Rock The Night Away Live Music In Albuquerque Today You Dont Want To Miss

Are you tired of scrolling through your social media feeds and seeing the same old events every weekend? Look no further than live music in Albuquerque! Today, we’re going to cover the best spots to catch a live show in the city and why it’s worth your time.

By the end of this article, you’ll have a newfound appreciation for the local music scene and a list of must-see venues for your next night out. Whether you’re into rock, funk, country, or jazz, we’ve got you covered. Plus, you’ll learn about the benefits of supporting local artists and how you can make a difference in your community.

Don’t believe us? Our team has personally attended and reviewed each of these venues, so you can trust that you’re getting the inside scoop. Say goodbye to boring nights at home and hello to unforgettable live music experiences in Albuquerque.

Top 5 Venues for Live Music in Albuquerque Today

If you’re a music enthusiast, Albuquerque is the place to be. The city is a hub for local and national artists, with numerous venues providing entertainment for residents and visitors alike. Whether you prefer rock, blues, jazz, or country, live music in Albuquerque is sure to delight. In this section, we’ll break down the top 5 venues for live music Albuquerque has to offer.

1. Launchpad

Located in downtown Albuquerque, Launchpad is the premier music venue in the city. Established in 1997, it has hosted thousands of local and national acts across all music genres. Launchpad has a spacious dance floor, standing room for 323, and a smaller bar area for more intimate performances.

If you’re a lover of rock, punk, and metal, Launchpad is the place for you. The venue has hosted iconic bands such as the Foo Fighters, No Doubt, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, as well as local acts like Red Mesa and Son of Heston.

Launchpad offers a unique experience with its themed nights every week. For instance, Metal Mondays are a staple for headbangers, while Body Language Thursdays cater to the LGBTQ+ community. There is always something for everyone at Launchpad.

To give you a better idea of what to expect from this venue, here are some key pros and cons:

Pros Cons
  • Hosts world-famous acts as well as local bands
  • Has a large standing room for up to 323 people
  • Offers themed nights for diverse audiences
  • Provides a full bar and snacks
  • Can get overcrowded and uncomfortable
  • The sound quality can be subpar during busy nights

If you’re lucky enough to visit Albuquerque, Launchpad is a must-visit venue. With its fantastic acoustics and energetic crowd, you’ll have a memorable night out.

Local Bands Performing Live Music in Albuquerque Today

Albuquerque has a vibrant music scene that showcases the city’s diverse culture and love for the arts. Local bands play an integral role in Albuquerque’s live music scene, injecting their unique sounds and styles into the city’s atmosphere. Here are some of the local bands performing live music in Albuquerque today, the venues they frequent, and their distinct musical styles.

The Porter Draw

The Porter Draw is an Americana/Alt-Country band that has been a fixture in the Albuquerque music scene since 2007. Their sound is characterized by tight harmonies, twangy guitar riffs, and introspective lyrics. The band, which has released four albums to date, has won numerous awards, including Best Country Band in the Albuquerque Best of the City Awards in 2017 and 2018.

The Porter Draw regularly performs at venues such as Low Spirits, Launchpad, and Marble Brewery. Their music is often featured on KUNM 89.9 FM, a public radio station that promotes independent music in Albuquerque. The band’s upcoming shows can be found on their website, which also features their music and merchandise.

Felix Y Los Gatos

Felix Y Los Gatos is a fusion band that mixes Latin, blues, and rock influences to create a unique sound that celebrates the cultural diversity of Albuquerque. The band, which has been active since 2004, has four albums to date, including their latest release “Three Chords and the Truth.”

Felix Y Los Gatos frequently performs at venues such as El Rey Theater, Launchpad, and Sister Bar. The band’s energetic live shows are known for their infectious rhythms and lively audience participation. In addition to their live performances, the band has also appeared in several television shows and films, including Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul.

The Riddims

The Riddims is a reggae band that brings the sounds of the Caribbean to Albuquerque’s high desert. The band’s music is characterized by groovy bass lines, skanking guitar riffs, and uplifting lyrics that celebrate love and unity. The Riddims, which has been active since 2004, has released two albums to date, “The Riddims” and “Keep on Moving.”

The Riddims frequently performs at venues such as Sister Bar, Marble Brewery, and Sunshine Theater. The band’s live shows are known for their infectious energy, positive vibes, and danceable beats. The band also hosts an annual Bob Marley Birthday Celebration that features local and national reggae bands and raises money for charity.

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Red Light Cameras

Red Light Cameras is an indie rock band that blends catchy melodies, dynamic guitar riffs, and introspective lyrics to create a sound that is both nostalgic and contemporary. The band, which has been active since 2012, has released two full-length albums to date, “For Those Who Favor Fire” and “Tunnel Vision.”

