LA Band

How to Find the Best Los Angeles Bands for Hire

How To Find Bands For Hire In The Los Angeles AreaPlanning an event? The Los Angeles music scene is incredibly diverse, which means if you’re looking for live entertainment for your guests, you’ll have an overwhelming number of options!

First, though, you’ll want to consider the type of music you’re looking for. What will your guests enjoy? When planning music for a wedding, the couple’s wishes trump everything else. If you’re hiring a band for a dance or party, you’ll want to take all of the guests’ tastes into account. Next, it’s time to find Los Angeles bands for hire – the following are some ways to start your search:

Check Local News Sources and Classifieds

The local classifieds can be a great place to start your research. The Los Angeles Times classified section lists many local performing artists, including DJs, cover bands, and up-and-coming artists. You can also find lots of bands in the Los Angeles eBay Classifieds, as well as within Craigslist Los Angeles (in the musicians category). When you find bands you’re interested in, check for reviews and ratings and see if they have a nearby show booked so that you can check them out for yourself.

Browse Los Angeles Bands for Hire Online

Many websites exist specifically to help Los Angeles bands for hire find gigs. For example, Gig Masters lists over 1,200 wedding bands looking for gigs. You can also check Gig Salad, which features a generous number of cover bands that perform at weddings, parties, school dances, and other events. The website Thumbtack allows you to select the genre of music you want and the type of event, giving you a list of bands that might be a good fit.

Visit Los Angeles Music Venues

Perhaps the best way to assure that you’ll be satisfied with your choice is to see prospective bands perform in person. There are several excellent places around LA to see newcomers in action and get your chance to book the next musical sensation before they’re too expensive to consider. Hotel Cafe in Hollywood, for example, has a speakeasy vibe and features live jazz musicians nightly. It’s a great place to find a smooth jazz act for a wedding reception or other classy event.

The Troubadour in West Hollywood has featured many big names, like Elton John and Guns N’ Roses, but also books smaller, lesser-known bands that are looking for places to perform. The Echo in Echo Park often has live indie music, and it’s the perfect place to find unusual and innovative acts that are a nice change of pace from your typical cover bands. Bootleg Theater has a lively underground music scene and is another great place to check out more offbeat acts.

There is no shortage of great Los Angeles bands for hire – you just have to do the legwork to find the right fit for your special event. The perfect band is out there waiting for you!

 

Interested in Private Lessons?

Search thousands of teachers for local and live, online lessons. Sign up for convenient, affordable private lessons today!

Free TakeLessons Resource

 Photo by Justin Higuchi

42480211_84ff5a5fc9_o

Exploring the Scene: How to Find Jazz Concerts in Los Angeles

Jazz Concerts In Los AngelesJazz has always been considered one of America’s leading contribution to the world of music. As an art form, jazz is constantly evolving as new artists introduce new musical influences and styles to the genre.

Los Angeles is a hotbed of amazingly talented jazz musicians. As the center of the entertainment industry, Los Angeles boasts a great jazz scene with lots of clubs, concerts, and festivals available to help you get your jazz on!

Jazz on the Radio

Kjazz is a public radio station that broadcasts from California State University, Long Beach.  Offering listeners the entire spectrum of jazz, KKJZ plays everything from bebop to cool jazz, Latin to straight-ahead, and swing to big band styles. This is the station to hear the masters, including Miles Davis, Sonny Rollins, and John Coltrane, as well as the hottest up-and-coming artists like Grace Kelly, Doug Webb, and Brad Mehldau.

Jazz Concerts in Los Angeles

Los Angeles features some of the finest concert halls in the country. Most host jazz concert series throughout the year.

For more than 20 years, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art has hosted jazz concerts in Los Angeles at the Jazz at LACMA series. The series runs from April through November and has featured LA’s finest local jazz musicians along with legends like Wayne Shorter, Kenny Burrell, Les McCann, and Ernie Watts.

A great venue for listening to music, the Broad Stage boasts impeccable acoustics and seats so comfortable, you’ll be hoping for an encore or two! While the jazz series is a bit sparse, you can definitely find some talented jazz musicians.

Designed by architect Frank Gehry, the Walt Disney Concert Hall is an amazing venue to catch a concert. Home of the LA Philharmonic, the Hall also hosts an annual jazz series led by Herbie Hancock. There’s not a bad seat in the house for watching these high-profile jazz acts!

Nothing beats spending a beautiful summer evening under the stars with a picnic and live jazz. Another venue curated by Herbie Hancock, iconic performers come from around the world to play at this amazing venue. The season kicks off with the famous weekend-long Playboy Jazz Festival (more on that later!)

