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The House of Independents in Asbury Park is “back in business.”

Brian Fallon, the Red Bank-born frontman for the Gaslight Anthem, performed shows on June 1 and 2 to reopen the Cookman Avenue venue after flooding closed the spot in September.

The Elizabeth-based Concert Crave purchased the business and made repairs to open the 500-capacity hall.

“It’s nice to be open again,” Fallon said on stage on Saturday. “Another place to go. It’s not a dump, you know what I mean? There are enough dumps in the world. Not this one. We like it. “We’re here, we’re happy.”

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Fallon, who said the venue was “back in business,” performed an acoustic set of his solo music and Gaslight Anthem songs for the rapt sold-out audience. The rocker has a unique ability to create a shared space of intimacy with his music and his stories.

The songs refer to heartbreak, nostalgia, clubland noir and romantic optimism. Fans hang on every lyric, and chimed in with background harmony on “American Slang” and gentle “whoas” for “A Wonderful Life.”

One of the Fallon’s most popular songs, the Gaslight Anthem’s “Blue Jeans & White T-Shirts,” referenced a desire to buy a house on Cookman.

“It’s hilarious to me that song is old enough… [that] I had to change the words because you can’t afford a house on Cookman Avenue,” said Fallon of the track, originally released in 2007. “It’s wild that it’s been around that long and things have changed that much because it was a dump around here.”

Part of Fallon’s appeal is the running dialogue he keeps with the audience. On Saturday, I have referenced a broad range of topics, including Dolly Parton, Adele, Rob Thomas, his Brian Fallon koozie, celebrity phone calls, his kid’s goldfish and his body weight.

“I got to lose 25 pounds by Sea Hear Now,” Fallon said. “It’s no joke. You don’t think I can do it?”

The Gaslight Anthem play Sea Hear Now in Asbury Park on Sunday, Sept. 15, the same day Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band are headlining. The Gaslight Anthem also play Friday, Aug. 16, at the city’s Stone Pony Summer Stage.

“It’s nice to see a local guy reopen a venue back up,” said Michael Butler of Hazlet, who attended the show with his wife Jill Butler.

“This is our Spotify playlist in real life,” Jill Butler said.

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The sound for the evening was crisp and the stage lights sparkled. The set up for the two-floor venue, with the stage on the lower floor, remains the same. The bar at the rear of the first floor has been renovated.

The city band Doc Emmett opened the evening with a set of agreeably moody progressive rock that included a cover of the Tears for Fears’ hit “Everybody Wants to Rule the World.”

“I can’t tell you how many times we’ve played on this stage,” said frontman Matthew Caponegro.

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The House of Independents, which opened in 2016, has been closed since flooding from Wesley Lake during a Sept. 29 storm caused $500,000 worth of damage, management said.

“There was 4 feet of water, it was a swimming pool here,” said Claude Elie of Concert Crave at the June 1 show. “So anything up to 4 feet is brand new basically. New stage, speakers — everything down there. We’re still doing a lot of work. We were doing construction and getting the place ready until the last five hours. “We’ve been busting it.”

Concert Crave also promoted concerts on the Eastern seaboard and recently purchased the Webster Theater in Hartford. Connecticut.

House of Independents upcoming schedule

Upcoming shows and events at House of Independents include:

  • Be Our Guest: The Disney DJ Night on Friday, June 7
  • Frikitona: Classics vs Current Reggaeton Fiesta, Saturday June 8;
  • The Latin Social, Sunday, June 9
  • Ed Bassmaster, Thursday, June 13
  • Dueling Pianos, Friday, June 14
  • Bollywood Night Party, Saturday, June 15
  • Rivals, Sunday, June 16
  • The Taylor Party, Friday, June 21
  • BTS Day Party: 11th Anniversary K-Pop Party, 11 am Saturday, June 22
  • Cupcakke, 9 pm Saturday, June 22
  • TKA Jersey Shore Freestyle, Friday, June 28
  • Remember Jones, Saturday, June 29.

Visit houseofindependents.com for more information.

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Chris Jordan, a Jersey Shore native, covers entertainment and features for the USA Today Network New Jersey. Contact him at cjordan@app.com.