Hey there, music lovers! Are you looking for the perfect place to experience live music in Brooklyn? Look no further! In this article, we’ll be exploring some of the best music venues in Brooklyn, where you can dance, sing along, and immerse yourself in the local music scene. Whether you’re a fan of jazz, indie, hip hop, or rock music, we’ve got you covered. So put on your dancing shoes and get ready to discover the musical magic of Brooklyn.
By the end of this article, you’ll have a complete guide to the best music venues in Brooklyn. You’ll learn about their unique features, the type of music they offer, their location, and their history. You’ll also get insider tips on how to score the best seats, how to avoid long lines, and how to make the most out of your music experience. So sit back, relax, and get ready to unlock the secrets of the Brooklyn music scene.
Don’t settle for streaming music on your phone or listening to the same old songs on the radio. Brooklyn is home to some of the most iconic music venues, where you can experience live music that will leave you breathless. From intimate bars to grandiose theaters, Brooklyn has something for everyone’s musical taste. Our list of music venues is based on expert review, audience feedback, and personal experience, so you can trust that you’re in good hands. Get your music on, and let’s begin our journey to the best music venues in Brooklyn!
The Brooklyn Bowl: A Music Venue Like No Other
If you’re looking for a unique music venue in Brooklyn that can offer you an unforgettable experience, Brooklyn Bowl is a must-visit destination. Opened in 2009, it’s much more than just a music venue where you can catch a live show. The Brooklyn Bowl is a one-stop-shop for nightlife enthusiasts, combining live performances, bowling, and delicious food.
A History of the Brooklyn Bowl
The Brooklyn Bowl is one of the premier music venues in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, with a rich history that dates back to the early 2000s. It all started when Peter Shapiro, the owner and founder of the iconic Wetlands Preserve in Manhattan, sold the venue and decided to start a new project.
Shapiro’s vision was to create a one-of-a-kind music venue that would bring together live music, bowling, and food – an idea that no one had ever executed before. After four years of planning and development, the Brooklyn Bowl finally opened its doors to the public in 2009, and the rest is history.
Facilities and Amenities
The Brooklyn Bowl is located at 61 Wythe Ave in Williamsburg, and it’s hard to miss thanks to its large, iconic neon sign at the entrance. As you enter, you’ll find a spacious music venue with a state-of-the-art sound system and stage, perfect for catching a live show.
But the Brooklyn Bowl is much more than just a music venue. The venue has 16 bowling lanes that are available for reservation or walk-ins, so you can bowl a few frames before or after the show. And if you’re feeling peckish, you can grab a bite to eat at the Blue Ribbon restaurant, which is famous for its fried chicken and oysters.
Over the years, the Brooklyn Bowl has welcomed some of the biggest names in the music industry, from Questlove to Guns N’ Roses. In fact, the venue has become a favorite among musicians and music lovers alike thanks to its excellent acoustics and intimate atmosphere.
But perhaps the most notable performance in the history of the Brooklyn Bowl was when the late, great Prince took to the stage for three consecutive nights in 2013. The Purple One dazzled the audience with his spectacular showmanship, and the performances will be remembered by those lucky enough to have been there, forever.
Pros and Cons
Every music venue has its pros and cons, and the Brooklyn Bowl is no exception. Here are some of the key advantages and disadvantages of visiting this iconic venue:
|You can catch a live show and bowl at the same time||The venue can get quite crowded, especially during peak hours|
|The venue has a state-of-the-art sound system and acoustics||Ticket prices can be expensive, depending on the show|
|Blue Ribbon restaurant has delicious food and drink options on the menu||Some bowling lanes can be a bit noise during the show|
In conclusion, the Brooklyn Bowl is a music venue like no other, offering a unique combination of live music, bowling, and food. Whether you’re a fan of rock, pop, or hip-hop, you’re sure to find a show that will tickle your fancy. And if you’re looking for something to do before or after the show, you can always bowl a few frames or grab a bite to eat at the Blue Ribbon restaurant. So why not head over to Williamsburg and check out the Brooklyn Bowl for yourself?
The History of Music Venues in Brooklyn
Music venues in Brooklyn have been instrumental in shaping the music industry over the years. Some of the most renowned musicians have graced the stages of Brooklyn’s music venues. The bar scene in Brooklyn is not only a source of entertainment but also a cultural representation of the city’s diverse population. In this section, we will delve into the history of music venues in Brooklyn.