Jazz Festivals in Los Angeles

Along with ongoing jazz concerts in Los Angeles, the city hosts some of the most dynamic jazz festivals in the country.

2014 marks the 36th year of the world famous Playboy Jazz Festival. The two-day festival held at the Hollywood Bowl has featured some of the jazz world’s most luminary figures in years past. 2014 is no exception, with performances scheduled by Al Jarreau, Stanley Clarke, Dianne Reeves, Dave Holland, and the Arturo Sandoval Big Band.

West Coast jazz was born on Central Avenue and this festival is a celebration of community and music. This year marks the 19th annual festival and will feature performances by some of LA’s top up-and-coming artists.

Jazz Clubs in Los Angeles

Los Angeles boasts one of the most dynamic jazz club scenes anywhere! From intimate supper clubs to world-class jazz clubs, LA has something for everyone.

This club was designed by trumpeter, producer, composer, and jazz executive Herb Alpert. It’s a classy joint with great acoustics and live jazz six nights a week.

This intimate Hollywood club is one of the priciest venues in the city, but it’s certainly worth it, as it features an impressive lineup of touring jazz greats and local emerging artists.

Located in an unassuming concrete mall in LA’s Little Tokyo, the Blue Whale is one of the top jazz clubs in LA. This club is both romantic and vivacious, and has its finger on the pulse of the LA jazz scene. CD release nights are common here and the weekly jam nights offer listeners a chance to catch the newest up-and-coming musicians in the city.

Whether you’re searching for jazz concerts in Los Angeles, or an intimate club where you can discover the newest rising stars, the Los Angeles offers tons of opportunities for music lovers. Happy listening!

 

Interested in Private Lessons?

Search thousands of teachers for local and live, online lessons. Sign up for convenient, affordable private lessons today!

Free TakeLessons Resource

Photo by bongo vongo

The Roxy

5 Iconic Hollywood Music Venues

Hollywood Music Venues It’s no secret that Hollywood is home to some of the most versatile and unique forms of entertainment. With the art of performance and entertainment deeply imbedded in the city’s roots since its early days, the amount of activities and music it has to offer can be somewhat overwhelming at times! If you ever find yourself in “the hills,” here are some of our favorite Hollywood music venues to check out:

The Viper Room

8852 West Sunset Boulevard, West Hollywood, CA 90069

This sophisticated yet grungy music venue is perhaps one of the most historical spots for live music that Hollywood has to offer. Despite its subtle look from the outside, history has been made on its neon-lit stage inside. Originally known as The Melody Room in the 1940s, it attracted a wide variety of mobsters with its melodic jazz shows and laid back environment.

It sports a low-key profile, with a maximum capacity of 250 people, so it feels very intimate. Sadly, on the first day of its opening, famed actor River Phoenix died of a drug overdose. Despite the early tragedy, the venue pressed on and has hosted many famed actors such as Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Aniston, Angelina Jolie, Jared Leto, Tom Hanks, Drew Barrymore, and its previous owner, Johnny Depp. Bands and artists such as Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Stone Temple Pilots, Oasis, Iggy Pop, Pearl Jam, and many more have performed at this colorful venue on Sunset Boulevard.

Troubadour

9081 Santa Monica Boulevard, West Hollywood, CA 90069

This historical venue opened in 1957 and helped launch the careers of several famed musical groups, such as Guns N’ Roses and The Eagles. Today, the Troubadour is known for its vast array of music, both local names and famous artists, that it brings forth. From electronic genres to pop and punk rock, this music venue may have just what you are looking for on any given night out in West Hollywood.

House of Blues

8430 Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069

The House of Blues tops the list of Hollywood music venues not only because of the artists that it attracts, but because of its impressive three-story layout, as well as 1,000 people capacity. The HOB Los Angeles has hosted many famed hip-hop artists and groups, such as Tupac Shakur, Odd Future, and Mac Miller, along with many famous blues and rock groups. The inside sports a nightclub, bar, restaurant, and of course a stage for its musical entertainment.

The Roxy Theatre

9009 Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069

This famous nightclub opened in 1973 and was the original home of the Rocky Horror Show performance in the United States. That one fact alone is enough to attract a wide audience to this unique venue. Bands and artists such as Neil Young, Genesis, Prince, and The Red Hot Chili Peppers have all graced the stage. Frank Zappa even recorded most of his album Roxy and Elsewhere inside the the walls of The Roxy in December of 1973. And to many, The Roxy will forever be known as the place where John Belushi allegedly partied before his tragic overdose in 1982. Because of these events, this venue has one of the most colorful histories in Hollywood, with the energy of past performances still felt every night in this corner on Sunset Boulevard.

