Before the Badlander occupied 208 Ryman, it was Hammer Jacks, remember? If you're a local, you probably even remember The Ritz.

Hammer Jacks was Missoula's bar for live DJs and dancing from 2004 to 2007. When I asked Missoulians what they remember most about the bar, the number one answer was "25 cent beers." 96.3 The Blaze used to host quarter beer happy hour and we met our fill of fun hobos.

As for nights at Hammer Jacks, it was all about DJs spinning actual vinyl and creating a fun party atmosphere. That place was straight bumpin' for a few years, largely in part to the DJs and 107.5 Zoo FM (formerly Wild 107.5) promotion.

Here's how Aaron "The Tallest DJ in America" Traylor remembers it.

It was the perfect storm with Hammer Jacks. The very same week that we launched Wild 107.5 was the same week that Hammer Jacks began looking for DJs. In the beginning, it was myself, DJ Bionic and Money Mike, followed soon after we had guest appearances from legends like DJ Chunkiye and DJ Mow. When the station flipped format and I left town, the Wild Boyz disbanded and DJ Terminal and DJ Bionic took on the reigns as their resident DJs. Hammer Jacks will always have a place in my heart. It was where many talented people were either launched, or propelled their career to even greater heights. So many memories, so many friends made! I'll never forget that place.

 

The Tallest DJ in America has since left Missoula and 107.5 Zoo FM to become the Operations Manager of WAY-FM in Nashville and still DJs at events there.

DJ Terminal was also a big part of the Hammer Jacks years. He has since become a partner in a hospitality firm called Clique Hospitality, who owns/operates/builds restaurants, bars, lounges, pools and nightclubs. Terminal also still DJs quite a bit in Southern California and Vegas under the name Sir Pearce.

DJ Bionic and DJ Chunkiye are still actively working at various bars and events in Missoula.

Photo by Angel