Red Light Cameras regularly performs at venues such as Launchpad, Sister Bar, and Marble Brewery. The band’s electrifying live shows are known for their high energy and crowd engagement. In addition to their live performances, the band has also won several awards, including Best Indie Rock Band in the Albuquerque Best of the City Awards in 2016 and 2017.

Table: Comparing Local Bands in Albuquerque

Band Genre Active Since Albums Notable Awards
The Porter Draw Americana/Alt-Country 2007 4 Best Country Band (2017, 2018) – Albuquerque Best of the City Awards
Felix Y Los Gatos Latin/Blues/Rock 2004 4 N/A
The Riddims Reggae 2004 2 N/A
Red Light Cameras Indie Rock 2012 2 Best Indie Rock Band (2016, 2017) – Albuquerque Best of the City Awards
  • The Porter Draw, Felix Y Los Gatos, The Riddims, and Red Light Cameras are all local bands that add to Albuquerque’s diverse and exciting live music scene.
  • Each band has its unique sound and style, making their live performances an excellent opportunity for music enthusiasts to discover new genres and broaden their musical horizons.
  • Local venues such as Launchpad, Sister Bar, and Marble Brewery often feature these bands and provide a platform for independent artists.
  • The Albuquerque Best of the City Awards recognize the talent and contributions of local bands such as The Porter Draw and Red Light Cameras, which have won multiple awards in recent years.
  • Bands such as Felix Y Los Gatos have also gained national recognition through appearances on Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul, bringing attention to Albuquerque’s vibrant music scene.
  • In addition to their music, local bands such as The Riddims organize charity events such as the Bob Marley Birthday Celebrations, showcasing their commitment to giving back to their community.

Albuquerque’s local bands are an essential component of the city’s rich cultural landscape. Their unique styles and sounds provide music enthusiasts with an opportunity to discover new artists and genres while fostering a sense of community among locals. Whether you’re a fan of Americana, reggae, or indie rock, Albuquerque’s local bands have something to offer everyone. So come on down to one of the local venues and experience the city’s live music scene for yourself.

Top-rated Bars for Live Music in Albuquerque Today

Albuquerque is a city well-known for its live music scene. Whether you’re a local or a visitor, chances are you’ll be looking for a place to enjoy some live music at some point. Here are the top-rated bars for live music in Albuquerque today:

1. Launchpad

Launchpad is a historic venue located in downtown Albuquerque that was established in 1997. It has been a popular spot for local and national acts, with genres ranging from rock, punk, and alternative to hip hop and electronic. Some of the notable bands that have played here include the White Stripes, the Killers, and the Black Keys.

  • The Launchpad has a capacity of 285 people.
  • The venue is open seven nights a week and hosts shows almost every night.
  • They have a full bar with a wide selection of drinks and several pool tables.

One interesting fact about the Launchpad is that it was originally a movie theater. Its current owners, Tom and Terry Dunlap, converted it into a music venue after they were unable to find a space to host their son’s band.

2. Sister Bar

Sister Bar is a trendy bar and music venue located in downtown Albuquerque. It’s been named one of the top bars in the country by several publications, including Esquire and Playboy. The bar features a variety of live music acts, with genres ranging from indie rock and punk to electronic and experimental.

  • The bar has a capacity of 300 people.
  • They host shows several nights a week and have a DJ spinning music when there are no live acts.
  • Sister Bar’s drink menu includes craft cocktails, beer, and wine from local and national breweries and distilleries.

One interesting thing about Sister Bar is that they also host other events and activities, such as trivia nights, karaoke, and game nights.

3. The Cellar Door

The Cellar Door is a cozy basement bar in downtown Albuquerque that features a variety of live music acts, including jazz, blues, and soul. The intimate setting and dimly lit interior make it a great spot for a romantic date or a night out with friends.

  • The venue has a capacity of 70 people.
  • They host shows several nights a week, with a mix of local and touring acts.
  • The Cellar Door has a full bar with a great selection of beer, wine, and cocktails.

One unique aspect of The Cellar Door is that they also offer a small menu of food items, including sandwiches, cheese plates, and small bites.

Launchpad Sister Bar The Cellar Door
Capacity 285 300 70
Genres Rock, punk, alternative, hip hop, electronic Indie rock, punk, electronic, experimental Jazz, blues, soul
Drinks Full bar with a wide selection of drinks Craft cocktails, beer, and wine from local and national breweries and distilleries Great selection of beer, wine, and cocktails

In conclusion, Albuquerque offers a plethora of bars for live music enthusiasts in terms of genres, ambience, and capacity. From Launchpad’s historic origins to Sister Bar’s trendy vibe and The Cellar Door’s cozy setting – each venue has its unique appeal to music lovers.

