Since 1995 Darwin’s Burgers & Blues has been serving up some of the best burgers and blues in Atlanta. In 2011 the current owners, Lindsay Wine and Jonathan Akin, took ownership. From 2011 to 2016, the couple has invested resource and sweat equity to establish Darwin’s as a hugely popular location for music fans to enjoy a selection of ongoing weekly blues jams, some of Atlanta’s best local bands and many, many touring acts. In 2016, as a testimony to Darwin’s impact on the music community, Darwin’s was awarded the Keeping the Blues Alive award from The Blues Foundation in Memphis. The popularity of Darwin’s brought growing pains as the venue was typically filled to capacity and parking became a struggle.
In 2016, Lindsay and Jonathan realized that the only way their tiny juke joint could continue to grow and thrive was to move from it’s Marietta location to someplace new. At the end of 2016 Darwin’s temporarily closed it’s doors and we all held our breath in anticipation of the venue opening again. Ultimately, a location in Sandy Springs, the former home of Steve’s Live Music, was the location selected as the new home for Darwin’s Burgers & Blues. Over $11,000 was contributed by the fans of Darwin’s to help Linsday and Jonathan to complete the conversion of the new space.
This Thursday, Darwin’s Burgers & Blues officially reopened at 234 Hilderbrand Drive in Sandy Springs. The ribbon cutting was attended by Rusty Paul the mayor of Sandy Springs, members of the Sandy Springs Perimeter Chamber, local business owners and of course the extended Darwin’s family of musicians and music fans.
The ribbon cutting was a full day celebration. Everyone was in high spirits and it showed in the smiles on everyone’s faces as they sat down to BBQ by L an P Catering Services and listened to the music. As people came and went throughout the day it felt very much like a family reunion as everyone chatted to catch up since the last time they met, shared old tales about music at the Marietta venue, and looked ahead to the next time they would see each other at Darwin’s.
Once the sun set Cody Matlock & Friends (Tony Erice on congos, Johnathan McKnight on drums, Jon Schwenke on bass and Valerie Waters and Rhett Huffman on keys) took to the stage. Picking up on the energy that had been accumulating all day the crowd danced through out the night and into the late night hours. It was great to see many familiar faces in the crowd but even better to see new ones out for a night of great burgers, BBQ and blues.
Cody has been a staple on the stage at Darwin’s since he was in High School and has matured into a phenomenal guitar player and singer. Like a seasoned veteran of the stage he gave every one of his Friends on stage a chance to show off their chops. Take a listen to some of the music from Cody Matlock & Friends’ performance at today’s ribbon cutting celebration. In addition to the blues classics you will find a Cody Matlock original.
You can hear Cody Matlock and Friends every Thursday night at Darwin’s.
Live music and the blues are alive in well at Darwin’s Burgers and Blues. Take a friend or three and pay Lindsay and Jonathan a visit at the new location and say thanks for their determination and dedication to local live music. Take a look at the Darwin’s calendar of events to see what’s happening every Tuesday through Sunday.
Libro Musica Live! YouTube Playlist
Take a listen to more live music on the Libro Muscia Live! YouTube playlist.