Rainbow Bar & Grill

9015 Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069

Situated right next to the Roxy Theatre, this venue features two stories packed with a bar, dance floor, and restaurant. Perhaps not many venues on the Strip can quite compete with the sheer history and celebrity attractions this venue has provided over the years. On its opening night in 1972, then known as the Villa Nova restaurant, Elton John hosted a party and the building started accumulating iconic history from then on. It is even said that John Belushi ate his last meal here. Rumor also has it that Marilyn Monroe attended a blind date here with Joe DiMaggio in 1952.

Over the years, the establishment has served as a major hangout for various bands and their groupies, including John Lennon, Led Zeppelin, Alice Cooper, Poison, and even Elvis Presley.

 

There are so many Hollywood music venues to visit and concerts to check out on any given night. Get out there and start exploring!

 

Interested in Private Lessons?

Search thousands of teachers for local and live, online lessons. Sign up for convenient, affordable private lessons today!

Free TakeLessons Resource

Photo by Stepan Mazurov

USC

4 Los Angeles Music Schools for Aspiring Musicians

Top Four Music Schools In Los AngelesThe Los Angeles music scene is an epicenter for the entertainment industry. As such, Southern California boasts a number of renowned music schools for students seeking elite training in preparation for the professional music scene. The University of Southern California and UCLA are two of the leading universities in the nation, each with their own highly respected music program. There are also a number of other schools and programs in the area that are worth considering. The Los Angeles music students enrolled at these educational institutions are among the most talented worldwide and are well on their way to becoming the next generation of professional musicians.

University of Southern California

USC is home to the prestigious Thornton School of Music. This school features a world-class faculty of Los Angeles music performers, attracting gifted students from around the world. The school was founded in 1884 and has since become one of the most elite music training programs in the world. Students who graduate from the school earn positions with major orchestras, studios, and industry firms, performing on stages and in studios internationally. The school regularly partners with groups like the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Los Angeles Opera, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, The Recording Academy, and the GRAMMY Foundation.

The Thornton School offers a full range of music degree programs, including instrumental and vocal performance, composition, musicology, music education, jazz studies, music business and industry, motion picture and television scoring, and arts leadership. Both undergraduate and graduate programs are offered.

University of California Los Angeles

Music students enrolled at UCLA study at the Herb Alpert School of Music. The UCLA School of Music has more than 20 ensembles, and performance majors also participate in solo recitals throughout the year. The students at the Herb Alpert School train in one of several degree programs offered, including performance, composition, and music education degrees. One of the most outstanding features of the School of Music at UCLA is its musical academics, centered predominantly on the music programs for Ethnomusicology and Musicology.

The Colburn School

The Colburn School is a relatively young institution in Los Angeles, but it has grown to become a formidable partner among the more established music training schools. Founded in 1950 and originally called the Community School for the Arts, the school was renamed in the 1980s after Richard D. Colburn, a Los Angeles music benefactor. Colburn contributed enormous financial support for the school, transforming it into an independent non-profit.

Every year, more than 300 performances take place, often at no charge to the public, and its considerable outreach programs spread the joy of music and art to children and communities in need. The bulk of the intensive music training is done through the Colburn Conservatory of Music, which was founded in 2003. This program trains elite college musicians through an impressive coterie of internationally respected instructors. Also notable is the school’s dedication to helping its talented students by offering full coverage scholarships. In 2007, the Colburn School underwent a major campus renovation and expansion, resulting in improved classroom, rehearsal, and performance facilities.

University of Redlands

Located roughly one hour inland from Los Angeles is the University of Redlands. The School of Music provides a conservatory-like setting and approach to music training, with undergraduate and graduate degrees in performance, music education, conducting, and composition, as well as an Artist Diploma. Here students enjoy smaller class sizes and more personal, one-on-one teaching from the faculty. Students participate in various performances year-round with the variety of ensembles, including the orchestra, wind ensemble, jazz ensemble, jazz combo, choir, chapel singers, and percussion ensemble.

It should come as no surprise that Los Angeles and the surrounding region are home to an impressive selection of renowned training programs aspiring musicians. From small to large program sizes, classical to popular musical focus, performance to education degrees and beyond, these schools offer an elite education and professional guidance, while allowing you to pursue a career doing something that you love! If you’re serious about becoming a professional musician, look into these Los Angeles music schools, and find the one that suits you best. Good luck!

