Welcome to the city of Boston, where the streets are buzzing with energy and the nightlife is legendary. Whether you are a local looking for a new spot to unwind or a visitor wanting to know the best places to go, we truly understand the struggle of finding a great bar with live music.
Well, you’re in luck! In this article, we will guide you through the best bars in Boston that offer live music. From the iconic jazz clubs to the intimate acoustic venues, we have got you covered. You’ll learn about the unique ambiance, the variety of music genres, and the upcoming events that you don’t want to miss. So, grab your dancing shoes and let’s get started!
Are you tired of searching online for hours just to find a decent bar with live music? Do you find yourself settling for mediocre venues, paying high covers, or dealing with overcrowded spaces? Look no further as we have curated a list of the best bars in Boston that will not disappoint. Imagine sipping on your favorite drink while tapping your feet to impressive live performances or singing along to your favorite songs. This article will provide you with a hassle-free experience and help you discover the most authentic and exciting places to enjoy live music in Boston.
The Top Bars with Live Music in Boston
Boston is known as one of the best cities for live music lovers. From jazz to rock, Boston offers a diverse range of live music options. Bars with live music have become one of the best ways to enjoy these live performances. Here are the top bars with live music in Boston:
The BurrenBack Room
The BurrenBack Room is located in Davis Square in Somerville, which is only three miles away from Boston city. This bar is a traditional Irish pub that features a modern back room where live music events take place almost every night. In fact, the back room is a music venue that is built with one purpose in mind – to provide an intimate setting for live performances.
- Music Genre: Folk, blues, and traditional Celtic music
- History: The BurrenBack Room has been hosting live music events since 1996. In the late 1990s, the pub became known as a folk music epicenter in the Boston area. The BurrenBack Room has also been featured in various TV shows and movies, such as, “Patriot’s Day”, “The Runaround”, and “Good Will Hunting”
- Design: The back room has a capacity of 100 people and is designed with acoustics in mind. The room has an elevated stage, dynamic lighting, and surround-sound speakers, providing an excellent experience for both the audience and performers
- Reasonable cover charges, making it an affordable night out
- An extensive beer list with over 20 rotating taps
- A full bar and kitchen, with authentic Irish food
- An intimate setting and an opportunity to interact with the performers
- No reservations for the back room, so arrive early to get a good spot
- The pub gets crowded on weekends and during special events
- The music volume can be loud for some people
|The BurrenBack Room||The Middle East||The Sinclair|
|Music Genre||Folk, blues, Celtic||Indie rock, hip hop, reggae||Rock, pop, electronic|
|History||1996, known as a folk music epicenter in Boston||1970, has hosted over 20,000 live music events||2012, features local and national acts|
|Design||Elevated stage, dynamic lighting, surround-sound speakers||Two stages, one indoor and one outdoor, with multiple bars||Capacity of up to 525 people, with two levels of seating and standing room|
|Pros||Affordable cover charges, authentic Irish food, intimate setting||Two stages, diverse music genres, international cuisine||Excellent sound quality, attractive layout, multi-functional space|
|Cons||No reservations, can get crowded, loud music volume||Crowded on weekends, long lines, expensive drinks||Expensive tickets, hard to find parking, can be noisy|
The BurrenBack Room is a must-visit for live music enthusiasts visiting Boston. The bar’s intimate setting and quality acoustics make it a perfect spot to enjoy traditional Irish music and other genres like folk and blues.
2. Choosing the Best Live Music Venue for You
Once you have a list of potential live music venues in Boston, the next step is to choose which one to visit. This can be a daunting task as each venue offers a unique experience. However, there are a few factors to consider that can help you narrow down your choices.
One of the most important factors to consider when choosing a live music venue in Boston is its location. The city offers a vast array of live music venues scattered throughout its neighborhoods, and it’s important to choose a venue that is convenient for you to get to. Venues located near public transportation, parking, or within walking distance to your home or hotel can save you time and money.
Boston offers an eclectic mix of live music genres from rock and pop to jazz and blues. Choosing a venue that plays music you enjoy is key to having a great time. Check the venue website or social media pages to see what types of music they feature. Some venues may have nightly or weekly themes such as Motown Mondays or Jazz Fridays.