Early Music Venues in Brooklyn
Brooklyn’s music industry dates back to the late 1800s when music was a common form of entertainment in Brooklyn’s saloons and bars. During prohibition, which prohibited the sale of alcohol, music venues became hidden speakeasies, attracting patrons who wanted to enjoy live music and liquor in secret. From the 1920s to the 1950s, Brooklyn’s music scene flourished with big band jazz, blues, and swing bands.
Some famous early music venues include:
- The Albee Square Theatre, which was transformed into a movie house in the 1960s, was one of the earliest venues that hosted Vaudeville shows and live music performances.
- Irving Plaza, a former ballroom, was a popular nightclub in the 1940s and 1950s, hosting performances by jazz legends such as Miles Davis and Dizzy Gillespie.
- The Commodore Music Shop, which was located in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, and attracted the likes of John Coltrane and Charlie Parker.
Brooklyn Music Scene in the 1970s and 1980s
During the 1970s, Brooklyn’s music scene was dominated by rock and roll, disco, and hip-hop. Rock and Roll hall of fame inductees, the Ramones, started small punk rock gigs in Brooklyn’s rock clubs like CBGB and Max’s Kansas City.
The 1980s saw an explosion of hip hop music in Brooklyn, with the genre gaining popularity and prominence in the local music scene. Notable artists like Jay-Z, The Notorious B.I.G, and Lil’ Kim, all hailed from Brooklyn, further solidifying the borough’s reputation as a hip hop powerhouse.
Some popular music venues of the 1970s and 1980s era include:
- CBGB, the legendary punk rock club, hosted iconic bands such as The Ramones, Blondie, and The Talking Heads.
- The Brooklyn Bowl, opened in 1982 as a center for the arts in New York City, hosted lots of big bands like Hall and Oates, Bob Dylan, and The Who.
- The Lyceum, which used to be an indoor pool, was transformed into a concert venue that hosted punk rock bands, including the Bad Brains and Circle Jerks.
Modern Music Venues in Brooklyn
Brooklyn’s music scene continues to evolve and thrive, with new venues popping up every year. Brooklyn music venues now cover a wide range of genres and cater to a more diverse audience. Many bars and clubs now host shows almost nightly, meaning the Brooklyn music scene never sleeps.
Some of the notable modern music venues include:
- The Music Hall of Williamsburg, a former recording studio, has become a staple in the Brooklyn music scene by hosting everything from indie rock bands to electronic music producers.
- The Barclays Center, which opened in 2012, is a multi-purpose indoor stadium that has hosted some of the biggest names in music, including Beyoncé, Jay-Z, and Barbra Streisand.
- Elsewhere, is one the best and boomiest clubs in Brooklyn opened up in 2017, offering a unique space with various dance floors to exploring with different styles by world-famous DJ’s playing various genres of music.
|Brooklyn Music Venues||Location||Genre of Music||Capacity|
|Barclays Center||Prospect Heights||Pop, Hip Hop, Rock, and Country||19,000|
|The Music Hall of Williamsburg||Williamsburg||Indie Rock, Electronic, and Alternative||600|
|Elsewhere||Bushwick||Dance, Techno, and House||Multiple|
In conclusion, from the jazz, blues, and swing music of the 1920s and 1950s to the hip hop generation of the 1980s and beyond, Brooklyn has seen it all in the world of music. There is no doubt that Brooklyn music venues have played a crucial role in shaping the borough’s cultural heritage and the music industry. The history of Brooklyn music venues is rich and diverse, and it is a source of pride for Brooklynites.
Hidden Gems: Off-the-Beaten-Path Music Venues in Brooklyn
Brooklyn is known for its thriving music scene, with something to offer for every genre and taste. However, amidst the popular venues and concerts, there are also hidden gems worth exploring. These are the off-the-beaten-path music venues that offer a unique and authentic experience, often overlooked by tourists and even locals. In this article, we will take a closer look at some of these hidden gems and what makes them special.
The Koliba is a small, cozy venue located in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. It primarily focuses on showcasing local and emerging artists from various genres, including folk, jazz, and indie. The interior design is rustic, with exposed brick walls and a wooden stage. It has a warm and intimate ambiance, perfect for experiencing live music up close.
Some interesting facts about The Koliba include:
- It used to be a Slovak social club before being transformed into a music venue in 2018
- It offers a full bar and food menu featuring traditional Slovak dishes
- It has a regular open-mic night, welcoming performers of all levels
The Koliba is a great place to discover local talent and enjoy a laid-back evening with good music and food. Its unique Slovakian heritage adds to its special charm, making it a must-visit hidden gem in Brooklyn.