 

Interested in Private Lessons?

Search thousands of teachers for local and live, online lessons. Sign up for convenient, affordable private lessons today!

Free TakeLessons Resource

Photo by digitonin

Axl Rose

Music in LA: 5 Bands from Los Angeles Who Influenced The Scene

Influential Bands Who Hail From Los AngelesLos Angeles has long been the entertainment hub of the United States – and arguably the world. In addition to being the home of Hollywood movie studios, the Los Angeles music scene has launched the careers of some of the biggest names in the history of music. While having a passion for music from a young age puts aspiring musicians at a substantial advantage, being in close proximity to the Los Angeles music industry can be just as important. The following are a few of the most popular and successful bands that came out of the greater Los Angeles area:

The Beach Boys

The Beach Boys are one of the most iconic bands from Los Angeles County (Hawthorne, to be exact). The group formed in 1961 and signed with Capitol Records just one year later. The Beach Boys found their passion for music and worked together to create it while they were still in high school at Hawthorne High. While there, they were able to take advantage of their Southern California lifestyle that helped to shape their successful image and musical style.

Guns N’ Roses

Guns N’ Roses is one of the best-known heavy metal bands of the 1980s and 1990s. The band was originally formed by Axl Rose, Izzy Stradlin, Tracii Guns, Rob Gardner and Ole Beich. The group made waves early on by performing at iconic Hollywood clubs such as The Roxy and The Troubadour, and became a major staple in the Los Angeles music scene, before moving on to gain a national following.

Red Hot Chili Peppers

The Red Hot Chili Peppers are one of the most successful bands in history and have come a long way since their funk-rock roots at Fairfax High School in Los Angeles (Steven Adler and Slash, who later joined Guns N’ Roses, are also fellow alumni). It was during those years that the members of the band met each other and formed the group, thanks in large part to their shared passion for music during their early teenage years. Although the band has seen some roster changes over the years, the Red Hot Chili Peppers remain as popular as ever.

Rage Against the Machine

Rage Against the Machine is the iconic metal band that came to define a new wave of music that began in the early 1990s. Originally formed in 1991 in Los Angeles, Rage Against the Machine got their first taste of publicity as a band when they debuted at a house party in Orange County. Although it took a few years after signing with Epic Records for the band to truly become successful, their self-titled debut album would eventually go on to sell triple platinum.

Metallica

Metallica originally found its roots in the underground Los Angeles metal scene of the early 1980s. The band formed in 1981 with the help of a “drummer in need of metal musicians” advertisement in the Los Angeles newspaper The Recycler. On March 14th, 1982, Metallica began their journey into history with their debut live performance at Radio City, a now-closed venue in Anaheim. Metallica would eventually become one of the most successful bands from Los Angeles thanks to their fifth album, The Black Album, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 list.

One thing that all of these bands from Los Angeles had in common was a passion for music at a young age, and a willingness to learn from others. Could you be part of the next successful band from Los Angeles? Start working hard now, and you just might be!

 

Interested in Private Lessons?

Search thousands of teachers for local and live, online lessons. Sign up for convenient, affordable private lessons today!

Free TakeLessons Resource

Photo by Saad Faruque

Zimmer Children's Museum

6 Los Angeles Museums to Explore Culture and the Arts

Best Los Angeles Museums For Kids Los Angeles art museums are wonderful places for children to learn about many different areas of arts and culture. While most galleries and museums are designed more for older children and adults, some stand out as venues where youngsters are welcome to learn and explore the world of color and imagination. Here are a few of our favorites:

Getty Center

J. Paul Getty (1892-1976) left his priceless collection of art, sculptures, decorative arts, and furnishings to the public at the free Getty Center, located at 1200 Getty Center Drive. This is one the major Los Angeles museums with spectacular gardens and a view of West Los Angeles.

Children will enjoy the Family Room and its five activity coves, where they can decorate an illuminated manuscript, play with cameras and lenses, and build sculptures from tubes. They’ll also be fascinated with a hall of mirrors and a treasure hunt, which leads them to peepholes where they can get a bird’s eye view of the fine art in the galleries.

The Getty Center is an excellent place to spend an afternoon or a whole day exploring the modern building and its gardens.

Los Angeles County Museum of Art

The LACMA (5905 Wilshire) offers tons of great programs for kids, including the nation’s only free youth membership program, Family Sundays, Story Time each week, art classes for kids and teens, and even a special gallery where kids and family can make art together and learn about Asian brush painting and textile skills.

