Discover The Best Hidden Gems Live Music In Brooklyn

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Hey, Brooklynites! Are you tired of the same old typical weekend routine – Netflix and chill, some drinks at the local bar, and then calling it a night? Well, how about experiencing something truly unique and unforgettable? That’s right – we’re talking about live music in Brooklyn!

In this article, we’re going to cover everything you need to know about live music in the bustling borough. From the best venues to catch rising stars and established performers to tips on making the most of your night and creating lasting memories – we’ve got you covered.

But why bother checking out live music in Brooklyn? Well, aside from the obvious fun and excitement, studies have shown that music has numerous health benefits. It’s been known to reduce stress, improve mood, and even boost cognitive function. Plus, there’s nothing quite like seeing your favorite artist perform live and feeling the energy and passion of a crowd all around you. So, are you ready to rock out and discover Brooklyn’s lively music scene? Let’s dive in!

Best Venues for Live Music in Brooklyn

Brooklyn, New York is known as one of the best cultural hubs in the world. It boasts a wide variety of music venues that host some of the best performers in the industry. From small bars to grand theaters, Brooklyn has something for everyone. In this article, we will be exploring the best venues for live music in Brooklyn.

The Brooklyn Bowl

The Brooklyn Bowl is a popular venue for not only live music but also bowling and restaurant dining. It is located in Williamsburg, Brooklyn with a capacity of 600 people. It was founded by Peter Shapiro in 2009, who also co-founded the famous Wetlands Preserve in New York City.

  • The Brooklyn Bowl hosts a range of shows, from local bands to world-famous musicians like Guns N’ Roses, The Roots, and The Killers.
  • The venue has a state-of-the-art sound system and a large stage, making it a great spot for both intimate shows and larger concerts.
  • The Brooklyn Bowl also has a delicious menu with a wide variety of food options, including their famous fried chicken and seafood gumbo, which have received rave reviews from food critics.
  • One of the unique features of the Brooklyn Bowl is its bowling alley, making it a perfect spot for a night out with friends.
Pros Cons
The venue has a state-of-the-art sound system and large stage for a great concert experience. The cost of tickets can be expensive for larger acts.
The venue offers great food options, perfect for dinner and a show. The venue’s popularity means it can get very crowded, with long waits and potentially cramped spaces.
The combination of live music and a bowling alley makes for a unique and fun night out. The venue is located in a crowded area of Brooklyn, making it difficult to find parking nearby.

The Brooklyn Bowl has been a favorite spot for both Brooklyn residents and visitors from around the world. Its unique combination of music, food, and entertainment has made it a staple in the Brooklyn music scene.

Murmrr Theatre

Murmrr Theatre is a historical event space that has been around since 1920. It was the original location for Ansonia Roller Rink but was renovated in 2016 to become a performance venue. It has a capacity of 600 people and is located in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn.

  • The Murmrr Theatre hosts a range of shows, including music, comedy, and lectures from authors and public figures.
  • The venue’s unique design features beautiful chandeliers, a grand balcony, and stained glass windows, giving it an old-world charm.
  • Murmrr Theatre has a highly-rated sound system, making it a favorite spot for musicians who appreciate high-quality sound.
  • One of the unique features of Murmrr is its ability to host intimate shows and larger events, making it a versatile spot for all types of performances.
Pros Cons
The venue has beautiful, historic architecture and a highly-rated sound system for a unique concert experience. Parking can be difficult to find nearby, especially during busier events.
The venue is versatile and can host both intimate shows and larger concerts. Because of its popularity, tickets can sell quickly, leaving many potential attendees without admission.
Murmrr Theatre hosts a range of events, including music, comedy, and lectures, making it an exciting spot for cultural events in Brooklyn. The venue is smaller than other popular concert halls in Brooklyn, making it more exclusive.

Murmrr Theatre is a unique venue that is perfect for music lovers who appreciate historic architecture and intimate performances.

Kings Theatre

The Kings Theatre is a large venue that was built in 1929 and has recently been restored to its original grandeur. It has a capacity of 3,000 people and is located in Flatbush, Brooklyn.