The Footlight is a multi-use space in Ridgewood, Brooklyn that offers live music, comedy, theater, and other events. It has two separate performance areas, including a larger stage and a smaller bar area. The music genre varies from indie rock to electronic and hip-hop, catering to a diverse audience. The Footlight is known for hosting both established and up-and-coming artists, providing a platform for artists to experiment and showcase their talent.
Some interesting facts about The Footlight include:
- It has a backyard patio that features art installations and film screenings during the summer
- It has a monthly drag show that is known for its elaborate costumes and performances
- It hosts a regular open jam session, where musicians can spontaneously collaborate and create music together
The Footlight’s versatility and willingness to explore different forms of art and entertainment make it stand out among other venues in Brooklyn. Its welcoming and inclusive atmosphere attracts both locals and visitors, making it a hidden gem worth experiencing.
Babycastles is a nonprofit art and game collective that promotes diversity and experimentation in various art forms. Besides hosting exhibitions and workshops, it also has a performance space that provides a platform for musical experimentation and exploration. The music shows at Babycastles often feature alternative, experimental, and avant-garde artists, showcasing the cutting edge of music culture.
Some interesting facts about BABY CASTLES include:
|Babycastles is a unique and experimental platform that encourages diversity and creativity in music||The performance space is relatively small, so shows can feel crowded and intimate||The intimacy of the shows allows for a genuine connection between the artists and the audience|
|Babycastles has a community-driven atmosphere, offering opportunities for artists and volunteers to get involved||The location can be hard to find, as it’s tucked away in the back of an office building||The off-the-beaten-path location adds to its obscure and unconventional charm|
Babycastles is not just a music venue but a platform for artistic experimentation and collaboration. Its commitment to diversity and inclusivity in art makes it an essential place for anyone interested in exploring the cutting edge of music culture. Its intimate setting and community-driven atmosphere create a unique and authentic experience that cannot be replicated elsewhere. Visiting Babycastles is a must for anyone looking for something different and exciting in the Brooklyn music scene.
In conclusion, Brooklyn has an abundance of music venues that cater to different tastes and genres. However, exploring the hidden gems and off-the-beaten-path venues can offer a more unique and authentic experience. The Koliba, The Footlight, and Babycastles are just a few examples of these hidden gems, each with their unique charm and offerings. Whether you’re a local looking for something new or a visitor exploring the city, adding these venues to your list is a must.
4. Consider the Accessibility of the Music Venue
The accessibility of the music venue is an essential consideration when finding the right music venue in Brooklyn. The location of the venue, transportation options available, and parking availability can significantly affect the overall experience of attending the concert.
Location of the Venue
The location of the venue is a crucial factor when it comes to convenience and accessibility. Before choosing a music venue, it’s essential to consider the distance from your location, the proximity to public transportation, and the surrounding environment. Some music venues are located in remote areas, making it challenging to travel to and access them. This can lead to the cancellation of plans to attend concerts as travelling can be expensive, time-consuming and an overall hassle. Therefore, it’s recommended that you choose music venues that are situated in easily accessible and safe locations.
Making use of public transport is another excellent way to get to a music venue conveniently. Before attending a concert, check if the venue is accessible by train or bus, and identify the route that takes you closest to the venue. Another option is to hire a taxi, ride-hailing service, or carpool with friends or colleagues. Most music venues offer information on the best route to get to the venue, as well as parking options.
Parking availability can be a significant concern when attending a concert. Brooklyn has various public parking options located near most music venues. However, it’s essential to consider the cost, duration, and security of parking space. You should also research whether the venue offers reserved parking for eventgoers so that you can have peace of mind knowing that you have a spot saved for you. It’s also good to check parking availability on ticketing websites to learn what parking options may be available for the event.
To understand better the importance of considering the accessibility of a music venue in Brooklyn, we have two case studies:
- Barclays Center: The venue is situated in Downtown Brooklyn and is easily accessible by multiple subway lines, buses, and taxis. Barclays Center has a dedicated parking system and reserved parking spots available through its website. This music venue boasts an average capacity of 15,000 people and has played host to several Grammy-winning artists.
- Baby’s All Right: This music venue is located on Broadway and boasts a comfortable and stylish ambiance. The venue is easy to access and located near the Williamsburg Bridge. Public transportation is an excellent option when attending a concert at Baby’s All Right, as there are several bus routes that lead to the venue. Street parking may also be an option for some, although it’s important to note that parking is not available directly outside the venue.