Zimmer Children’s Museum

This is one of the special Los Angeles museums created especially for children, located at 6505 Wilshire in the Goldsmith Center in the Miracle Mile. Here, kids can participate in story time and sing-alongs, create art projects, and much more. The museum also hosts playtime exclusively for babies every Wednesday morning, where babies and their caregivers can explore in a more relaxed setting.

Kidspace Children’s Museum

Take a trip to nearby Pasadena for the Kidspace Museum at 480 N. Arroyo Blvd. This is another of the Los Angeles art museums that explores science and art with exhibits, classes, and workshops. The Imagination Workshops gives youngsters a chance to create art from tubes, old toys, baskets, and other items. Kids can also drop in to classes to learn about soap making, mosaics, and more.

Children’s Art Studio

Color is everywhere at the Children’s Art Studio at 12401 Wilshire Blvd in the Brentwood area. This is where kids ages two through teens can discover the world of creativity through painting, woodworking, and pottery. Parents are also encouraged to participate alongside the kids, too!

Hammer Museum

The Hammer Museum, maintained by UCLA, is located at 10899 Wilshire Blvd at Westwood. This is another of the Los Angeles art museums that’s great to visit with the family. It’s sponsored by the family foundation of the late Armand Hammer (1898-1990), and houses his collection of classic and contemporary art, along with a variety of special exhibits. This museum also hosts lectures from local artists, and all programs are free to the public.

Art is everywhere in the Los Angeles area. This is one of the major advantages of living in a large metropolitan area! So next time you’re looking for things for kids to do in Los Angeles, take advantage of the many LA art museum offerings to help your children appreciate art in many forms.

 

Interested in Private Lessons?

Search thousands of teachers for local and live, online lessons. Sign up for convenient, affordable private lessons today!

Free TakeLessons Resource

Photo by Smart Destinations

Walt Disney Concert Hall

How to Find Classical Concerts in Los Angeles

Where To Look For Classical Concerts In Los AngelesResearchers and experts have long touted the benefits of learning about and listening to classical music. By being exposed to this art form, you can reap a wide host of benefits – for your health, your brain, your well-being, and more. And, of course, classical music is just a sheer joy to listen to!

However, if you want to start listening to classical music and are not familiar with the particular music scene in Los Angeles, maybe you’re not sure where to start looking. Fortunately, your city is home to a huge variety of opportunities for classical music lovers of all ages and levels. From world-renowned concert halls and prestigious universities to private lesson studios and radio stations, residents of Los Angeles can enjoy a virtually endless array of offerings for the seasoned or burgeoning classical music listener.

Professional Ensembles

Those not in the know will be delighted to learn that Los Angeles is home to one of the world’s elite orchestras. Currently led by international conducting superstar Gustavo Dudamel, the Los Angeles Philharmonic ranks among the most highly lauded musical ensembles in the world. The orchestra was founded in 1919, and every year more than one million listeners enjoy its classical music concerts in Los Angeles. Audiences can enjoy performances by the Los Angeles Philharmonic orchestra in one of two iconic and state-of-the-art concert venues: the Hollywood Bowl and Walt Disney Concert Hall.

Designed by celebrated architect Frank Gehry, the Walt Disney Concert Hall is located at First Street and Grand Avenue and was built in 2003. It is hailed as one of the most acoustically sophisticated performance halls in the world, providing any concertgoer with a feast for the eyes and the ears. View the season calendar for the Walt Disney Concert Hall to experience its pristine acoustics for yourself.

In addition to their regular concert season offerings, the orchestra is highly involved in community outreach, especially in music education for children. One of its most wide-ranging initiatives for classical music education is Youth Orchestra Los Angeles (YOLA). At the core of YOLA is the goal of building community and youth orchestras throughout the Los Angeles region. By doing this, the orchestra aims to extend the reach and beauty of classical music, as well as foster the next generation of classical music lovers.

Another wonderful opportunity for attending live classical music concerts in Los Angeles is the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra. This ensemble features elite performers playing a repertoire of classical masterpieces and modern works by contemporary composers. The pieces played by this chamber orchestra are typically from the Baroque and Classical eras, and are ideal for listeners who are interested in listening to more intimate, small-scoped works.

Universities

For a preview of the next generation of professional classical musicians, check out the performance calendar for the many universities in Los Angeles. The University of Southern California and UCLA are two of the leading universities in the nation and they also happen to have two highly respected music training programs. The students studying music at these educational institutions are incredibly talented and are well on their way to becoming future professional musicians. As such, the schools offer a full calendar of solo recitals, chamber music performances, and band and orchestra concerts throughout the year. Best of all: these performances are often free to the public!

