“It’s about having punk rock one night, having comedy the other night, and having a burlesque drag show the next night. If it’s good, good is good,” says Tim Mars, the owner of The Lexington bar on 3rd Street. You could say Mars gets what it means to deliver a good time after spending years on the road as a stand-up comic. But it wasn’t on stage where he discovered his desire to open up The Lexington bar here in DTLA, it was behind the wheel as he traveled from gig to gig, listening to books on CD to pass the time.
One of the topics that ended up grabbing his attention dealt with commercial real estate. He came back to Los Angeles with a plan. He wanted to open up a bar. And with some borrowed money from a former comedy road booker, and some discounted freezers from a Rite-Aid going out of business sale he stitched together the perfect dive bar in 2013. It’s grungy, friendly and a drink isn’t going to drain your rent fund. You don’t feel judged here. You don’t feel like you owe them anything, You’re just here to have a good night. There’s also a smoking patio out back where Mars says, “That’s where the world gets figured out.” Depending on the night here’s what you can expect: Monday nights you can catch some angsty Boyle Heights rock band or a punk band you’ll want to follow up on.
It’s like hitting the shuffle button and getting the opportunity to listen to some great music you wouldn’t naturally come across. The booker for this night is the drummer for The Tissues and she’s just that good at scouting local talent. Tuesdays are dedicated to comedy that tends to steer clear of the mainstream bunch so leave your sensitivities at the door. They’ve had headliners like Bill Burr perform as well as the amateur comedian trying to get the exposure and ease needed to pursue a career in comedy.
Thursdays are kind of a free for all for those reaching out to the bar for a chance to show what they’ve got on stage. Mars is in charge of bringing in the best of the best on Fridays and Saturdays and every other Sunday you can enjoy a burlesque and drag variety show hosted by the always entertaining Tito Bonito aka the Cuban Missile Crisis. Mars thanks the success of his bar on the fuss-free vibe coupled with his talented bookers, three of which are women. So come see what they’ve all lined up for you, grab a drink and walk away knowing you just added a new bar to your rotation.
Written by Linda Hosmer
Photographed by Robiee Ziegler