Written by Peet Banks
You can’t call yourself a paranormal investigator, and not have heard of Bobby Mackey’s Music World! It is up there as American’s ‘Most Haunted’ night club. Located on the banks of the Licking River, in Wilder, Kentucky the venue itself has a very colourful, and highly publicised history full of gambling, violence, music, prohibition and all kinds of ghosts, spirits, demons and portals to hell!
It is said that in the early 19th century, the area was originally used as a slaughterhouse. Following this it was a roadhouse with various different names One of the stories attached to the venue is that two men, who are said to still haunt the building, murdered a young, pregnant lady named Pearl Bryan. They held a satanic ritual which involved decapitating her and throwing her head down a well. Years later this well was uncovered by the caretaker, and it is said that when he opened it, he claimed to be possessed by the evil entity he had unwittingly released.
The basement of the venue is another extremely haunted area. It was where the dressing rooms used to be for the performers. A story told is that in the 1940’s there was a dancer named Johanna who fell in love with a man her father did not approve of. Her father was a gangsta, and he and his fellow criminals ‘got rid’ of the suitor. Johanna, in her grief, ingested poison in the dressing room. All of this was recorded in a diary which the caretaker also claimed to find.
Bobby Mackey himself has never experienced anything paranormal at the venue, but hundreds of others have, including his late wife Janet. She was allegedly attacked by an invisible entity. Others claim to have been thrown across the room, seen full bodied apparitions and shadow figures, heard disembodied voices, and, of course, Zak Bagan’s belief that he was possessed by a demonic force there.
Over the years it has been said that there are over 40 different spirits who inhabit the site, including a particularly dark entity who is dangerous to women.
Author Douglas Hensley spent five years researching the background of the nightclub, the land it is located on, and the sordid history dating back to the 1800s. “Hell’s Gate: Terry at Bobby mackey’s Music World” contains 29 sworn and signed affidavits from club employees, patrons, Wilder Policeman and more, attesting to the paranormal happenings at this den of iniquity.
Their official website states “Come for the ghosts, stay for the music!” – well okay then!