Hello, music lovers! Are you tired of hearing the same old tunes on the radio and looking for a more authentic musical experience? Look no further than St. Louis, Missouri! In this article, we’ll explore the vibrant live music scene in St. Louis, and how you can immerse yourself in the city’s rich musical heritage.
By the end of this article, you can expect to learn about the city’s best live music hotspots, from cozy jazz clubs to sprawling music festivals. We’ll also introduce you to some of the talented local musicians who call St. Louis home, and give you a taste of the diverse musical genres that you can experience in the city. Whether you’re a local looking to expand your musical horizons, or a visitor eager to explore the city’s cultural offerings, this article has something for everyone.
Don’t just take our word for it – St. Louis has been recognized as a hub for live music by publications such as Travel + Leisure and Rolling Stone. With our insider tips and recommendations, you’ll be able to discover the best that the city has to offer and make memories that will last a lifetime. So sit back, relax, and get ready to discover the musical heartbeat of St. Louis!
The History of Live Music in St. Louis
St. Louis, Missouri, has played an important role in the development of American music. The city’s location at the confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri rivers made it a hub of trade and transportation, attracting musicians from all over the country. From ragtime to blues to jazz and rock and roll, St. Louis has been a breeding ground for a wide range of musical styles. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the history of live music in St. Louis, exploring the key events, figures, and venues that have shaped the city’s vibrant music scene.
The Early Days of Live Music in St. Louis
St. Louis has a rich musical heritage that dates back to the 19th century. In the late 1800s, the city was a hotbed of ragtime music, thanks in large part to the contributions of Scott Joplin. The composer and pianist lived in St. Louis for several years, and during that time, he wrote some of his most famous works, including “Maple Leaf Rag” and “The Entertainer.” Joplin’s ragtime music influenced countless musicians in St. Louis and beyond, helping to establish the city as a center for American music.
Other early musical pioneers in St. Louis included W.C. Handy, known as the “Father of the Blues,” and Thomas “Fats” Waller, a jazz pianist and composer. Both musicians spent time in St. Louis and were influenced by the city’s vibrant musical culture. In the early 20th century, St. Louis was also home to a thriving vaudeville scene, with performers flocking to the city’s theaters to showcase their talents.
The Impact of Segregation on St. Louis Music
Unfortunately, St. Louis, like many other American cities, was plagued by segregation in the early 20th century, with African American musicians often confined to playing in “black” venues. One such venue was the legendary Club Plantation, which operated from the 1920s until the late 1960s. The club hosted some of the biggest names in blues, including B.B. King, Muddy Waters, and Ike and Tina Turner, but because of segregation, it was largely off-limits to white audiences.
Despite the challenges posed by segregation, many African American musicians in St. Louis thrived, creating music that would go on to influence generations of musicians. One such musician was Chuck Berry, who arrived in St. Louis in the early 1950s and began playing at clubs like the Cosmopolitan and the Club Imperial. Berry’s innovative blend of blues and country music helped to create the sound of rock and roll, and he went on to become one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century.
The Rise of Rock and Roll in St. Louis
In the 1960s and 70s, St. Louis became a major center for rock and roll music. Some of the city’s most famous venues during this time included the Gaslight Square district, where musicians like Miles Davis and Stan Getz would perform, and the Fox Theatre, which hosted legendary acts like Elvis Presley and the Beatles.
St. Louis also had a thriving garage rock scene during this time, with bands like the Seeds, the Rats, and the Standells all calling the city home. Many of these bands played at clubs like Cicero’s and the Crystal Palace Ballroom, which were popular with both locals and touring acts.
The Legacy of St. Louis Music
Today, St. Louis continues to be a hub of live music, with a wide variety of venues and genres represented. The city has produced countless influential musicians over the years, from Scott Joplin to Chuck Berry to Nelly. Some of the most popular venues in St. Louis today include the Pageant, the Delmar Hall, and Blueberry Hill, where Chuck Berry used to perform regularly.
Despite the challenges posed by economic downturns and changing musical tastes, St. Louis remains a vital part of the American music landscape. With its rich history and diverse musical culture, the city continues to attract musicians and fans from all over the country and the world.