  • The Kings Theatre has hosted a wide range of performers, including Diana Ross, Elvis Costello, and the Wu-Tang Clan.
  • The venue’s historic design features marble columns, gold leaf molding, and a grand stage, giving it a truly grand atmosphere.
  • The Kings Theatre has a top-rated sound system and lighting design, ensuring a high-quality concert experience.
  • The venue also offers VIP packages with private entrances, access to exclusive lounges, and personal attendants for a truly luxurious experience.
Pros Cons
The Kings Theatre has a grand, historic design that adds to the concert experience. The venue’s large size can make it difficult to see the stage from certain seats.
The venue’s top-rated sound system and lighting design ensure a high-quality concert experience. The cost of tickets for larger performances can be expensive.
The Kings Theatre offers VIP packages for a luxurious concert experience. The venue’s location can be far from some Brooklyn neighborhoods, making transportation difficult.
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The Kings Theatre is a popular spot for larger concerts and performances, offering a grand atmosphere and luxurious experience for attendees.

In conclusion, Brooklyn is home to a wide range of music venues that cater to all types of music lovers. From small intimate shows to larger concerts, Brooklyn has something for everyone. Whether you’re a local resident or a first-time visitor, exploring the live music scene in Brooklyn is a must-do activity for any music lover.

The Evolution of Live Music Scene in Brooklyn

Brooklyn has always been a hub of creativity, including live music. The neighborhood has evolved over the decades in terms of the genres, venues, and audience it attracts. This article will explore the history of Brooklyn’s live music scene, how it evolved, and its current state.

Early Days of Live Music in Brooklyn

Live music has been a part of Brooklyn culture since the early 20th century. In the 1920s, jazz concerts were held in Brooklyn’s dance halls and clubs, such as the Coliseum on the Bushwick/Bed-Stuy border. Popular jazz musicians like Duke Ellington and Count Basie had performed there. The 1930s saw the emergence of specialized Latin dance clubs which hosted live bands playing salsa, mambo, and other Latin styles. The most famous clubs were La Conga, Tito Puente’s El Mambo Club, and Los Hermanos.

In the 1940s, Brooklyn was a major center for the emerging rhythm and blues scene. Among the legendary artists who performed there were Sam Cooke, James Brown, and Jackie Wilson. Large ballrooms, such as the Brooklyn Paramount Theater, hosted the biggest names in music. R&B clubs like the Apollo Theater also contributed to Brooklyn’s musical landscape.

Rock ‘n’ Roll Era and Beyond

The 1950s saw a rise in rock ‘n’ roll in Brooklyn, with artists such as Chuck Berry, Buddy Holly, and Elvis Presley performing to packed venues. In the 1960s, the folk revival was in full swing, and Brooklyn had become a hub for the coffeehouse scene, with places like the Gaslight Café in Greenwich Village and the Bitter End in Brooklyn Heights. Many famous musicians played here, including Bob Dylan and Pete Seeger.

In the 1970s, Brooklyn’s musical landscape changed again with the rise of disco. Brooklyn was home to many famous disco clubs such as Studio 54, and Paradise Garage. Hip-hop music and culture also emerged during this time in areas like Bedford-Stuyvesant and Brownsville. Some of the early pioneers of hip-hop such as Run-DMC, Notorious B.I.G, and Jay-Z, hailed from Brooklyn.

Current State of Live Music in Brooklyn

Brooklyn’s music scene continues to thrive today, and has diversified to include a wide variety of genres beyond the aforementioned jazz, rock, R&B, disco, and hip-hop. Nowadays you can find an assortment of musical offerings, such as indie rock, electronic music, and experimental styles.

The number of music venues in Brooklyn has also increased in recent years. The most well-known venues are Music Hall of Williamsburg, Brooklyn Steel, and Barclays Center. Many clubs and bars also feature live music, such as The Bell House in Gowanus and Baby’s All Right in Williamsburg.

Despite the vibrancy of Brooklyn’s live music scene, its evolution hasn’t been without controversy. The gentrification of the neighborhood has led to rising rents which have caused many music venues to close their doors. Also, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought the live music industry to a standstill.

Pros and Cons of Brooklyn’s Live Music Scene

Here is a table detailing the Pros and Cons of Brooklyn’s Live Music Scene:

Pros Cons
  • Diversity of genres
  • Large number of venues
  • History and legacy
  • High rent costs
  • Limits on noise levels and performance times
  • Weather can be unpredictable for outdoor shows

In conclusion, the live music scene in Brooklyn has a rich history and has evolved over the decades. From jazz and Latin dance clubs in the 1920s and 30s, to R&B and folk in the 1950s and 60s, to hip-hop, disco, and indie rock in more recent years, Brooklyn has something for everyone. Despite the challenges the scene has faced over the years, it remains one of the most exciting and diverse musical landscapes in the world.

