Innovative music-maker and performance space plans 2020 opening in downtown Greensboro’s east side.
REENSBORO, NC — At the corner of Washington Street and Pastor Anderson Way in the former M. Lieb & Son Gourmet Foods building, construction noise is a sweet sound to area musi-cians. Rhythm Works, a new maker’s space in downtown Greensboro’s east side, is becoming reality as building upgrades are underway and an executive director has been hired.
Mike Hooks named executive director of Rhythm Works
Mike Hooks, a Greensboro native with a long history in the local music scene, has accepted the leadership role, according to local developer Andy Zimmerman. Zimmerman has been champi-oning the site as a musicians’ maker space and performance venue for months and now, with partners Stu Nichols and Linda Spitsen, the idea has gained serious tempo.
“Greensboro has a long history as a musical city and remains so today,” Zimmerman said. “Rhythm Works will be the place where established and aspiring musicians can come to play, practice, record and perform. Mike is the perfect person to lead this project toward our planned opening by late summer this year.”
Hooks, whose father, Joe, was a local jazz drummer, began performing in clubs and coffee houses while in his teens. He performed at the Songwriter’s Showcase in Nashville and today still produces multi-track recordings. Hooks’ main “gig,” however, has been as a sales a market-ing executive for numerous companies, most recently in the outdoors industry. Rhythm Works represents an idea that would have been a dream-come-true to the young Hooks.
“Rhythm Works is a non-profit whose purpose is to nourish the community of musicians and those who appreciate musical performance,” Hooks said. “It’s where artists can affordably take their music to a higher level through studio access and rehearsal spaces, a one-stop location for enjoying both local artists performances as well as more regional and nationally recognized entertainers.”
The facility occupies the same block as Zimmerman’s, Nichols’ and Spitsen’s Studio 503 artists/creators space which opened in 2018. Plans include spaces dedicated for classes and clinics, recording, rehearsing and performing. Hooks said there will also be space equipped for internet radio station, podcasts and video editing/production.