The Best Venues for Live Music in St. Louis
St. Louis has a rich music history that dates back to the early 1900s with the rise of blues music. Today, the city continues to be a hub for live music with various venues that cater to different music genres. Here are some of the best venues for live music in St. Louis:
Located in the Delmar Loop area, The Pageant is perhaps one of the most iconic music venues in St. Louis. With a capacity of approximately 2,300, the venue has hosted some of the biggest names in the music industry, including Taylor Swift, John Mayer, and Coldplay. Here are some reasons why The Pageant is a must-visit venue for live music enthusiasts in St. Louis:
- State-of-the-art sound and lighting: The Pageant prides itself on having one of the best sound systems in the Midwest. The venue also has a custom lighting system that enhances the overall concert experience.
- Multiple balconies: The Pageant has three balconies that overlook the stage, providing different vantage points for concertgoers. The balconies also offer private seating areas for groups or parties.
- Great food and drinks: The Pageant offers a wide variety of food and drinks, including beer, wine, and cocktails. The venue has a full-service kitchen that serves appetizers, entrees, and desserts.
If you plan to visit The Pageant, it is advisable to buy tickets in advance as many concerts sell out quickly.
The Fabulous Fox Theatre
Built in 1929, The Fabulous Fox Theatre is a historic landmark that has hosted numerous Broadway shows and concerts. With a seating capacity of approximately 4,500, the theatre boasts of intricate architecture and design that adds to the overall concert experience. Here are some reasons why The Fabulous Fox Theatre is a unique venue for live music in St. Louis:
- Historic significance: The Fabulous Fox Theatre is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and has been designated a National Historic Landmark. The theatre’s architecture and design are based on Arabian influences and have been meticulously restored over the years.
- Comfortable seating: The theatre seats are comfortable and spacious, providing ample legroom for concertgoers. Additionally, the venue has various seating options, including box seats and mezzanine seating.
- Great acoustics: The Fabulous Fox Theatre has a state-of-the-art sound system that provides crystal-clear sound quality. The venue’s acoustics are designed to enhance different music genres, including classical, jazz, and pop.
If you plan to attend a concert at The Fabulous Fox Theatre, arrive early to explore the theatre’s architecture and design.
Blueberry Hill is a cozy restaurant and music venue that has been a mainstay in St. Louis since the 1970s. The venue has a capacity of approximately 340 and is known for its intimate setting and vibrant atmosphere. Here are some reasons why Blueberry Hill is a unique venue for live music in St. Louis:
- Iconic decor: Blueberry Hill is known for its quirky decor, including walls covered in pop culture memorabilia and neon signs. The venue has a nostalgic feel that adds to the overall concert experience.
- Intimate setting: The venue’s small size provides a sense of intimacy between the audience and the performer. Concertgoers can get up close and personal with their favorite artists.
- Local talent: Blueberry Hill is known for showcasing local talent and is a popular venue for up-and-coming artists. The venue also hosts regular open mic nights for aspiring musicians.
If you plan to visit Blueberry Hill, try their signature burger, named after the venue’s founder, Joe Edwards.
|The Pageant||The Fabulous Fox Theatre||Blueberry Hill|
|Food & Drinks||Wide variety||Concession stands||Signature burger|
|Seating options||Multiple balconies||Variety of seating options||N/A|
|Local Talent||N/A||N/A||Popular venue for up-and-coming artists|
In conclusion, St. Louis has a diverse range of venues that cater to different music genres and preferences. Whether you prefer large concert venues with state-of-the-art sound systems or small intimate venues with a cozy atmosphere, St. Louis has something for everyone.
Discovering Talented Local Bands in St. Louis
If you’re a music lover who is always on the hunt for new and exciting music, St. Louis is the perfect place for you. The city is home to a thriving music scene and is home to many talented local bands. Discovering these local bands can be an enriching experience that exposes you to unique sounds and perspectives.
1. Attending Local Music Festivals
St. Louis hosts various music festivals throughout the year that showcase both local and national talent. These festivals provide the perfect opportunity to discover new local bands. Some of the notable music festivals in St. Louis include the LouFest, the Bluesweek Festival, and the St. Louis Jazz Festival.
