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Lennon Studios Is Being Sold for Millions

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By Nicholas Palmer

You can buy a lot of things with millions of dollars, but no amount of money can replace magic that’s discovered, fought for, bled over and perfected inside the padded walls of a music rehearsal space. What Lennon Studios has been to local maestros of pitch and beat is worth far more than the $4.2 million price tag.

That’s right. The 7,500-square foot, two-story South of Market warehouse that’s offered up carved out, gear-filled spaces for budding and seasoned musicians alike is on the market, “attached parking lot” and all.

The InvestSF listing touts the “soaring wood frame bowed truss ceiling and poured in place concrete construction with multi-purpose rooms throughout, skylights, and heavy power” as quite the investment for a “plethora of occupancy opportunities.”

Lennon Studios, or formally Lennon Rehearsal and Music Services, has been a San Francisco staple for local and visiting musicians since 1984 when it began in its first space on Capp Street. They eventually grew out of their first digs and in 1992 moved into the “Ninth Street” spot, which bears an official 271 Dore St. address.  

The woman-owned Lennon Studios came to be after Carole Lennon decided that her two sons, who were both in bands then, needed a safe rehearsal space — preferably one that wasn’t located in the center of her living room. It turned out to be an “if you build it, they will come” sort of venture with walls that would absorb and witness sessions of Faith No More, Dead Kennedys, 4 Non Blondes and countless others. The late night music shop is an essential stop for touring bands in desperate need of random gear.

Lennon Studios on 271 Dore Street in San Francisco, Calif., a community staple music rehearsal space, is being sold for $4.2 million. Photo via Google Maps.

The no-frills, clean but kind of fittingly band-danked, affordable spaces monitored by a cultishly loved but totally feared Smokey seem to be a home as much as a rehearsal studio. It will most certainly be missed.

It’s not clear if both the monthly and hourly facilities are being sold or why it’s being sold to begin with. We have a call in to clarify but have yet to hear back. We’ll let you know as soon as we figure that out.

Until then, we hope one of you happens to know a friend who happens to know a friend with a cousin who’s hoarding millions and has a secret yearning to keep a piece of community alive and thriving.

Otherwise, such a shame.       

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