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Big Changes at Viper Room Start Playing Out

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Over the last couple of weeks, the scene at the Viper Room has been changing -- bartenders were let go, one of the bookers is gone, and now the internal publicist and talent buyer announced a seemingly abrupt departure. Former publicist Annie Geyer writes in an e-mail:

As of Friday, June 6, 2008 Melissa Renee Hernandez and I are no longer affiliated with the Viper Room. We appreciate everyone’s support over the last 2+ years and are very proud of the things that we have accomplished for the Los Angeles music scene under the Viper Room roof. We leave the Viper Room with heavy hearts and we will continue our Girl School and Indie 103.1 Check One Two nights very soon at a new venue. Thanks to all the bands, agents, sponsors, and fans for making our nights great.

The Viper Room's fame sits on the shoulders of a troubled past. River Phoenix's death at the club branded it for many, but financial troubles, court documents, an alleged disappearance of a part-owner (during the Johnny Depp era) and new owners all became part of the background drama. Despite all that, the club was a scene, an amazing place to be made possible by a group of dedicated staff that made it home.