Raleigh is a Live Music Capital Nearly 365 Days a Year

Raleigh is the Live Music Capital

Visitors and locals alike can enjoy a live show taking place ANY night of the week, nearly 365 days a year.

Music is at the heart of Raleigh, North Carolina, especially live music. Visitors and locals alike can find a live show taking place ANY night of the week, nearly 365 days a year. The city’s buzzing music scene has garnered lots of attention, including the most recent feature in Vogue.com where it’s annual Hopscotch three-day music festival brings big names like Erykah Badu, Wye Oak, Andrew Bird, Solange Knowles and others to play small venues all over town. Additional spotlight has also been cast through The Most Music website and Nashville’s own Music From the Row.

From national and internationally renowned artists to up-and-coming independent artists, Raleigh is the place to be for the most bands; most venues; most genres–the most music!

But wait–there’s more! Good food and good music go hand in hand, so look for these Rock ‘n’ Roll Raleigh staff picks of our favorite restaurants, bars and music venues during your visit to enjoy a live show or two!.

To view the full listing, visit The Most Music.


Red Hat Amphitheater

The home of your finish line festival and post race concert (stay tuned!). This downtown music venue is a skip away from Raleigh’s bars and restaurants and holds 5,500. In 2016 Rock ‘n’ Roll Raleigh presented by WRAL hosted Gavin DeGraw and St. Lucia as the Toyota Rock ‘n’ Roll Concert Series headliner.

2016 Raleigh Rock n Roll Weekend Raleigh, NC April 8-10, 2016 Photo: Bruce Wodder@PhotoRun Victah1111@aol.com 631-291-3409 www.photorun.NET


Raleigh Times Beer & Banjos Series

This classic bar with old time meets hipster feel hosts Raleigh Times Beer & Banjos Series that features a different music genre, local and out of town talent for a night that pairs perfectly with their beer! Find pub fare paired with a fine selection of craft beers. The building was once home to the city’s newspaper, The Raleigh Times and The Evening Times. Today the building has been preserved and restored to house the restaurant and bar that pays homage to its original tenants through their namesake and newspaper clippings that cover the walls. Pro tip: Opt for the outdoor seating on the rooftop patio for the best views in downtown Raleigh

Photo credit: theculturetrip.com


42nd St. Oyster Bar & Seafood Grill

One of North Carolina’s most well known establishments, 42nd St. also holds the reputation of being worth the trip no anyone that finds themselves in the southern part of the United States. Aside from offering the best steamed oysters around, they pride themselves as being a Southern seafood tradition. The restaurant blossomed out of humble beginnings in 1931 as a grocery store that offered oysters and draft beer. It was re-established in 1987 and quickly rose to Be Raleigh’s premier destination for fresh seafood paired with spirits and food of equal quality. “Seafood any fresher would still be in the ocean,” rings true at 42nd St. Oyster Bar & Seafood Grill.

Photo credit: 42nd St. Oyster Bar & Seafood Grill


C. Grace Cocktail Bar

Travel back in time and experience a classic jazz club with a speakeasy feel. The lights are dimmed low and sophisticated drinks as well as classic cocktails are welcome accompaniment to the live jazz found five nights a week.

Photo credit: cdn.c.photoshelter.com


Hibernian Restaurant & Pub

The Hibernian Restaurant & Pub features old world flavors of Ireland with modern day flare. As is Irish tradition, the unique atmosphere of the restaurant combines the relaxing calm of a traditional Irish social club with the hospitable warmth of a Gaelic home kitchen. Find traditional dishes like shepherd’s Pie, fish ‘n’ chips and American favorites like sliders, burgers and more. Serving two locations in Raleigh, live music shows range from weekly to monthly.

Photo credit: bestboozer.com


Irregardless Cafe and Catering

Established in 1975, Irregardless Cafe offers farm to table eats freshly picked from their own community garden. Although their menu is popular for its vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free items, meat lovers will also find beef, lamb, poultry, duck and seafood. Enjoy live music every night of the week starting in the evening.

Photo credit: http://raleighpix.com


Rye Bar & Southern Kitchen

This is Southern food with class. This airy eatery is nestled in the heart of downtown and offers seasonal menus with fresh meats and produce, all locally sourced from N.C. farmers. Live music ranges from nightly shows to monthly performances.

Photo credit: ryeraleigh.com


Solas Restaurant Lounge & Roof

Solas sets itself a part from most restaurants and bars you’ll find in Raleigh. It offers an impressive three levels of entertainment complete with an outdoor patio, banquet room, ultra-lounge and dance floor. Sip specialty cocktails on the second floor while enjoying great music and a relaxing environment. The third floor evokes South Beach, Miami and continues the lounge feel with rooftop views of the Glenwood South neighborhood.

Photo credit: http://solasraleigh.com


Sullivan’s Steakhouse

Sullivan’s Steakhouse offers an exquisite experience for patrons–grab a big window seat and watch the world outside the two-story brick building, all while sipping signature cocktails, savory bites that double as art and swaying to live music. Enjoy live music throughout the month.


The Architect Bar & Social House

Located in a historic 1922 restored building, The Architect boasts charm and sophistication from the decor to the drinks. They offer craft beers and specialty cocktails in an elegant, yet welcoming and airy atmosphere.

Photo credit: The Architect Bar & Social House


The Big Easy

N’awlins tastes made their way to Raleigh with this Louisiana themed restaurant landed. Expect to find truly tasty Cajun, Creole recipes and generous portions in this laid back restaurant. Enjoy live Zydeco and Preservation Hall music every Wednesday night while you bask in the delightful atmosphere and food. Other genres are also featured throughout the month.

Photo credit: Joubert Photography


The Point at Glenwood

Locally owned and operated by Raleigh natives, The Point opened its doors in 2004 and has since grew to be a regular meetup spot to catch up with friends, clients, you name it. Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, they pride themselves on quality comfort food at affordable prices. Live music can be enjoyed Thursday and Saturday nights.


Woody’s at City Market

Established in 1993, Woody’s City Market is a sports bar staple frequented by regulars and visitors alike. The atmosphere is lively with trivia, coverage of live sporting events and live music taking place throughout the week. They’ve got award winning wings and host of traditional pub food ranging from Southern grilled cheese, philly cheese steaks, burgers, salads and more. Find live music shows taking place twice a week.

Photo credit: @ExploresThe919

Of course, there’s plenty of live music to enjoy in Raleigh both on and off the course. Don’t take our word for it. Grab a pal or rally your whole crew to partake in a race weekend in North Carolina’s capital city. You’ll get more music than you can handle, starting the minute you cross the Start Line to encounter live local bands along course, accompanied by cheer teams and spectators. Then it’s on to the Finish Line Festival and the headliner concert!

There were too many to choose our favorite, so explore the full list of live music restaurants worth exploring here.

Commit to running and rocking (to live music, pretty much everywhere, but definitely on course!) in Raleigh April 7-8, 2018.