Local Bands Making Waves in Brooklyn’s Live Music Scene

The Brooklyn music scene is incredibly vibrant and diverse, with local bands playing a key role in making it so. The independent and DIY spirit of the borough has created a space for musicians to experiment and push boundaries, resulting in exciting new sounds and a wealth of talent. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at some of the local bands making waves in Brooklyn’s live music scene, exploring the sounds and stories behind their music.

The Menzingers

The Menzingers are a punk rock band from Scranton, Pennsylvania, now based in Brooklyn. The band formed in 2006 and quickly gained a reputation for their raucous live shows, catchy melodies, and poignant lyricism. Their music is rooted in punk and indie rock, with influences ranging from Bruce Springsteen to The Clash. Their latest album, “Hello Exile,” released in 2019, has received critical acclaim for its introspective lyrics and mature sound.

  • The Menzingers formed while attending college together in Scranton, PA.
  • They’ve released seven studio albums, including their latest, “Hello Exile.”
  • In 2020, The Menzingers were slated to headline The Fest, a punk festival in Gainesville, FL, but the event was cancelled due to COVID-19.
Pros Cons
– Catchy melodies – Not everyone enjoys punk music
– Introspective lyrics – Can be perceived as too angsty
– Mature sound – May not be suitable for all age groups

The Lone Bellow

The Lone Bellow is an indie-folk band from Brooklyn, formed in 2010 by vocalist and guitarist Zach Williams with multi-instrumentalist Kanene Pipkin and guitarist Brian Elmquist. Their music is characterized by strong harmonies and emotive lyrics, with influences ranging from gospel to Americana. The band has released four studio albums, with their latest, “Half Moon Light,” released in 2020.

  • The band’s members have backgrounds in Southern gospel music and have cited gospel music as a major influence on their sound.
  • The Lone Bellow has been featured on popular TV shows such as “The Late Show with David Letterman” and “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.”
  • The band’s song “Then Came the Morning” was covered by Grammy-winning artist, gospel singer, and civil rights activist Mavis Staples for her album of the same name.
Pros Cons
– Strong harmonies and emotive lyrics – Not everyone enjoys folk music
– Gospel influences – May not be suitable for all age groups
– Featured on popular TV shows


DIIV is a shoegaze band from Brooklyn formed in 2011 by frontman Zachary Cole Smith. The band’s music is characterized by swirling, dreamy guitars and hazy, introspective lyrics. Their sound has been compared to bands like My Bloody Valentine and Slowdive, with influences also including post-punk and krautrock. Their latest album, “Deceiver,” released in 2019, has been praised for its raw and emotionally resonant sound.

  • DIIV’s name is derived from the acronym for “Drug Induced Interpersonal Vision”
  • The band’s debut album “Oshin,” released in 2012, received critical acclaim for its unique blend of dream pop and shoegaze.
  • Zachary Cole Smith’s struggles with addiction and mental health have been explored in the band’s music and in his personal life.
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Pros Cons
– Unique blend of dream pop and shoegaze – Not everyone enjoys shoegaze music
– Strong visual imagery in their music – Can be seen as too introspective for some
– Emotionally resonant sound – May not be suitable for all age groups

In conclusion, Brooklyn’s live music scene is full of diverse, exciting acts, from punk rockers to indie-folk crooners and shoegaze dreamers. These local bands are making waves both in the borough and beyond, inspiring audiences with their passionate performances and unique sounds. Whether you’re a fan of punk, folk, or shoegaze, there’s something for everyone in Brooklyn’s vibrant music scene.

The Art of Sound Engineering in Live Music Performances in Brooklyn

Brooklyn is a hub of live music performances. A diverse range of local and international artists, bands, and musicians perform in the borough’s numerous music venues, big and small. One aspect of these live performances that is often overlooked but vital to quality performances is sound engineering.

Sound engineering, more commonly known as audio engineering or sound mixing, is the process of recording, manipulating, and reproducing sound. Sound engineers, also known as mixers, collaborate with musicians, producers, and performers to create a cohesive and balanced sound during live performances. In this section, we will explore the art of sound engineering in live music performances in Brooklyn.

The Role of a Sound Engineer

Sound engineers play a crucial role in ensuring that live music performances sound exceptional. They manage the technical aspects of sound production, including microphone placement, sound mixing, and acoustics. The primary objective of a sound engineer is to ensure that the audience hears the artist’s sound in the most accurate and authentic way possible.