The seating arrangement can have a significant impact on your live music experience. Some venues offer standing room only while others have tables and chairs. If you prefer a more relaxed atmosphere for enjoying live music, look for venues with seating options. Some venues even offer VIP seating with reserved tables and bottle service.
The ambiance and atmosphere of a live music venue can make or break your experience. Some venues have an intimate setting with low lighting and cozy seating arrangements, while others have a more lively atmosphere with a large dance floor and flashing lights. Think about what type of atmosphere you prefer and choose a venue that matches your style.
Live music venues in Boston can vary in price, from free admission to expensive cover charges or minimum drink purchases. Determine your budget and look for venues that fit within it. Some venues may have happy hour or drink specials, so be sure to research and compare prices.
|Factors to Consider||Pros||Cons|
|Location||Convenient, saves time and money on transportation and parking||May limit choices for music genres or atmosphere|
|Music Genre||Ensures enjoyment of live music||May narrow down venue choices|
|Seating||Creates a comfortable and relaxing atmosphere||Venue may be more expensive for VIP seating|
|Atmosphere||Matches style and preference for live music experience||May not satisfy the tastes of everyone in a group|
|Price||Allows for budgeting and planning||May limit venue choices based on budget|
- Research venue websites and social media pages for information on location, music genre, seating, and atmosphere
- Consider budget when choosing a venue
- Ask friends or locals for recommendations on venues that match your preferences
- Read reviews on venue websites and social media pages to learn about other people’s experiences
- Attend different venues to experience new music genres and atmospheres
When choosing the best live music venue in Boston for you, it’s important to consider location, music genre, seating, atmosphere, and price. By researching and comparing different venues, and asking for recommendations, you can ensure a memorable live music experience in Boston that matches your preferences.
Experience the Thrill of Live Music at Boston’s Finest Bars
If you are a music enthusiast looking for a vibrant nightlife scene, Boston has plenty of bars that offer electrifying live music performances. With a plethora of options available, it can sometimes be overwhelming to choose the perfect bar to spend your evening. Here we have highlighted some of the best bars in Boston that offer live music performances to help you make an informed decision.
3. Types of Live Music
Boston’s bars offer diverse genres of live music that cater to various music taste. Below are the different types of live music offered by bars in Boston:
Boston has a deep-rooted history when it comes to Jazz music, and bars in the city have embraced this genre with open arms. The city has a thriving Jazz music scene. Many bars host regular live Jazz music performances by skilled musicians such as Berklee College of Music graduates. A notable Jazz bar in Boston is Wally’s Cafe Jazz Club, a renowned Jazz club where celebrities such as Bon Jovi and Ray Charles have performed.
Boston has a vibrant blues music scene, and many bars in the city offer regular live performances. Blues music aficionados will love the wealth of talent on offer here. The music style is characterized by soulful vocals and guitar solos. A renowned Blues bar in Boston is the House of Blues. The House of Blues not only offers live music performance but also a variety of dishes that make dining a complete experience.
The sound of electric guitars and pounding drums have kept the rock music genre alive for decades. Boston bars love to cater to rock music fans with many offering live performances. Music enthusiasts can expect to hear bands performing old-school rock songs as well as original compositions. A notable rock bar in Boston is the Middle East in Cambridge, which has played host to famous rock artists such as Foo Fighters, Oasis and Nirvana.
Indie music has become increasingly popular with live performances being hosted by various bars across Boston. The music style is associated with individualism and has created some of the most profound and exciting acts in music history. Great Scott, located in the Allston neighborhood, is a notable Indie bar in Boston. The bar has featured up and coming music bands that are on the cusp of hitting mainstream, such as the Arctic Monkeys.
Pop music is a genre that has dominated charts across the world, and bars in Boston have not overlooked this. Many bars offer live performances from bands and musicians who produce catchy melodies and danceable beats. Royale Boston is a popular pop music bar that has become a landmark for popular music in the city. The bar has hosted international pop artists such as Tiesto and David Guetta.
|Jazz Music||Wally’s Cafe Jazz Club|
|Blues Music||House of Blues|
|Rock Music||Middle East|
|Indie Music||Great Scott|
|Pop Music||Royale Boston|
- Boston has a variety of bars that offer music performances ranging from Jazz to Indie music.
