The Tin Can is becoming The Balboa. After a three-month hiatus from live music, the Bankers Hill venue is undergoing a rebranding and will reemerge in March with a new name and a new concept.
The bar has been in a state of transition for several months, since co-owner Patrick Conway left San Diego for Portland and his former partner, Justin Rodriguez, dissolved his stake in December, after the final Tin Can Country Club showcase. Now, owner Tommy Logsdon, who also runs in-house eatery Doods Foods, is taking over and making a few changes.
"It's kind of been a long time coming," Logsdon tells CityBeat. "We had to step back and focus on where we wanted to go."
The Balboa will continue to have live music, which is being booked by Jackson Milgaten, best known for playing as a member of Cuckoo Chaos and Deadphones. Milgaten says there'll be shows every Friday and Saturday, and they'll mostly feature local acts.
"The San Diego scene is vibrant in a lot of ways, but somewhat small in a lot of ways," he says. "When I first moved here, there were barely any clubs. Now, there are a lot of options. We just want to recognize the people in town who make great music. We're not trying to create a market—we're just going to offer live music in Bankers Hill."
Milgaten's also developing a new cocktail menu for the bar, which will phase out its canned-beer concept. But, that doesn't necessarily mean the bar's going to be adopting some recent upscale trends.
"We're not trying to get too crafty," he says. "The primary focus is on classics."
The first show at The Balboa will feature Ed Ghost Tucker and Idyll Wild on Friday, March 6. And Milgaten says that most of March is already booked. Yet, while the bar will start a new life under a new name—inspired by the location's past life as a storage unit during the Panama-California Exposition in Balboa Park in 1915—Logsdon has nothing but positive memories of The Tin Can.
"I look back at The Tin Can fondly," he says. "I love the small, strange intimacy of the whole place."