Los Angelenos enjoy a unique advantage when it comes to live music; as the heart and soul of the country’s entertainment industry, LA is home to a vibrant assortment of music venues that host performances in every genre. From taking in a Lady Gaga show at a massive arena to reveling in an intimate indie performance at a small club, there are countless opportunities to enjoy live music in Los Angeles. Here’s how to find out about the best concerts in LA:
Where to Look
Los Angelenos love their music, and local publications feed that desire by keeping the readers up-to-speed of the latest goings-on at any given time. In addition to featuring the latest music industry news and profiles of local musicians, LA Weekly offers a weekly column identifying their picks for the best concerts in LA on any given weekend. For a complete list of shows, check out the comprehensive, monthly Concert Calendar, which includes everything you need to know, from venue location to ticket price. Keep an eye out for free shows too, which there are plenty of!
ThrillCall.com is another source for finding concerts in LA — particularly if you’re looking for something to do at this very moment. Their “Featured Concerts Tonight” column points readers in the direction of what’s happening right now in LA. You can even sign up for alerts so you don’t miss anything major.
For a customizable view of what’s going on around town, sign up for Oh My Rockness, which not only creates a schedule of favorite artists and shows just for you, but even syncs with your calendar.
From small coffee shops to huge arenas, each stage offers a different experience to all breeds of music fans. WhereLA.com has compiled a handy list of Top 20 Venues for Live Music in Los Angeles, including a few “Must-See” favorites:
The Staples Center has become THE place for the industry’s hottest stars. Everyone from Taylor Swift to Beyonce has graced the stage of this 20,000-seat stadium. Both the young and the young at heart are sure to find something to love at this star-studded venue.
Perhaps no other music venue captures the essence of LA’s historic music scene quite like the Hollywood Bowl. Home to the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra and the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s summer season, this outdoor amphitheater hosts countless music shows every year. The Hollywood Bowl isn’t just a concert venue, though; it’s an experience shared by the city’s music-loving population, which makes it a great spot for kids to get an early taste of the performing arts.
Many an up-and-comer has graced the stage of the Hotel Cafe, the quintessential Hollywood spot for aspiring performers with just a guitar and a dream. Many of today’s famed singer-songwriters, including Rachael Yamagata, Sara Bareilles, Ingrid Michaelson, Anna Nalick, and Meiko, got their start on this humble stage. All shows at the Hotel Cafe are for the 21-and-over set, so get a sitter and make it a date night.
From free concerts to basement clubs, to world-class arenas and Hollywood hot-spots, Los Angeles is full of opportunities to experience a breathtaking array of live musical performances. Concerts in LA don’t only entertain, but are sure to awaken and inspire your inner musician.
Photo by dana robinson