USC is home to the prestigious Thornton School of Music. This elite training program features a world-class faculty of music performers and researchers, drawing in gifted students from around the world. The school opened in 1884 and is the oldest continuous-operating cultural institution in LA. Music students who graduate from USC have moved on to positions with professional orchestras, ensembles, studios, and industry firms, performing on stages throughout the world. The school frequently partners with professional groups such as the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the LA Opera, The Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, The Recording Academy, and the GRAMMY Foundation.

Don’t let the fact that they are students dissuade you from attending their concerts! The ensembles perform at an extremely high level and are often on par with professional groups. A calendar of performance events at the Thornton School can be found here.

UCLA is home to the Herb Alpert School of Music. Students training in music at UCLA have a wide array of opportunities for performing throughout the year, allowing residents and visitors to enjoy classical concerts in Los Angeles for little to no cost. Again, these concerts are a very high caliber and every bit a world-class listening experience for the classical music lover. The UCLA School of Music has more than 20 ensembles; in addition, performance majors also present a full schedule of solo recitals year-round. Performances both by students and the renowned faculty take place most often in Schoenberg Auditorium, Jan Popper Theater, and other locations on campus. For a relaxed mid-day musical experience, also check out the Music at the Med Noon Concert Series.

Visiting these music school buildings can open a wealth of additional listening opportunities. As budding professionals, the performance majors in both of these music programs frequently advertise their off-campus performance ventures on fliers and posters around the school, so you can easily find information about additional performances at area churches, coffee shops, bars, and other LA venues.

Radio Stations

Perhaps the most convenient method of listening to classical music in Los Angeles is to tune into the classical music radio stations in the area. There are two stations that offer continuous classical music programming. KUSC 91.5 broadcasts from the campus of USC and is a public radio station featuring art music programming. Be sure to also check out KMZT 105.1 FM for another classical music listening opportunity.

Freelancers and Private Teachers

Last but not least, if you’re looking for opportunities to attend classical music concerts in Los Angeles, those taking private music lessons can attend recitals and performances put on by your instructor. Los Angeles is an epicenter for musicians looking for opportunities to perform, and that means a vast network of freelance musicians, teachers, and their students offering various concerts and recitals throughout the community.

Finding classical concerts in Los Angeles doesn’t have to be difficult, as long as you know where to look! LA is such a hub for musicians, artists, and entertainers from the student level to the highest echelons of professional achievement, and music fans can easily find opportunities to attend performances of all types. Get out there and enjoy some classical concerts in Los Angeles!

 

Interested in Private Lessons?

Search thousands of teachers for local and live, online lessons. Sign up for convenient, affordable private lessons today!

Free TakeLessons Resource

 Photo by Roman Königshofer

Troubador

5 LA Music Venues Where Legends Got Their Start

Renowed LA Music VenuesLos Angeles is known as the place where stars are born and legends are formed. It’s not just Hollywood, either. From punk to hip-hop to indie rock to New Wave and beyond, LA music venues have launched the careers of some of the world’s biggest performers. From Echo Park to Compton to the Sunset Strip to North Hollywood, this is a city with history at every turn. This guide will discuss some of LA’s best and most historic clubs.

The Troubadour

No discussion of essential LA music venues would be complete without The Troubadour – known for both its drama and its history. This is where Lenny Bruce was arrested for obscenity charges, where John Lennon and Harry Nilsson got kicked out for drunken heckling, and where Janis Joplin spent her last night. Somehow, this tiny venue (maximum capacity is only 400) has a knack for fostering amazing talent. James Taylor, The Eagles, The Byrds, Carole King, Guns N’ Roses, and Pearl Jam all played key shows here, and it continues its amazing track record today. New headliners like Florence + the Machine, Lana Del Rey, and Odd Future all played their first gigs in LA here, and big names like Prince and Nine Inch Nails have been known to play secret shows at this venue.

Avalon Hollywood

With its cavernous 1,100-person capacity, insane acoustics, and amazing history, the Avalon is LA’s premier destination for house music and EDM. Skrillex, Wolfgang Gartner, Dada Life, and Bingo Players all got their feet wet here, and the Avalon’s weekly CONTROL Fridays continue to attract amazing up-and-coming DJ talent. The venue’s history goes all the way back to the 1930s, when it hosted everyone from Judy Garland to Tina Turner and played a key role in bringing New Wave to the US.  Back in the ’80s, the Avalon booked the first North American gigs for Duran Duran, The Clash, Eurythmics, Fine Young Cannibals, and many more.