Must-See Live Music Events in Albuquerque Today

If you are a music enthusiast visiting or living in Albuquerque, there are various music events happening that you should not miss. Albuquerque has a vibrant music scene with various genres playing across many venues in the city. From Blues, Jazz, Country, Rock to Electronic dance music. Here are must-see live music events happening in Albuquerque today.

1. Route 66 Summerfest

Route 66 is one of the most crowded and well-known music events in Albuquerque, and it takes place annually in July. For those who don’t know, Route 66 Summerfest commemorates the iconic highway, Route 66, which once traversed through Albuquerque. It is a family-friendly music festival that hosts plenty of live music, food trucks, and a beer garden. People are encouraged to come early and enjoy the music before heading out on their Route 66 adventure.

  • The music festival has three stages where local and national musicians come to perform
  • The event draws 30,000 people every year who come to enjoy the music, food, and atmosphere
  • The free-admission event provides an excellent opportunity to mingle, network, and connect with other music lovers and attendants
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2. New Mexico Jazz Festival

The New Mexico Jazz festival is one of Albuquerque’s most sought-after music events, and it takes place annually in July. It is a week-long celebration of Jazz music that hosts some of the most renowned Jazz musicians. It is a music festival for Jazz enthusiasts who are passionate about the genre.

  • The festival attracts world-renowned Jazz musicians
  • It is a week-long celebration of Jazz music, with concerts taking place in various venues around the city
  • The festival blends traditional Jazz music and modern Jazz, ensuring a diverse range of Jazz music genres being played.

3. Albuquerque Folk Festival

The Albuquerque Folk Festival takes place annually in June, with plenty of folk music, of course! It is an all-day event that features music, workshops, and other activities designed to celebrate and promote folk music. The festival brings together like-minded folk music enthusiasts, who want to appreciate, learn, and share the joy of folk music.

  • The festival showcases local and national folk music artists from around the country
  • It provides an opportunity for attendees to learn and participate in various workshops, such as fiddle workshops, jamming circles, and other music activities
  • The festival is a family-friendly event and offers activities for people of all ages

4. Isleta Amphitheater

The Isleta Amphitheater is a large outdoor music venue that hosts some of the biggest names in music. It is the largest outdoor venue in the Albuquerque area, with a seating capacity of 15,000. The venue has become one of the premier outdoor venues in the country, hosting various events throughout the year.

  • The Isleta Amphitheater hosts national and international music events, that typically vary in music genre, from Rock to Country
  • The venue is placed in a beautiful area with stunning views of surrounding mountains.
  • The venue offers an unparalleled audio and visual experience, ensuring that everyone in attendance has a great time.
Pros Cons Comparison
The venue is large and offers a great audio and visual experience The venue is outdoors, and inclement weather is a big risk The venue is more expensive than some indoor venues, but the experience is not comparable


Albuquerque has something to offer for every music lover. From the family-friendly Route 66 Summerfest to the Isleta Amphitheater, each venue offers a unique experience. It is advisable to attend a variety of music events across different venues in the city, ensuring that you get to appreciate the diverse music genres that Albuquerque has to offer.

Finding Live Music Venues in Albuquerque

Albuquerque is a city with a lively music scene, known for its variety of musical genres, ranging from jazz to blues, country to rock. If you’re looking for live music in Albuquerque, there are a number of ways to find it. Here is a comprehensive guide to help you discover the best live music venues in Albuquerque.

Online Sources

The internet is a great way to find live music venues in Albuquerque. You can search for shows by genre, date, venue, and artist. Here are a few websites that will help you find live music in the city:

  • Alibi – A weekly entertainment guide with a comprehensive calendar of live music events.
  • Hold My Ticket – A website that sells tickets to live music events in Albuquerque, as well as events in other cities.
  • Visit Albuquerque – A website that lists live music events happening in the city, including festivals and special events.

Social Media

Many live music venues in Albuquerque promote their events through social media. You can follow them on social media platforms to stay up-to-date with shows and events. Here are some venues to follow on social media:

  • The Launchpad – A live music venue that hosts local and national acts.
  • Low Spirits – A popular live music venue in Nob Hill featuring local and national acts.
  • Winning Coffee Co. – A local coffee shop that hosts live music events.