Table: Comparison of Accessibility in Brooklyn Music Venues
|Music Venue||Location||Public Transport Availability||Parking Availability|
|Barclays Center||Downtown Brooklyn||Multiple subway lines, buses, taxis||Dedicated parking system and reserved spots|
|Baby’s All Right||Broadway, Williamsburg||Several bus routes||Street parking available, not directly outside venue|
|Murmrr Theatre||Prospect Heights||2, 3 trains, buses||Public parking garage in the area|
|Brooklyn Steel||East Williamsburg||L train, several bus routes||Public parking lot with shuttle, street parking|
For further research check, brooklynvegan.com has a comprehensive list of music venues in Brooklyn with details of location, ticketing, accessibility, and more.
Exploring Brooklyn’s Neighborhoods Through Its Music Venues
Brooklyn, New York, is a jungle of neighborhoods, each with its own unique vibe, energy, and charm. It is a destination for music lovers, as the borough is widely known for its vibrant and diverse music scene. From local bars to large-scale concert halls, Brooklyn’s music venues cater to all music genres, making it an ideal place to explore and experience music through its venues. Here, we’ll take a closer look at how each neighborhood in Brooklyn has its own distinctive flavor in the music world.
Williamsburg is perhaps the most famous area in Brooklyn for its music scene. It has been the hub of the indie rock and electro-pop scenes for years, thanks to the numerous bars and music venues lining the streets. A few venues worth mentioning include:
- Music Hall of Williamsburg: This large music venue has a capacity of about 700 people and has hosted famous acts such as Arctic Monkeys, Vampire Weekend, and Arcade Fire.
- Rough Trade NYC: This music venue doubles as a record store, making it a unique destination for music lovers. It has a capacity of 250 people and has hosted artists such as David Byrne, Beck, and Metronomy.
- The Brooklyn Bowl: This music venue is not only a concert hall but a bowling alley as well. It has a capacity of 600 people and has hosted big names such as Elvis Costello, Snoop Dogg, and Moby.
Apart from these notable venues, Williamsburg is also home to several smaller bars and music venues that showcase local and up-and-coming artists.
Greenpoint is a neighborhood that is a bit more laid back than its neighbor, Williamsburg. The area has a thriving music scene, but the venues tend to be more intimate and less commercial. Here are a few noteworthy venues in Greenpoint:
- Elsewhere: This multi-level music venue houses multiple stages and a rooftop bar. It has a capacity of over 1,000 people and has hosted musicians such as Floating Points, Bonobo, and Khruangbin.
- Good Room: This music venue is a converted warehouse space, and the tall ceilings and raw atmosphere lend themselves to a unique music experience. It has a capacity of 500 people and features regular DJ sets and live performances.
- St. Vitus: This music venue is a metalhead’s paradise, with a focus on heavy metal, punk, and hard rock. It has a capacity of 250 people and has hosted bands such as Black Sabbath cover band, Sabbath Assembly, and The Melvins.
Greenpoint is known for its sense of community, and the music venues here reflect that.
Flatbush is an area in Brooklyn that is often overlooked in terms of its music scene. However, it has several venues that cater to different tastes, making it a destination worth exploring. Some noteworthy venues in Flatbush include:
- Kings Theatre: This historic venue has recently been restored to its former glory and is now one of the best places to see live music in Brooklyn. It has a capacity of 3,200 people and has hosted musicians such as Diana Ross, Elvis Costello, and Morrissey.
- The Owl Music Parlor: This music venue is a cozy space that hosts acoustic sets and intimate performances. It has a capacity of 50 people and features regular jazz and folk performances.
- The Brooklyn Academy of Music: This cultural institution has several venues that host a variety of events, including concerts, theater productions, and film screenings. It has a capacity of several thousand people and has hosted musicians such as Cat Power, Calexico, and Iron & Wine.
Flatbush is a diverse neighborhood, and its music venues reflect that. From historic theaters to intimate clubs, there is something for everyone in Flatbush.
Bushwick is a neighborhood in Brooklyn that has undergone a transformation in recent years, with many abandoned buildings being converted into art spaces and music venues. Here are a few noteworthy venues in Bushwick:
- Market Hotel: This DIY-style venue operates out of a former market and warehouse space. It has a capacity of about 250 people and has hosted musicians such as Animal Collective, Thee Oh Sees, and Ty Segall.
- The Sultan Room: This recently opened venue is located inside a Turkish-themed restaurant and features a mix of live music and DJ sets. It has a capacity of about 200 people and has hosted musicians such as Har Mar Superstar, Zebra Katz, and Caroline Polachek.
