Old Miami

From MusicWiki Detroit
Jump to: navigation, search
The Old Miami
OldMiami Logo.jpg
Background Information




Cass Corridor


3930 Cass Ave
Detroit, MI


(313) 831-3830


12:00 Noon - 2:00 am
7 days a week



Event Schedule

Event Schedule listed on Facebook


There are certainly 4 very separate identities to this bar at 3130 Cass Avenue.

Miami Bar

In the 40's and 50's it was called the Miami Bar and was a very classy joint. There used to be a few new car dealerships along the corridor and The Miami is where a lot of the salesmen hung out.

Kens Lounge

Sometime in the 60's The Miami became Kens Lounge, not a classy or a nice place. The back room that later became the music area was originally a house. When Cass became commercial, a storefront was built onto the front. Many other corridor buildings were like this, including HoHo's on 2nd. Anyway, the house part burned down. The ruble was dumped into the basement and a flat roof was put on top of the surviving exterior walls. This was a separate space and at one time a machine shop operated there. Most likely from the 50s on it was vacant. Ken was a very sleezy guy and his bar attracted a bad crowd. Many of the people who hung out at The West Detroiter on Woodward and The Golden Ducat on 3rd were also regulars there. There were several violent murders in Ken's.

When Michael Roper went in to check it out in 1976 to see what he might be in for if he purchased the place, the barmaids were turning tricks on mattresses laid out on the old machine shop floor in back. When he was there a pimp came in and dragged one of the girls out from behind the bar and beat her up, much to the delight of the crowd. He bought it anyway.

New Miami

In 1976 George Rupert, who was working at the Pontchartrain asked Michael Roper if he would be interested in going in on purchasing Ken lounge at 3130 Cass. He did and learning of its glory days in the 40s and 50s as the Miami Lounge. He suggested calling it The New Miami. After totally gutting the place they opened in February 1977.

They opened with Shadowfax in February of 77 and had a great time for awhile, but the neighborhood was changing and business was not always great. Many of the apartment buildings around us including some nice ones like the Coronado on Selden and Cass burned down. However there was always the music The Vibes. The bluegrass band Harlin County, The Lords, The Rockabilly Cats, Bobby McDonald, Mitch Ryder, Steve Nardella with the great Mr. B on piano and George Bedard on guitar, Sonic's Rendezvous, Wayne Kramer, Destroy All Monsters, etc. All played there.

In February of 1980 a group of losers (as Michael describes) who They had trouble with over the years poured gas into the exhaust fan opening and lit it on fire. Underinsured and lacking any sort of cash reserve, that was the end of The New Miami. Ken exercised his option and took the bar back.

The Old Miami

In 1986 after remaining vacant for some time, Dan Overstreet fixed up and reopened the bar calling it The Old Miami and made it a as a haven for Vietnam Veterans and there is NEVER a cover charge for Veterans.

The walls are lined thick with Vietnam and other military Memorabilia, many of which were given to owner Dan Overstreet by fellow veterans. The Old Miami has been called "the C.B.G.B's of the midwest" for it's history as a music venue. Almost every notable artist from Detroit has played on it's stage as well as many national acts of the punk/modern rock era.

With a jukebox full of vinyl from Patsy Kline to Gang Green that sits next to the pool table to Comfortable couches and chairs are placed by the fireplace and in front of the dance floor it creates a relaxed den-like atmosphere. Outside there is a huge back yard with a pond and large porch/stage that hosts many all-day outdoor events in the summer months.

External Links