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9 of the Best Live Music Venues in Boston You Simply Need to Visit

So… Where Does the Music Take You in Boston?

Boston offers a wide choice of bars, clubs, theaters and lounges where people can listen to great live music. But do you know which ones they are and what type of events can you attend? You can support local musicians, attend career-launching events and catch your favorite singers on tour. Not to mention the fact that you have your pick of music genres and different types of venues, from the more compact to the more accommodating. So, let’s see what Boston has to offer.

9 Boston Music Venues You Need to Visit

1.Great Scott

Video description: Krill performing at Great Scott in 2015

Located in Allston, Great Scott is a 240-person capacity venue known for its indie rock concerts. The place suffered a dramatic makeover more than 10 years ago, a change which may have brought upon its great success. It has no backstage therefore the artists are “forced” to make their way off stage into the crowd of fans – which is always nice… for the fans. A great “feature” of the place is that most up-and-comers who perform here end up famous within a year or two.

2. House of Blues


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Image description: Street view of the House of Blues Club in Boston

The House of Blues is a franchised music venue, the location in Boston being the first ever location of the chain. This alone speaks of the popularity of the club. About 2500 people can enjoy a music event and, despite being a medium-sized venue, it still is able to welcome big acts like that of Bob Dylan and Lady Gaga.

3. Brighton Music Hall

The Brighton Music Hall is another venue that forcer artists to retreat through the middle of the crowd. Reason enough for you to visit it yet? Although the club itself is rather new, the building was built 40 years ago and served as a music hall for rock bands. Today, the Brighton Music Hall performers are alternative, punk and indie rock bands, touring as well as local artists.

4. The Middle East


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Image description: Artist Rittz taking a picture with the crowd during the Yelawolf concert at the Middle East in December 2014

The Middle East is one of America’s best rock clubs in Boston and in the country. There are two stages on which artists perform – the Upstairs and the Downstairs – and the place operates as a restaurant as well as a music venue. There are rock, alternative and indie concerts, and the ZuZu area offers great dance parties with DJ sets. Fleet Foxes and TV on the Radio are among the bands that have performed here.

5. Paradise Rock Club


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Image description: The Vaccines band performing at the Paradise Rock club in 2013

Paradise Rock is one of Boston’s MUST VISIT rock music venues. Need more information? U2 performed here in 1980 and this is the place to attend shows of bands like The Shins, The Radio Debt, OK Go, or Mastodon, Haim and Artcic Monkey. Local artists usually sing in the lounge and there are appetizers and sandwiches to be served.

6. Lizard Lounge

The Lizard Lounge is a basement bar in the vicinity of Harvard Square. The fun thing about it is that it has no stage and that the only thing separating the artist from the audience is the edge of a rug. Visitors can enjoy a very wide variety of music events from all sorts of genres like rock or folk, jazz and others, as well as good food. It is perceived as a warm and intimate space

7. The Sinclair

The Sinclair is considered the main act of the Boston music venues. It was recently renovated and its décor now boasts an antique wooden bar and other such elements, to preserve the character of the area. It has a 525 person limit as it doubles as a restaurant and a concert hall. Given the capacity and the names featured in their acts, it is no wonder that they sell out so quickly. Among the big names to have performed here there is that of the Manic Street Preachers’ band.

8. The Royale


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Image description: DJ Shadow+CORALCOLA performing at the Royale in Boston in 2012

This place has a different kind of design, compared to the other venues that wanted to preserve the old-world regional charm. The massive room is adorned with dripping chandeliers, there are comfortable seating areas, the elegant foyer is made of marble and the sound system is something you would only expect from one of the best music venues in Boston. And if this is not VIP enough, there are balconies where you can retreat to and still enjoy the music from a more intimate setting. The type of music played here? House, dance, indie rock, pop and hip-hip.

9. TT The Bear’s Place


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Image description: Street view of the T.T. The Bear’s Place club

T.T. The Bear’s Place is an underground venue by definition. It often features great yet unknown bands. Among the artists who had their early shows here we name The Strokes, Franz Ferdinand and the Pixies. It has a capacity of 330 people. Also keep in mind that once a week you can attend a new-wave party with DJ Chris Ewen.

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Here are 9 of the top music venues in Boston to bring you closer to great local bands, rock stars and up-and-comers. Some even serve food! So if you have not been here yet, you must do something to fix this!

11 of the Most Popular Venues to Listen to Live Music in Los Angeles

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


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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.

2. Troubadour


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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


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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.

5. Echo

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


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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.

 7. Avalon

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


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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.

10. Wiltern

Evanescence at The Wiltern

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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


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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.

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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.