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The Empty Bottle is a bar and music venue located at 1035 N. Western Avenue in Chicago, Illinois. Located on the west side of Chicago's Ukrainian Village neighborhood, the venue primarily hosts local, regional, and touring alternative music acts, but also hosts acts ranging from indie-rock, punk, metal, rock'n'roll, hip-hop, electronic, experimental and jazz. The venue was opened by Bruce Finkelman in 1992, originally a simple neighborhood bar. In 1993 the club moved to its current location, two blocks from its original location. The venue also owns a connected restaurant next door called Bite Cafe. The Empty Bottle is open 7 days a week and hosts performances every night.[1]

The Empty Bottle
Torquil Campbell at The Empty Bottle 1.jpg
Torquil Campbell at The Empty Bottle in 2005
Address1035 N. Western Avenue
LocationChicago, Illinois, United States
TypeMusic venue, bar
Genre(s)Alternative rock

The offices of indie record label Flameshovel Records were located directly above the venue.[1]

In August 2009, The Empty Bottle lost "Radley", its house cat of nearly 20 years, who was much loved by staff, patrons, and musicians.[2][3][1]

"The Empty Bottle Chicago: 21+ Years of Music / Friendly / Dancing, a 200-page oral history...[from]...local indie publisher Curbside Splendor,"[4] edited by John E. Dugan with an introduction by John Darnielle, was released in June 2016.[5][6][1] "The book's subtitle references the words on the canopy over the club's front door."[4]


  1. ^ a b c d Dugan, John E. (June 2016). The Empty Bottle Chicago: 21+ Years of Music / Friendly / Dancing. Curbside Splendor. ISBN 978-1940430546.
  2. ^ Sless-Kitain, Areif (August 26, 2009). "Radley remembered: Empty Bottle's cool cat lives on in pictures". TimeOut Chicago. Retrieved October 25, 2018.
  3. ^ Jensen, Trevor (August 27, 2009). "Empty Bottle feline had full life". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved October 25, 2018.
  4. ^ a b Dugan, John (April 20, 2016). "An oral history of the Empty Bottle". Chicago Reader. Retrieved October 25, 2018.
  5. ^ "Curbside Splendor Publishing: The Empty Bottle Chicago: 21+ Years of Music / Friendly / Dancing". Curbside Splendor. 2018. Retrieved October 25, 2018.
  6. ^ "An Ode to Chicago's Empty Bottle, the Last Great Indie Rock Dive Bar Standing". Pitchfork Media. June 3, 2016. Retrieved March 5, 2019.

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Coordinates: 41°54′01″N 87°41′12″W / 41.9004°N 87.6866°W / 41.9004; -87.6866