- Bossa Nova Civic Club: This intimate club features a rotating lineup of DJs playing techno, house, and disco. It has a capacity of about 100 people and has hosted DJs such as Honey Dijon, Danny Krivit, and Optimo.
Bushwick is home to many young artists and musicians, and the music scene here reflects their DIY spirit.
Prospect Heights is a neighborhood in Brooklyn that is perhaps best known for its cultural institutions, such as the Brooklyn Museum and the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. However, it also has several music venues worth checking out. Here are a few noteworthy venues in Prospect Heights:
- The Bell House: This music venue is housed in a 1920s warehouse space and has a capacity of about 400 people. It has hosted musicians such as Belle & Sebastian, St. Vincent, and The Magnetic Fields.
- Baby’s All Right: This music venue is also a restaurant and bar, making it a popular spot for dinner and a show. It has a capacity of about 250 people and has hosted musicians such as Mitski, Kurt Vile, and The War on Drugs.
- Union Hall: This music venue is also a bar and features regular comedy shows in addition to live music. It has a capacity of about 150 people and has hosted musicians such as Neko Case, Yo La Tengo, and Eleanor Friedberger.
Prospect Heights is a relatively quiet neighborhood, but its music venues provide a welcome escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.
In conclusion, exploring Brooklyn’s neighborhoods through its music venues is a great way to get a taste of the borough’s diverse and vibrant music scene. From indie rock to heavy metal and everything in between, Brooklyn’s music venues cater to all tastes and musical preferences. Whether you’re a local or a tourist, there’s always something new and exciting to discover in Brooklyn’s music scene.
FAQs: Music Venues in Brooklyn
What are the best music venues in Brooklyn?
Some of the most popular music venues in Brooklyn include Music Hall of Williamsburg, Brooklyn Bowl, Warsaw, Rough Trade NYC, and Baby’s All Right. Each of these venues has hosted notable musical acts and provides unique experiences for concert-goers.
How do I find upcoming concerts in Brooklyn?
You can visit websites such as Songkick or Bandsintown to find upcoming concerts in Brooklyn. These sites allow you to search for concerts by location, date, and artist. Additionally, many of the music venues in Brooklyn have event calendars on their websites where you can see their upcoming shows.
What is the capacity of Music Hall of Williamsburg?
Music Hall of Williamsburg has a capacity of approximately 550 people. This intimate venue has hosted a variety of musical acts ranging from indie rock to hip hop.
Can I bring my own food and drinks to Brooklyn Bowl?
No, outside food and drinks are not permitted at Brooklyn Bowl. However, the venue has a restaurant and bar where you can purchase food and drinks before or during the show.
What is the age limit for concerts at Rough Trade NYC?
The age limit for concerts at Rough Trade NYC varies depending on the show. Some shows are 21+ while others are open to all ages. You can check the venue’s website or the ticketing website for more information.
What is the history of Brooklyn Steel?
Brooklyn Steel is a relatively new music venue in Brooklyn, opening its doors in 2017. The venue was designed specifically for music performances and has state-of-the-art sound and lighting systems. It has hosted a variety of musical acts and has quickly become a popular destination for music lovers.
What is the location of Market Hotel?
Market Hotel is located in the Bushwick neighborhood of Brooklyn. The exact address is 1140 Myrtle Ave.
What types of music are typically played at Baby’s All Right?
Baby’s All Right is known for hosting indie rock and pop acts. However, the venue has also featured performances by electronic, hip hop, and experimental artists.
What is the capacity of Warsaw?
Warsaw has a capacity of approximately 1000 people. This venue has a long history in Brooklyn, originally opening in 1904 as a Polish community center.
What is the admission price for shows at Saint Vitus?
The admission price for shows at Saint Vitus varies depending on the performer and the day of the week. You can check the venue’s website or ticketing website for specific pricing information.
Brooklyn is known for its thriving music scene, and with so many fantastic venues to choose from, music lovers have plenty of options when it comes to seeing live performances. From intimate venues like Music Hall of Williamsburg to larger spaces like Warsaw, there is something for everyone in Brooklyn. To stay up to date on upcoming concerts and events, be sure to check out the websites of your favorite venues and sign up for email newsletters. After reading this article, you should have a better understanding of some of the best music venues in Brooklyn and what to expect when attending a show. Don’t wait, get out there and start exploring the vibrant music scene that Brooklyn has to offer!
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