Nashville's Best Music Bars
These bars book fresh talent nearly every single day, be sure to check their calendars to see who might be gracing their stages.
Written By: Heather Byrd
Photographers: The Tennessean
12th and Porter
Byrd says: With an impressive sound and light production set up inside such a small room, this has become the epicenter for Nashville showcases in all musical genres, and by extension, a hotspot for industry insiders.
114 12th Avenue N., (615) 320-3754; 12thandporterlive.com
3rd & Lindsley
Byrd says: The new expansion proves that bigger is definitely better and has given diehard music lovers even more elbow room for taking in a few tunes with their Pabst.
818 3rd Avenue S., (615) 259-9891; 3rdandLindsley.com
Byrd says: The new kid on the 12 North block of the Gulch is sexy, unfussy, and one of the best late-night dance spots in town. Most evenings of the week kick off with live performances from a rotating roster of musical artists.
125 12th Avenue N.; anthemnashville.com
Bourbon Street Blues & Boogie Bar
Byrd says: It’s a Printer’s Alley staple and one of the few spots in town to hear the blues surrounded by a seasoned crowd.
220 Printers Alley, (615) 242-5837; bourbonstreetblues.com
Mercy Lounge/Cannery Ballroom/One/High Watt
Byrd says: Like water on a gremlin, the venue offerings on Cannery Row keep popping up—meaning a night on this block will net you some of the best rock shows rolling through town.
1 Cannery Row, (615) 251-3020; mercylounge.com
Byrd says: If Ron Burgundy lived in Nashville, this would be his go-to spot.
601 12th Avenue S., 615-248-2888; sambucarestaurant.com
The Upstairs Lounge at Valentino’s Ristorante
Byrd says: This gem offers live music six nights a week and caters to a grown up, sexy crowd. They keep it classy and jazzy and no one seems to mind a little stogie smoke.
1907 West End Ave., 615-327-0148; valentinosnashville.com
Byrd says: It’s a party in the front, music business in the back.
1516 Demonbreun St., 615-313-7103
9135 Carothers Pkwy, Suite 100, Franklin, 615-435-8100
1st Place — 3rd and Lindsley
TIE for 2nd Place — 12th & Porter and Tin Roof
3rd Place — The Stone Fox
Honorable mention to the 5-Spot