The Smell

If you can get past the name of this venue, you’ll find that The Smell is a spot that’s always willing to take a chance on something new and exciting! It has played a key part in developing LA’s vibrant punk and noise scene. No Age, Mika Miko and Abe Vigoda all launched their careers at the venue’s all-ages shows, most with under-$5 covers.

The Radio/Radiotron

Perhaps no genre is more closely associated with LA than gangsta rap. The West Coast sound was born in basements and tiny LA music venues, and no club was more iconic for the scene than The Radio (a.k.a. Radiotron), located in MacArthur Park. Somewhere between a nightclub and a community center, it was a gathering point in the early ’80s for B-boys and several soon-to-be hip-hop legends, such as Ice-T, Dr. Dre, Jurassic 5, Air Force Crew, and Kurtis Blow. It’s also where the 1984 film “Breakin’” was filmed. Unfortunately, Radiotron shut down in 1985, but a recent push has brought back at least the dance competition side of things.

The Satellite

With its many free shows, notoriously discerning crowds, and beer fridges stocked with PBR, The Satellite has become a stomping ground for up-and-coming indie rock talent. Beck, Elliott Smith, Foo Fighters, Silversun Pickups and Foster the People all cut their teeth playing for the Satellite’s crowds (although it was first known as Spaceland), and it remains one of the city’s best and most eclectic LA music venues. On any given night, you may be in for a folk singer-songwriter, a horrorcore band, an electro-dance collective or something truly out there!

So, ready to start exploring the music scene? Check out one of the many venues or concerts in LA, and you’ll be in for a treat. And years from now, when the “next big thing” hits the airwaves, you might already know all about them!

Interested in Private Lessons?

Search thousands of teachers for local and live, online lessons. Sign up for convenient, affordable private lessons today!

Free TakeLessons Resource

 Photo by Charlie Salazar

LA Bookings

A Beginner’s Guide to Booking Shows in Los Angeles

Tips On Booking Shows In LAIf you’re a musician or you’re in a band in Los Angeles, you already know how much fun it is to play and record your own music! With that comes the flipside of having to book your own gigs, though, which can be a little perplexing for artists who are new to the scene. It’s important to play live shows in order to boost awareness of your band and also to improve your sound! Here are a few tips on how to get you, or your band, more shows in the Los Angeles area in order to keep heading down the path toward stardom:

Befriend Other Musicians

The best way to start booking shows in Los Angeles is by making friends. All this means is just having a good attitude, turning up at other shows in your area and chatting with people you’d like to get to know. Being genuine about making friends is the best way to learn more about the music scene in Los Angeles and get people interested in what you are doing.

Find Booking Agents

Booking agents are a valuable tool for you, and the more contact you have with them and the more personal your relationship with them becomes, the better! Remember, they deal with tons of musicians all day long, so anything you can do to help yourself stand out from the crowd will be helpful. For one, just be nice! No one likes someone who is demanding or entitled. Second, you may need to be willing to play smaller shows – for example, let them know that you are up for playing Monday night shows. You have to start small in order to grow big, and they’ll appreciate your flexibility and might throw you bigger gigs in the future.

Form a Community

As mentioned before, it’s important to maintain friends, and this should work toward building a community. Stay apprised of what other bands and artists in Los Angeles are doing. There’s sometimes a “you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours” kind of mentality in the music world, so go see small bands play and talk to them after the show. Follow bands whose music you are genuinely interested in, and your energy will come back to you in spades!

Play for Free

When you’re just starting out in the music scene, you can’t expect your music to pull in riches right away. Be humble and realize that there are hundreds of other people doing the same thing you are. The successful ones are working just as hard and doing everything they can to get their music out in the world. Send press kits out to booking agents, and always carry copies of your songs or CD with you, or at least business cards that let people know how to hear your music. The easier you make it for people to hear you play, the faster you’ll gain a following and start playing more shows in Los Angeles.

Booking shows in Los Angeles can seem a little daunting, but there are certainly ways that you can make it easier for yourself. Start small and slowly build a following, and venues will soon be reaching out to ask you to perform, instead of the other way around!

 

Interested in Private Lessons?

Search thousands of teachers for local and live, online lessons. Sign up for convenient, affordable private lessons today!

Free TakeLessons Resource

Photo by Licorice Medusa

Concerts At Staple Center

From the Troubadour to Staples Center: Your LA Concerts Survival Guide

Best LA Concert GuideThere’s no music like live music! And when you’re lucky enough to live in Los Angeles, you have countless opportunities to catch acts great and small at the many awesome local venues. Whatever kind of music you like or want to discover, going out to a concert in LA is a great way to spend an evening and perhaps even find your new favorite band!

