Soho Tea & Coffee is a community coffeehouse, committed to providing its customers with quality service, products, art, and entertainment. I agreed to a night of “improv jazz” when Vince Kargatis asked me if his musicians could play at Soho Tea & Coffee on April 7th (Artifacts, 4/17).

Mr. Kargatis explained that he routinely charged a door fee for his production—nonprofit perhaps, but not a free concert. The so-called musicians that played the night of April 7th, at best, sounded like grade-schoolers practicing for the first time. I have had many local groups and solo artists play at Soho, as well as open-mike nights that are held on the first and third Wednesdays of each month, when anyone is invited to express themselves through a variety of media, and I have never had to ask anyone to stop playing or leave.

However, after listening to what was supposed to be improv jazz (for more than four seconds, I might add), as a business owner concerned for my customers and after numerous complaints from my staff and customers regarding Mr. Kargatis’ musicians’ performance and Mr. Kargatis’ attitude and treatment of my patrons—for example, walking up to customers and saying, “I can’t ask you to leave, but you must donate to stay for the performance,” which was not only inappropriate but rude—I made the decision to stop the nuisance that was driving customers out of my store.

As for your article, I think the descriptions you used—”chicken shit,” “coffee jerks,” and “sycophantic staff”—allowed readers to draw their own conclusions as to your credibility—not to mention the noise complaints that drew the police to insist that this group of so-called musicians stop playing in the park across the street from Soho. Noise is a good definition for what this group sounded like.

Owner, Soho Tea & Coffee

Dupont Circle