If the walls of 100 Men DBA Hall could talk, the conversation would probably be very tuneful. Built in 1922, the Bay St. Louis music joint has hosted the likes of Etta James, Big Joe Turner and Professor Longhair. In recent years, it’s been a regular stop for Walter “Wolfman” Washington, Marcia Ball and Waylon Thibodeaux.
But owners Kerrie and Jesse Loya are looking to sell the hall. And if you can’t afford the building’s price tag of almost $500,000, which includes living quarters and an acre of land, you can buy some memories before the Loyas turn over the keys. The property also comes with its own ghost.
Beginning Wednesday, the Loyas, who opened the dance hall in 2006, will be hosting a memorabilia sale at 100 Men Hall. It will run through Friday.
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“Jesse and I ran a nightclub in (Los Angeles) and we knew nothing about the history of the hall — that came much later,” Kerrie Loya said. “When we first bought it, no one said, ‘That’s the place Etta James played.’
“It’s been a great adventure, but we just feel like it’s time to move on and do something different as this chapter has ended for us and now it’s time for someone else to come in and do something fantastic with the place.”
Among the items that will be for sale are posters signed by some of the venue’s many performers, as well as a vinyl record Jesse Loya produced .
A decade of memories
“Jesse produced an LP of some of the people that had played here while we had the place and we had it pressed on blue vinyl,” Kerrie Loya said. “I got a grant to produce an LP and I told Jesse, ‘Honey, you’re going to be producing it’ — but he always comes through.”
He said producing the album did present challenges.
“The biggest challenge was curating the material and finding the best performances and then fitting them into the 18 to 20 minutes per side of the album,” he said. “It was like putting a puzzle together.”
Other items for sale are a documentary about 100 Men DBA Hall on DVD, bottles found under the building and even the hall’s works of art.
“We will sell the guitar sculpture out front if someone wants it,” Kerrie Loya said. “You can see a lot of the items on our Facebook page — also, if you paid for a personalized chair from here, please come and pick it up.”
The sale will be 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. If you would like to schedule an appointment, call 228-342-5770.