Whether you’re checking out one of the intimate bars in LA for a small-time jam session, or hitting up the Staples Center for a massive spectacle of a party, every show requires some degree of preparation for even the most avid of concert-goers. But before you head out, prevent stress and maximize your fun by checking out the following tips for surviving LA concerts:

Before the Concert

Beforehand, think ahead about the logistics of the show, and what you’ll need to bring.

  • If you’re bringing kids along, make sure the venue allows them, the show is appropriate, and that you prepare for their needs (especially ear protection). Remember, just because a rock show says “All Ages” doesn’t necessarily mean it’ll be fun for a kid – and just because a show might be at the Walt Disney Center doesn’t necessarily mean it will be engaging for a young audience.

  • Dress comfortably, and take into account whether the venue has a coat check. At some venues, you might be standing all night, so wear comfortable shoes! It’s also smart to figure out how parking will work, and whether the venue allows re-entry, before you plan on stashing anything in the car. If you’re going to a show that you expect to be crowded, or if you expect to move around frequently during the evening, think twice about wearing that nice necklace or watch.

  • For large festivals that last all day or multiple days, don’t forget to plan for things like extra water, sunscreen, and food. Take a look at a schedule ahead of time, plan which bands you’d like to see, and be ready to compromise your itinerary as you go, just in case.

  • For one-night shows, think ahead about the venue’s rules, and don’t carry anything that could be considered dangerous. Many venues don’t allow backpacks or certain clothing items like bandanas or chains.

  • If you or anyone in your group has special needs, make sure the venue can accommodate them. Call ahead or visit the venue’s website, rather than playing things by ear at the door, or you’ll risk huge delays and possible disappointments.

  • Plan pocket space for your essential items, like your driver’s license and cell phone.

  • Get cash ahead of time so that you can visit the merch tables or tip your bartender without having to pay for ATM fees.

  • Most of all, don’t forget your tickets! If you have them on your phone, make sure the venue can scan them from your phone at the door. If you order your tickets to will call, make sure you know where and how to pick them up.

During the Concert

Once you’re at one of your favorite LA concerts or festivals, get the most out of your experience!

  • Plan rendezvous points ahead of time with friends and family to avoid stress. A good step is to immediately identify where smoking areas and bathrooms are, and use those or similar locations.

  • If you’re with a large group of friends, accept that people will split off, and if a lot of your friends are at the show, accept that you probably won’t get to see everyone. It’ll make your experience much less stressful!

  • Conserve your phone battery by turning off unnecessary apps, Wi-Fi, and just generally keeping the thing off unless you really need it!

  • Check out everything in the venue, from the bands’ merch tables to checking out posters from historic LA concerts decorating the walls at most concert halls.

  • Pace yourself if you’re at a show for a long day or for multiple days. Don’t spend all your money, party too hard, or get too caught up in planning!

After the Concert

The fun doesn’t end when the the last guitar pick hits the floor. Try these tips to make the most of the night, and sweeten the memories afterward:

  • Stick around on the floor (as long as you’re not in the way of the cleanup crew), or hang out near the front of the venue to increase your chances of snagging free or cheap copies of extra concert posters or other souvenirs.

  • Hang out at the bar for a minute after the last set. Sometimes, this can be a great way to meet band members! At mid-sized older venues with a lot of history, like the Troubadour or the Roxy, this can be a great way to learn something new and hear great stories about past shows.

  • Consider throwing an afterparty if nobody already planned one, or head to an all-night restaurant so you can invite all your new friends from the show!

  • Save wristbands, ticket stubs, and handouts for memorabilia, and post pictures of the show online if you’re so inclined. Your friends who missed the great night will be more motivated to join you the next time!

  • Visit the websites and Facebook pages for bands you liked. Some (like Iron Maiden) are known for posting pictures of their audiences and inviting attendees to tag themselves, and this can be a fun way to interact with them.

Whether you’re already a concert addict, or are new to this great way of getting out on the town once in a while, you’ll have a great time checking out new and exciting LA concerts. Going out and enjoying live music for an evening is good for your body, brain, stress levels, and creativity – and you might even meet some new friends!

Not sure what show to hit up tonight? Check out our guide to finding concerts in LA if you need some help getting started on this great new hobby. Enjoy the show!

 

Interested in Private Lessons?

Search thousands of teachers for local and live, online lessons. Sign up for convenient, affordable private lessons today!

Free TakeLessons Resource

 Photo by Neon Tommy