You’re new to a city and you need to find some places to hang out. Preferably they’re close. So you look for some bars, maybe some coffee shops, maybe some concert venues near you.
You’re a smart, discerning person. So I don’t need to tell you, you don’t want to go to just any venue. Some might not be great for music, some might just be too expensive. How do you find the best concert venues near you?
Why does it matter? Here’s a little secret about concerts that might change your entire perspective on music and concerts, or more likely, make you irrationally angry at me for challenging your world view.
The artist doesn’t matter.
Hear me out. For music and the music you like, of course the artist matters. But for concerts, the venue matters a lot more. If the artist was coming to your couch and singing for you, then yes, they would matter to the concert experience. But on average, I would argue that picking the right venue and just choosing a night to go makes a better concert experience than waiting for an artist you like to arrive in town (or close enough) and follow them to whatever venue.
Instead, you should just try and find a nice venue or a bar, or a few, not too big or expensive, and follow their calendar. Trust them to pick artists you might find yourself liking, or at least one’s you’d enjoy being around even if you never listen to their music again. Then, you can pick any night you want to go out and just… go.
How do you find the right venues to go to though? I’ve put together a comprehensive guide to finding that perfect venue. Ready? You’re in for some reading, just so you know. Ready now? Okay here we go!
The guide to finding the best concert venues near you
- Leave your house.
- Walk around.
- Find that loud place that really seems like they’re playing music.
- See if it’s live.
- Stay if it is.
- See if you like it.
- If you like it, go back. If not, go back to step 1.
That’s it. Really, there’s not that much to it. That’s how you find the best concert venues near you. Okay, I feel like I might have cheated you a bit. Here are a couple of (real) tips to keep in mind.
- Genre: Most places do tend towards certain genres. While there is benefit in breaking out of your comfort zone and trying something new, if you’re looking for someplace you’d consider the best, you’re going to want to check out the calendar before hand and see what genre is regularly scheduled. Because of my New York-, organic food-, liberal bubble-centric lifestyle, I’m going to give you New York examples now. For example, Saint Vitus is a great metal bar. If you hate metal, you’re not going to like it. Schimanski is electronic. White Eagle Hall if you want to go to New Jersey. And so on.
- Other people: Depending on your point of view, other people can be the best or the worst thing about going to concerts at music venues. Regardless, they’re going to be there. Again, artists probably aren’t going to be coming to your couch and singing for you any time soon. Look for the crowd that fits you. Whether it’s a really danceable place, or an older crowd, or someplace where the drinks are strong enough that other people don’t really matter.
- Activities and amenities: Okay, so at a music venue, you should be into the music. But if you’ve ever been to a concert before, you might know that there’s often some downtime. If you’re the type of person where the little gremlin of boredom makes your fingers fidget quickly, you might want to make sure this place has something to occupy your time. Like video games, darts, or proximity to another friend who’s willing to go with you and talk to you but also shut up when you want them to shut up.
- The general vibe:
That’s really all there is to finding the best concert venue near you. Effort combined with a little awareness and you’ll be well on your way. I believe in you. You is smart. You is kind. And you didn’t need me to tell you any of this, it’s been inside of you this whole time!
Go out tonight, and any night. Jukely is a concert subscription that gives members guestlist access to hundreds of music events – for one price. Whenever you want to go out, you’ll always have something to do. Learn more and sign up at jukely.com.