LouFest is a renowned music festival that features an eclectic mix of local and national acts. The festival attracts thousands of music lovers and is held every year at the Forest Park in St. Louis. In addition, LouFest has an impressive history of showcasing up-and-coming local bands. For example, the alternative rock band, Foxing, played at LouFest in 2016 before they became one of the most popular local bands in the region.
Bluesweek Festival is a weeklong music festival that celebrates the rich blues heritage in St. Louis. The festival features local blues bands as well as national acts. Bluesweek Festival is an excellent platform for discovering talented local blues bands.
St. Louis Jazz Festival, held at the historic Touhill Performing Arts Center, features some of the best local jazz musicians. The festival provides a unique opportunity to discover new and exciting jazz sounds.
2. Visiting Local Music Venues
St. Louis is home to numerous music venues that host live shows by local bands. Visiting these venues is an excellent way to discover local bands that are not yet on the festival circuit. Some of the popular music venues in St. Louis include Off Broadway, The Pageant, and Blueberry Hill.
Off Broadway is a locally owned and operated music venue that has been in operation for over 30 years. The venue features local and national acts across various genres, including rock, indie, and folk. Off Broadway has hosted some of the most popular local bands, including the alt-country band, Son Volt.
The Pageant is an iconic music venue in St. Louis that has been named one of the best music venues in the country. The venue features local and national acts across various genres, including rock, hip hop, and pop. The Pageant has a capacity of 2,000 people and has hosted some of the biggest names in the music industry, including Dave Matthews Band and Radiohead.
Blueberry Hill is a legendary music venue that has been in operation since 1972. The venue features live shows by local bands as well as touring acts. Blueberry Hill has hosted some of the most popular local bands, including the punk rock band, The Fugitives.
3. Connecting with Local Radio Stations and Music Blogs
Local radio stations and music blogs are excellent sources of information about the local music scene. By connecting with these platforms, you can discover talented local bands and stay up-to-date with their latest releases and performances.
a. Local Radio Stations
There are several radio stations in St. Louis that feature local music shows. Tuning in to these shows is an excellent way to discover new local bands. Some of the popular local music shows in St. Louis include St. Louis Public Radio’s “St. Louis on the Air” and KDHX’s “Local Produce Live.”
St. Louis Public Radio’s “St. Louis on the Air” is a live radio show that features local musicians and bands. The show provides a platform for local bands to showcase their music and connect with the community. St. Louis on the Air has featured several popular local bands in the past, including the alternative rock band, Sleepy Kitty.
KDHX’s “Local Produce Live” is a weekly show that focuses on showcasing the best in local music. The show features live performances by local bands and interviews with local musicians. KDHX is a community-run radio station that has been supporting the local music scene for over 30 years.
b. Local Music Blogs
Several local music blogs cover the St. Louis music scene and provide valuable information about local bands. These blogs offer in-depth reviews of local shows, interviews with local musicians, and information about upcoming events. Some of the popular local music blogs in St. Louis include Eleven Magazine and I Went to a Show.
Eleven Magazine is a monthly magazine that covers music, arts, and culture in St. Louis. The magazine features in-depth articles about local bands and interviews with local musicians. Eleven Magazine also covers local music festivals and provides information about upcoming shows and events.
I Went to a Show is a local music blog that provides reviews of local shows and events. The blog features interviews with local musicians and provides information about upcoming concerts and performances. I Went to a Show is run by a group of music enthusiasts who are passionate about supporting the local music scene.
|Provides a platform for local bands to showcase their music||Limited airtime for local music shows|
|Connects music lovers with the local music scene||Local music blogs may have limited reach|
|Offers valuable information about upcoming shows and events||Radio stations may be limited to specific genres of music|
c. Social Media and Music Streaming Platforms
Social media and music streaming platforms are also excellent resources for discovering local bands. By following local bands on social media and streaming their music, you can stay up-to-date with their latest releases and performances.
Platforms like Bandcamp and Soundcloud are popular among local musicians as they offer a free and easy way to upload and share their music. By browsing these platforms, you can discover new and exciting local bands.