The role of a sound engineer includes:

  • Setting up all sound equipment before performance
  • Choosing the right microphones and instruments for a particular venue
  • Ensuring that the sound is mixed properly throughout the performance
  • Controlling sound levels to prevent feedback or distortion
  • Monitoring sound quality throughout the performance
  • Adjusting sound to fit the venue’s acoustics and size

Key Concepts in Sound Engineering

To be a successful sound engineer, one needs to have a deep understanding of key concepts in sound production. Some of the key concepts include:

  1. Frequency response: The range of sound frequencies an audio system can produce.
  2. Signal-to-noise ratio (SNR): The difference between the desired sound and unwanted noise in an audio signal.
  3. Phase: The timing relationship between two or more audio signals.
  4. Dynamics: The range of volume levels in an audio signal.
  5. Sound delay: The time it takes for sound to travel from the source to the audience.

Pros and Cons of Digital and Analog Sound Production

Sound engineering has evolved over time, with digital and analog productions being the most commonly used methods. Each method has its advantages and disadvantages.

Pros Cons
Digital Low noise level; greater precision and flexibility; more accessible; can be easily stored and manipulated using software. Sound can sound too clean/reproduced; may not have the same analog warmth and richness.
Analog Has a vintage feel and warm sound; produces natural compression and harmonics; often used in recording studios for unique sound Noise level is high; less precise/consistent; not easily manipulated; expensive and difficult to maintain

Notable Sound Engineers in Brooklyn

Brooklyn has produced several renowned sound engineers who have worked with famous artists and bands. Some of these sound engineers include:

  • Abraham W. Walker: A sound engineer who has worked with The Roots, Beyoncé, and Jennifer Lopez.
  • Gaspar Claus: A French sound engineer who has worked with Sufjan Stevens
  • Judith Sherman: A Grammy-winning sound engineer who has worked with Yo-Yo Ma and Itzhak Perlman.

The Evolving Role of Sound Engineering in Live Music Performances

The role of sound engineering in live music performances has changed over the years. With advancements in technology and changing audience tastes, sound engineering has become more complex and sophisticated. Sound engineers must now balance the need to produce high-quality sound with the need to produce a unique and unforgettable experience for the audience.

Some notable technological advancements in sound engineering include:

  • The use of digital sound processing and software
  • The use of wireless microphones and in-ear monitors
  • Virtual sound research and modeling

In conclusion, sound engineering plays an important role in live music performances in Brooklyn. The art of sound engineering is critical to ensure that the audience enjoys a high-quality and unforgettable performance. Good sound engineering requires a deep understanding of the technical aspects of sound production, including microphone placement, sound mixing, and acoustics. The continued advancements in technology and changing musical tastes have made sound engineering in live performances more challenging and rewarding than ever.

Exploring Brooklyn’s Diversity through Live Music Venues

Brooklyn is known for its diverse culture and lively nightlife, which is exemplified through its live music venues. From jazz joints to indie rock bars, Brooklyn has it all, and each neighborhood offers a unique experience. In this article, we will explore Brooklyn’s diversity through its live music venues, highlighting some of the best spots to catch a show.

The Multicultural Sounds of Brooklyn

Brooklyn’s music scene is deeply rooted in its diverse communities. The borough is home to a wide range of ethnic enclaves, including Chinese, Italian, Jewish, Puerto Rican, and Caribbean neighborhoods. Each of these communities has contributed to Brooklyn’s rich musical heritage, with sounds ranging from salsa and reggae to hip hop and rock.

Some of Brooklyn’s most popular live music venues cater to these diverse communities. For instance, the Brooklyn Bowl, located in the Williamsburg neighborhood, is known for its eclectic lineup of music, which includes everything from Latin funk to hip hop. Meanwhile, the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music hosts concerts featuring classical, jazz, and world music.

The Best Places to Catch Live Music in Brooklyn

Brooklyn is home to a vast array of live music venues, each offering a unique atmosphere and musical experience. Depending on your taste in music and vibe, here are some of the best spots to catch a show:

  • Barclays Center: This 19,000-seat arena in downtown Brooklyn hosts some of the biggest names in music and entertainment.
  • Baby’s All Right: A popular indie rock venue in Williamsburg known for its intimate atmosphere and affordable prices.
  • Music Hall of Williamsburg: A spacious venue that hosts emerging and established indie rock bands and DJs.
  • Brooklyn Bowl: The ultimate spot for music, bowling, and beer. This Williamsburg venue hosts live music and DJ events almost every night.
  • The Bell House: A former warehouse turned live music venue in Gowanus that serves up a mix of comedy, live music, and dance parties.

