Where LA Goes to Get Loud
Los Angeles is the place to be if you want to make it big. This means that is has amazing opportunities for talented artists to perform in front of live audiences. They can be successful in front of a very large audience, or they can build a very solid and loyal fan base with more intimate concerts in some of the following venues.
11 Most Popular LA Live Music Venues
1. El Rey Theater
Image description: Rachel Platten performing at the El Rey Theater in 2016
The El Rey Theater is an LA live music venue located inside an art-deco building dating since 1936. Turned into a live music venue in 1994, the theater allows audiences to see artists perform in the beautiful setting of an art deco ballroom, under the neon signage.
Image description: Hozier performing at the Troubadour in May 2014
The club opened in 1957 and artists like Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, Elton John, Billy Joel, Van Morrison, Pointer Sisters, Bruce Springsteen, Leonard Cohen, The Eagles, Metallica, Guns’N’Roses, Pearl Jam, Korn, No Doubt, System of a Down, Radiohead, Johnny Cash, White Stripes, David Grohl, Franz Ferdinand, Coldplay, The Strokes, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and many, many, many more have performed on its stage since.
3. Largo at the Coronet
Largo at the Coronet is a place with a great vibe. In 2008, after 20 years in the previous location on Fairfax Avenue, the Largo club moved at the Coronet Theater. Among the artists who have ever performed here we mention Nellie McKay, Aimee Mann, Elliott Smith, Suzanne Vega, Fiona Apple, Sarah Silverman.
4. Hotel Cafe
Image decription: Anna Nalick performing live at Hotel Café in August 2011.
This place may surprise you at first – that is if you manage to find its alley entrance. But know that this is the place where you can listen to some of the great new artists. The acoustics is great and among the most recent appearances we can mention Leighton Meester, John Mayer and Charlotte OC.
Looking for a great place to listen to indie music? This is it. Looking for a place to listen to the newest and hottest indie music? Right again! And this is a 2 in 1 venue with the Echoplex just downstairs, a place intended to remind you just how great music sounds underground and with a sound system that will turn you into a regular on the spot.
6. Hollywood Bowl
Image description: The Hollywood Bowl Amphitheater with the Hollywood sign in the background
The Hollywood Bowl opened in 1922. Sinatra performed here in 1943 and the Beatles in 1964. This is the place to listen to some of the greatest music, from the LA Philharmonic to pop, rock and any other genre and collaborations between them. One thing you will love about it is that events at the Hollywood Bowl are pretty extensive as many people like to start them with a nice picnic before enjoying amazing music.
Video description: Sita Abellan at the Avalon in October 2014
House music lovers usually flock to this place, but this is not all there is to it. Apart from offering the coolest DJ sets, the place can also cater to a different kind of audience: the Bardot. This venue is upstairs from the main one and it is decorated like a French bar and lounge. DJ and rock music is played here.
8. Staples Center
Image source: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/16/Staples-Center-at-night.jpeg
Image description: Street view of the Staples Center
Staples Center is a venue with 20,000 seats that allows artists to put on big shows with pyrotechnics and other shenanigans. So if this is what you enjoy, then Staples Center is the place for you. It has featured performances of Lady Gaga, Katty Perry and Justin Beiber.
9. Theater at Ace Hotel
An architectural gem and a landmark for the city’s artistic heritage, the Theater at Ace Hotel is a place here you can have some pretty spiritual musical experiences. The interior has been restored and it can host amazing large scale events.
Image source: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/4/44/Evanescence_at_The_Wiltern_theatre_in_Los_Angeles,_California_07.jpg
Image description: Evanescence performing at the Wiltern
The Wiltern is another beautiful art deco building hosting performances of artists such as Wilco and the White Stripes. It was built in 1931 and was first meant to be a vaudeville house. The venue has a lot of character which it transfers it to all the events taking place on its stage. Music lovers appreciate the mix of old and new and it is one of the most appreciated locations in the city.
11. Greek Theater
Image source: https://c2.staticflickr.com/6/5580/14904286055_c55ef382fe_b.jpg
Photo credit: Jun [email protected]
Image description: Yo-Yo Ma performing at the Greek Theater in 2014
The Greek Theater is the place where you can see the stars from under the stars. That is if the performance is held at night. Otherwise, this 6000 seat outdoors amphitheater offers great acoustics and a romantic setting.
If you are looking for a place to listen to amazing live music in LA you sure have where to choose from. Keep your eyes on the programs and book your seat because these popular locations tend to be sold-out quickly.
Take a look at this list of 11 of the most popular LA venues where you can enjoy quality live music. You can either be there when a new artist gets discovered or enjoy the tunes of established musicians.