Whether you are a local or a tourist, everyone knows that Nashville is the place to be especially for the amazing music scene it offers. This town is crawling with aspiring artists trying to make a name for themselves and if you’re lucky, you may just catch your favorite artist singing at a local bar. New York Country Swag has compiled a list of the 10 best places to hear live music while you are in town.
1. The Bluebird Cafe
You’ve probably seen The Bluebird Café in almost every episode of the hit television show Nashville and let me tell you, it did not do the place justice. When you arrive at the café, you can expect a mile-long line. But don’t let that intimidate you. The wait is so worth it. This is the place to hear your favorite billboard hits performed by the people who wrote them. Their passion for music is what makes this place so special. For more info click here.
2. Ascend Amphitheater
Ascend has become the “it” venue in Downtown Nashville. This outdoor venue is located on the edge of the Cumberland River and it is beautiful. You can expect to see all of your favorite artists here in the warmer months. Alongside Bridgestone Arena, this has become the place for headlining tours. The amphitheater holds a huge capacity with seats and a lawn and they even have VIP boxes available. Check out their events here.
3. The Listening Room
The Listening Room is one of Nashville’s staples in the music world. This is where songwriters perform their own work before it gets passed on to established artists, meaning you get to hear the next-big-thing before anyone else. There is just something so special and beautiful hearing music performed by the songwriters themselves. For more information on upcoming shows click here.
4. Ryman Auditorium
This is an obvious pick on our list. The Ryman is one of the most “Nashville” places you will ever step foot in. Located in the heart of downtown, you can find just about every genre of music here. Artists that perform here find themselves humbled on the stage of so many great musicians who came before them. The rich history of this venue and the stained glass windows make it very unique and a must-visit when in Nashville. For upcoming shows and tickets click here.
5. Winners Bar & Grill
This bar is a favorite by all locals and has some of the best grub in town. If you didn’t know, Winners is the home of Whiskey Jam. Whiskey Jam has been around for over 8 years and they have hosted some of the best names in the music industry. Some artists that have been featured at Whiskey Jam are Lee Brice, Michael Ray, Chris Young, Old Dominion, and Kip Moore. If you are a local or ever in town, this is a must. For more info on Winners click here and for more info and upcoming Whiskey Jam nights click here
6. 3rd and Lindsley
3rd and Lindsley is definitely the place to hear new, up and coming artists before they make it big. Groups like Lady Antebellum and Train have played to welcoming crowds. This venue is great because there is a dance floor, but if that’s something that doesn’t float your boat, there is a balcony that offers seating, food, and drinks. Check out upcoming events here.
7. Grand Ole Opry
This venue needs no introduction. Although The Opry is outside of Downtown Nashville, it is 100% worth the trip. It’s a country music fan’s dream and it also attracts non-country music fans as well. The history of this place and all of the artists to walk that stage truly make this place special, read more about our VIP backstage tour that we took in 2017 here and for upcoming shows and tickets click here.
8. Marathon Music Works
If you are looking for a more laid-back vibe and non-Nashville themed venue, then this is your place. Located in the old Marathon Motors Work Factory, this industrial chic venue has 2 full service bars and great views of the stage no matter where you are standing. The venue is standing room only so be prepared to stand for long periods of time. It is worth it once you get to see your favorite artist. Check out the upcoming shows here.
This venue will definitely make you feel young at heart. Exit/In offers every music genre and will please the tastes of every music lover. It has a longstanding history and a diverse list of artists that keeps people coming back. Inside there’s not a bad seat in the house, but the balcony has the best view. Check out the list of all the legacies who have passed through here and the upcoming shows here.
10. Broadway Bars
You cannot go wrong walking down Broadway in the heart of music city and stepping foot into any bar. There is live music everywhere. Some places include, Rippy’s, Wildhorse Saloon, FGL House, Acme Feed and Seed, and Ole Red. You will not be disappointed with the music you hear.
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