In conclusion, discovering talented local bands in St. Louis is an enriching experience that can expose you to unique sounds and perspectives. You can attend local music festivals, visit local music venues, connect with local radio stations and music blogs, and utilize social media and music streaming platforms to discover new local bands.
Live Music Festivals in St. Louis You Don’t Want to Miss
St. Louis is a city that loves live music. There are plenty of opportunities to see local and national acts year-round, but the music festival scene in St. Louis has grown significantly in recent years. Here are four festivals you won’t want to miss.
LouFest is one of the biggest music festivals in St. Louis. It takes place in Forest Park, and the festival organizers aim to showcase a diverse mix of local and national acts. The festival has been going strong for almost a decade and has welcomed big-name artists like Arcade Fire, The Killers, and Chuck Berry.
– Large variety of local and national acts
– Multiple stages for different genres
– Food and drink options available
– Family-friendly environment
– Located in the heart of the city
– Limited number of tickets available
– High ticket prices compared to other local festivals
– Weather can be unpredictable in September
Taste of St. Louis
The Taste of St. Louis festival is not just about music, but it’s also a celebration of the food and drink scene in the city. The festival takes place in September at Chesterfield Amphitheater and includes cooking demonstrations, wine tasting, and plenty of live music.
– Opportunity to try a variety of local food and drink
– Live music runs all day for all three days
– Free admission
– Limited number of acts
– Smaller venue compared to other festivals
– Not all food and drink options are included with free admission
Bluesweek Festival celebrates the history and influence of blues music in St. Louis. The festival takes place over a week in August and features acts from all over the country. The festival includes educational workshops, film screenings, and plenty of opportunities to hear some of the best blues music around.
– Celebrates the historical influence of blues music in St. Louis
– Offers educational opportunities
– Features a variety of well-known and up-and-coming blues artists
– Limited to blues genre only
– Spread across multiple venues
– No camping options for out-of-town visitors
TwangFest is a festival that focuses on country, roots, and Americana music. The festival takes place in the spring at Off Broadway and has been going strong for over 20 years. The festival includes both local and national acts, and every year, the organizers donate a portion of the proceeds to a local charity.
– Celebrates a specific genre of music
– Intimate venue for up-close performances
– Opportunity to support a local charity
– Limited number of acts
– Only focuses on one genre of music
– Smaller venue compared to other festivals
|Taste of St. Louis||Mixed||Chesterfield Amphitheater||Free|
|Bluesweek Festival||Blues||Multiple Venues||$25+|
There’s no shortage of live music festivals in St. Louis. Whether you’re into blues, country, or just want to see a mix of different genres, there’s a festival for you. Do some research, buy your tickets early, and get ready for an unforgettable experience.
Where to Start
When planning a night out for live music in St. Louis, there are several factors to consider. From the type of music to the venue location, it can be overwhelming to decide where to start. Here are some steps to follow that will help you plan the ultimate night out for live music in St. Louis.
1. Choose the Right Type of Music
Knowing what type of music you want to hear is crucial to planning a successful night out. Are you in the mood for jazz, rock, blues, or country? Each genre has its own unique vibe and atmosphere, so it’s essential to decide which one fits your mood and personality.
- Research different music genres to find the right one for your night out.
- Figure out what you like about the music and what mood it sets for you.
- Choose a music genre that fits your personality and style.
2. Research Venues
St. Louis has many music venues that cater to different types of music. Some venues are smaller and more intimate, while others are larger and more crowded. Some venues are known for their acoustics, and others are known for their atmosphere. Researching the best venues will help you choose the right one for your night out.
|Blueberry Hill||Fun||Rock||Iconic venue, good food, and drinks.||Can be crowded and noisy.|
|BB’s Jazz, Blues, and Soups||Intimate||Jazz & Blues||Great acoustics, cozy atmosphere, and delicious food.||Limited seating.|
|The Pageant||Electric||Rock & Pop||Big-name acts, state-of-the-art lighting and sound, and ample parking.||Can be expensive, and some people find it impersonal.|
3. Determine Transportation
Getting to and from the venue safely is vital. The last thing you want is to have a great night out only to get stuck without a ride home. Choose a transportation option that works for you, whether it’s driving, public transit, or a rideshare service.
- Plan your transportation ahead of time.