The Pros and Cons of Seeing Live Music in Brooklyn

While Brooklyn is known for its vibrant music scene, there are both pros and cons to catching a show in the borough. Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages:

Pros Cons
Wide variety of music genres and venues Can be overcrowded and noisy
Intimate and authentic atmosphere in many venues Difficult to find parking and navigate through neighborhoods
Opportunities to discover new and emerging artists Can be expensive, especially for big-name acts
Cultural diversity and exposure to different communities Some neighborhoods may not be safe to walk alone at night
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Case Study: The Brooklyn Music Scene During the COVID-19 Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has greatly impacted the live music industry, and Brooklyn’s music scene has not been immune. With bars and venues closed, musicians and music lovers have had to get creative in finding alternative ways to enjoy live music.

One example of this has been the rise of virtual concerts and live streams, which have allowed musicians to continue performing and connecting with their fans. Many Brooklyn-based organizations, such as the Brooklyn Academy of Music and the BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival, have offered virtual concerts and events to keep the music scene alive.

Additionally, some Brooklyn venues have started hosting outdoor shows and events in compliance with social distancing guidelines. For instance, the Greenwood Park Beer Garden in Park Slope has been hosting live music and movie nights in its spacious outdoor area.

Despite the challenges brought on by the pandemic, Brooklyn’s music scene remains resilient and hopeful for the future.

FAQs: Live Music in Brooklyn

Where can I find live music in Brooklyn?

Brooklyn is known for its thriving music scene, and you can find live music in plenty of venues. Some of the most popular places to catch great live music in Brooklyn include the Brooklyn Bowl, Music Hall of Williamsburg, and Brooklyn Steel. Other great venues include the Baby’s All Right and the Union Pool.

How can I find out about live music events in Brooklyn?

You can find out about upcoming live music events in Brooklyn by checking out local websites, such as Brooklyn Vegan or Time Out New York. These websites often feature event listings and updates about shows, so you can stay up-to-date with what’s going on. You can also check out the websites for specific venues to see what shows are coming up.

Is there live music every night in Brooklyn?

While there is live music in Brooklyn on a regular basis, it’s not necessarily every night. The schedule depends on the venue, the time of year, and other factors. However, there are many venues that feature live music several nights a week, so it’s quite likely that you can find something to enjoy any night of the week.

What kind of live music can I expect to find in Brooklyn?

Brooklyn’s music scene is incredibly diverse, so you can expect to find all kinds of live music in the borough. From indie rock and pop to jazz and hip hop, there’s something for everyone. Many venues also host local and up-and-coming artists, so you can discover new music and support emerging talent.

Do I need to buy tickets in advance for live music events in Brooklyn?

It’s always a good idea to buy tickets in advance for live music events in Brooklyn, especially if it’s a popular band or artist. Many venues also offer discounts for advance ticket purchases. However, some smaller shows may have tickets available at the door, so it’s worth checking with the venue if you’re unsure.

Can I bring children to live music events in Brooklyn?

The age restrictions for live music events in Brooklyn depends on the venue and the specific event. Some venues are 21+ only, while others allow minors if they are accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. It’s always best to check with the venue before bringing children to a live music event.

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

The dress code for live music events in Brooklyn is usually casual, although some venues may have specific rules. You’ll want to wear comfortable shoes since you’ll likely be standing or dancing for most of the night. It’s also a good idea to dress in layers in case the venue gets too hot or too cold.

Are there any free live music events in Brooklyn?

While many live music events in Brooklyn require tickets, there are also plenty of free options available. During the summer months, there are often free outdoor concerts in parks or public spaces throughout the borough. You can also check out the listings at smaller venues, such as bars and cafes, which sometimes offer free shows.

Can I bring my own food and drink to a live music event in Brooklyn?

No, most venues do not allow outside food or drink to be brought into live music events in Brooklyn. However, many venues have bars and food options available for purchase inside the venue. It’s always a good idea to check with the venue to see what their specific policy is regarding food and drink.

Is it safe to attend live music events in Brooklyn?

While Brooklyn, like any large city, has its share of crime, attending live music events is generally considered safe. The venues themselves take security seriously and have measures in place to ensure the safety of attendees. However, it’s always a good idea to be aware of your surroundings and take precautions such as not leaving valuables unattended.


In conclusion, Brooklyn’s music scene is diverse, vibrant, and always changing. There are many options for catching great live music in the borough, from large concert halls to small cafes and bars. Whether you’re a fan of rock, jazz, hip hop, or any other genre, you’re sure to find something that suits your tastes in Brooklyn. After reading this article, check out some of the websites and venues mentioned to stay up-to-date with upcoming events. Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!