- Many bars host live music performances as part of their weekend entertainment program or on a regular basis, with some containing full-fledged performances or shows.
- While some bars feature in-house bands, others change the musicians that perform regularly to keep the performances exciting.
- Famous artists and bands such as Bruce Springsteen, Aerosmith, and the Dropkick Murphys have all hailed from the Boston music scene.
- The city of Boston has produced many successful musicians and bands over the years, making it a significant player in the music world.
In conclusion, Boston’s bar scene offers a variety of Live music genres to cater for every taste. Whether you prefer the soothing melodies of Jazz or the energetic sound of rock, there is a bar in the city that offers it all. With the vibrant nightlife and the historic sights around the city, at least there is no shortage of things to do when you are enjoying the music in Boston bars.
Uncovering the Hidden Gems of Boston’s Live Music Scene
Boston has a vibrant live music scene, with a variety of bars and venues hosting local and national acts. While many people are familiar with popular venues like the House of Blues and the Paradise Rock Club, there are also plenty of lesser-known spots that offer great live music experiences. Here are some of the hidden gems of Boston’s live music scene that you won’t want to miss.
The Plough and Stars
The Plough and Stars is a classic Irish pub located in Cambridge’s Central Square neighborhood. While the bar is known for its cozy atmosphere and quality drinks, it also boasts a regular lineup of live music acts. From traditional Irish music to blues and folk, the Plough and Stars offers a diverse range of musical genres that will appeal to any taste.
Acoustics and Atmosphere
The Plough and Stars is a small, intimate space that is perfect for live music. Its low ceilings and brick walls provide great acoustics, and the stage area is just the right size for an up-and-coming band or solo act. The bar also has a cozy, old-school vibe that makes you feel like you’re stepping back in time.
The Plough and Stars has live music almost every night of the week, with a focus on local talent. You can check their website or Facebook page for a calendar of upcoming shows. Some notable acts that have played at the Plough and Stars include Patty Larkin, Vance Gilbert, and the Irish folk band, The Nightingale.
Pros and Cons
Here are some pros and cons of experiencing live music at the Plough and Stars.
|– Great acoustics||– Limited seating|
|– Cozy atmosphere||– Can get crowded|
|– Diverse range of genres||– Limited stage space|
The Burren is another popular Irish pub that is also a great live music venue. Located in the Davis Square neighborhood of Somerville, the Burren has been hosting live music acts for nearly two decades. The venue has two stages—one in the main bar area and one in the back room—that host a variety of acts from local singer-songwriters to established national acts.
Food and Drinks
In addition to its live music offerings, the Burren is also known for its excellent food and drink options. The bar features a rotating selection of craft beers and ciders, as well as a full bar menu. The food menu focuses on Irish and American pub fare, with a standout dish being the shepherd’s pie.
The Burren has live music every night of the week, with multiple acts playing each night. The venue also hosts a Sunday afternoon Irish music session that is open to anyone who wants to come and play traditional Irish tunes. Some notable acts that have played at the Burren include Martin Hayes, Susan McKeown, and Altan.
Pros and Cons
Here are some pros and cons of experiencing live music at the Burren.
|– Two stages||– Can get crowded|
|– Excellent food and drink options||– Can be noisy|
|– Diverse range of genres||– Limited seating on busy nights|
The Sinclair is a live music venue located in the Harvard Square neighborhood of Cambridge. The venue offers a mix of established and up-and-coming acts, with genres ranging from rock and indie to electronic and hip hop. In addition to its music offerings, the Sinclair also hosts comedy shows and other events.
Sound and Lighting
The Sinclair is known for its top-notch sound and lighting systems. The venue has a professional staff that ensures that every act sounds great and looks great on stage. The venue’s layout also allows for great sightlines, no matter where you’re standing or sitting.
The Sinclair has a busy schedule of live music acts, with performances almost every night of the week. The venue has hosted a variety of notable acts, including Sleater-Kinney, St. Vincent, and Gary Clark Jr. You can check their website for a complete calendar of upcoming shows.
