "I think that people need to realize that if that's something they enjoy in life, they really need to support it. We've got a great art community here and - I don't know - I think sometimes they take it for granted."