- Check the availability of public transport.
- Pre-book a ride through a rideshare service.
- Designate a sober driver for the night.
4. Dress Appropriately
Knowing what to wear can make or break your night out. Depending on the venue and music genre, there may be different dress codes to follow. For example, a jazz club may have a more formal dress code than a rock concert.
- Check the venue’s website for dress code information.
- Ask friends who have been to the venue before what they recommend wearing.
- When in doubt, dress up rather than down.
5. Plan Your Budget
The cost of a night out for live music can vary widely. Some venues may be affordable, while others may require a significant financial investment. Planning your budget will help you stay within your means and avoid any financial stress.
- Research ticket prices for the concert and plan accordingly.
- Factor in transportation costs and any additional expenses, such as food and drinks.
- Look for deals and discounts that can help reduce costs.
- Consider prepaid options, such as a package deal that includes concert tickets, food, and drinks.
In conclusion, planning the ultimate night out for live music in St. Louis requires careful preparation and attention to detail. By following these steps, you can ensure that your night out is a success and you have a great time enjoying the vibrant live music scene in St. Louis.
FAQs for St Louis Live Music
What are the best venues for live music in St. Louis?
There are many great venues for live music in St. Louis. Some of the most popular include: Blueberry Hill, Delmar Hall, The Pageant, The Ready Room, and The Sheldon Concert Hall.
What types of music can you hear in St. Louis?
St. Louis is home to a vibrant music scene that offers a variety of genres including blues, jazz, rock, hip-hop, and country. Whether you like classic rock, contemporary pop, or underground beats, there is something for everyone in St. Louis.
How can I find out about upcoming concerts in St. Louis?
You can check out local entertainment websites or apps like Bandsintown or Songkick to find upcoming concerts in St. Louis. You can also follow your favorite musicians on social media to stay up-to-date on their tours and performances in the area.
What is the best time of year for live music in St. Louis?
St. Louis has a music scene that is active year-round, but some of the most popular times for live music are during the summer months. This is when outdoor music festivals like LouFest and Bluesweek take place.
Can you see live music for free in St. Louis?
Yes, there are many opportunities to see live music for free in St. Louis. During the summer months, many parks and outdoor venues offer free concerts. You can also check out local bars and restaurants that feature live music as part of their entertainment line-up.
What is the dress code for live music venues in St. Louis?
The dress code for live music venues in St. Louis varies depending on the venue. Some venues may require formal attire, while others are more casual. It is always a good idea to check the venue’s website or call ahead to find out about their dress code policy.
Can I bring my own alcohol to a live music venue in St. Louis?
No, most live music venues in St. Louis do not allow outside alcohol. However, many venues have bars or concessions where you can purchase drinks.
Is there a minimum age requirement to attend live music events in St. Louis?
The minimum age requirement to attend live music events in St. Louis varies depending on the venue and the event. Some venues may have age restrictions for certain shows, while others require adults to accompany minors. It is always a good idea to check the venue’s website or call ahead to find out about age restrictions.
Can I take photos or record video at live music events in St. Louis?
The rules about taking photos or recording video at live music events in St. Louis vary depending on the venue and the artist. Some venues may not allow cameras or recording devices, while others may have specific policies you must follow. It is always a good idea to check the venue’s website or call ahead to find out about their policy on photography and video.
Are tickets for live music events in St. Louis refundable?
Most live music venues in St. Louis have a no-refund policy for tickets. However, some venues may allow exchanges or credit towards future events.
In conclusion, St. Louis is home to a thriving music scene with many great venues to enjoy live music. From blues to hip-hop, there is truly something for everyone. If you’re looking for upcoming concerts, be sure to check out local entertainment websites, apps, and social media pages. Additionally, some opportunities to see live music for free or at a lower cost are offered throughout St. Louis. We hope you enjoy all that St. Louis has to offer in terms of live music!
After reading this article, consider checking out some of the popular music festivals like LouFest and Bluesweek that happen in St. Louis every summer. Plan a fun night out with friends, or even take a date to a concert. No matter what you choose, don’t miss out on the chance to experience the vibrant music scene in St. Louis.
Thank you for reading, and be sure to check out our other interesting articles!