Pros and Cons
Here are some pros and cons of experiencing live music at the Sinclair.
|– Top-notch sound and lighting||– Limited seating for some shows|
|– Great sightlines||– Can be expensive|
|– Diverse range of genres||– Some shows may sell out quickly|
The Middle East
The Middle East is a well-known live music venue located in Cambridge’s Central Square neighborhood. The venue is split into several smaller rooms, each with its own unique vibe and genre focus. From rock and metal to hip hop and electronic, the Middle East has something to offer for everyone.
Multiple Rooms and Events
One of the standout features of the Middle East is its multiple rooms, each offering a different live music experience. The main space hosts larger acts and shows, while the upstairs space is more intimate and features local and up-and-coming acts. In addition to its live music offerings, the Middle East also hosts other events, such as readings and film screenings.
The Middle East has a packed schedule of live music events, with shows happening almost every night of the week. The venue has hosted a variety of notable acts, including The Lemonheads, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, and Nas. You can check their website for a complete calendar of upcoming shows.
Pros and Cons
Here are some pros and cons of experiencing live music at the Middle East.
|– Multiple rooms and experiences||– Can be crowded and noisy|
|– Diverse range of genres||– Limited seating for some shows|
|– Regularly hosts notable acts||– Some shows may be 21+ only|
5. The Pros and Cons of Bars with Live Music
Bars with live music can be a great source of entertainment, but there are also potential drawbacks. To help you decide whether these types of bars are right for you, let’s examine the pros and cons in more detail.
- 1. Live music adds to the overall experience.
- 2. Bars with live music provide a great night out.
- 3. Bars with live music support local artists and musicians.
- 4. Bars with live music can be more memorable than regular bars.
- 5. Bars with live music can offer a wider variety of music genres.
1. Live music adds to the overall experience.
Bars with live music offer a unique experience that can enhance a night out with friends or loved ones. The combination of live music, drinks, and a lively atmosphere can make for an unforgettable night. Live music offers something that pre-recorded or canned music can’t replicate – a unique energy and atmosphere that can’t be replicated anywhere else.
2. Bars with live music provide a great night out.
Bars with live music offer a great night out, especially for those who love music. Instead of just going out for a drink or two, these bars offer a reason to stay longer and enjoy the ambiance. Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion or just looking for a fun night out, bars with live music can be a great option.
3. Bars with live music support local artists and musicians.
Many bars with live music choose to support local talent and give up-and-coming artists a platform to showcase their music. By supporting these bars, you’re also supporting local musicians and artists who are trying to make a living from their passion. It’s a win-win situation for both parties.
4. Bars with live music can be more memorable than regular bars.
Bars with live music can be more memorable than regular bars since they offer an interactive experience. You can dance, sing along, or simply enjoy the music while sipping on your favorite drink. Plus, the atmosphere at a live music venue can be electric, making the night even more memorable.
5. Bars with live music can offer a wider variety of music genres.
Bars with live music can cater to a wider range of music tastes since they often feature different genres of music on different nights. If you’re an avid music fan, these bars are perfect for you. You can discover new artists and sub-genres while enjoying the night out.
- 1. Bars with live music can be noisy and crowded.
- 2. Bars with live music can be expensive.
- 3. Bars with live music can be overwhelming for introverts.
- 4. The quality of live music can vary.
- 5. People might talk during performance or use phones.
1. Bars with live music can be noisy and crowded.
Bars with live music can often be crowded and noisy, making it difficult to have a conversation. If you’re looking for a quiet night out, bars with live music might not be the best option. However, if you’re looking for a lively night out with friends, these bars are the perfect option.
2. Bars with live music can be expensive.
Bars with live music can be more expensive than regular bars. Since these bars often feature live performances, they may charge a small fee or raise the prices of their drinks. However, it is important to note that this is not always the case, and some bars may offer free live music with no additional costs.
3. Bars with live music can be overwhelming for introverts.
Bars with live music can be overwhelming for introverts who prefer quieter environments. The loud music and crowds can be draining for some individuals. If you’re an introvert, you may prefer a quieter venue or opt for the option of earplugs.