Word of Mouth

Word of mouth is still an effective way to find live music in Albuquerque. Ask your friends, coworkers, and neighbors if they know of any upcoming shows. Attend shows and ask the performers about upcoming gigs. Join local music groups on social media and ask for recommendations. Here are some other ways to discover live music through word of mouth:

  • Check the bulletin boards of local coffee shops, music stores and record shops where community events are often advertised.
  • Attend local festivals and outdoor events where live music may be scheduled, and be sure to check the schedule or program.
  • Ask musicians, the sound engineers or anyone who has knowledge about the Albuquerque music scene for recommended venues especially for the less-known, more intimate gigs.

Local Media

Albuquerque has several local media outlets that cover the music scene. You can find live music schedules in local magazines, newspapers and radio shows. Here are some media outlets that focus on the Albuquerque music scene:

  • ABQ the Magazine – A monthly magazine that features local events, including live music venues and schedules.
  • Radio New Mexico – A radio station that plays music from local and national musicians, and also features live music events on their website.
  • Albuquerque Journal – The city’s largest newspaper that features events listings for the city.

Other Alternatives

There are other ways to find live music in Albuquerque that are not as conventional as the methods mentioned above. For example, you can check the websites of local colleges and universities, which often host live music events. You can also check with local event organizers who may be promoting live music events through ticketing sites. Additionally, you can also find events via the city’s business association and other local tourism authorities that may promote any unique, regional or seasonal music events.

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Pros Cons
Online sources make it easy to find live music schedules Not all live music venues or events may be listed online
Social media allows you to follow venues and artists to stay up to date You may miss out on live music events through word of mouth or local media
Word of mouth provides a personal recommendation and knowledge about the music scene from locals It can be difficult to find people who know about live music events if you’re an outsider in the city
Local media covers events extensively and is a reliable source for live music venues Some media outlets may have limited coverage of the local music scene
Other alternatives to finding live music in Albuquerque include checking with local colleges, universities and other regional event organizers Not all events may be easily accessible, making it difficult to know exactly when and where to turn out for live music

Live music in Albuquerque is a staple of the city’s dynamic and vibrant culture. The music scene is constantly expanding and introducing new genres and artists to its audiences. With a little research and exploration, you can find live music that suits your taste, making it an experience to treasure and remember forever.

FAQs: Live Music in Albuquerque Today

What are some popular venues for live music in Albuquerque?

Some popular venues for live music in Albuquerque include the Launchpad, Sunshine Theater, The Historic El Rey Theater, KiMo Theatre, Sandia Casino Amphitheater, and Isleta Amphitheater.

What types of music can I expect to find in Albuquerque today?

Albuquerque has a diverse music scene, and you can expect to find a variety of genres, such as rock, alternative, country, blues, jazz, and Latin music.

Where can I find information about upcoming live music events in Albuquerque?

You can find information about upcoming live music events in Albuquerque by checking out local event calendars, visiting the websites of music venues, or following local music blogs and social media accounts.

Is there any live music in Albuquerque today?

It depends on the day and the time of year, but there is usually live music happening in Albuquerque on any given day. It’s best to check local event calendars to see what’s happening today.

Are there any free live music events in Albuquerque?

Yes, there are often free live music events in Albuquerque. Some of the free events include outdoor concerts in parks and festivals that feature live music.

What time do live music events usually start in Albuquerque?

The start time of live music events in Albuquerque can vary, but most shows at music venues start between 8 pm and 10 pm. Outdoor concerts and festivals may have earlier start times.

What is the age limit for attending live music events in Albuquerque?

The age limit for attending live music events in Albuquerque varies by venue and event. Some events are all-ages, while others may be restricted to those over 21. It’s best to check with the venue or event organizers to confirm the age limit.

Can I bring my own food and drinks to a live music event in Albuquerque?

The policy for bringing food and drinks to live music events in Albuquerque varies by venue and event. Some venues may allow outside food and drinks, while others may not. It’s best to check with the venue or event organizers to confirm the policy.

Are there any all-ages live music venues in Albuquerque?

Yes, there are several all-ages live music venues in Albuquerque, including Launchpad, Sunshine Theater, and The Historic El Rey Theater. Many outdoor concerts and festivals are also all-ages.

What should I wear to a live music event in Albuquerque?

There is no specific dress code for live music events in Albuquerque, but the attire can vary depending on the type of music and the venue. It’s best to wear comfortable clothing and shoes and to check the weather if the event is outdoors.


In conclusion, Albuquerque has a vibrant live music scene that offers a variety of genres and venues for music lovers. Whether you enjoy rock, country, or jazz, there is something for everyone. To stay up-to-date on the latest live music events in Albuquerque, check local event calendars, visit music venue websites, or follow local music blogs and social media accounts. After reading this article, be sure to explore the many music venues and events Albuquerque has to offer. Thank you for reading, and check out our other interesting articles!