From the HOB to The Rail Club: Your Dallas Concerts Survival Guide

Dallas Concert Guide And TipsWhether you’re a concert aficionado and catch new acts every weekend, or have never been to a live show before, you’ll definitely have a good time at one of many great Dallas concerts throughout the city. This diverse city offers audiences a plethora of contemporary and classic genres to choose from! Here you can check out everything from world-famous chain venues like the Dallas House of Blues, to totally different atmospheres at places like the Granada and The Rail Club.

Planning ahead for these concerts will help you minimize the stress and maximize the fun. Get ready for a great time at shows big or small, with this guide to enjoying Dallas concerts:


Logistics matter, and can make or break the concert experience if someone in your group can’t enter the show, can’t get back to the car, or can’t find a seat. Uncomfortable shoes and forgotten IDs aren’t any fun, either! Run through this list to make sure you’re prepared for your favorite concerts in Dallas.

  • Check the venue’s rules about children, if you’re bringing them along. Some shows aren’t necessarily appropriate for kids, and some venues (like most bars) have age restrictions. Also, consider bringing ear protection for the kids, as some shows get pretty loud!

  • If anyone in your group has special needs, check in with the venue about accessibility. Don’t wait until you’re at the door; call or visit their website before you determine the rest of your concert night plans.

  • Know how parking works so that you don’t have to spend extra cash or walk longer than you expected. Also, check whether the venue or festival allows re-entry, especially if you’re thinking of stashing something in your car that you might need later on, like a jacket.

  • Think about your clothes so that you’ll be comfortable enough to do lots of walking and standing. Depending on the kind of crowd you’ll be around, it might get rowdy, so think twice about wearing anything that could be damaged by a spilled drink. If you plan to stand close to the front at a crowded rock show, wear sturdy shoes instead of heels or flip-flops.

  • Plan a few essentials to keep on you, like your ID, cash, earplugs, and keys. Also, pull out cash ahead of time, so that you can skip the ATM fees when you’re buying merch, food, and/or drinks.

  • If you’re going to a big festival, think ahead about water, food, sunscreen, and planning your itinerary. Festivals typically have lots of bands playing back-to-back and often on multiple stages, so don’t end up with regrets – plan realistically, and give yourself time to get close to your favorite artists before their set starts.

  • Don’t forget the tickets! Some large venues (like the Gexa Energy Pavilion) can scan your tickets from a smartphone, but don’t a;ways make this assumption. Make sure you know how to pick up any will call tickets, or keep it simple and just bring printouts.

Enjoying the Night:

Even at the show, it’s easy to get distracted and miss out on the fun. Take a deep breath, relax, and make the most of the night by knowing what to expect.

  • Find important places right away, like exits and bathrooms. Identifying these will also help your party select rendezvous points; if someone loses contact with the group, those are usually good first choices for where to look.

  • Keep your phone charged, just in case you’re the one who gets lost! Turn off extra apps, Wi-Fi, and maybe even the entire phone if you really want to relax. It’s the best way to save the battery. (And if you’re packing for a big festival, consider bringing an extra charger!)

  • Let your group do their thing, and don’t be surprised if people split off. Similarly, if you expect to run into lots of people you know at the show, don’t be sad if you don’t get to say hi (or bye) to everyone – there’s always next time. Now, on the flip side …

  • Do make new friends! Be friendly and be open to meeting new people – concerts are an excellent way to meet other enthusiasts who share your tastes! Instead of pulling out your phone in between sets, introduce yourself to the people around you.

  • Go easy on the partying. Whether it’s drinks, merch, or moshing, it’s a good idea to pace yourself during Dallas concerts. It’s easy to overload on fun if you take it too fast, especially at a multi-day festival.

  • Walk the entire venue. Take advantage of at least one set break to take a look around, so that you don’t miss the hidden secrets the best concert venues in Dallas have to offer. Posters from history-making shows, unique merchandise from bands, unusual views of the stage, and more await when you explore venues to their fullest.

Partying On:

The cleanup crew might be hitting the floor and looking forward to getting home for the night, but as long as you’re not in their way, you don’t have to hurry out just yet. Wait out the traffic and cap off your favorite Dallas concerts with some extra memories.

  • See if the bar has a late-night scene, like a night owl happy hour. If you stay later, especially at smaller venues and bars, you may even get to meet some of the band members! If it’s quiet enough and the bartenders aren’t hurrying to clean up, they (or other staff) might have some great stories to share.

  • Look out for last-minute giveaways, like extra copies of freshly-outdated posters from the show.

  • See if there’s an after-party, or consider organizing one yourself! Alternatively, plenty of all-night diners and other restaurants (like Buzzbrews Kitchen) make for fun stops before you head home for the night.

  • Save the memorabilia, like your ticket stubs, wristbands, stickers, and handouts.

  • Share online about the great time you had! Venues and bands appreciate good reviews (and constructive criticism) of shows, so speak up on your favorite social network or review site.

  • Support the bands and performers you liked by looking them up and learning more about what they do, and buying tickets to their other shows.

Spending time with friends, learning new things, and listening to music are all great for your health – and let’s face it, they’re also much-needed fun! So take a night off sometime (or an entire weekend) and steep yourself in humankind’s universal language. Finding good concerts in Dallas is as easy as asking your friends or searching online for your favorite artists’ tour schedules, so there’s no excuse not to get started. Whether you’re finding old favorites, or trying something spontaneous and new, you won’t regret getting out more often for Dallas concerts all around town!


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Photo by Mariam Shahab

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