4. The quality of live music can vary.
The quality of live music can vary depending on the venue and the performer. Sometimes the sound can be poor, or the performer may not live up to expectations. It’s always a good idea to research the venue and the performer beforehand, to ensure you’ll enjoy the experience.
5. People might talk during performance or use phones.
Despite the excitement of live music, some individuals may not be as enthusiastic as others. They might talk during the performance or use their phones, which can disturb others. However, some bars take this problem seriously and may have rules against talking on the phone or during the performance.
|1. Live music adds to the overall experience.||1. Bars with live music can be noisy and crowded.|
|2. Bars with live music provide a great night out.||2. Bars with live music can be expensive.|
|3. Bars with live music support local artists and musicians.||3. Bars with live music can be overwhelming for introverts.|
|4. Bars with live music can be more memorable than regular bars.||4. The quality of live music can vary.|
|5. Bars with live music can offer a wider variety of music genres.||5. People might talk during the performance or use phones.|
Bars with live music have both pros and cons. On one hand, they offer a unique night out and give local artists a stage to perform, while on the other hand, they can be noisy, crowded, and more expensive. By weighing up the pros and cons, you can decide whether this type of bar suits your preferences. Nonetheless, bars with live music can add a new dimension to your night out and make it more memorable.
FAQs: Bars with Live Music Boston
What are some popular bars with live music in Boston?
There are several popular bars with live music in Boston, including The Sinclair, The Middle East, The Paradise Rock Club, House of Blues Boston, and Wally’s Cafe Jazz Club. Each offers a unique atmosphere and a different genre of music.
Where can I find jazz music in Boston?
You can find jazz music in Boston at bars such as Scullers Jazz Club, The Beehive, and Wally’s Cafe Jazz Club. These bars regularly feature live jazz performances.
What is the age requirement to enter bars with live music in Boston?
The age requirement to enter bars with live music in Boston varies depending on the establishment. Most require patrons to be 21 years or older. However, some bars allow entry for individuals who are 18 or older, but they may not be able to purchase or consume alcohol.
Are there any bars with live music that don’t require a cover charge in Boston?
Yes, there are several bars with live music that don’t require a cover charge in Boston. Great Scott, Toad, and The Plough and Stars are just a few examples of bars that offer live music without a cover charge.
What type of music can I expect to hear at bars with live music in Boston?
The type of music that you can expect to hear at bars with live music in Boston varies depending on the establishment. However, you can expect to find a range of genres such as rock, jazz, blues, folk, and hip hop.
Where can I find Irish music in Boston?
You can find Irish music in Boston at bars such as The Black Rose, The Plough and Stars, and The Burren. These bars often feature live Irish music performances.
What is the busiest night for bars with live music in Boston?
The busiest night for bars with live music in Boston typically falls on the weekends. Friday and Saturday nights are the busiest, with many bars featuring live music performances on these nights.
What kind of atmosphere can I expect at bars with live music in Boston?
The atmosphere at bars with live music in Boston varies depending on the establishment. Some bars have a lively and energetic atmosphere, while others are more laid back and intimate. Generally, you can expect a lively crowd and good vibes.
What is the best time to arrive at bars with live music in Boston?
The best time to arrive at bars with live music in Boston varies depending on the establishment and the night of the week. It’s always a good idea to arrive early if you want to secure a good spot close to the stage. However, if you’re looking for a more lively atmosphere, arriving later in the evening may be a better option.
What is the dress code for bars with live music in Boston?
The dress code for bars with live music in Boston varies depending on the establishment. Some bars have a more casual dress code, while others require more formal attire. It’s always a good idea to check the dress code policy before you head out for the evening to avoid any issues.
If you’re looking for a night out on the town, visiting a bar with live music in Boston is the perfect option. With a range of genres to choose from and a lively atmosphere, there’s something for everyone. From jazz clubs to Irish bars, Boston has plenty of options to suit your taste. Arrive early to secure a good spot close to the stage or arrive later for a more energetic atmosphere. Remember to check the dress code policy before you head out for the evening. Have fun and enjoy the music!
After reading this article, you may be interested in learning more about Boston nightlife. Check out our article on “Top Nightclubs in Boston” for more information on where to dance the night away in Boston!