The happy hour live shows at The Page will continue, as the SF Entertainment Commission granted the bar a Limited Live Performance permit on Tuesday — though a few neighbors showed up to complain that the music is too damned loud.  

Of the many mitigation measures that bars and restaurants had to make during COVID-19, the most charming and clever of these in San Francisco may have been the parklet at Lower Haight bar The Page, which rather hilariously recreated the bar’s home-y interior in an outdoor setting. The Page also got themselves a Just Add Music (JAM) permit, which allowed for live performances, but that JAM permit legislation expired earlier this year.

So like many bars, if The Page wanted to keep hosting live music, they had to go before the SF Entertainment Commission to get a regular live-music permit, as SFGate reported last month. And The Page applied for just a Limited Live Performance permit, asking merely for a couple hours of live music during happy hour that would not run late into the evening.

On Tuesday, the Entertainment Commission unanimously granted that live-music permit in a 4-0 vote, despite about a half-dozen neighbors showing up to complain that The Page’s music was too loud. The Page’s new permit can apply indoors, or to outdoor shows in their parklet.

Commissioner Maria Davis explained her vote in favor of the permit, saying, “They haven’t been able to have musicians inside. Granting this permit might bring more musicians inside, and I feel like that’s a win for everybody.”

But commissioner Cyn Wang had some tough questions for The Page, citing the “sheer number of complaints we have received related to sound there.”

The Page owner Bob Wait said he’d taken many sound mitigation measures. “In response to some of the complaints, we removed our outdoor speakers,” he told the commission. “We limited the performance from 5 to 7 [pm], on weekends we moved it from 3 to 5 [pm]”

Wait added that they’d also limited vocals, eliminated the use of brass instruments, and no longer allow percussionists to use sticks. “We have a guy who plays with brushes rather than sticks,” Wait said.

But before the vote, several neighbors detailed their complaints about the live shows.

“I’ve complained from Day One,” resident Albert Sammons, Jr. told the commission. “You will probably give him that permit. But I live in that neighborhood. Most of the people who are supporting it don’t live on my block.”

“It’s just been so loud,” added neighbor Tony Calaveras. “If the permit goes out, this new permit, I don’t believe anything I hear as far as ‘Oh, we're going to do this or we’re going to do that.’ Because they haven’t respected us at all.”

Musician Tom Drohan, who plays at The Page weekly with his band Skillet Licorice, insisted the music is generally not amplified. “When you’re hearing an acoustic bass, an acoustic guitar, a fiddle, and a mandolin, I just don’t think that’s intrusive,” he said Tuesday.

Before voting to grant the permit, the commission’s president Ben Bleiman assured the neighbors that like any permit holder, The Page is subject to notices of violation and citations if the bar does not comply with sound measures spelled out in the permit’s Good Neighbor Policy.

“The neighbors have a place to reach out to that actually is super responsive and has a job to do to respond to the complaint,” Bleiman insisted. “We do have a track record of supporting neighbors and venues in finding ways of working together, compromising, and finding solutions.”

Related: Mission District Bar Casements Wins Right to Extend Their Back Patio Hours Later Into the Evening [SFist]

Image: Mijin Y. via Yelp