18 & Up: T-Town by Shanetra Foster

6400 Richmond Ave.

April 2004–At the age of about eleven years old is when I first started wanting to go out. My two sisters were always going places because they were older than me. One day my two sisters, their friend, and my cousins went to a teen club called Stadium Bowl. When they came home, they talked about how fun it was all night long. They were saying I should go because I could lie and say that I was thirteen. A couple weeks later, I went to Stadium Bowl. I cannot recall exactly what I wore, but I do remember that I had on a pair of blue jeans shorts, cotton shirt, and a pair of white girls (this is what they called a pair of white tennis shoes for girls). It was everything they said it would be and I loved it. We could be seen at Stadium Bowl almost every weekend. That first night was the point of no return. After this experience, I only wanted to hang out with the older crowd

Soon the “teen-clubs” played out. Even though we were still teens ourselves, we thought there were too many “young” people and it was too “ghetto.” Every time we would go there a fight would break out over people stepping on each other’s new “J’s” (Air Jordan’s) and “hoods” (neighborhoods). I thought fighting was such an immature thing to do and it made me hate teen clubs.

The summer of my junior year I heard about this club that was actually four clubs in one- it had karaoke and it was two stories high. I was really feeling this club, which enforced a dress code (no tennis, which meant no fighting because of some one stepping on your “J’s”). It was located on Richmond Avenue, one of the “hot” streets in Houston.

You do everything on the Richmond strip; it is Houston’s Bourbon Street.

The four clubs inside of T-Town included Club EDR, Tune Town, the Booty Bar, and Senor Frogg’s. Club EDR is located on the main floor and plays House, Rap, Dance and Southern Bounce. It’s equipped with two massively overstocked bars, a huge dance floor, and a beer station. It also has a High-Tec Sound system Light shoe. Tune Town Karaoke is a relaxed atmosphere and fully stocked custom bar. You could sit back and watch friends in one of plenty private tables. The Booty Bar is the latest club in T-Town. The DJ spins a mix of Rap, Hip Hop and Dance. It has a system and light show the rivals EDR’s, but with a funkier style. It also housed a thirty-foot bar fully stocked and a stage just for the ladies. Senor Frogg’s is like your tropical oasis in the city. Outside on the patio the DJ spins Trance, Dance, and Spanish Pop. The patio features a tournament –sized pool table, a state of the art sound and Light system, and an island bar with custom multilevel deck.

I wanted to experience for myself so badly, but you had to be eighteen or older and I was only seventeen. Since I had older sisters, I could easily use one their ID’s and I had done so plenty of times before at different clubs. The real problem was they were strict on checking ID’s and one of my friends had been busted for using someone else’s ID and was totally embarrassed because they turned her around in front of everybody. I was nervous this would happen to me. At the same time I wanted to try to get in anyways because I also knew someone else who had gotten in successfully.

On the night of December 20, 2002 I decided to go with some friends. We were excited about going because this was the Christmas break for the college students, which meant all of our old friends would be there. That night I thought I was looking so good, wearing this low cut, backless shirt, and some Guess jeans with black and silver imprints, accompanied by a pair of two inch black heels. This outfit was a total change compared to what I used to wear to the teens clubs. While approaching the club, I could see that it was two stories high and you would have to go up the stairs to get to the door.

When we drove up we had to valet park because it was packed and that was the only way to park without getting your car towed. I could see the bouncer as we were arriving and he was this big, bald headed white guy who wore a black t-shirt with T-Town’s logo on the upper left shoulder. He had an intimidating look about him and it really made me scared. While waiting in line, I saw the bouncer turn away a girl because the picture on the ID was not of her. This made me very nervous. When I got to the bouncer I flirted with him a little bit so he could not pay so much attention to the face on the ID while he checked. It must have worked because I got in!

Walking down the stairs inside the club I was shocked! The club was so big and crowded! You could not even see the dance floor from some many people. The club also had a nice atmosphere. There were bar chairs around the dance floor, circular booths off the dance floor, and a private section where if you had a party or reserved seats you would sit. The crowd was definitely older and I immediately loved it. The people were all dressed nicely and the boys were really looking good. They had this clean, mature, casual look going on. The girls wore casual but provocative clothing and they looked really nice also. Even though the girls looked good, I still thought that no one looked better than me that night.

Just like I had heard, there were three clubs, a karaoke bar, about four bars and also an area where you could shoot pool. Waiters even came up to you to order your drinks. I danced in Club EDR and the Booty Bar. What I loved the most was the DJ. He was great! He went by the name J Homie Marco. Homie Marco is originally from St. Paul, Minnesota and has been living in Houston for the last past ten years. Some of his other experiences include working as Program Director of KQQK 106.5 and as a DJ at KMAP, Urban Radio, and Club DJ. He won an award for radio and music Tejano Program Director of the year in 1994. Marco DJ at several Houston clubs such as, the Roxy and El Dorado Ranch. He played a variety of music. My favorite was when he played his old school and slow jam segment. This segment played old school music back from the early nineties and late eighties such as, Lenny William’s Cause I Love you and Betty Wright’s Tonight is the Night. The segment also played slow jams such as R. Kelly’s Bump and Grind and Adena Howard’s T-shirt and Panties. I danced all night until three a.m., which was the time the club closed.

When the club closed outside would be crunk (hype). Everyone was walking around seeing people they had not seen on the inside of just meeting up with people they had just met on the inside of the club, making the dark light in the club was not fooling them. People who did not come inside the club were sure to be on the outside “parking lot pimping” (this was an expression meaning hitting on girls/boys outside in the parking lot). They had a truck outside that sold barbeque, hamburgers, burritos, and sodas. So the club did not actually clear out until about four a.m. in the morning.

This place was so much of everything I wanted to be. It was very diverse and the people were real cool. The crowd was not too young or too old, but jut in the age range I preferred and if they were not, they were very mature for their age and that’s all that I really wanted. There was definitely no fighting in this club and nobody going around throwing up their “hood” sign and arguing over spilled milk. This club, my dream club, is located on Richmond Avenue (one of the hottest streets in Houston) is Tune Town better known as T-Town.

Air Jordan

T-Town

Roxy

Maps:

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