Warren Maxwell is giving something back to his roots.
For the past weeks the frontman for Trinity Roots and Little Bushman has been pouring concrete, knocking down walls and helping to convert two adjoining Masterton warehouses into the town's only dedicated live music venue.
The Featherston- based musician opens King Street Live on Thursday with a special acoustic performance by Tiki Taane and a DJ set with DJ Samboura on Saturday.
Maxwell and his business partner Carl Schdroski have dubbed King Street Live "a good place for good people to have a good time".
"I think the gods threw it at us," Maxwell jokes when asked about his new venture. "The town deserves a live music venue and I hope it provides a revenue stream for musicians. There's not a lot of income, what with illegal downloading of music and burning of CDs . . . So getting out there, playing live and having access to venues is a lot more important nowadays.
"I would love to see venues like King Street Live all around the country. There are boutique music venues in New Zealand that stand out for me. One is the Mussel Inn in Golden Bay, another is Leigh Sawmill Cafe and the other is the Penguin Club in Oamaru. These places might be a little off the beaten track but they have very loyal audiences and [they're] great to play for. Hopefully, musicians will feel that way about King Street Live in Masterton."
Initially, the venue will open three days a week - Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
"We need to test the waters to see if the community embraces it or not," Maxwell says. "The feedback has been very humbling. The whole thing has been terrifying for me. It's new territory but it's a natural progression."
And yes, if you drop in you might see Maxwell behind the bar pouring a drink.
- Sunday News